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Dodge Ram - II

meredithmeredith Member Posts: 575
edited March 2014 in Dodge
This topic is a continuation of....

Topic 460 Dodge Ram.

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Comments

  • markcordmarkcord Member Posts: 113
    The current Kelly Safari DTR's I am running are 33x12.5x15 on an 88 GMC with 2" suspension lift.
    I installed these about a year ago but am getting the impression that they will last quite a while. The BFG's that I got 45K out of were driven mostly in the city (so lots of corners). Were it not for the sidewall separation problems I would have purchased them again. I plan on going to 33x12.5x16.5 Kelly DTR's on my new V10. My suspicion is that "sako" is experiencing minor tire rub on his 2500 because of wheel depth and/or offset. When I get my Kelly's they'll be mounted on 8" wheels (as they currently are on my GMC).

    markcord
  • eric16eric16 Member Posts: 38
    Got a call from dealer with a price on a 2000 Ram 2500 Qcab 4X4 Cummins, the prices was 75.00 off of what the web site Carprices.com listed. So the rumor about the option prices being rolled over from 99 must right.

    Eric16
  • skippy470skippy470 Member Posts: 5
    I have 1998 Ram Quad cap 4X4. I have been noticing a loug ping when I shift from park to reverse. I also have noticed hard and abrop shifting. Is this just a normal Dodge Transmission or is there something wrong? I have had it to the dealer a couple of times and they have not found anything. any comments please
  • KCRamKCRam Mt. Arlington NJMember Posts: 3,516
    skippy,

    Some drivers get this if they normally park on an incline. A recommendation is to start the truck, then shift into Neutral during warm up - this permist better fluid flow than Park and should cut down on the hard shifts.

    kcram
    Community Leader/Smart Shopper Conference
  • igemmineigemmine Member Posts: 6
    We will soon be placing an order for our new 2000 3500 quad cab, but have a few questions and would really appreciate any advice we can get!!
    Will be using the truck much of the time to haul a 11 foot truck camper that will weigh in at about 3500 pounds. On occasion we might also pull a small trailer. Which engine should we order for our truck the v-10 or the 5.9. If we do get the v-10, does anyone have a guess as to the mpg with it and the camper and with the truck solo?
    We appreciate any and all input.
    thanks.
  • rlkruegerrlkrueger Member Posts: 98
    which engine,
    The only issue with the V-10 is gas mileage to my knowledge. But it's a b-i-g issue, at 8 miles per gallon. The 3500 comes with a 35 gal tank, so figure about 280 miles between stops, in reality its less if you aren't intending to refill when you have only fumes left. Plenty of power, quiet, and gas stations are everywhere. ( They better be with this hog...) People buy the V-10 when they don't want to deal with the extra noise that accompanies the diesel, or the smell of the exhaust. There is no warmup period or cooldown period required after a run as there is with the diesel. Turn it on and go, and when you get wherever you're going, shut it off, simple as that. That fairly well presents the + and - of the V-10 I think.
    Aside from power generally equal to the V-10, you have the great gas mileage available with the Cummins. Another big factor is the proven reliability and longevity of this fine engine.
    The vast majority of 3500 owners opt for the diesel for all their pulling requirements. It is a true workhorse, and can loves to run under constant load all day long without a whimper.
    I have a new 99 3500 Cummins, and I love it.
    It rides beautifully, gets 17 mpg back and forth to work, and 20 mpg on the highway. Your's will be a little different, admittedly, as they are upping the torgue and HP for 2000 for the Cummins, so with the premise that there is no free lunch, I suspect that the mileage figures may drop slightly, but they will still be twice as much probably as the V-10.
    I have about 5000 miles on mine, and there isn't a drop of oil anywhere on or under this engine. It's a beautiful machine.
    For rearends, my guess would be that you should opt for the 4:10, if that is available for 2000.
    Even though the output is higher for 2000 and the Cummins will no doubt pull your load down the highway with the 3:55, you should select your rear end for other conditions that will load down the truck with your camper, such as long steep grades, or mountain hills. It will lower your top speed somewhat, but it will cruise all day at 75 at 2400 RPM with the 4:10's.
    There is a very knowledgable person monitoring this and other topics by the name of "kcram". He has all the specs you need and some very good advise. I'm sure he will offer his own personal brand of guidance to help you in your decision.. This is my two cents worth.

