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Drivetrain Tech General discussion of drivetrain for the Ford Ranger.

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  #26  
Old 04-19-2005
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In your FX4, it is a 5R55E and the manual would have been a M5OD R1HD.
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  #27  
Old 04-19-2005
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I love manual transmissions. I have one in my Ranger and the 3.0L is better suited to it in my opinion. I have driven the 3.0L with auto tranny and it feels like a dog. I will always own manuals in vehicles of this size because it makes me feel like I am in control and not some electro gizmo. I hate electronics and me and electronics dont get along at all. That being said, I have an 04 F350 diesel in auto tranny only because diesels are faster as auto trannies as tests have proven. Since I tow with it it made more sense. Its all a matter of preference but like I said, the Ranger 3.0L Vulcan feels like a dog in anything but a manual tranny.
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  #28  
Old 04-19-2005
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Can't argue with THAT, lol!

My 3.0 is not fast with the auto -- but it does what I need it to and constantly surprises me. Racing is NOT one of it's strong suits, however!
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  #29  
Old 04-19-2005
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I hate my manual... (I'm gettin lazy)

My next truck going to have a automatic...
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  #30  
Old 04-19-2005
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I'll add this: if I were buying a truck specifically for towing, snow plowing, or off-roading, I would almost certainly get an automatic. For everyday driving, and nearly every on-road situation (except bumper-to-bumper traffic) a manual transmission is far preferrable for driving "fun."
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  #31  
Old 04-20-2005
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here's to my next Ranger with a diesel engine and a 6 speed automatic transmission
because off road is where it goes and traffic is a part of living in the NY metro region
now my 2 door convertible - that will be a manual....
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  #32  
Old 04-20-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wowak
I'll add this: if I were buying a truck specifically for towing, snow plowing, or off-roading, I would almost certainly get an automatic. For everyday driving, and nearly every on-road situation (except bumper-to-bumper traffic) a manual transmission is far preferrable for driving "fun."
exactly how i feel.. i hit traffic everyday in the city though, so, auto it was.
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  #33  
Old 04-20-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rand
The 7% more power fact isnt supported by any dyno of a 4.0 ranger I have seen.
Rand
You haven't seen the right dyno then. Bottom line is, a manual transmission of similiar size and capacity of a relative automatic will always have less parasitic loss than the auto...
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  #34  
Old 04-20-2005
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Originally Posted by 3LiterBeater
You haven't seen the right dyno then. Bottom line is, a manual transmission of similiar size and capacity of a relative automatic will always have less parasitic loss than the auto...
I call Bull**** on that. Well, I'm the second person to.. still you're obviously making that up. I'd love to see a dyno proving that. Not that it'd be possible to do w/o using about 10 auto trucks of same type and 10 manual trucks of same type, each using different size engines. Take an auto class, maybe you'd learn something. Actually, take a debate class, you threw out a strawman argument with no evidence.

Aaron

(Ok i realize this was really attacking, buts its 11:30, forgive me i like my sleep.)
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  #35  
Old 04-20-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Red_Ak_Ranger
I call Bull**** on that. Well, I'm the second person to.. still you're obviously making that up. I'd love to see a dyno proving that. Not that it'd be possible to do w/o using about 10 auto trucks of same type and 10 manual trucks of same type, each using different size engines. Take an auto class, maybe you'd learn something. Actually, take a debate class, you threw out a strawman argument with no evidence.

Aaron

(Ok i realize this was really attacking, buts its 11:30, forgive me i like my sleep.)
Call it BS if you like but it's true. An automatic uses some of the available engine power to run a high pressure hydraulic pump and turn more parts with more friction. Unlike manuals, automatic transmissions must have a large heat exchanger in the radiator to get rid of the internal heat. Energy that is rejected as heat is energy that is lost to power the vehicle.

