Braking and rocking techniques for the dunes
We all know someone we would describe as an adrenaline junkie – always looking for fun and thrill. If you know that someone, share this article with them. Below are two techniques that have been proven to be safe and exciting at the same time that you can execute on Oman’s dunes.
Hand brake technique
If, when crossing the dune at an angle, there was not enough acceleration. The car sat on its belly, hanging on both sides, i.e. the diagonally opposite wheels hang in the air and rotate are several options for resolving the issue.
In any case, do not try to simply leave at the expense of gas supply and wheel slip – you will only aggravate the situation with this and create additional difficulties for yourself.
First, determine which side of the dune the vehicle weighs more. You need to lower the car down in the direction where the greater weight is shifted, regardless of whether it is front or back.
Next, turn on the range multiplier (downshift) so as not to overload the clutch (manual gearbox) and not burn the clutches (automatic gearbox). Evaluate how free of sand the wheels are; maybe some of the wheels are better to dig first.
Look, if the car is equipped with a forced rear axle differential lock, turn on the lock, and very slowly, just starting and immediately releasing the gas, not allowing even one complete turn of the wheels at one press of the gas, try to move the car.
In this case, when the lock is activated, the second rear wheel in contact with the sand starts to rotate. If the car starts to move – every 3 centimeters matters, continue slowly repeating the described actions until you drive the car off the top. At the same time, accompany the car’s forward movements with a slight rotation of the steering wheel. This will help to quickly free yourself from the sandy captivity.
If the machine is equipped with a limited-slip differential (LSD), after preparatory actions with the transmission and sand under the wheels, tighten the handbrake just enough so that the engine can turn the wheels at low acceleration. This will activate the rear axle differential lock. Ensure that both rear wheels rotate. If not, tighten the handbrake until you achieve the desired effect – activating the differential lock.
Afterwards, begin with slight turns of the wheels to remove the car from the dune’s top. As practice shows, the method of using the hand brake is possible even if there is no blocking in the rear axle at all.
If, while driving in sands, you did not correctly calculate the trajectory of movement, and the car got into a sand crater, or simply ended up in a place with very soft sand, and it is not possible to leave – when trying to move – the car is just buried. You need to apply the following technique: In any case, do not try to simply leave due to the gas supply and wheel slip – you will only aggravate the situation by this and create additional difficulties for yourself.
Remove excess sand from the wheels if you are already buried. Shift down and start moving forward very smoothly (or backward, which seems easier) and applying gas no more than when evacuating from the top of the dune (a technique described above).
After driving 3-5 cm, stop, engage reverse (reverse gear) and move the car in the opposite direction clearly in your tracks 7-10 cm, or more, if the surface allows.
Do not under any circumstances allow the wheels to slip; otherwise, all work will go to waste. Then again, follow your own footsteps, move in the opposite direction, each time lengthening the path travelled by centimeters.
What’s happening? If the car moves back and forth without skidding, after a while, the tread marks become clearly visible on the sand, which indicates its appearance of hardness; thus, you “rolled” your foundation under the wheels in the form of hard sand. As you remember, moving on hard sand is much easier.
The firm track length should be at least 5-6 meters, which will provide sufficient acceleration at a smooth start to obtain the initial acceleration of the car and allow you to ride out of the soft sand. In this case, it will be correct to leave the funnel after you have rolled your starting track, accelerating in a circle along the walls of the funnel, each time increasing the radius. With sufficient speed, get the car out of the funnel and continue your journey.
All of the above situations may require longer shoveling depending on how hard you set your vehicle in the sand. In the worst-case scenario, there is always a chance to flatten the wheels and get out of any situation.
It should be borne in mind that low pressure in the wheels entails the risk of disassembling the wheels. We suggest looking for the best tire brands in Oman to equip your vehicle with.
At first, implementing all the above techniques may require exceptional patience and high concentration of attention. Do not be discouraged if it does not work out the first time – mastery comes with time. If you have mastered all the above tips and tricks, rest assured – the desert will submit to you!