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Hey y'all,

I believe I'm in need of a new torque converter and I'm looking for input on brands and features I should consider before plunking down a bunch of money.

First a bit of background... In late '08 I had my 47RE rebuilt by All Star Transmission in Marble Falls, Texas because they were referred to me by other diesel owners. It was a relatively mild build and they did everything short of replacing the input shaft. This truck tows my Jeep and isn't built to race or for doing burnouts and based on my criteria, this is what All Star recommended so I went with it. The converter suggested by them was a single disc billet converter. I think it was made by Transgo, but don't recall for sure. The truck is only mildly tuned and at best may make 400hp/800tq, but probably less than that.

The converter has always acted like it's slipping more than it should. Maybe the stall is too high? Maybe the clutches aren't holding? The trans shifts very nicely and is firm. But until the converter locks up (either on its own or when I flip my switch), it never feels fast or feels like it's pulling hard. All Star said this was normal years ago when I took them for a drive, but I don't like it. For years I just dealt with it. Recently, however, with the converter switch on and locked up, I'm able to slip the converter when I get on the throttle hard. Not good. So I've started researching replacing the converter.

I spoke with someone at ATS and he told me there's no way a single disc converter should've been used in my application, even thought it's only at a moderate power level. He also said my stall is likely too high and is designed for a stock power output. He suggested their 5 disc converter:
ATS | 1300-1500 RPM STALL SPEED -Five Star Viskus Clutch Drive Torque Converter, Billet Stator F-Trim, Positive Impeller, Dodge, 94-07, 5.9L Cummins, 47R-H/47-RE/48-RE Transmission


So my question is this... Would you all agree that my converter is likely the issue? If not, what? If it is the converter, what features and/or brands should I consider? Again, I'm not making this thing a race car, but I want it to pull strongly when under heavy loads.....and it doesn't do that well right now at all.

Thanks!
Tommy
 

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Discussion Starter #2
I just spoke to Jimmy at Suncoast and he said it's crazy to run such a low stall like ATS suggested! He suggested one of their 3 disc 2000 RPM stall converters:
2000 STALL 24V 3D CONVERTER

This is awkward because I have two companies (both reputable as far as I know) that are telling me very different things regarding stall speed.
 

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Call Goerend, get the converter they suggest, be happy because you got a primo converter.

Single disk converters even in stock applications are less then ideal. I'd agree with what Suncoast told you and that a 1300-1500 stall is rediculous for you. The 2000 stall that was recommended sounds slightly lower then stock and should fit your truck well.
 

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i second goerend as i know a guy who has worked on trans for 20 years and he worked in my local state with a trans shop that carried goerend equipment, they are beast. he also told me stories about rebuilds he has done on ats trans with the little things missed, like not upgradeing drive shells, not replacing aluminum shift levers with steel and so on.

i also agree none of our trucks, even on stock power should be on a single disk. its just such a high failure mode that it dosent make sense. idk if they make non billet tripple disk but id assumption some one does. i have a 600rpm low stall stator in my suncoast tripple disk and its rated for about 1500ft/lbs, i have chowdered the crap out of it and needed to pay them to rebuild it because even tho im under that torque point i beat the ever loving crap out of it. cost me 250 to get it cut open and rebuilt so its not bad but point is that if you abuse a trans you will need to rebuild it more regardless of parts in it. just keep that in mind.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for the input! I'll give Goerend a call and pick their brain, as well. I thought ATS was well-respected so I'm really glad I asked before buying!

I'm not abusive to my truck at all. I get on the throttle hard from time to time and I tow with it, but the most expensive thing to replace on this truck is the trans so I'd prefer to not rebuild again, if at all possible. The rebuilt trans currently has about 70k on it over the last 10 years and still shifts fine. It just appears the converter isn't up to snuff.
 

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Whats the reason for everyone saying a low stall is bad and the single billet is a bad choice, he didnt mention having a different then stock turbo. Just curious, no hate please.
 

