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RE: How to improve 2017 Ford 350 head light output? See Update.

If you made an LED, of exact shape, position, and LUMEN OUTPUT as a halogen filament, then it could be made 100% DOT legal. But there is no such product I'm aware of. The reason DOT spec maximum lumen for each halogen bulb, is because a reflector housing for that bulb can only have a max lux (brightness) of scatter light, as well as main beam pattern. The best housing design still scatter. If you put a 6,000 lumen LED in place of an 1,800 lumen filament, even at the exact position, the scatter would blind people. Projectors have far less scatter, and, within the main beam the lumens is distributed better, so lower lux. That's why you can have a 5000 lm project LED, but not in a reflector housing.
RoyJ 03/17/20 10:48pm Tow Vehicles
RE: 2020 IKE raw and unedited

Ford uses a water to air intercooler to better control the air temperature consistency going into the engine. If you control your inputs you'll have better success with controlling your outputs (i.e. efficiency, power, emissions). Wonder if Ford also chose air to water to improve throttle response. This air to air, you have to compress a larger volume before reaching your desired manifold pressure.
RoyJ 02/24/20 08:10pm Tow Vehicles
RE: How to improve 2017 Ford 350 head light output? See Update.

:) Hi, my 2014 F-150 has the factory HID headlights. They are much brighter than anything that I have ever owned. I was concerned about getting flashed, but I never have been. With a bed full of stuff, including my generator, and my trailer connected, I was sure that someone would flash me. I went basically from Oregon to Maine, to South Carolina, and back to Oregon. Over 13,000 miles and for 3 1/2 months, never got flashed. And THAT is the difference between a DOT certified, OEM engineered solution vs. aftermarket bulb. Even with the best aftermarket LED, ask yourself, if there's truly no light scatter - why didn't bother getting it DOT certified and therefore capture a HUGE market, but advertising themselves as the ONLY DOT-approved solution? Because they can't...
RoyJ 02/23/20 12:45pm Tow Vehicles
RE: The Cummins soon to take on the Ike

The last Cummins to have a flat torque curve was the 350 HP 650 LB/FT. in early 2011 It reached 650 lbft at 1600 RPM and stayed flat until peak power at 2800 RPM The 350/800 engine reached 800 lbft at 1600 RPM but gradually decreased until it was the same as the 650 engine at 2800 RPM. If it was still making 800 lb ft it would be putting out 426 HP, not 350. If the Cummons 900 engine was still making 900 lb ft at 2800 RPM it would be putting out 480 HP, not 385. If you read his post again, it's flat *power* curve, not torque curve. A falling torque curve is desirable in a heavy duty motor, because as you lug down the revs in a gear, you get torque rise, thus fairly constant power. The Cummins loses less power at lower rpm than the Duramax, and thus won't need 10 speeds nearly as much.
RoyJ 02/17/20 02:13am Tow Vehicles
RE: 2020 Ford 7.3L Ike Gauntlet

I buy a new vehicle every 20 years or so. I have always thought a diesel pickup was not the best idea for most buyers. If you drive less than about 10000 miles a month, the price of fuel would never save the cost of the upgrade. The extra long life of the engine is mostly wasted because most pickups are not junked because the engine wore out. Then add the problems the emission controls cause, and the outrageous cost of some repairs that are needed by too high percentage of owners. I'm thinking that the big spark plug motor might be a good choice... This is even more true in the Class C/B/A market, where many get driven less than 2k miles / year, and sits there the other 9 months. A diesel is very wasteful, and your maintenance / mile driven is through the roof. I see Ford really dominating in that market - they already own nearly 100% of the cab chassis, and now with a 7.3 / 10 spd combo, would make for some very good motorhomes. Of course, there's always a big market for diesel - high miles driven, frequent heavy towing / hot shotting, power enthusiasts, or if you simply have money to burn.
RoyJ 02/03/20 08:53pm Tow Vehicles
RE: 2020 Ford 7.3L Ike Gauntlet

VERY impressive for a gas engine! For folks disappointed with the paper ratings, this proves why a fat torque band, and tightly spaced transmission gearings, is far more important than a peak hp rating attained at 7000 rpm. Even though 4.30s were used, I'm willing to bet a 3.73 would post identical times. With 10 gear ratios, it's as simple as dropping 1 gear, and you'll be right at the big 7.3's hp peak again.
RoyJ 02/02/20 01:44am Tow Vehicles
RE: F350 Super Duty vs 3500 Denali vs The Ike Pulling 30k lbs