    rk
  • KCRamKCRam Mt. Arlington NJMember Posts: 3,516
    thanks rk :)

    igemmine,

    A 3500-pound camper will be right at the load limit of a 3500 QC, so low-end power will be an issue in terms of getting moving. You don't mention your choice of transmission. If you have no qualms about driving a stick and can hold out until January, get the ETH-code Cummins and the 6 speed manual - it will not even flinch with that camper on its back, and even 4.10s, as rk said, will not destroy your fuel economy. If you're looking to order now, I would say the ETC-code Cummins with manual or the V10 with either trans will get that load moving. Your decision will be fuel economy savings vs. purchase price - spend the $4000 up front for 50-100% better fuel economy and higher resale value, or spend less now and pay much more in operating costs (fuel in particular). The Cummins with automatic will be the weak link of the bunch, since it has noticeably less torque than the V10 or the manual-trans Cummins.

    The other criteria is hills. If you travel them, get the Cummins with either transmission. The turbocharger will keep you in proper power and air pressure, while the V10 will begin to gasp.

    Granted, no Dodge dealer will let you strap on your camper to a truck in stock for a test drive, but as a recommended to rk, drive the various combinations and make a seat of the pants evaluation. Obviously all the trucks will be slower with the load, but the relative differences will be the same.

    kcram
    Community Leader/Smart Shopper Conference
  • stecksteck Member Posts: 1
    I just bought a 1999 Dodge 1500 Quad Cab with the 5.2 engine and short box. It seem to sit higher than a lot of pickups I have seen. Is there an easy way to lower the truck and make it look a little nicer and be easier to get in and out of. It's two wheel drive with an automatic and 6400 lbs GVWR. It has P245/75 R16 tires and wheels.
  • goldrushgoldrush Member Posts: 20
    Hi all,

    Still reading but not posting much. Just thought I'd update again. Have 5600mi on my 99 QC Cummins w/ 6 spd. Have had no problems. Towed a 4500 lb trailer/load yesterday in the mountains. Went up hills in 5th with no problem and mileage was 17.8. The truck rode like a car with the trailer weight behind it and the cummins seemed to love the extra work! I love this truck.
  • skippy470skippy470 Member Posts: 5
    I tried starting my truck and putting it in neutral and that seamed to help the loud ping. kcram have you heard of any problems with the transmission of the 5.9. a couple of times my transmission will down shift 2 - 3 gears when I step on it at 60-65 mph. Almost like I was on ice and the wheels were spinning. Don't get me wrong I love my truck but it is the first I have owned. Is it just me, am I to use to a cars transmission??????? Do I have new truck owner paranoia????

    skippy
  • KCRamKCRam Mt. Arlington NJMember Posts: 3,516
    skippy,

    The 46RE automatic did have some problems about 3-4 years ago (early "deaths" on 95 and 96 Rams with the 5.9 V8 and the 46 trans were well above average), and some torque converter changes were made. Sounds like your TC is out of adjustment, or the bands may need to be tightened up. Don't buy the "normal" or "they all do that" line, because they don't. Ask for a full transmission service (pan gasket, screen cleaning, band adjustment, new fluid and filter) and ask them to look carefully for more than usual shavings in the pan. That would signify a problem beyond what a road test would show.

    kcram
    Community Leader/Smart Shopper Conference
  • sakosako Member Posts: 25
    i dropped my 2500 4x4 qc cummins off to get the 33/12.50x16.5 tires put on. i'll pick it up tomorrow. i'm posting this 'cuz in an earlier post i said i needed to lift the truck 2" for this tire & rim combo, but in reality you just need to install what they call a leveling kit to the front end due to the tire rub when turning(this adds about 2" of lift to the front), this may be as aluded to earlier by others, that my rims are the real culprit, because of width or offset or both. i'll try to scope this out when i get my truck back, 'cuz i don't know the rim width or offset.
  • ladyblueladyblue Member Posts: 326
    skippy:

    I have the same noise when I put my '99 Ram 1500 in reverse. Not all the time - just occassionaly - but then my truck is newer than yours. I will be interested to see what the outcome of your problem is.

    ladyblue
    Community Leader/SUV Conference
  • brett039brett039 Member Posts: 56
    Well, I finally did it! Just bought my new truck. And I might also point out that I've been a loyal Ford truck owner for 10+ years and this is my first Dodge. I love it so far (only 1 1/2 days...) and get a real "kick" out of the diesel sound.

