CLFish5

AWD on the beach?

84 posts in this topic

On 2/2/2021 at 2:17 PM, CLFish5 said:

I’ll gladly take that link! I’ve been looking for a dedicated beach buggy. But have struggled to find one that passes the test with the wife!

 

im not sure If my cx5 can handle it

CX5 will not handle it, we've had two back to back models of CX5 from 2013 to 2019. Subaru, yes! Tried Accent, Forrester, and Outback no issues, all stock air down, enjoy. 

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16 mins ago, riggler said:

I have recently seen these on the road, very sharp vehicle !

So you can lock the axle differentials independently from the cab?

Is the price point comparable to gm/chevy suburban or tahoe ?

It is smaller than both of those noted above. As my dad has had Tahoes( 3, models over 22 years) so I speak from a 2021 on Tahoe in size compared to a 2019 Telluride.  Yes, locks out from inside can and requires less than 25mph orbit shifts out automatically.  We love the telly. Great miles has averaged 20mph living in Boston mix of highway and city driving over 17,000 miles. 

 

Price wise were leagues apart. A fully loaded telly is mid to high 40's. Ours was $43k and mid level with some adds. But the mid level has the fit and feel of a higher end car with leather seats,  heated and cooled  etc. Tahoe or suburban are not compared @$65-80k new. But, they are bigger if you need room for a family of 5 or 6 and all your gear it may not fit inside. 

 

Overall ide give it 9.5 out of 10. Only because its really hard to find 1 due to demand and no deals in fact it may be over list. But, it's still worth it. We haven't had a "single" operational issue in 17k. Which you hope with a new car but,  it was also year 1 of the vehicle and they still nailed it. 

 

Just get one!

 

Ctown

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3 hours ago, z-man said:

Do you have any proof of any of this? My truck works much harder driving up a long hill or towing a trailer than it does on the beach. I’ve never blown up the transmission, AC, etc. You’re making driving the beach seem much more difficult than it really is. 

Must be running PSI above 15....

2 hours ago, C.Robin said:

You have a group of people who think a Toyota Camry can get on the beach no problem, and another group of people who think you need a tank and an extensive beach driving course to drive on sand. Reality is somewhere in the middle.

 

Let the air out properly and anyone can drive on the beach. My 1985 Subaru Brat sat low enough that half the time the center of the undercarriage was dragging/plowing sand while I drove it. Never had a problem but I did air down to 8 PSI....   

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3 hours ago, riggler said:

I guess all i have to go with is i have been on beaches and off road a little better than 40 years, starting with junk that i had to keep going through learing, in many  cases the hard way.  Also being a self employed contractor (rigging,welding, and excavation) who owns and maintains  his own equipment.

I tend to keep stuff that i like for as long as possile, so i operate with that in mind.

My current beach vehicle is a 1999 i bought new, it went through my wife and kids, has 225k on it, and is excellent on the beach. I had other vehicles in between but i like this one the best so i use it the way that will keep it going the longest. Using low range when appropriate lets all the systems work better and last longer, i have a lot trouble free hard and easy beach miles to prove it. I have rebuilt a couple of automatic transmissions, I hope to never have to again. If you saw how they work and the little bit of friction material that does the work you would understand my thought process.Maybe you dont keep your stuff long enough that wear doesnt matter, have at it.

  Obviously since most of the first beach buggies were 2 wd and they made it work, I suppose your point has validity,

perhaps it is just where you are or where you plan to go.

 There are times you can walk on the beach in high heels if you want, but some of the places I go can be trecherous and at times actually impassable , maybe you dont get that challenge where you operate. There are times when airing down also seems un necessary , but it is done as a courtesy  for others that use the track.

I wish you well on your beach travels and hope you dont have to get educated tbe hard way.

 

I’m usually at Race Point which is probably the deepest sugar sand anywhere. Look how deep my tires are in the sand in this picture. I can drive that in 2WD when aired down to 11PSI. It’s really not difficult, ease into the throttle and keep your momentum and you can go anywhere. 
 

A0500893-F356-4B7A-B1A9-D91B222846D2.jpeg

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  I guess we will agree to disagree.

It is true that any modern vehicle can pull the beach in 2 or 4 wd high range, probably all of 80% of the time, especially with tires running at low pressure.

 But I also know that the hardest work a drivetrain experiences is low speed travel combined with low engine speed, whether that is backing a loaded trailer up a grade in to a parking spot, or chugging through the sand . Highway travel, towing or not may be tougher on the engine, but the trans is operating in a way better environment, allowing to shed internal heat that can cook them over time.

 Using low range will give the drivetrain a lot less load, which in turn will help it to live longer, those are facts.

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14 hours ago, riggler said:

  I guess we will agree to disagree.

It is true that any modern vehicle can pull the beach in 2 or 4 wd high range, probably all of 80% of the time, especially with tires running at low pressure.

