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3.73 vs 4.10 gears - fuel economy?


racsan

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Ive towed a V6 automatic 2wd ranger longbed with a 2.3 ranger before on a tow dolly, I dont recommend it but Ive done it. I have a box trailer, a 7x10 flatbed and a ranger longbed trailer. I dont tow much with the ranger anymore now that we have a escape, but at one time it was either the ranger or a hhr and I wasn’t putting a hitch on the hhr. Sometimes you just have to use what you have, I may get a mid-90’s 1/2 ton someday just for trailering, the bigger brakes alone would be worth it.
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Rock Auto 5% Discount Code: 7FA902352B4C01: April 5th, 2021

Dirtman

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I would not recommend doing this but...
56538
 

cbxer55

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Mine is a 3.0 V6 auto with 3.73s. I towed a trailer with two full size street bikes on it, and several hundred pounds of weight in a box on the front to get proper tongue weight, from CA to OK. It did okay, but I mainly had to keep the OD locked off, unless on totally flat ground or going downhill. And I-40 from CA to OK is pretty up-and-down. Didn't even use a tow bar, but a bumper ball.
 

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I would not recommend doing this but...
View attachment 56538
What's that weigh? 1,500? Thats within the tow limit on my 2.3. My 2.3 truck is rated for 2,700lbs. Yea not much but a bare trailer like that no problem.

My dad had a 92 s10 with every HD option available. I dunno the real tow rating, but it pulled a 26' grady white without issue and it was within the legal limit. People looked at my dad like he was insane but that truck never had a problem moving, stopping, uphill, downhill. If chevy didnt turn the s10 trucks to garbage I'd own one now because of that truck. The 4.3 with the 700r4 worked. Ford never beat it, chevy just gave up.
 
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Shran

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What's that weigh? 1,500? Thats within the tow limit on my 2.3. My 2.3 truck is rated for 2,700lbs. Yea not much but a bare trailer like that no problem.
Haha, I think the car trailer weighs somewhere around 2500lbs... the little trailer on top is like 300, maybe not even that.

I used my little 4 cylinder Ranger in the picture to pull the big trailer around the block a few times. I couldn't park trailers at my house when I lived there. It was totally doable, but I really had to ride the clutch to get it moving and always smelled clutch afterwards so I quit doing it. That picture was more or less just a poser shot that I thought would be funny for Facebook.

Actually I towed that car trailer with my V8 Ranger a few times. Other than horrible ride quality and needing an obscene 20" drop hitch to compensate for the lift, it was alright.
 

Roert42

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What's that weigh? 1,500? Thats within the tow limit on my 2.3. My 2.3 truck is rated for 2,700lbs. Yea not much but a bare trailer like that no problem.

My dad had a 92 s10 with every HD option available. I dunno the real tow rating, but it pulled a 26' grady white without issue and it was within the legal limit. People looked at my dad like he was insane but that truck never had a problem moving, stopping, uphill, downhill. If chevy didnt turn the s10 trucks to garbage I'd own one now because of that truck. The 4.3 with the 700r4 worked. Ford never beat it, chevy just gave up.
I’ve towed pretty close to the legal limit with my 4.0l ranger, never had any problems.

took a 18’ car trailer with a bmw about 600miles. Weighed something like 4500lbs maybe more.
 

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I towed my boat and trailer from Maryland to Kentucky and back with a 2000 2.5 with 5 speed. Old steel trailer + 3 marine batteries + boat + outboard were about 1800lbs I'd guess.

It was wood runabout, 2 rows of seating. 200lb outboard.

Other than having to go into 3rd through the mountains a bit it did fine, especially considering the engine is worn.

Towed a Uhaul from Maine down to Maryland that weighed in at 2700 loaded, it towed fantastic. Truck was in better tune at that time.
 

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I towed my boat and trailer from Maryland to Kentucky and back with a 2000 2.5 with 5 speed. Old steel trailer + 3 marine batteries + boat + outboard were about 1800lbs I'd guess.

It was wood runabout, 2 rows of seating. 200lb outboard.

Other than having to go into 3rd through the mountains a bit it did fine, especially considering the engine is worn.

Towed a Uhaul from Maine down to Maryland that weighed in at 2700 loaded, it towed fantastic. Truck was in better tune at that time.
You truck and mine sound like they're essentially the same.
What rear end ratio were you using on these occasions?

DCman
 

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wildbill23c

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My '98 is 3.45 geared with 5-speed and I regularly get 26-27 mpg.
Tires are still the stock P205/75R14s that are supposed to be on it. Across the board, those tires are generally around 25" tall.
My truck is fuel injected, which can increase fuel mileage by around 15% (varies depending on your driving style), so if your Ranger was carbureted, it still should've been around 22-23 mpg.
Its interesting that the fuel mileage increase so much, by the change in tire size.
I suspect it could do with where the engines power peaks occurred at a given highway speed.
Seems you were spinning the engine way faster than it needed to be, thus the low fuel mileage.
Taller tires slowed your engine down and probably put it at a more efficient rpm.
That's IS a surprisingly dramatic change, though.