    I have some questions but let me give you the specs on the truck. 1999 2500, QC, 4x4, Shortbed, Cummins, Auto, 3.54 LS.

    I've been reading these postings for over a month now, so I'm aware of the pluses and minuses of the Cummins. Could someone give me some info on the proper "care" for my diesel? "Do's and Don't" to make it last longer, etc. I have always taken very good care of my vehicles and want to continue the habit. The type of info I'm looking for is... Warming-up before driving, frequent starting and turning off, etc. I don't want to treat it like a gas engine because I know they're two completely different "animals". Any advice / comments welcome.

    Thanks in advance...

    Brett
  • sakosako Member Posts: 25
    picked up the eweminator 'n by golly it sure looks nice with those 33" tires & weld rims. kinda like a ram should, i thinks. ok the rims are 16.5 x 9.75 and the offset is 4 5/8". this combo requires the leveling kit i mentioned earlier to avoid problems. i'm not sure but you might be able to use 285/75r16 'n not have to buy the leveling kit, but i'd be doing my homework beforehand to make sure. judging by the tach 'n speedometer it looks as if this new combo did nothing to alter the speedometer reading. i'll update if i find out this not true. rammin' it
  • rlkruegerrlkrueger Member Posts: 98
    Here's my suggestions:

    > Do fill up at stations that get a lot of traffic. One's that don't get an accumulation of water in their fuel tanks that will find it's way into yours.

    > Do read your owners manual and be loyal about following recomendations.

    > Do allow your engine to warm up before you take it out. I allow the needle to move off the 140 mark before starting off to work. If you are towing a large load or otherwise intend to load up the Cummins immediately after departure, make sure it is at full operating temperature. In the summer, I start the truck about 5 - 7 minutes before I leave, in the wintertime I will buy the special Cummins Bra for the front which allows you to restrict the air intake to the grill to maintain proper operating temperature and allow for quicker warm-ups.

    > Assuming you change your oil at the 7500 interval, make sure you have the auto trans oil and filter changed. After the first time, repeat the auto trans procedure every 12,500 miles.

    > Due to the Turbo, you must allow time for cool-down, otherwise you risk damage to this unit.
    This is especially important after a hard run, either towing/hauling or running fast on the Interstate. My last mile coming home is at 40 mph on a level road, so I give it about two minutes to cool down. Pulling off the Interstate after running 75 - 80 mph, it will take 10 - 15 minutes to get the temperature down. ( Summer ) I use the instrument guage to guide me, but there are devices made to measure temp directly off the Turbo, such as the one by TST.

    > Do use a wintertime fuel additive at each fillup if you live in the cold climates.

    > I'm sure there is a bunch of other stuff, but read farther back in the topics, because kcram has answered this very question posed by myself and others before. It's like Ragu Spaghetti Sauce, it's in there...
    Also, check out the Cummins RamPage website, there is a wealth of answers to your question, and others you haven't thought of yet in their FAQ's.
    You can send them e-mail (takes about a week for a reply), or, they actually prefer you call them with your questions using their posted number.

    Here's the TST site:
    http://www.tstproducts.com/

    Here's the Cummins site:
    http://www.Cummins.com/ram/ram.html

    Remember: Big boys can't have their toys without debt :-)

    rk
  • KCRamKCRam Mt. Arlington NJMember Posts: 3,516
    in particular, this may help lgemmine

    The 2500 and 3500 will offer larger tires for 2000. This makes the 4.10 axle MUCH more economical than the 1999-and-earlier trucks. mathematically, the 2000s with 4.10 axles are equivalent to 1999s with a 3.73 when equipped with factory tires. Beginning with 2000s, I am going to change my recommendation to the 4.10 for all Cummins and V10 buyers.

