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How does a Torque converter help?

This is a discussion on How does a Torque converter help? within the Automatic Transmission forums, part of the Drivetrain category; I'm currently in the market for a 3600 stall, I think it will fit nicely with the gears I have ...

  1. #1
    Senior Member clg82's Avatar
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    How does a Torque converter help?

    I'm currently in the market for a 3600 stall, I think it will fit nicely with the gears I have as well as being an automatic. The question I ask is what are the benefits of having one, on the street, at the strip, or during regular driving? thanks for any help in advance. By the way I know what they do i just want to know what the benefits are....
    2000 Arctic White trans am, ws6 hood, ws6 air box, slp lid, slp smooth bellows, slp loudmouth exhaust,shift kit, rebuilt trans, LS6 intake, 3.73 gears, Shaner S3 p/p throttle body, and a tune . SFC. C6 ZO6 rims 18" in back 17" in front. Drilled and slotted rotors.

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    James Bond Spikito's Avatar
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    3600 might be a little high for regular driving. good for a track car though.

    if your gonna be on the streets much at all, id go with a 3000

    basically what a torque converter does is allow you to idle in gear. factory is something like 2000. under a certain RPM and it allows your trans to slip, above is where it locks.

    so lets say you have a 3000 stall, youll be able to stand on the brakes, and run up to 3000 rpms, before you start burning out, a 3600, and itll be 3600 RPMS.

    what this does, is allow you to preload the TC more, so that youll come off the line harder.

    now the part im not so sure about, is how high youll actually idle on the streets. its not like youre gonna be in neutral if you're under the range, you just wont have as much power. leaving redlights and what not, youll have to run up more RPMs to get rolling than you did before.

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    Senior Member clg82's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spikito View Post
    3600 might be a little high for regular driving. good for a track car though.

    if your gonna be on the streets much at all, id go with a 3000

    basically what a torque converter does is allow you to idle in gear. factory is something like 2000. under a certain RPM and it allows your trans to slip, above is where it locks.

    so lets say you have a 3000 stall, youll be able to stand on the brakes, and run up to 3000 rpms, before you start burning out, a 3600, and itll be 3600 RPMS.

    what this does, is allow you to preload the TC more, so that youll come off the line harder.

    now the part im not so sure about, is how high youll actually idle on the streets. its not like youre gonna be in neutral if you're under the range, you just wont have as much power. leaving redlights and what not, youll have to run up more RPMs to get rolling than you did before.
    From what i've read here 3600 is the ideal TC for my gears being 3.73

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    Veteran 0rion's Avatar
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    you can run a 3600 on the streets easily....the drawback is your gas mileage is going to suffer in stop and go traffic and city driving. Once you get up to speed (40ish mph...depending on where it's set to lock in your tune) your convertor will lock up and gas mileage will be the same as it is now.
    You also won't stall up to 3600 and it's dependant on HP too as to how high you'll stall to. With my 3500 fuddle it wants to start pushing through the brakes ~2200 rpm. Where the stall will help you is how quickly it gets you into your power band and with shift extension it keeps you there. Know how when the car shifts now the rpm's drop way down and start building again in the next gear? Doesn't do that with a stall....you're rpm's will stay in the 4000-4400 rpm range on shifts. Keeps the motor where it likes to make power the whole time.

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    Exalted Cyclops 67CamaroRSSS's Avatar
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    I have a 3400 stall with 3.73 gears in the 02. Mileage dropped between 2-5 mpg depending on how I drive. Hiway mileage stayed the same as it's a lock-up TC.

    Biggest difference was at the track. My 60' times were high 1.9x and now it's consistantly low 1.7x. I took ~.5 seconds off my ET. It went from 13.0x down to 12.5x. I had to go with MT ET Street DR's as the Nitto555r's just wouldn't hold anymore. It sticks so good that I also went with a tunnel mount adjustable torque arm so as to prevent cracking the tail shaft.

    I did all this as well as a tranny cooler (a must), a rebuild (even at 42,xxx) with HD internal parts and a shift kit (!TM).

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    Senior Member clg82's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 0rion View Post
    you can run a 3600 on the streets easily....the drawback is your gas mileage is going to suffer in stop and go traffic and city driving. Once you get up to speed (40ish mph...depending on where it's set to lock in your tune) your convertor will lock up and gas mileage will be the same as it is now.
    You also won't stall up to 3600 and it's dependant on HP too as to how high you'll stall to. With my 3500 fuddle it wants to start pushing through the brakes ~2200 rpm. Where the stall will help you is how quickly it gets you into your power band and with shift extension it keeps you there. Know how when the car shifts now the rpm's drop way down and start building again in the next gear? Doesn't do that with a stall....you're rpm's will stay in the 4000-4400 rpm range on shifts. Keeps the motor where it likes to make power the whole time.
    NICE, very well put thank you orion!

