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 rear end/tire combo 
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Joined: Sun Jul 30, 2006 9:07 pm
Posts: 6
Location: southern california
Hi everybody,

I'm new to the ford scene. I just purchased a 64 econoline (sold an old VW beetle to purchace the van)...while driving it home on the freeway, the top speed was about 50-60 mph....and the motor was screeming. Short of swapping the transmission, I was wondering if there is a rear end/tire combo that would give me 10-15 mph more on my top speed and not work the motor soo hard? The transmission is a 4 speed with a column shifter.
The rear axle tag is:
WCC-E1
4.00 4AC 753 (or something to that effect).
The tires are:
P185/70R 13

Thanks,
Frank


Wed Aug 02, 2006 8:44 pm
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Joined: Sun Jan 29, 2006 7:10 pm
Posts: 46
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Frank,

It looks like you have a 4.00 to 1 rear axle. That will make things really scream at freeway speeds alright. You might want to consider some rearend work (or swap) to get a more speed friendly ratio - unless you are into pulling stumps etc. :wink:

Jim in CA


Thu Aug 03, 2006 5:39 pm
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Joined: Sun Jul 30, 2006 9:07 pm
Posts: 6
Location: southern california
Hey Jim,

Thanks for the reply... This whole gear ratio and tire size topic confuses the heck out of me. So what would you suggest as a good rear axle gear ratio with a good tire size, to make my van a more freeway friendly vehicle?

Thanks,
Frank


Thu Aug 03, 2006 8:39 pm
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Joined: Sun Jan 29, 2006 7:10 pm
Posts: 46
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Frank,

I run 3.50 in my 62 three window with three speed manual and 13" tires. It seems to be a good trade off for around town and some freeway driving. I keep the 13" tires because I like the hub caps. If you do a lot of freeway driving you may want to consider 3.20 - 2.80 range with 14" tires. Not much off the line in that range but around 2500 rpm at 65 mph is better than pushing 4,000 rpm. :wink:

I am sure others have other opinions - what about it folks?

Jim in CA


Fri Aug 04, 2006 6:50 pm
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Joined: Sun Jul 30, 2006 9:07 pm
Posts: 6
Location: southern california
Hi Jim,

You've got me thinking about just trying to switch to a bigger tire and wheel.

So now here is my next question... How do I determine what wheels will fit on my van? Do the early Econolines have a standard bolt hole pattern? And are there aftermarket rims or rims that I might find a a junkyard that would work?

Thanks again,
Frank


Sat Aug 05, 2006 6:07 pm
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Joined: Sun Jan 29, 2006 7:10 pm
Posts: 46
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Frank,

I run 13" rims on the Econo, Falcon and Ranchero because I like the various styles of dogdish hubcaps so I am not the one to answer your rim questions. I have read a lot of info on what others have done but since I have not done it myself I will let others answer your questions.

Jim


Sun Aug 06, 2006 5:12 pm
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Joined: Fri Jan 27, 2006 4:22 pm
Posts: 9
Location: Cincinnati OH
Post 
aren't they 5 on 4.5" bolt circle? if so then there are lots of options for wheels out there, including chrysler wheels. i am running a 3.73 rear end in my chevy van with powerglide tranny (1:1 top gear ratio) and i have 15" olds cutlass wheels on it with 255/60/15 size tires in the rear. it runs about 3100 rpm at 70-72 mph. i would like to go to something in the area of 3.36 or so. i don't know how big of wheels/tires you can fit on an econo but i was running 14"slots before on the chevy and going up to 15's made a noticeable difference in highway speed at the same rpms. of course the speedo is probably off a little but thats ok. even with the 14" wheels i dropped almost 1000rpm at highway speed over the stock 13" wheels.
-tim


Sun Aug 06, 2006 6:16 pm
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Joined: Sun Jul 30, 2006 9:07 pm
Posts: 6
Location: southern california
Hey Jim and Tim,

Thanks for the info... I found a website that explains how to determine the bolt hole pattern for your lug nuts. It looks like I do have a 5 lug pattern on a 4 1/2 inch bolt hole circle.

So if that is the case, I am going to experiment with a larger wheel diameter. That seems like the cheapest alternative at this point. And if that is not enough, then I will look at changing the rear axle gears.

I am going to hang on to my 13 inch wheels, I like the look of them on the van.

Thanks,
Frank


Sun Aug 06, 2006 8:47 pm
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Joined: Sun Jan 29, 2006 7:10 pm
Posts: 46
Post 
Yep, they are 5x4.5 car pattern. Good that you found the site on how to measure the pattern since possible swaps over 40 plus years can change what is supposed to be there :wink:

As Tim sez your speedo will not be right on but that can be fixed with a new tranny driven gear which is easy and relatively cheap to do - around $15.00 at your local Ford dealer.

Jim


Mon Aug 07, 2006 5:23 pm
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