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Old 10-16-2012, 02:43 PM   #1
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Until I bought my Ram I only owned manual trans vehicles and I have rebuilt many of them over the years. As I approach 200,000 miles my trans is on it's last leg and I'm considering teaching myself to rebuild it. The one thing that I am unclear on is the torque converter and what the stall speed means in daily application. I assume it's the engine speed where the converter locks up but what RPM do want on a stock or mild cam option?

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Old 10-16-2012, 02:43 PM   #2
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Until I bought my Ram I only owned manual trans vehicles and I have rebuilt many of them over the years. As I approach 200,000 miles my trans is on it's last leg and I'm considering teaching myself to rebuild it. The one thing that I am unclear on is the torque converter and what the stall speed means in daily application. I assume it's the engine speed where the converter locks up but what RPM do want on a stock or mild cam option?
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Old 10-16-2012, 04:42 PM   #3
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A torque converter is nothing but a fluid clutch the stall speed is the point at which the converter begins to transfer the most power in a sense

I run a 3500 stall converter and around 3500 rpm the truck really begins to move at wot where my power band starts for an everyday driver with a mild cam I would say anywhere from 1800-3000 depending on the cam you run and where it's power band starts at
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Old 10-16-2012, 05:58 PM   #4
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This describes the major pieces. http://www.tciauto.com/tc/torque-converters-explained
Our TC's have a lockup clutch that is engaged at speed to eliminate TC slippage for best mileage and reduces heat. I like to describe a TC action is like a rubber band with a fishing wieght hanging from it. If held steady the rubber band stretched lenght represents being at stall. If the rubber band is jerked, it stretches more before moving the wieght, this is flash. The TC starts moving the vehicle well below stall speed and will maintain vehicle speed with little change of rpm at actual stall and then if a heavy load is applied either by going up a steep hill or going WOT the TC further slips a little representing flash. From a standing start going WOT the TC launches at its flash point and then settles back to stall as the load decreases. Using the same TC a heavier vehicle will have an increased flash over a lighter vehicle. Same applies if a vehicle of the same wieght and one has more torque or traction, it can flash to a higher rpm. I hope that helps...
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Old 10-17-2012, 07:01 PM   #5
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Thanks for the response guys and I think I need to do some reading but having said that I think my problem is the slipping. From my manual trans experience slippage is bad but it sounds like an automatic needs slippage and you have the ability to tune with it instead of minimizing it completely. Is that getting closer?
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Old 10-17-2012, 07:12 PM   #6
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Picking a proper TC is important to your vehicle's performance. Engine/TC combination is critical. Just keep in mind that slippage builds heat and that also must be dealt with for longivity.
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Old 10-17-2012, 07:58 PM   #7
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I was also told that bad driving habits could contribute to more heat and thus the longevity of an auto trans. Like racing everyone from light to light. Or excessive towing with a higher than stock stall converter. Or not changing the fluid and filters often enough. From what I've read the stock converter is really not that effecient at putting the power to the ground on our trucks, so an after market converter can be even more beneficial.
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Old 10-17-2012, 08:47 PM   #8
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Yes factory converter is not good at all for power to ground edge makes a nice converter and driving habits will Deff affect a 545rfe for sure
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Old 10-17-2012, 10:12 PM   #9
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Much like when a standard trans with a clutch is driven for performance such as raising the rpm to 2500+ and dropping the clutch which provides a hard launch. A 2800+ stall converter can accomplishes the same thing. However, if you power brake and flash it at every light you will use up your equipment quickly same as you would dropping the clutch at every light. Most folks install a larger capacity trans cooler when using a higher stall TC to handle the additional heat generated. My setup with 2800 stall, 4:10 gear, 28" tires and a 1 ton cooler on the hottest of days in Virginia see's no higher than 180 degree's. Usually around 135-150 during normal city stop and go. Highway cruise the TC is locked up and the temperature drops. IMO, clutches are fun, but auto's are quicker. Good luck...
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Current 60' PB 1.351 (2019) mechanical issue for 1/4m

HTC 2018 TOTY

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