If it can average 42 mph it would reach the top of the hill in 10 minutes 50 seconds. According to the drag formula it would require 89 HP tp overcome drag and rolling resistance at 42 mph. 320 minus 89 leaves 231 HP which is the required HP to raise the 39000 lbs 2120 feet in 6 minutes and 50 seconds. Edit: I guess I should have quoted the definition of HP: 1 horsepower is the power required to raise 550 lbs 1 ft in 1 second So 39000 lbs x 2120 ft / (620 seconds x 550) is 242.46 HP I think I spot the error now - when I crunch the following: 39000x2120/550/231hp I get 650 seconds, not 6:50s. 650 seconds translates to 10:50s, which is a more reasonable time for the Ram. If the Ram did do it in 6:50s, then its average speed would be significantly higher, and we'd have to start the iterative process all over again...
RoyJ 02/01/20 12:23pm Tow Vehicles
RE: F350 Super Duty vs 3500 Denali vs The Ike Pulling 30k lbs

I've been screwing around with the numbers and I think the Duramax time was not really that far off what should have been expected based on a 39000 lb truck and trailer and 2220 ft of elevation gain climbing the hill. Based on those same numbers the Ram should climb the hill in about 12 minutes. The thing that doesn't add up is that the Ford should not have been able to climb the hill in 6 minutes and 20 seconds running at the rpm it ran at unless it is putting out more power than Ford claims. 4x4ord, I'm curious what your calculation shows, if we pretend the L5P has a bigger turbo that does not lose hp at elevation. According to GM's graph, the engine is suppose to climb from 380 to 445hp from 2300 to 2800 rpm: https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/proxy/6N7oyzCAwvojZ_XEJEQwAdVE7DxmpRECSndipSVkWtblp8dv8toRwlDjnE6cHCDhMqGbBLNTPG4FL7SxY13IeAa9XKVnM39wz6QvnIPWsNDdOMGByWCbNdMvnlHO9q5P We know the high elevation dyno flattens out at 320 rwhp from 2300 - 2800 rpm. Assuming it climbs 55hp (account for drivetrain loss), so that it dynos 375 rwhp @ 2600 - 2800 rpm. What time would that turn out?
RoyJ 01/31/20 06:23pm Tow Vehicles
RE: F350 Super Duty vs 3500 Denali vs The Ike Pulling 30k lbs

Again, watch Gale Banks explain the limit of the stock L5P turbo. To go above the stock max power at sea level, essentially you have to "choke" your turbine side by activating the variable geometry nozzles at WOT (to gain turbo rpm, and therefore CFM), which is not within OEM GM parameters. Doing that would create a lot of drive pressure and you would likely pop a head gasket before you had turbo failure. Not to mention a restriction like that would cause extremely high EGT's. It does not make sense to do this because you will not be able to make more power for any real period of time. I know back when I had the stock VG turbo on my 2014 Cummins, I had the VGT vane position on my monitor. Both in stock form and after being tuned, going WOT the vanes would restrict to about 50% or so for a few seconds to get the wheel turning and then go fully open. For sure, which is exactly why OEM and a good tuner never closes the VG vanes at WTO. Banks simply showed the stock turbo couldn't produce enough airflow to exceed 445hp while keeping a safe EGT/AFR. The only way to cheat that is by closing the vanes 30%, over-driving the turbo from 110k to 130k rpm. And we both agree that creates all kinds of problems. At 10,000' elevation, the L5P consumes the same CFM to make the 445hp. However, now the turbo has to do it at a much high pressure ratio. Given a fixed compressor design, the only way to achieve this is to spin faster, and get into a lower eff land on the map. Since we agree GM OEM programming would never do this, I believe the turbo stays at ~110,000 rpm, and therefore the L5P runs out of CFMs past 2300 rpm. That's why we see a hp plateau.
RoyJ 01/31/20 06:16pm Tow Vehicles
RE: F350 Super Duty vs 3500 Denali vs The Ike Pulling 30k lbs