    kcram
    Community Leader/Smart Shopper Conference
  • rlkruegerrlkrueger Member Posts: 98
    kcram,
    I realize there will be an increase in both torque and HP for the Cummins for 2000, but what else besides a software upgrade are they changing, if anything?

    thanks,
    rk
  • KCRamKCRam Mt. Arlington NJMember Posts: 3,516
    rk,

    So far, that's it. It may very well be the Cummins uprate kit that they are offering for 24V/manual transmission combos right now. The uprate voids the warranty because it exceeds the 5 speed's torque capacity, but the 6 speed manual can handle it with no sweat.

    kcram
    Community Leader/Smart Shopper Conference
  • skippy470skippy470 Member Posts: 5
    I was just wondering if anyone knows which is correct. I own a 1998 1500 sport quad cab with the 5.9 liter v8. my owers manual says I should run regular unleaded gas (87 octane), one technigition at the dealer says I should run 89-92 octane and another says the 87 is fine. does anyone know which I should run in my dodge?
  • brett039brett039 Member Posts: 56
    Thanks, rlkrueger, for the info on the proper care for the Cummins Diesel.

    Now I have a few more questions that popped up over the weekend. Any comments/advice from anyone would be appreciated.

    I have a 2500 w/Cummins, Auto, 3.73 LS. I will be towing a 5,000# trailer soon and was wondering if I should tow with the O/D off on the highway? When I got on the highway with it turned off (no trailer), the RPM's seemed way too high at 55+ MPH. I only felt the tranny shift 2 times (e.g. in 3rd gear). Does turning off the O/D simply eliminate the 4th gear or should it still shift into 4th?

    I used to run my old bronco with the O/D off to eliminate the excess stress on the tranny by constantly shifting in and out of high gear.
    I've read about the Dodge Auto Trans having problems in the past, so I want to take every pre-caution to keep this from happening to me.

    I take numerous trips through the mountains towing my boat, so I know I need to take this into consideration.

    Also, how long should I wait to tow my boat? I've had people tell me a break-in period isn't needed before towing and others tell me to put 1K miles on it first. Currently, I'm taking the safe approach and waiting to tow.

    Thanks
    Brett (New and Proud Ram Owner!)
  • jcmdiejcmdie Member Posts: 594
    I have essentially the same unit as you - a '98 quad cab 4X4 sport with 5.9. I have used regular 87 octane gas - just like the manual reccemends, since I got it 21,000 miles ago. No problems with it. Always go to a station that has a good turn around on thier gas. It will have less sediment, water, and be fresher. The only exception is never get gas right after the station got a shipment because the fresh fuel entering thier tank will stir everything on bottom.
  • KCRamKCRam Mt. Arlington NJMember Posts: 3,516
    Brett,

    The TSBs are only performed when a problem is determined, and that won't be observed until someone drives it regularly, so only saftey recalls are perfromed on lot vehicles, not TSBs.

    As for what they are:

    18-11-99 reprograms the Cummins ECM (the engine computer suppled by Cummins) to make sure you're getting the proper fuel and airflow settings for correct torque output.

    18-02-99 reprograms the Mopar computer for the automatic transmission settings. This cures a problem where the torque converter will frequently lock and unlock in 3rd or 4th gear when it should stay locked. One would feel surging and erratic rpms under this condition.

    18-08-99 adjusts the cruise control system to prevent a "surging" feel while using cruise control.

    kcram
    Community Leader/Smart Shopper Conference
  • KCRamKCRam Mt. Arlington NJMember Posts: 3,516
    Brett,

    oops, forgot to answer your earlier post.

    First, you have either 3.64 or 4.10 axles (I'll guess 3.54 if you did not specifically ask for or see an option listing for the 4.10).

    Definitely leave OD off when towing. Your Cummins has more than enough power, torque, and efficiency to not need the extra speed of OD, and all the tranny will do is constantly shift back and forth.

    You "felt" two shifts, but the second one was not a shift at all - it was the torque converter locking. This does cause a reduction in rpm because now you essentially have a direct mechanical connection like a manual transmission.

