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Unread 09-14-2009, 11:31 AM   #1
jeepjerryp7m8
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30's vs 32's and "using 5th gear to slow down"

I keep reading here about people with a 4 banger and even slightly oversize tires using 5th gear to "slow down" because the 4 is so under powered.
I commute 28ish miles one way in a 93 YJ with 4 angry squirrels 4:10 gears and 30" Grabber tires. My trip in is 90% freeway and 70 mph, trip home is 90% 2 lane blacktop at 45 to 55mph. (Fuel mileage averages out to 18 or so, on a trip where I can keep her at 55 I'll get 20 mpg.) I have one hill that I have to down shift on to maintain 65 ( speed limit there is 60) other than that she just gives all I ask of her and doesn't complain.
Would the switch to 32's kill my top end that bad? I've got the room for them, RE springs, longer shackles,etc and new tire time will probably come this spring, just trying to get an idea of what to do when the time comes.

BTW 65 mph is right in the 2500 rpm range now and mileage is not unlivable, should I just consider myself blessed and stick with the 30's?
Thanks
Jerry

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Unread 09-14-2009, 01:19 PM   #2
YJames90
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How is fifth going to slow you down? Up hills yes, down hills no
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Unread 09-14-2009, 01:21 PM   #3
MC_NickP
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say goodbye to fifth gear, on any decent incline, you have to shift down into 3rd to accelerate. my jeep tops off at around 70
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Unread 09-14-2009, 01:26 PM   #4
Axl Jack
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Why not compromise and get a set of 31x10.5's???

I have the 4.0L with 4.10's and I run 32's and I think its quite a speedy Jeep. My friend has a 4cyl and 33's, and I don't like driving it as much. I feel like I need a quarter mile to get into 3rd gear.

You know whats funny though. I have no idea how much power steering robs the engine of HP, but his other Jeep is a 4cyl on 31's with no power steering and that little SOB runs!
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Unread 09-14-2009, 02:16 PM   #5
tobias94yj
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I could tell a huge difference when I went from 31's to 33's. even though 2" does not sound like much you will pretty much lose 5th gear on even the slightest incline
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Unread 09-14-2009, 07:01 PM   #6
jeepjerryp7m8
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Problem solved for now. I'll stick with my 29's. They do everything I want (so far) and they also "look right" on the Jeep. I'm still amazed that going up a couple of sizes kills top end that much.
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Unread 09-14-2009, 07:13 PM   #7
xeroid81
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Gear ratio is a b*tch. The only thing, other than changing gear sets out,that overcomes your situation, is a small block or built up 6.My 32's are no prob. for me ACCEPT on a long upgrade. And thats with an auto(aw4).With the thirties I had before,it was too quick,lot of tire spin without trying.Ihad to slow the axle down ,hence the 32's.I like the set up I have,it's just the mileage didn't really increase much. I can live with it though. Lots of performance when I need it. Seems like there's a trade off either way you go. Just my 2cents though.
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Unread 09-14-2009, 07:50 PM   #8
MC_NickP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xeroid81 View Post
...ACCEPT...
the word is EXCEPT
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Unread 09-14-2009, 08:12 PM   #9
YJames90
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I still dont get the how you would use 5th gear to slow down
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Unread 09-14-2009, 08:17 PM   #10
tsalmeto
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I have a 4 cyl., 4.10 gears, 5 spd. and 33s. I find that if I'm heading west, because usually that's where the wind is coming from, I can't hold my speed in 5th gear. I just drive in 4th and sometimes on hills I have to downshift into 3rd. If I'm behind a large truck, or not driving into the wind, I can manage 5th gear. Long trips on the freeway I usually drive 65 without a problem. A couple of weekends ago I was driving a thrilling 80 mph, and sometimes, more for half an hour to catch up to my fellow Jeepers (heading south). Basically until I can afford a gear swap 4th gear has become my 5th. To date my best fuel mileage has been a corrected 20.1 mpg. Worst tank was heading west into a slight wind and I got 11 mpg. Both were on the highway. Usually I get 15-18 mpg. If I were to do a gear swap I think 4.88s would be a good choice.
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Unread 09-14-2009, 11:43 PM   #11
TheNewbie
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I had 32's on my rig until this week and a 4 banger with 4.10's. I can use 5th on the highway on flat ground, but up hill I just pop her down a gear, no big deal. You said you were running 2500 RPM at that speed any way. You're not even in your main power band at that point. So downshifting would actually even help you out in your current setup. But as for going 2" higher, you should be fine as long as you don't want to race the thing.

I never even notice the difference in town, just on hills and into the wind at speeds over about 60 MPH.

I can pull 80 MPH easily and have gotten her up to 100 on flat ground with the wind behind me a couple times, but with even a slight hill or headwind 80-85 is about tops. And up a steep hill or into a strong headwind you will notice the difference but it's still nothing a little bit of downshifting won't help.

And as far as gas mileage goes, I get about 16-17 in town and on highway but have not corrected for the difference in tire size, so at least 18MPG I'm sure.
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Unread 09-15-2009, 07:39 AM   #12
MC_NickP
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i have one other thing to add. when mudding i have to go in 4lo because 4hi just doesnt have enough torque to keeps the wheels spinning. in thick mud anyway. to drive around in general off road, i switch into 4lo and use second gear to replace my 4hi in first gear.
i have to say the looks and ground clearence was worth losing 5th gear
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Unread 09-15-2009, 11:27 AM   #13
tsalmeto
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MC_NickP View Post
i have one other thing to add. when mudding i have to go in 4lo because 4hi just doesnt have enough torque to keeps the wheels spinning. in thick mud anyway. to drive around in general off road, i switch into 4lo and use second gear to replace my 4hi in first gear.
i have to say the looks and ground clearence was worth losing 5th gear
Good point. A couple of weekends ago I was 4 wheeling on Drummond Island with my brother who has a stock YJ with an automatic trans. He kept telling me, "This is how you do it in 2 wheel drive". I had mine in 4-lo, not because I needed the 4 wheel drive, but because I needed the low gearing. I couldn't go as slow as he could without stalling.
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Unread 09-15-2009, 11:29 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MC_NickP View Post
i have one other thing to add. when mudding i have to go in 4lo because 4hi just doesnt have enough torque to keeps the wheels spinning. in thick mud anyway. to drive around in general off road, i switch into 4lo and use second gear to replace my 4hi in first gear.
i have to say the looks and ground clearence was worth losing 5th gear
I actually saw an increase in MPG when I dropped the 5th gear. I run it at 70 in forth with 4.10's and 32's with a correct speedo and get 21-22 hwy
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