^^^That is not how turbos work. Air density, blade profile, A/R ratio, flow, blade size and other things dictate how much power a turbocharged engine looses at altitude. Turbo shaft speed generally increases with altitude to compensate for the decrease in air density. Bigger turbo wheels that make a lot of power cannot spool as fast as a smaller turbo wheel. So generally a smaller turbo that is at its max potential at sea level will do better at altitude than a larger turbo. Also, tuners do not often push turbos way past their efficiency zones, at least not a good one. If you go past the turbos efficiency zone then you start making less power and higher EGT's which is not what you want so to make the best gains you have to stay withing the turbo's efficiency. A tuner will generally keep adding fuel and timing until they start to see power numbers start to decrease with excessive EGT's. That is the point where they know the turbo is leaving it's efficiency zone and a bigger turbo is needed to make more power so they back the fuel and timing back down to where it made more power. Diesels are regulated by fuel and not air like gas engines. Re-read what I wrote, it does not contradict anything you said. A turbo that is sized to produce full rated power at sea level would start to starve the engine of CFM at higher altitude. Because maintaining the same absolute manifold pressure at altitude, is similar to over-boosting at sea level (higher pressure ratio), which almost ALWAYS pushes you to a lower eff curve on the compressor map. Again, watch Gale Banks explain the limit of the stock L5P turbo. To go above the stock max power at sea level, essentially you have to "choke" your turbine side by activating the variable geometry nozzles at WOT (to gain turbo rpm, and therefore CFM), which is not within OEM GM parameters.
RoyJ 01/31/20 11:27am Tow Vehicles
RE: F350 Super Duty vs 3500 Denali vs The Ike Pulling 30k lbs

Is that dyno sheet from the actual truck that they used in the towing test? It seems as though it's not just an isolated truck. I thought the reason the Duramax they put up against the Ram failed to perform better might have been on account of the shift points programmed into the Alison transmission, but,after seeing the high rpms used in this run up the mountain I recognize that the Alison is tuned to aggressively use the high end of the power curve. It seems strange to tune the transmission to run high engine rpm if there is no additional power to be has there. Not the actual truck for this test, but a previous one in 2017, where the 445hp Duramax failed to beat a 385hp rated Cummins. The reason I feel this is elevation choked, is because Gale Banks has a nice series of video "killing a duramax", which he showed the turbo parameters being nearly maxed out to produce the rated 445 hp. Therefore at elevation, the turbo has nothing left, and power output suffers starting at such an early RPM. Tuners often push the turbo way past its efficient zones on the compressor map, shortening the life. I bet at sea level the engine hp will keep climbing after 2500 rpm.
RoyJ 01/30/20 06:13pm Tow Vehicles
RE: 5.9 Cummins Diesel Towing capacity

Like others have mentioned, maintenance is key for an older truck. Get the cooling system to tip top shape, and upgrade the brakes to a 3rd gen. Make sure steering/balljoints/suspension are good. If you don't have it already, install a shift kit to allow manual torque converter lockup. My 47RE is modded for manual lock up 2nd, 3rd, and OD. This will help exh brake performance, and tranny temperatures for hill climbing (6 - 8% grade in 2nd locked).
RoyJ 01/29/20 08:07pm Tow Vehicles
RE: F350 Super Duty vs 3500 Denali vs The Ike Pulling 30k lbs

^^^ I think if the fan on the GM was cutting in and out we would have heard it. I kind of think it was either always on or always off. The thing that is hard for me to understand is this: The Ford is supposed to make 1050 lbft of torque at 1600 rpm which is 320 hp. It is rated at 475 hp at 2800 rpm. The power very likely builds quite uniformly over the power band which means it likely gains about 13 hp per 100 rpm. This means the Ford should be capable of making around 398 hp at the 2200 rpm it ran at. The GM is supposed to make 445 hp at 2800 and 279 hp at 1600. Therefore the Duramax builds about 14 HP per 100 engine rpm. If we say the Duramax ran at about 2600 rpm it should have been able to generate about 420 hp at that rpm. The time difference up the mountain between the two trucks indicates the Ford was putting out about 63 more hp than was the Duramax. If the Ford was making 398 HP the Duramax was only making 335 ..... yet it should have been capable of making 420. Not sure if an elevation glitch, but TFLT's Duramax dyno is very poor: https://www.tfltruck.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/2017-chevy-3500-duramax-dyno.jpg As per this dyno, above 2300 rpm or so it makes a constant 320 rwhp. If we believe their 2020 PS's dyno of 469, which is nearly identical to the crank rating, at 2200 rpm the PS is making ~390 rwhp, or 70 more than the L5P. Pretty close to your 63 hp calculation!
RoyJ 01/29/20 06:32pm Tow Vehicles
RE: F350 Super Duty vs 3500 Denali vs The Ike Pulling 30k lbs