Still, I don't think that's a good reason to reject an automatic. They are far better than they used to be and are nearly on par with a manual in terms of fuel economy and real world performance.
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  #36  
Old 04-20-2005
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My motivation for buying a manual was I hope to one day own a SVT cobra mustang, where an auto is not availible so I wanted to know what I was doing before I bought a high performance car. Since I learned how to drive a manual I can say I really enjoy it. I have driven manuals before but not on a daily basis. However if I had known about ford rating the manuals for less towing ability I would NOT gotten a manual. What can you really tow that is only 3700 lbs anyway I mean come on. I plan on getting some kind of camper soon but I am uncertain what exactly. I might end up getting an F-150 also just to pull the camper, and keep my ranger around just as my toy.
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  #37  
Old 04-20-2005
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My first vehicle ('84 Ranger) was a 3 speed automatic. Total piece of crap, spewed trans fluid whenever you got over 70mph.

After I wrapped that around a tree, I got a '91 Ranger STX with the 5-Speed stick. I learned how to drive manual on that and once I got the hang of it, I absolutely loved it. There is just something fun about about it, especially after you get good at it and can do it without the cluth.

However, where I commute for work, I-95 is a parking lot in the afternoon on Friday, Saturday, & Sunday in the summer. My left leg got very tired of that. My '03 now is an auto and I'm glad just because it is easier in traffic. I still enjoy driving a standard when the opportunity arises.
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  #38  
Old 04-20-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ranger1
However if I had known about ford rating the manuals for less towing ability I would NOT gotten a manual. What can you really tow that is only 3700 lbs anyway I mean come on.
Not just Ford. A manual from any manufacturer will likely be rated for lower towing capacity than an automatic, provided there is not some other overall limiting factor like brakes, tires, suspension or power.

I wouldn't hesitate to pull the automatic rating with my manual as long as I could be sure that I would not have to launch it from rest on a steep hill.
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  #39  
Old 04-20-2005
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I was calling be on the 7% figure not that automatics have a higher driveline loss.

I saw a dyno of a 4x4 automatic ranger it was 165hp peak (dont have the dyno handy) the manual 4x4 was 172... hardly 7%

Now if you compare say a 3L 4x4 vs a 3L 4x2 I am sure its more than 7% diff.

But anyway its bs unless you have dyno sheets to prove it as far as I'm concerned. Its more like 3-5% depending on options
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  #40  
Old 04-20-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by n3elz
Happens in any topic I get in. Don't know why.
For the record it wasn't my idea either, although I seem to be neck deep in it now..
Quote:
Originally Posted by n3elz
Colin, I'm not talking about TRANSMISSION breakage: I'm talking u-joints, CV's, driveshafts, etc. The auto cushions the torque delivery and preserves the entire drivetrain. They use autos to save the whole drivetrain. You missed the point.
I didn't miss the point at all, I was bringing up another one, that automatics have historically been more delicate and far more expensive to repair than manuals. I admit things are changing in that respect very quickly, and the new 5-speed autos, as I mentioned, seem to be a big step. But there still have been quite a few reports of problems. Wasn't it Christian that had massive problems w/ his auto as soon as he went to taller tires?!

And even then the Ranger is probably a bad example as the manual trans and clutch are sort of known weak spots of the whole product. But even still.. I think it was Bob who I was talking to in Centralia last year. He said something along the lines of: The new auto is nice, but I'd still rather have the stick. Sure the Mazda trans is a peice of junk, it always has, but for the price of minor repairs on the auto you could have a whole new manual trans!

I'm sure I'm paraphrasing here, but I think that was his general point.

And it isn't ALL about crawl speeds and off road performance either. At least not in my case..

And that still doesn't even address to the 'fun-factor'..
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  #41  
Old 04-20-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NHBubba
For the record it wasn't my idea either, although I seem to be neck deep in it now..
I didn't miss the point at all, I was bringing up another one, that automatics have historically been more delicate and far more expensive to repair than manuals. I admit things are changing in that respect very quickly, and the new 5-speed autos, as I mentioned, seem to be a big step. But there still have been quite a few reports of problems. Wasn't it Christian that had massive problems w/ his auto as soon as he went to taller tires?!

And even then the Ranger is probably a bad example as the manual trans and clutch are sort of known weak spots of the whole product. But even still.. I think it was Bob who I was talking to in Centralia last year. He said something along the lines of: The new auto is nice, but I'd still rather have the stick. Sure the Mazda trans is a peice of junk, it always has, but for the price of minor repairs on the auto you could have a whole new manual trans!

I'm sure I'm paraphrasing here, but I think that was his general point.

And it isn't ALL about crawl speeds and off road performance either. At least not in my case..

