Tall vs Short Gearing for FE - Fuelly Forums

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Old 09-01-2006, 07:52 PM   #1
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Tall vs Short Gearing for FE

I've gotten in this fight twice in the last few days, and it's rather annoying.

If anyone cares to give their thoughts, please weigh in in a logical manner, cited sources are always good, as well as FE stats.

Thanks all!
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Old 09-01-2006, 08:08 PM   #2
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Based on what I've read...
Assuming taller gearing means the engine is spinning slower at some given speed. In order to make the same amount of power at that given speed, with the engine spinning slower, more fuel, and more importantly, more air must be in the cylinder, which reduces the difference in pressure between the volume of the expanded cylinder and the crankcase durig the intake stroke, which results in less force needed to turn the crank. These are pumping losses, and are a problem to some extent with every spark ignition to date. Lower engine speed also results in fewer friction losses since the engine turns less per a given power output. High EGR rates as well as forced induction also reduce pumping losses.

From this article.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Car and Driver
Driving the BMW at 75 mph in fourth gear yielded 26.4 mpg. In sixth gear at the same speed, it got 29.7 mpg, a 12.5-percent improvement. In lower gears, the engine simply spins faster, generating more friction and sucking harder against a partly closed throttle.
I think the spinning refers to friction losses and sucking refers to pumping losses. The way to test this is to drive a nice round trip with no stops at the same speed in two different gears... If going from 4th to 5th increases economy, then going from 5th to a taller 5th should have the same effect depending on how much taller the new gear is. GM is also planning a new series of six speed automatics, with taller OD gears.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Green Car Congress
The company recently introduced three new members of the six-speed family. Most of GM’s six-speeds feature a wide, 6.04:1 overall ratio compared to 4.0 of typical four-speed automatics.
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Originally Posted by FormulaTwo
I think if i could get that type of FE i would have no problem driving a dildo shaped car.
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Old 09-02-2006, 02:56 AM   #3
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Yes more fuel per stroke but less strokes per second so you can come out ahead a little if you are on the right point on the thermal efficiency curve.
One thing factors into the rpm that I didn't appreciate which explains a lot - the Synlube site has a friction vs speed graph of metal surfaces rubbing with oil vs synlube and you all should look at it. It really explains a lot about what is happening when we lug and over rev the engine.

http://www.synlube.com/howsyn.htm

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Old 09-02-2006, 04:05 AM   #4
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Too bad there are no values on the X-Y. Graphs can be misleading without actual values.
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Old 09-02-2006, 05:14 AM   #5
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And engine operating temperatures. Although in defense of synthetic oils I've heard they are especially suited for colder climates compared to dino.
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I think if i could get that type of FE i would have no problem driving a dildo shaped car.
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Old 09-02-2006, 06:32 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SVOboy
I've gotten in this fight twice in the last few days, and it's rather annoying.
It's a no brainer, really. You just have to show them the evidence.

I'm curious to know what arguments people are making that lower gearing is better.
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Old 09-02-2006, 07:11 AM   #7
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Some anecdotal evidence would be what Honda did. One the high FE 92-95 versions of the HB (CX and VX) they dropped the final drive to 3.25 from 4.06 on the DX. They also reduced weight and CD and used different engines, but if shorter gearing was better for FE, why did Honda do the opposite? The EPA figures show that the CX and VX FE is clearly better than the DX.

Since Honda engineers are much smarter than I am, I will let thier actions speak for me.
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Old 09-02-2006, 07:25 AM   #8
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EDIT: crap. Sorry Dan, I got confused reading your post. Your example is of course right. Deleting my earlier nonsense.
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Old 09-02-2006, 07:36 AM   #9
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Edit: la, la, laaa... deleting my confused & confusing reasoning...
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Old 09-02-2006, 07:51 AM   #10
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You mean because of the lower speeds? The DX would be better as long as you stay below 45 MPH. Above that, you would be looking for another gear. Believe me, I have had both.
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