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    Senior Member clg82's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 67CamaroRSSS View Post
    I have a 3400 stall with 3.73 gears in the 02. Mileage dropped between 2-5 mpg depending on how I drive. Hiway mileage stayed the same as it's a lock-up TC.

    Biggest difference was at the track. My 60' times were high 1.9x and now it's consistantly low 1.7x. I took ~.5 seconds off my ET. It went from 13.0x down to 12.5x. I had to go with MT ET Street DR's as the Nitto555r's just wouldn't hold anymore. It sticks so good that I also went with a tunnel mount adjustable torque arm so as to prevent cracking the tail shaft.

    I did all this as well as a tranny cooler (a must), a rebuild (even at 42,xxx) with HD internal parts and a shift kit (!TM).
    I hardly ever take it to the track and mostly do my racing on the street, so is a tunnel mount torque arm necessary for my application? I know that the tranny cooler is a must....where did you get yours from and was it easy to install? Already had my trans rebuilt with a shift kit so that is squared away as well.....
    Last edited by clg82; 03-15-2010 at 10:10 AM.

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    Senior Member JaycenK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by clg82 View Post
    I hardly ever take it to the track and mostly do my racing on the track, so is a tunnel mount torque arm necessary for my application? I know that the tranny cooler is a must....where did you get yours from and was it easy to install? Already had my trans rebuilt with a shift kit so that is squared away as well.....
    If you make that torque arm shorter it can affect the abillity for it to work to it's intended use. There are 2 types. one mounts it really short at the tunnel brace and the other moves it to the back of the trans brace. If you are on the street keep it longer, it helps squat the car under braking. You want it as long as it can be to help put the front of the car in a loaded possition to gain grip under hard braking.

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    Just me Y2KPewterSS's Avatar
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    Orion hit the primary aspects, but one more aspect, the stock convertor weighs around 55 pounds. Most aftermarket convertors weigh around the 30 pound range, which saves your motor from spinning around 25 more pounds of weight. Weight reduction and ability to rev quicker

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    Exalted Cyclops 67CamaroRSSS's Avatar
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    Like the old commercial says: Try it, you'll like it!

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    Exalted Cyclops 67CamaroRSSS's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JaycenK View Post
    If you make that torque arm shorter it can affect the abillity for it to work to it's intended use. There are 2 types. one mounts it really short at the tunnel brace and the other moves it to the back of the trans brace. If you are on the street keep it longer, it helps squat the car under braking. You want it as long as it can be to help put the front of the car in a loaded possition to gain grip under hard braking.
    While true there is 1 caveat: Tunnel mount torque arm doesn't break tranny tailshaft!

    Having seen several friends with highly modded cars break the tailshaft on both T56 and 4L60E tranny's is why I went with a tunnel mount T/A.

    I cut 1.7x 60' (I have several friends that cut 1.6x and 1.5x 60's) with my tunnel mount MidWest Chassis T/A.
    Last edited by 67CamaroRSSS; 03-13-2010 at 08:35 PM. Reason: spelling = govt edjumacation

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    Senior Member clg82's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 67CamaroRSSS View Post
    While true there is 1 caveat: Tunnel mount torque arm doesn't break tranny tailshaft!

    Having seen several friends with highly modded cars break the tailshaft on both T56 and 4L60E tranny's is why I went with a tunnel mount T/A.

    I cut 1.7x 60' (I have several friends that cut 1.6x and 1.5x 60's) with my tunnel mount MidWest Chassis T/A.
    Can I get a link to the T/A you bought, and did you install it yourself or have to have someone install it?

  13. #13
    Retired NOT tired SteveC's Avatar
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    I have a 3k stall, and if I had to do it all over again I would go with a 3600, another factor to consider is the STR (Stall Torque Ratio), a converter with 2.5 would be nice.

    Do not forget a transmission cooler (B&M 24k), and possibly consider a deeper aluminum trans pan (if your vehicle is not lowered). I also replaced the weak stock flexplate in my 01 Z28 with a TCI SF29 race grade unit.

    Good luck;

    SteveC

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