And that still doesn't even address to the 'fun-factor'..
I see both sides of this discussion but I have to agree with John on this point: For the type of offroading he does, he would be screwed if he had both a manual and 2WD. The 2:1 torque multiplication of the torque converter gives him a partial substitute for the 2.48:1 multiplication that the 4x4 manuals have in low range. (Actually, it's not quite as good as it first appears because the manual also has a lower 1st gear in the trans.) Nonetheless, as long as traction can be maintained and the terrain doesn't get too steep, a 2WD auto can get by without a two speed transfer case on slow, technical terrain. A stock 2WD manual would be hard pressed to do the same and would likely need regular clutch replacements as a result.
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  #42  
Old 04-20-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rwenzing
I wouldn't hesitate to pull the automatic rating with my manual as long as I could be sure that I would not have to launch it from rest on a steep hill.
I've heard you say this before and find it comforting. I about had a heart attack when I saw the towing specs (after I signed on the dotted line irronically!) on my new truck. But then I went back and reviewed the specs on my old '99 XL Sport and quickly realized that I just had to have exceeded that on several occasions too. Your explanation of the rating and testing system definitely sheds light on that..
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wowak
I'll add this: if I were buying a truck specifically for towing, snow plowing, or off-roading, I would almost certainly get an automatic. For everyday driving, and nearly every on-road situation (except bumper-to-bumper traffic) a manual transmission is far preferrable for driving "fun."
That's a great point too. Personally I'd like to have 3, 4, maybe 6+ cars in my stable. Each specially suited for it's intended purpose. There'd be a diesel HD pickup (or SUV or van) for towing, an econobox for commuting, probably a luxury vehicle for longer trips, a sports coup for fun, and hopefully an off road toy for playing on the 40 acres of land the garage that housed all these things would sit in ... but back here in reality I can't afford all that. I for one needed one do-everything vehicle. And after months of searching I thought my Ranger was a pretty good match for that. The class III hitch is the towing component. The comfy seats, cruise and AC is the luxury element, and the 4x4 is the off-road/all season element. However the manual trans is the 'fun' element.

In the end it's all a personal decision. It is quite true, the auto vs stick divide becomes blurier and blurier as time marches on. And there are ups and downs to both options. In the end it depends largely on what is important to you..
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  #43  
Old 04-20-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NHBubba
In the end it's all a personal decision. It is quite true, the auto vs stick divide becomes blurier and blurier as time marches on. And there are ups and downs to both options. In the end it depends largely on what is important to you..
Exactly! ^^^
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  #44  
Old 04-20-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rwenzing
I see both sides of this discussion but I have to agree with John on this point: For the type of offroading he does, he would be screwed if he had both a manual and 2WD.
Quite true. But then I think it could be argued that John's use is just a little outside what the original design probably called for! In fact he does far more (and more intense) off-roading than I do in my comfortably equipped 4x4.

As w/ anything I guess it depends on your intended use. If you're into 2WD offroading to the extent John is, or do a lot of in-town, in traffic time then the auto is probably a better choice for you. However if you do some mild off-roading now and then, don't see much traffic, and enjoy working the gears youself, then the stick deserves looking at..
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  #45  
Old 04-20-2005
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All great points. Let me add my to pennys!!

If John's case, 2wd 3.0L with 35's an auto is the way to go. I'm not sure a maunal will hold up well. All that "clutch slipping" in order to get the rig rolling. Than add to it some off-roading, that clutch is going to be toast!

But now if you have 4wd and a choice of auto or manual. I'm going to go with manual all the way. Yes the big boys (rock crawlers) are going auto's for reasons that John said. But us, mild wheelers. I as manual.

Sand hill's which I've done alot you need speed and power to make it up the hill. The bad part about an auto is right near the top of the hill the auto down shifts to 1st and you usually end up digging to china. With a manual I can get good speed in 2nd 4Low and still have enough torque to keep the tires spinning but not digging to china.

Rocky, steep hills, this depends on how steep the and how much speed you need to climb the hill. If you can just crawl up it, either auto or manual will be just fine. Control is the key.