    As for break-in, the official word from both Cummins and DaimlerChrysler is no break-in is necessary, but almost everyone I know with a Cummins waits til about 1000 miles, changes the oil, then hooks up the hitch :)

    kcram
    Community Leader/Smart Shopper Conference
  • cdeancdean Member Posts: 1,110
    Brett

    the break in probably isn't as critical to the engine as it is to the transmission and rear end.

    Definitely tow in 3rd, not in OD. The problem with the transmission is not that it will shift too much; it might, but the Cummins is strong. Shifting doesn't cause stress, it causes excess heat, that makes your oil less protective. But the main reason you should tow in 3rd, is that your transmission gets more oil flow, better lubrication, and better protection in 3rd because of the higher RPMs. It would tow fine in OD, but all the torque generated at low RPMs by the Cummins would cause stress levels that are too high for the amount of oil being circulated at those lower RPMs. hope i didn't confuse you. Just tow in 3rd, and enjoy!
  • madmackmadmack Member Posts: 39
    Is it a good idea to get the 4 wheel anti-lock brakes? I ordered a 4x4 2500 QC with the diesel. Advantages ....Disadvantages?
    Thanks
  • rlkruegerrlkrueger Member Posts: 98
    kcram,
    Just had the 18-11-99 and 18-02-99 installed today. The Mech said it added about 15Hp and increased the torgue. It immediately improved throttle response I noticed.
    Also, he said Cummins is coming out with a 7.3L, that must be the one installed in the "SnowMaster" or whatever that thing is called.
    Question: Is there a web site where I can obtain current TSB's for my vehicle?

    thanks,
    rk
  • skippy470skippy470 Member Posts: 5
    Without sounding dumb can someone explain to me what a tsb is and is it only for the Cummins???
  • KCRamKCRam Mt. Arlington NJMember Posts: 3,516
    madmack,

    4WABS is only good if you live in an area with lots of traffic and you have no intention of ever leaving paved roads. It is actually detrimental off-road.


    rk and skippy,

    TSB - Technical Service Bulletin. A TSB is issued when vehicles exhibit a common problem amongst any particular model, but it is not deemed to be a safety hazard, nor will every vehicle so equipped encounter the problem. They are issued by the manufacturer, and are not limited to any one specific make, model, or engine.

    To see all the Dodge Ram TSBs from 1994 to now - my source, by the way :) - click here to my friend Dave Fritz's excellent Dodge Ram site. Once there, choose Frames or Non-Frames, then click on the "Technical" link.

    Nothing in the Cummins press releases about a new industrial engine, but it's possible. The only reason I would doubt the size is because of the displacement - it would split the B and C series engines (the Ram uses the B5.9, there are aso B3.9 and B3.3 four cylinder engines) - the C is 8.3 liters. A new agricultural version of the C8.3 was announced this spring - that may be the engine the service guy had been thinking of.

    kcram
    Community Leader/Smart Shopper Conference
  • brett039brett039 Member Posts: 56
    Thanks kcram & cdean for the responses.

    Yes, kcram, you were right. I have the 3.54LS rear end. Ford uses the 3.73. Too many years owning a Ford Truck! It won't happen again!!!

    After reading your response concerning towing in O/D... Went for a quick drive (empty) with O/D off. At 55mph the engine is showing 2200 rpm. The Cummins red lines at 3200. Doesn't that seem high for only 55mph? That engine will be 'humming' right along if I try to run at 70mph. It feels like it needs to shift again but won't. I don't feel the torque converter unlocking and locking, it just seems like there should be one more gear and it's not shifting.

    With the O/D off, roughly when should the transmition be shifting into each of the gears.
  • brett039brett039 Member Posts: 56
    Just got back from running a few errands. Turned off O/D and brought it up to 60mph. 2500rpm's!!! I'll red line (3200) if I try for 70! I tried letting off and coast, seeing if it would shift, but no luck. :( Just doesn't seem right!