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Whats the reason for everyone saying a low stall is bad and the single billet is a bad choice, he didnt mention having a different then stock turbo. Just curious, no hate please.
In my case, ever since my trans was rebuilt and had a new single disc converter installed, it's felt way too loose for the application. Imagine flooring it in first gear, the revs jump up to about 2800 or so (close to redline) and the tach barely moves to maybe 3000 rpm before it shifts again.....and when it upshifts the revs only drop to about 2800-2900 rpm.

That's just an example, but is pretty close to what mine does. It's really frustrating and has never felt fast.....until the converter locks up. And now the converter clutch is having a hard time holding full power when locked. ATS and Suncoast both agreed this is indicative of a situation where the converter is too loose.
 

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the lower your stall the lower the rpm at which you get fluid coupling. meaning that if your TC is meant to stall at 2000RPM and your engine is stting at 800RPM you do not have acquit fluid coupling to move you forward. this is one of the reasons in an auto when stopped in traffic you dont plow into the guy infront of you when not holding the breaks. however as you lower this stall speed by changing the stator fins angle of attack you get more power transfer at lower RPM's. so if you have ever been in a vehicle that feels like its trying to drive through the breaks that is a low stall TC. i like having more of my power band and since most of us have major mods to increase low end torque it makes since to have the fluid couple at the lower RPM range since we have far more torque down there than the factory ever counted on. then if we move to the higher gears 3rd with OD off or 4th with it on our TC will lock a clutch to give us 100% transfer (just like a manual), (no fluid coupling is 100% transfer, there is always waste). when the TC locks what ever difference in energy transfer is immediately taken up by the clutch pack. so if you have say a 80% efficient fluid transfer in your TC (this is over simplified but just for example) and you have 1,000 ft/lbs of torque, when that TC locks it is taking up 200ft/lbs of torque that second and it needs to be able to hold that much extra power and transfer it to the wheels. when clutches slip is when they wear out and generate excess heat. add to that the clutch packs material flows through the trans, sure some goes into the filter but its possible to jam up your valve body or cause damage to solenoids due to clutch material flowing around in there. a triple disk is just that, 3 times the surface area for the TC to hold with, this also gives more thermal dissipation, and generally these come in billet housings so you gain extra strength on the shell as well. now having too low of a stall speed can place you outside of the optimal fluid coupling range. meaning if you gain max torque at say 1200rpm and your stall speed is set at 600rpm and your idle is at 500RPM then you will start locking and putting excessive strain on your engine before its into its optimal power band, hurting your towing efficency among other things.
 

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In my case, ever since my trans was rebuilt and had a new single disc converter installed, it's felt way too loose for the application. Imagine flooring it in first gear, the revs jump up to about 2800 or so (close to redline) and the tach barely moves to maybe 3000 rpm before it shifts again.....and when it upshifts the revs only drop to about 2800-2900 rpm.

That's just an example, but is pretty close to what mine does. It's really frustrating and has never felt fast.....until the converter locks up. And now the converter clutch is having a hard time holding full power when locked. ATS and Suncoast both agreed this is indicative of a situation where the converter is too loose.
I agree it sounds like a loose condition. It was said 2000 RPM stall would be better. I question this a bit I guess. (No hate please) I run a Single Dampened Low Stall Billet unit that I built for my rig and really like it compared to the OEM stall that was much looser. Mine will pull a grade at the parking garage near me without using the skinny pedal. I really like the lower stall, just wondering why it was suggested to use a 2000 stall. Unless someone had a HOTROD intended truck with a big turbo I would never think a 2000 stall would be good.
 