Rock climbing, this can go back and forth for years. The manuals down fall is the stop and restarting, that rolling back part, but one should jsut beable to let the clutch out w/o rolling back. But what I like about a manual when playing on rocks is gear selection. Say I try a rocky small hill, I go at it nice and slow but end up not making it. I can try gassing it but 1st 4low won't gain much speed, instead I'll try another gear 2nd. In an auto by the time it was in 2nd it would shift back down to 1st.

Its all a trade off. And everyone has their own likings.
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  #46  
Old 04-20-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rwenzing
Not just Ford. A manual from any manufacturer will likely be rated for lower towing capacity than an automatic, provided there is not some other overall limiting factor like brakes, tires, suspension or power.

I wouldn't hesitate to pull the automatic rating with my manual as long as I could be sure that I would not have to launch it from rest on a steep hill.
Yeah I never gave any other manufacturer a thought (because I wont buy one) but i don't blame ford I know thats just how it is.

I don't know about pulling the auto rating because there are good size hills all around me, maybe if I put a stronger clutch in.
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  #47  
Old 04-20-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ranger1
Yeah I never gave any other manufacturer a thought (because I wont buy one) but i don't blame ford I know thats just how it is.

I don't know about pulling the auto rating because there are good size hills all around me, maybe if I put a stronger clutch in.
A stronger clutch will take more abuse before failing but it doesn't solve the basic problem. There is a short period of time where the clutch must be slipped to get it rolling. During that time, your throwing away power to heat. When fully loaded, you just don't have that much to throw away.

If you get a 150, it will have a similar problem unless it's an automatic. A larger engine, tougher clutch and bigger rear gears would help but not eliminate it. Plus the truck itself would probably be heavier and that's part of the GCWR.

A few years ago, I was towing with a 5.0L, 4.10 F-250 manual. If I remember correctly, the GCWR was 7500 lbs., so it wouldn't have any advantage over your Ranger manual.
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  #48  
Old 04-20-2005
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Originally Posted by SuperSonicFX4
All great points. Let me add my to pennys!!

If John's case, 2wd 3.0L with 35's an auto is the way to go. I'm not sure a maunal will hold up well. All that "clutch slipping" in order to get the rig rolling. Than add to it some off-roading, that clutch is going to be toast!

But now if you have 4wd and a choice of auto or manual. I'm going to go with manual all the way. Yes the big boys (rock crawlers) are going auto's for reasons that John said. But us, mild wheelers. I as manual.

Sand hill's which I've done alot you need speed and power to make it up the hill. The bad part about an auto is right near the top of the hill the auto down shifts to 1st and you usually end up digging to china. With a manual I can get good speed in 2nd 4Low and still have enough torque to keep the tires spinning but not digging to china.

Rocky, steep hills, this depends on how steep the and how much speed you need to climb the hill. If you can just crawl up it, either auto or manual will be just fine. Control is the key.

Rock climbing, this can go back and forth for years. The manuals down fall is the stop and restarting, that rolling back part, but one should jsut beable to let the clutch out w/o rolling back. But what I like about a manual when playing on rocks is gear selection. Say I try a rocky small hill, I go at it nice and slow but end up not making it. I can try gassing it but 1st 4low won't gain much speed, instead I'll try another gear 2nd. In an auto by the time it was in 2nd it would shift back down to 1st.

Its all a trade off. And everyone has their own likings.
You can put the automatic in 2nd and it wont shift down...

Last edited by Rand; 04-20-2005 at 03:31 PM.
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  #49  
Old 04-20-2005
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^^^ Is that true? I thought it did. I thought it would shift into 1st or 2nd when in the '2' position..
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  #50  
Old 04-20-2005
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Originally Posted by NHBubba
^^^ Is that true? I thought it did. I thought it would shift into 1st or 2nd when in the '2' position..
It depends on the manufacturer. Some companies transmissions shift through 1 & 2 when in indicated "2". Fords have traditionally started out and remained locked in second gear. In low traction situations, snow for instance, it is sometimes easier to control wheelspin in a higher gear and get unstuck.

Current Ranger automatics are really weird because, in indicated "2", they start in 3rd gear and remain in 3rd gear. 3rd gear in the 5RXXE is the same as 2nd was in the 4RXXE. For reasons known only to a committee somewhere, they kept the indicator as "2" when the gear became 3rd.
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