    BTW... the truck only has 800 miles on it! Hope I'm not gonna regret this purchase...
  • KCRamKCRam Mt. Arlington NJMember Posts: 3,516
    Brett,

    You were running empty, that's why it felt so weird. With a heavy load (tyour trailer), you'll appreciate the extra horses the higher rpm produce. Turning OD off does not change any shift points or settings, just prevents 4th.

    kcram
    Community Leader/Smart Shopper Conference
  • stokerstoker Member Posts: 4
    I just visited the dodgeram.com web page and WOW!!! There’s a lot of good information there.

    stoker sends..............
  • madmackmadmack Member Posts: 39
    How much is it(4wheel antilock) of a safety issue? I live in Las Vegas and plan to play a little in the dirt but don't want to risk my kids safety on the way to school. What advantage is the 4 wheel brake over the two. Is the risk minimal? My insurance doesn't give a break for it....so it would "seem" the four doesn't reduce the accident rate.
  • brett039brett039 Member Posts: 56
    kcram,

    I'm sure it would feel different while towing, but the rpm's shouldn't change simply by towing. I would still be running 2500rpm's at 60mph whether towing or not! Does this sound normal with a 3.54 diff? That only leaves me 700rpm left until I red line the engine at 3200rpm's! So if I try to run 65mph, I estimate I'll be turning 2800rpm. I can't see where that's even close to normal, especially for many hours on a long haul. Help!!!!!!!!!

    Does anyone out there have a Cummins with Auto, 3.54 diff? What rpm's are you running at 60mph with the O/D turned off?

    Thanks in advance...

    Brett
  • djfire07djfire07 Member Posts: 5
    Brett,
    Congratulations on your new truck! I haven't bought my Dodge yet, but I will soon.
    It seems to me that if you must tow at 70 mph, it would be ok to use O/D because your RPM's would be up, preventing excess shifting. By the way, why an auto?

    DJ
  • rlkruegerrlkrueger Member Posts: 98
    Brett039,
    I have a 99 3500 Cummins/Auto/3:55 rear end, and the RPM's you are getting are about right. The real issue here is that you should have the 4:10 gears, not the 3:55's. That way, you could run along at 75 pulling about 2400, which would be ideal. You really only have two realistic choices. ( One may not be -that- realistic )

    1> Pull your trailer at 60mph with the OD off and resign yourself to this speed with a heavy load.

    2> Change the gearing to 4:10's. This won't be cheap, I'm sure, especially if you have 4WD, which means you have to change out both the front and rear sets. Prior to getting a quotation for doing this, it is the only realistic option if you find yourself in a situation where the gearing that came with the truck is just not going to work for your needs. Like I said, the cost may be prohibitive. If it is just a couple of thousand to do this on a 4WD, then it is by far the cheapest alternative considering the beating you will take if you trade it in with this purpose in mind. Your truck probably ( 4WD) cost in the neighborhood of 32 - 34K, so $2000 to get the gearing you need pro-rated over the expected life of the truck would not be very much, IMO.

    rk
  • brett039brett039 Member Posts: 56
    djfire07,

    Thanks... Overall, I really like the truck, except for Dodges choice for the Auto gear ratios. Very poor design!!!

    I went with the Auto mainly because the wife refuses to drive a stick. Sometimes she'll be pulling the boat out of the water on a steep boat ramp and she just can't seem to coordinate the brakes, clutch, and gas without submerging both the truck and trailer. In a way, I almost prefer the auto myself even though you loose a little power in the process. But it's too late now, I have it, so I'm stuck with it.

    I won't be towing at 70, but towing through KY on I75 is nothing but constant up and down long steep hills. Sometimes you can easily reach 70+ on the downhill side. Seems like I'll constantly be turning the O/D off on the uphill side and on on the downhill side. Or else I run the truck at the "red line" for 7 hours straight with the O/D off!

    I feel Dodge made a big mistake when they decided on the gear ratios for the Auto Trans. They say you should turn off the O/D when towing, but failed to tell you you can't go over 60!!! Maybe they should have an entry in the manual that says... "Sorry bout your luck, Pal!"

    Brett
  • eric16eric16 Member Posts: 38
    Bear with me here: Rk are you saying with 4:10 rearend you can go faster towing than with the lower 3:55 gears? Or do you mean you can then tow with O/D on and run 70 with the 4:10's?
    Just asking Eric16
  • brett039brett039 Member Posts: 56
    rlfrueger,

    I opted for the 3.54 diff because it's a "higher" ratio, which in turn mean higher speeds, less power. That was the main reason I wasn't interested in the 4:10. I figured the "higher" ratio would easily pull a 6000# trailer.