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I ran a Goerend 800/300 in my old 12v but should have ran a 900/400. This is from Goerend
 

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i like that you are trying to think ahead. i started with my trans when i bought this truck and did the following:
1st rebuild: tripple disk billet TC, shift kit, borg warner clutch/koleen steels, kevlar bands, all aluminum replaced with steel, rear planet gearing upgrade to higher gear count, deep pan, new shafts, billet servos/accum, all new wiring, machiend pressure plate and aditional clutch packs front and rear, and a paint job. i thought i had covered my bases.
2nd rebuild: replaced output shaft with modded lubricated version (broke the factory), new clutches/steels, upgraded snap rings (broke the ones from the first rebuild kit).
3rd rebuild: same as first but with billet flex plate (cracked factory one), billet input/intermediate, new case (cracked the factory one), machined case/sprag to bolt in wtih 5 bolts (factory sprag spun), modded VB further for higher line pressures and 1st gear lock up, also upgrade cooling for a 35,000 GRVW vehicle.
4th rebuild: replaced all front end parts with 48RE (clutches/steels/drive shell (twisted the factory 47RE one)/pump), rebuild TC (rock came through inspection plate and dented housing, had also destroyed the clutches), all new soft parts, added yet 1 more set of clutches forward.

1st one was about 2100.00
2nd was about 200.00
3rd one was 2500.00
4th one was 850.00

i wish i had done it all at the start but i just didnt know enough about where i wanted to take the truck nor did i know what the truck could, or rather could not, handle.
 

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Bingo. The smartest post yet in this thread.

Steer clear of ats. They are junk.
Can the below posters explain exactly why single disks are so bad, "even for stock applications" ?
Are these "high failure rates" anecdotal or personally witnessed, and what exactly failed?

Call Goerend, get the converter they suggest, be happy because you got a primo converter.

Single disk converters even in stock applications are less then ideal. I'd agree with what Suncoast told you and that a 1300-1500 stall is rediculous for you. The 2000 stall that was recommended sounds slightly lower then stock and should fit your truck well.
i second goerend as i know a guy who has worked on trans for 20 years and he worked in my local state with a trans shop that carried goerend equipment, they are beast. he also told me stories about rebuilds he has done on ats trans with the little things missed, like not upgradeing drive shells, not replacing aluminum shift levers with steel and so on.

i also agree none of our trucks, even on stock power should be on a single disk. its just such a high failure mode that it dosent make sense. idk if they make non billet tripple disk but id assumption some one does. i have a 600rpm low stall stator in my suncoast tripple disk and its rated for about 1500ft/lbs, i have chowdered the crap out of it and needed to pay them to rebuild it because even tho im under that torque point i beat the ever loving crap out of it. cost me 250 to get it cut open and rebuilt so its not bad but point is that if you abuse a trans you will need to rebuild it more regardless of parts in it. just keep that in mind.
 

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I wouldn’t say they’re bad or there’s a high failure rate. Just that in my experience and talking with Dynamic multiple times, the triple disk just works better on these trucks due to the amount of torque.

I’m sure there’s plenty of people using single converters that are happy as a clam. If I had to guess as to why they ‘fail’ it’d be due to people using them in applications where they should’ve used triples.

Last I checked Goerend sells single disk converters but the mentioned it being for stock only trucks WITH a modified valve body to support it.

Just my two cents, people can use whatever they want, 1000 for a Goerend triple, or 800 for a single.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
And speaking from personal experience, I can tell you that my very mildy tuned truck is causing my single disc billet converter to slip. Just another data point...
 

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Maybe I am one of those happy as clam guys. I built my converter over a year ago and its going strong but we apply our own friction material of our choice, which is much more aggressive then the oem. I dont give out our secretes but I am sure other builders do the same thing or similar mods to increase lock up functionality.
I dont abuse the power in OD either so maybe that helps. My lock up is still very strong. Lots of our customers lock the converter in OD under WOT/Heavy throttle so we use the triple on these and in the higher HP units as well.
 

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Valve bodies and line pressures along with clutch apply/release timing is key.
Yes, thats why we do a lot to the VB's on those Dodge builds using the 46/47/48 RE and we do a lot to the RH units as well. Each set up to match the converter type being used.
 
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