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Old 04-09-2010, 08:16 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Full Size DD/Trail Rig, locker/gear combo?

I've been searching for awhile and there was so many different scenarios and combination's that it got me all confused. I have a 97' Dodge Ram 2500 4x4 ext. cab V10. This is my DD for now, I'm building this as a expedition/crawler rig. I'm running 35's on it right now but probably jumping up to 38's or 39's. I've been searching and keep getting different answers for gearing 4:56, 4:88, 5:13. From looking at the calculators it looks like 4:88 would work good but I'm not sure. Some people say they will get hot on the highway, some say they won't. Some say go with 4:56 because they will be a lot better on the highway. I have stock 3:54's in there now with 35's and it might be plenty of power for some people but to me it feels like a dog compared to the smaller tires. I could feel a big difference with the 35's. I want the truck to have a nice amount of power and not be sluggish. I want to lock the front and rear too but I need something that will hold up to a heavy full size rig that will be loaded down. I'm on somewhat of a budget but I want to do this once and do it right the first time. Either way I don't want my truck to be a dog and I can only afford to do this once. I'm trying to do everything once and have a solid truck when I'm done. If I can I want to over build it instead of buying weak parts and breaking things every other day.

I looked into lockers too but not sure what would be best for this application. I saw ARB, detroit, detroit trutrac, ox, aussie, etc.. I don't want to get stuck somewhere with 2 or 3 wheels spinning, I want all 4 turning and doing their job. This truck will see lots of dirt, rocks, mud, and all types of weather conditions including heavy ice and deep snow. I won't always have the truck loaded down but I like to plan and think ahead of situations that might happen. What would be the best setup for a heavy loaded full size rig? What lockers would work best and hold up for a rig like this and why would it be better then something else. What would be the best gear ratio for 38's or 39's. I have a Dana 60 front and I think a Dana 70-U rear. When I get a new DD/tow rig this will probably end up on a trailer. Here's some numbers I pulled off the rears.


Rear:
Dana 46293
143
6
52069468
Rev 0907
3.54
605900-1


Front:
520988 35
B
Dana 436003
2186
Rev-o
05-03-94
13
610708
C 44980
60F

Last edited by Injected54; 04-09-2010 at 09:04 AM.
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Old 04-09-2010, 09:48 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Which lift are you going with? 3" with cutting, or 5"? I would run with 4.56's and see how you like that setup. If not, theres always stepping up to 4.88's.

Ideally, I think it would be BADASS to have ARB in front and back. If not, Id go with a Detroit in the back, with an OX in the front. Oh, and make sure you clean out those catalytic converters. Theyve been known to plug, and rob power. Ive heard the headers also make a BIG difference.
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Old 04-09-2010, 10:43 AM   #3 (permalink)
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go with the 4:88 gears Go with detroit in the back and tru track or ox locker in front. If you are going to be out alone (sole vehicle rember KISS
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Old 04-09-2010, 03:06 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I would go 4:56 with ox lockers or arb ecpecially if your going to be driving on hwy roads in snow and ice. It is much nicer to decide when you want what locked in instead of being surprised.
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Old 04-11-2010, 06:45 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I'm taking everyone's suggestions into consideration, I'm still up on the fence with this. Post up and let me know what you think and why you would choose one locker over the other one for a expedition/crawler rig. This is my DD for now too.




Quote:
Originally Posted by Loftis61 View Post
Which lift are you going with? 3" with cutting, or 5"? I would run with 4.56's and see how you like that setup. If not, theres always stepping up to 4.88's.

Ideally, I think it would be BADASS to have ARB in front and back. If not, Id go with a Detroit in the back, with an OX in the front. Oh, and make sure you clean out those catalytic converters. Theyve been known to plug, and rob power. Ive heard the headers also make a BIG difference.
I have a 6" lift on it, with it being a heavy rig and being loaded down sometimes I figured this would be my best bet. It will give me more body and frame clearance for deep snow, water crossings, and deep mud. If I need more room in the wheel wells when I get the bigger tires then I'll start cutting. I like the idea of having a selectable locker like ARB's front and rear but keep reading about people having problems with them and they're on the expensive side. Are they really dependable in all weather conditions, do the air lines and seals hold up just as good or better then a cable or a locker without a cable? If everything goes right exhaust is on the list next unless something else comes up.
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Old 04-11-2010, 09:43 AM   #6 (permalink)
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go with 5.13 gears i have 4.56 gears with 33s and wish i went with 4.88s so i can only imagine what it would be like with bigger tires
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Old 04-12-2010, 04:33 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Thats a big motor and makes lots of power at the low end like a diesel. IF youve got 3.54s stock you might wanna go 4.10s or something but i think 5.13 will make you want to over rev the engine.

play with this and get yourself some numbers to work with.

http://www.ramblerman.com/blazer/gearcalc.htm
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Old 04-12-2010, 10:47 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1966Tbird View Post
go with 5.13 gears i have 4.56 gears with 33s and wish i went with 4.88s so i can only imagine what it would be like with bigger tires


Eh? With that gearing and 33's, I would think you would be doing just fine.



I think that 4.56's would be the best bet just for on-road and off-road combination of performance. I think you'll get the best of both worlds out of that gearing.

As for lockers, I have none. IF I could pick, as I already said, I would PREFER and ARB in front and back. Why? Because you get to pick when to lock it in and when not to! Just the thought of it makes me all warm and fuzzy . The only bad experiences Ive read about is if the lines arent insulated, or sealed correctly, and lose enough pressure to make the locker malfunction.(IIRC theres something about that in the KODIAK DODGE BUILD...) Plus, that means having OBA as well. The only downside, I see is- Lose your airline on a rock, lose your locker for the day...

The V-10's sit tall as it is, so with the 6" lift, I think you'll be ok with bigger tires (38-40's). Im guesstimating since Im at stock and have 34's...

The exhaust should be pretty easy. I just used a good ole sawzall on mine, and cleaned out the honeycomb shit on the inside. Then I stitch-welded them up (be sure not to burn through, theyre kinda thin).

Just my .02, and I hope this helps.
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Old 04-16-2010, 08:26 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Thanks for all the suggestions. I'm still searching and reading up on lockers, every bit of info helps.
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