    Wow! I would hated to see what the top speed would be with the O/D off ---AND--- the 4:10 diff!!!

    Brett
  • jcmdiejcmdie Member Posts: 594
    Something doesn't sound right with your situation. I don't have the diesel but I would think that make life easier for towing. I have a 1500 quadcab 4X4 sport with 3.55 rear end and 5.9 gas engine. I went on vacation with the whole family (back loaded to the hilt) and towed a boat about 5500#. I did 10 hours straight both ways going 70-75. I had OD off. Not a hint of a problem.
  • RichinKsRichinKs Member Posts: 412
    Just monitoring the Dodge site as Dodge is my second choice and always looking for something I might have over looked. Still waiting to order in mid september. Years ago all the manufacturers recommended OD off while towing. Its the least strain on the transmission. I still do with my half ton Chevy because Its rearend is too high. But more than the transmission, it keeps the engine in the right range for peak power. ...... But the manufacturers I thought had all succumed to the request of their sales force to approve towing in OD as long as the engine is not constantly hunting back and forth between OD and 3rd. That generates heat. But I would think running 70 on the flat would be fine in OD if the trans isn't hunting. The transmission is no different for deisel than gas except you have alot more torque punnishing the trans. .... As far as the manual vs auto, as a young to middle age person I always had a manual. But after awhile any good thing becomes boring. So I'm an auto fan these days. I like to have my coffee in one hand and the other on the steering wheel(g). ........ I have been concerned about some of the weaknesses I've heard about in the Dodge transmission but I understood they were mostly resolved. ...... A 4.10 rearend will only make the engine turn more rpm at 70 mph which will make the problem worse. If what I'm hearing here is true, why would a person ever want a 4.10 on the highway with a Cummins? ..... Rich
  • rlkruegerrlkrueger Member Posts: 98
    brett039, eric16,
    Sorry about that. The 4:10 gears would allow you the towing capabilities with the OD ON, not off.
    I agree with you on Dodge's choice of standard axle ratios for the Cummins/Auto. They should have given you at least a 3:73 as standard, as that would keep the Cummins in a better powerband for most things except serious towing usage. In that case, the 4:10's would be the way to go, but IMO, the 3:55's were not the best choice.
    Many things are being changed for 2000, engine specs, transmission's, tire sizes, to name a few.
    As kcram said a few postings ago, he is personally recommending the 4:10 rear ends now for the Cummins due to the increased tire sizes which will effectively lower the final drive ratio. ( The 4:10's will give you about a 3:73 effective ratio with the 265 tires )
    On a costlier note, I queried a Dodge dealer on the change-over to 4:10's. Wow... That extra $50.00 for the 4:10's is lookin' pretty good.
    I got a price of about $1800 for parts only, my guess is two days (16 hours) to do this, but I have to wait a few days for the answer. So if I'm close, figure about $3000.
    I would not suggest running running the Cummins at Redline. It may take it, but why do it? Running at 65 MPH would get you about 2500 RPM, (OD Off) which should not be a big problem and you would have all the power that the Cummins can put out. Personally, I have no immediate towing requirements, so the 3:55 is ok for our traveling needs. For any time when I need to tow a heavy trailer or haul a large load, I will have to do exactly what I suggested to you. Beyond that, if my needs change, I will pay the price to change the gears, as trading up would be a far costlier option.

    rk
  • sakosako Member Posts: 25
    brett--i too have a '99 2500 qc 24v cummins but in a long bed, but i don't know the ratio of the diff's(i'm leasing 'n it was used 6k on it when i got it 8k now & my paper work doesn't tell me). i think i've got 3.55 'cuz w/ od on my rpm's are 2000 for 70mph; that is w/ the old 245/75 & new 33x12.50 tires(didn't change). i'll check it out w/ od off 'n let you know. rammin' it
  • brett039brett039 Member Posts: 56
    My thanks go out to kcram, rlkrueger, and Richinks. I appreciate all the info and comments.

    The speed/gear/tire chart was a great help. That chart hit it right on the button. I have 245/75 tires with the 3:54 diff. At least it's a relief that there's nothing wrong with the trans.