 But I also know that the hardest work a drivetrain experiences is low speed travel combined with low engine speed, whether that is backing a loaded trailer up a grade in to a parking spot, or chugging through the sand . Highway travel, towing or not may be tougher on the engine, but the trans is operating in a way better environment, allowing to shed internal heat that can cook them over time.

 Using low range will give the drivetrain a lot less load, which in turn will help it to live longer, those are facts.

You shouldn’t be chugging through the sand you should be floating on top of it. You either aren’t letting enough air out or your tires are too narrow. When I’m driving on the beach I’m not giving much more throttle than driving down on street. The truck is not working hard at all. 

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So when your dragging your differentials in that soft sugar sand you mentioned or crossing from one set of tracks to another, it is hardly any different than driving on the road ? 

like i said previously, we will agree to disagree

Edited by riggler

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I appreciate the conversation going on. I'm new to this as well and hoping to do some beach driving with my '14 outback. From what I'm hearing it can be done with caution but there are definitely better tools for the job. But it's the vehicle I have and it is capable.

I'm curious to hear your perspective @riggler My intended use is primarily limited to driving on a section of beach that is probably about 4 miles round trip, probably 20 times at most in a season. It's not an incredibly soft beach but there are a few deep sections. Beyond taking the precautions not to get stuck, airing down, having the right equipment if I do. How much concern would you have for the abuse to the drivetrain given that much use.

Edited by NMurray

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2 hours ago, NMurray said:

I appreciate the conversation going on. I'm new to this as well and hoping to do some beach driving with my '14 outback. From what I'm hearing it can be done with caution but there are definitely better tools for the job. But it's the vehicle I have and it is capable.

I'm curious to hear your perspective @riggler My intended use is primarily limited to driving on a section of beach that is probably about 4 miles round trip, probably 20 times at most in a season. It's not an incredibly soft beach but there are a few deep sections. Beyond taking the precautions not to get stuck, airing down, having the right equipment if I do. How much concern would you have for the abuse to the drivetrain given that much use.

  While I have no actual beach experiences with awd subarus (other than headgaskets...long story) I do see them on the beach and they appear to take their drivers anywhere they want to go, common sense and lowered tire pressures help.

 If I was using one on the beach I would want either the standard or the automatic transmission, definitely not the cvt model. If your using it on the beach as much you plan to I would find the tallest tire that can practically fit on them without modification, and with a moderate or all season/terrain tred pattern, not off road. I would try to keep the vehicle in the lowest gear available when using it on the beach, unless you are one of those beaches that can support someone in high heels...... I would also at the least make sure the differentials and transmission have fresh fluid/lube in them, and I would check the axle cv joints and covering boots to make sure they are dry with no rips.  Check your alloy wheels to see if the aluminum is getting "fuzzy".....a lot of older alloy wheels exposed to road salts and chemicals and ham fisted tire guys will get a bit crusty where the tire bead seats against the wheel, causing occasional hard to find leaks and can make running low beach tire pressures a bit nerve racking. On a couple of my past vehicles i ended up cleaning, sanding, and painting the wheels to stop the leaks. Between roadsalt, beach sand and salt, and a lower ground clearance, trying to keep the underside clean will make it last longer. A  garden hose and cheap lawn sprinkler is your friend. A few times a year (preferably when it is warm with minimal humidity) i set up the sprinkler on the lawn, and give the underside a bath from engine to back bumper. Turn on let go for 5 to 10 minutes, move down a few feet and repeat.

Some may say it wont help, I say it cant hurt.......

If you a person that keeps your vehicles for a while, this stuff is cheap insurance. If you change vehicles fairly often it probaly doesnt matter all that much. Good luck on your beach trips ! May I ask where you fish ?

 

 

 

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Thanks @riggler I mostly fish at Breezy Point. I've taken the outback out there a few times without issue but looking to learn and figure out the "right way" to do things. I've got AT tires and a portable compressor, plus all the various rescue items. Just need to get a full sized spare. The '14 outback only comes with a donut which is disappointing.

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7 hours ago, riggler said:

So when your dragging your differentials in that soft sugar sand you mentioned or crossing from one set of tracks to another, it is hardly any different than driving on the road ? 

like i said previously, we will agree to disagree

so should not your over heating transmission light come on and tell you your pushing.....just sayin.......is that not what it is there for....

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1 hour ago, beret said:

so should not your over heating transmission light come on and tell you your pushing.....just sayin.......is that not what it is there for....

Usually when that light comes on the proverbial goose is half cooked....and if your halfway through a sandy wash and said light comes on, what are your options ?

Shut it off and wait for it to cool down in a rising tide or a quarter mile away from breaking fish? Or keep going and make transmission fluid frappachino ?

Im not talking like this is an everyday occurrence, or even something that happens on every beach every season.......just if your tires are aired down, and the going is such that you need to go to 4wd, why not put in low range if it is available ? It beats the equipment a lot less.....

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