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Re: another quattro goes down in its element

In a message dated 98-02-16 23:49:01 EST, you write:

<< I was in the fast lane with a group of cars, going the same speed as 
 everyone else....apparently there was alot more water on the road than i 
 thought...well, someone from the lane next to me decided to get in front 
 of me, but they were going significantly slower than i was...
 So i put on the brakes very slightly, andi guess that was enough to do it 
 somehow...the tail drifted out (btw i had my center diff locked), i tried 
 to recover,but there was someone in the lane right next to me, i kept it 
 from spinning, but cause i was in 5th gear, i didnt have enough torque to 
 bring it back in line, so i started to go onto the left shoulder...i kept 
 trying to recover before i hit the guard rail, but there was alot of mud 
 suddenly, so i ended up hitting the rail with about a 10 or 15 degree 
 angle...it didnt hit too hard, maybe i was doing 50 mph by that point...
 But i also almost bounced back into the fast lane, but thank god i was 
 able to control it by that point enough to keep that from happening...so 
 i didnt involve anyone else...
 It looks like the bumper cover is OK, although there is a small hole torn 
 in the top of it...the front quarter panel is ruined, the headlight is 
 out of alignment, the side marker light is busted..the drivers door wont 
 open because of the front quarter panel...it is dented along where i was 
 sideswiping the guard rail, although not too badly, the door handles are 
 badly scraped, the key in the lock turns with alot of resistance...same 
 thing with the rear door...neither of them seem to be out of alignment 
 with the rest of the body..
 The problem is hte rear side of the car, the whole back end seems to be 
 moved about an inch or two toward the passenger side of hte car...the 
 tailights need to be replaced...what scares me more, is the appearence of 
 the rear wheel.  It seems to have major camber, i dontk now which is 
 positive and which is negative...but the top of the wheel is further out 
 than the bottom so it is slanted like this: \  So i dont know what kind 
 of damage that is, whether i somehow hit hard enough in the back to 
 damage the subframe, or the control arm, or the hub...whatever, it doesnt 
 look good....
 Here is the real bitch of it all, i only have liability insurance, so i 
 dont think i can get the car fixed...
 i am ok, no bruises or anythin, im just really depressedabout this and 
 the rest of my life...it just wont stop happening to me...
 I play by the rules and dont speed, dont change lanes, and this happens, 
 i cant win..
 I hope that the rest of you have had a better day than i have...

     Unfortunatley your downfall was probably the fact that you had the center
diff locked.  With the center diff locked on a paved surface, i.e. where the
wheels cannot slip this causes the drive train to bind or store torque in it's
workings.  When you put on the brakes weight was transferred from the rear of
the car to the front, causing the rear end of the vehicle to rise.  This
sudden loss of weight on the rear tires casued them to "unbind" i.e. slipping
at the road surface, once that occurred the back end went it's own way.  How
do I know this, during an autocross I accidentally had my center diff locked
and the first time I nailed on the brakes and truned slightly, the ass end of
my 4000q went it's own direction.  This occured on several occasions the same
day until I realized what happened, the stupid diff lock lights didn't work..
The Audi owners manual only recommends locking the center diff if you are
driving in severe weather, snow, ice or mud, and also states the the rear diff
should only be locked if the vehicle is stuck...

Sorry to hear another Q bites it..