    I guess the biggest problem is that I'm used to a gas engine with a wider usable rpm range than the Cummins. Not sure about the v10, but the 454 in my boat doesn't red line until 4800 and the cummins red lines at 3200. Dodge is using the same auto trans for both v10 and cummins (I think I read that in another posting), but the trans seems better suited for the v10. For instance... Running a gas engine (O/D off) at 2800 rpms to hit 70mph seems right on the money and it wouldn't "seem" like it's working that hard. But run a Cummins at 2800rpms to hit 70 and you're real close to red lining. Plus it sounds like I'm running the crap out of it.

    If I sound like I'm dissatisfied with the truck, I'm really not. I just wish I would have known about this (Cummins 'O/D off' speed) before I spent the extra 4K for the diesel. I might have purchased the v10 instead, but not sure. Either way I would have bought a Dodge, though.

    I could always get taller tires to drop the rpms a little with O/D off, but that might have a negative effect when not towing and in O/D. Since I only tow the boat during the summer, I'm not sure that's the best approach. If I only towed on flat terrain, there wouldn't be an issue. I'd leave the O/D on and cruise. But I mostly tow thru KY where you're constantly going up and down steep grades. I'm heading down to Lake Cumberland, KY on the 28th. We'll just have to see how it does with the O/D on. Maybe it'll be fine!

    I've been hearing about Dodge possibly using an Allison Auto Trans in the future (I think I read 2002). Maybe they (dodge) were doing this to remedy this situation? Just a stab in the dark, here.

    Thanks again for all the help.

    Brett
  • KCRamKCRam Mt. Arlington NJMember Posts: 3,516
    for the record, I got my Ram up to 94 mph with no effort. That was at 2600 rpm in OD (3.54, 215/85 tires).

    brett, one thing a diesel can do that a gas engine can't is hold its redline in any gear. In a gas engine, you can almost never get to redline in OD; the power dies and you can't keep the speed.

    kcram
    Community Leader/Smart Shopper Conference



    kcram
    Community Leader/Smart Shopper Conference
  • brett039brett039 Member Posts: 56
    kcram,

    I don't have any problems with the truck ---IN--- O/D. Runs like a charm and the other day I was on the interstate and glanced down at the speedo and I was doing 83mph! Didn't even realize I was going that fast!!! The truck felt like it was only doing 65.

    If I was to opt for the taller tires (265/75 instead of my current 245/75), how many mph gain would that be at the same rpm's? Would that give me too high of a "gearing" with the 3.54 diff? I was considering taller tires in the future mainly for looks, but now I'm unsure whether it's a good idea or not.

    Thanks,
    Brett
  • KCRamKCRam Mt. Arlington NJMember Posts: 3,516
    Brett,

    with the larger tires, and all other things equal, you would gain 8% in speed - 55 mph would become 59.5.

    kcram
    Community Leader/Smart Shopper Conference
  • brett039brett039 Member Posts: 56
    I don't think I've said in my past posting that I had a problem with the diesel. Runs fantastic and I did a lot of research before I made my decision to purchase one. The only problem I have is when it's "hooked up to" the auto and you turn off the O/D for towing (as recommended by the manufacturer), you have to come very close to red lining the Cummins to simply cruise at highway speeds.
  • RichinKsRichinKs Member Posts: 412
    plus and minus to what you say. What if you drive 45k and trade every three years? The fuel mileage cann't be justified. Plus if your past middle age and drink coffee you need to stop every two hours anyhow(g). But you didn't mention you will get more for your trad-in having a diesel. So I'm not sure the total cost would really be $4800 more than the V10. So even with the fewer miles trading every three years it may not be much more expensive. ... But my real problem with the cummins is I don't tow my 5th wheel more that 10% of my miles. The other 90% I have to let it warm up to go to the store, Let if cool down at the store. Warm it up again to come home, cool it off again after I get home. Shut it off when I go through the bank drive in. Have people ahead of me cuss if I don't shut it off for them also because they cann't hear the teller, and etc. I guess if I could dedicate it to towing it wouldn't be to bad. Its kind of like cool pipes on my GTO when I was younger. They sounded nice for a while but after a while all I wanted was a little quite. ...... Rich
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