I'd like to see a video of the 7.3 pulling that trailer up the Ike. I'd be willing to bet it would out do at least 1 of these diesels. It will not have enough torque,and not pulling 30,000#. Listed at 430 hp and 475 lb ft torque, it would need some serious deep gears to even make the climb. With the 4.7:1 1st gear on 10R140, and 4.30s, torque won't be a problem even at 37,000 GCW (way above the 7.3's rating). Taking TFLT's 407 lb-ft rwtq dyno result, and 32" tires, the max tractive effort is: 407*4.7*4.3*12/16 = 6169 lbs 6169 / 37000 = 16.7% gradability in 1st gear, which is far steeper than the IKE, even when you factor in rolling and aero resistance. What it won't have is horsepower to pull the load at the speeds the diesels can, at elevation.
RoyJ 01/29/20 05:58pm Tow Vehicles
RE: just saw my 1st 2020 F-350's

If anyone has ever ask an engineer to explain something to them , you will understand what I just went through, after an hour and 45 minutes of talking to a power train engineer he finally got down to the nuts and bolts and told me the transmission fluid is designed to Run at a certain temperature, he said that because the transmission shifts are controlled by solenoids, that having the fluid a certain temperature , they know what the viscosity and the flow characteristics of the fluid is ,So they can maintain optimum shift quality I once drove a Prevost tour coach, Allison BR500 transmission, and the wiring harness with the temp sending unit shorted out. The coach shifted harder than a Mustang with a shift kit...
RoyJ 01/19/20 01:29pm Tow Vehicles
RE: Winch Option with the Tremor Package

Nice option, but as said around the 3min mark, doesn't demonstrate much... If they set the parking brake, it'll at least create around 4000 lbs of drag. Assuming empty tandems weigh 5000 lbs, and 80% coefficient of friction.
RoyJ 01/16/20 08:10pm Tow Vehicles
RE: My Amazing 12-year old battery...

There're also battery testers that measure the inductance/resistance of the lead cells, essentially a modern version of the carbon pile load tester. One of the quickest ways a battery dies is sulphation - leaving it in a less than full state of charge. Unlike lithium ions, lead acids LOVE to be kept at 100% charge. I have 14+ batteries between my vehicles, toys, equipment, etc. All except my daily drivers sit on a tender at 13.0 - 13.4v
RoyJ 01/16/20 08:05pm Tow Vehicles
RE: The TFL guys bought a 7.3L

Get a diesel for the performance, get a gas for occasional light duty-cycle usage. Personally, if I'm buying a $70k truck, it'll be a diesel. If I'm buying a 10 - 20 year old truck, I'll likely find a lower mileage gas. A lot of the diesel financial calculations ignore the operating cost. One replacement on an injection pump / injectors, turbo, EGR/DPF/SCR system, and you've wiped out the entire lifetime worth of savings. Then add in the higher oil change / fuel filters, it doesn't make financial sense if I'm using it 3 months / 3k miles a year (RV use). Very few modern gas engines need anything beyond oil and filter changes. Yes, there's the occasional lemon, but used engines are everywhere for cheap.
RoyJ 01/16/20 08:01pm Tow Vehicles
RE: Ford Increases GVWR for 2020 Trucks

This is why I believe GVWR is mostly marketing driven, very loosely based on real engineering specs. Given the same rear GAWR, why would a longer frame have greater GVWR? If anything, the longer frame is weaker (highly doubt cross section is changed). Why can't a short box carry the same GVWR? My guess is marketing doesn't want you to believe a long bed is less capable, so jacked up the GVWR to compensate for higher curb weight.
RoyJ 01/15/20 02:14pm Tow Vehicles
RE: Towing questions

As others have pointed out, your rear axle itself is safe. 3/4 ton trucks share the safe axle as a 3500, but under-rated to fit within class 2. Just make sure your suspension remain level to ensure enough bump travel, and avoid getting pulled over (onto a roadside scale) due to visually appearing to be over-loaded.
RoyJ 01/13/20 12:47am Tow Vehicles
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