EDIT: Decided to do the math...Didn't include OD gear, because I don't know if your old truck has the same ratio as mine, so this was all calculated in 4th gear (1:1).
@ 60 with 25" tires, engine's turning 3306 rpm. With 32's, it's only 2583. A difference of 723 rpm.
That's quite a bit.
Essentially, the taller tires are making the engine think the truck's only going 46 7/8 mph.
That sounds about right for fuel economy with your axle and tire size. I have the 215/70r14's with the 3.73 axle in my 87 Ranger long bed 4x2 and got 24.7mpg on a 300 mile round trip a couple months ago. Probably would have gotten over 25mpg if the return trip didn't include a 300lb haphazardly installed camper shell sitting on the truck that didn't fit right causing a lot of wind drag. I'd think with the OP wanting to go to a 4.10, I bet they'd still get in the low 20's on the highway with it pretty easily. I was doing 80mph on the highway on that trip and still managed almost 25mpg, so I can see 4.10's still achieving 20+mpg. Probably be easier on the engine too it wouldn't be working quite as hard. I wonder what my 88 Bronco 2 would do with 4.10's, its kind of feeling the struggle with the 235/75-R15's on it LOL, it originally had 205/75-R15's on it but went larger because its hard finding the factory tire size around where I live and the 235's seem to be easy to get.
 

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You're about spot on, with the mileage corrections, Bill.
I think if I swapped my 3.45's for 4.10's, my mileage would drop to around 22.5-23 mpg, based on the difference in road speed alone.
...still of two minds whether I wanna do that swap or not. Guess it depends if the truck's future is going to be more about pulling a trailer or camper....if not, I might spend the money on an LSD instead.
I believe your '88 Bronco was supposed to have P205/70R15's on it, due to the stupid Consumer Reports article that also demonized the Suzuki Samurai due to handling issues with both vehicles (hey people, they ain't sports cars!).
If your Bronco II has 3.45's on it, swapping to 4.10's will pretty much correct the speedo.
According to my calculations, 205/70R15's are about 25.2" tall.
235's are 29" tall.
To put everything back to square, compensating for the increase in tire height, the 3.45 gears would have to be swapped to 3.97's...except no one makes that gear ratio (unless you paid $$$$$$$$ for a custom diff), so the next closest thing would be 4.10's.
You grab a tiny bit extra dig out of it, but I doubt anyone'd notice the difference between 4.10 and 3.97....maybe.
 
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wildbill23c

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You're about spot on, with the mileage corrections, Bill.
I think if I swapped my 3.45's for 4.10's, my mileage would drop to around 22.5-23 mpg, based on the difference in road speed alone.
...still of two minds whether I wanna do that swap or not. Guess it depends if the truck's future is going to be more about pulling a trailer or camper....if not, I might spend the money on an LSD instead.
I believe your '88 Bronco was supposed to have P205/70R15's on it, due to the stupid Consumer Reports article that also demonized the Suzuki Samurai due to handling issues with both vehicles (hey people, they ain't sports cars!).
If your Bronco II has 3.45's on it, swapping to 4.10's will pretty much correct the speedo.
According to my calculations, 205/70R15's are about 25.2" tall.
235's are 29" tall.
To put everything back to square, compensating for the increase in tire height, the 3.45 gears would have to be swapped to 3.97's...except no one makes that gear ratio (unless you paid $$$$$$$$ for a custom diff), so the next closest thing would be 4.10's.
You grab a tiny bit extra dig out of it, but I doubt anyone'd notice the difference between 4.10 and 3.97....maybe.
I think so as well. I've been thinking about adding an LSD to my Bronco 2 lately as well. My Bronco 2 has 3.73's in it. It doesn't do too bad but fuel economy has gone down quite a bit with the 3x larger size tires on it...Yes, I believe it originally had 205/70R15's on it, closest I had when I got new tires right after I bought it was 205/75R15's, they were cheap Starfire tires, and by cheap I mean cheap...supposedly a 40 or 50k tire, I managed to get 27k out of them and they were worn out and falling apart already LOL. I have Cooper Discoverer AT3 4S tires 235/75-R15's on it now. The speedometer is 5mph off no matter what tires it has, I think the speedometer is just screwed up in it to begin with. Broke the speedo cable in it, new one in it and it still sticks, and is still 5mph off so ehh LOL...however comparing the odometer from one side of town to home between the Ranger and Bronco 2 which was about a 4 mile trip the odometers between the 2 is only 2 tenths of a mile off, which makes no sense but whatever LOL. I just drive 30mph according to the speedometer when I need to go 25mph and its spot on. I have no idea what the PO did to that Bronco 2 but nothing was good that he did LOL.

I would like to add a LSD to my Ranger as well, but its about 100% useless in snow anyways without any weight in the bed LOL. An LSD in it wouldn't do any good with an unloaded bed, it spins both rear tires just fine in snow without an LSD HAHA!!
 

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I have a 3.73
You truck and mine sound like they're essentially the same.
What rear end ratio were you using on these occasions?

DCman
I have a 3.73 rear end , open differential. I'd like to have an e-locker and 4.10 gears in it someday.
 


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