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Thread: 4:11 vs 3:90 diff which one better on street n freeway?

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    Default 4:11 vs 3:90 diff which one better on street n freeway?

    Currently i have modded l24 with n42 head and wild cam running SU..plus which of 5spd should i use if i go with 4:11..

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    either and either

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    me and friend was debating that 411 is too much on the street ,bad mpg and will whine on the freeway like a 4spd..pls help to clarify..

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    5 speed will lower engine rpm about 400 rpm. Later zx non turbo's had 3:90 gears to help move the heavier car. 280z's have 3:54 gears. 4:11's are a bit quicker off the line but you have to shift sooner. Early 5 speeds have taller 1st and 2nd gears. An early 5 speed with the 4:11's would make a good light to light car. In reality, you aren't going to notice a heck of a lot of seat of the pants difference. Neither are going to help mpg with "a wild cam", what ever that is.

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    I have a 3.9 in the back of a mostly stock L24. Had to go with a five speed eventually. Bought a $50.00 tranny off a nissan truck. Clunky 4th to 5th shift, but otherwise great. I think it was at 4000 RPM at 65 mph with the 4 speed. Love the 3.9 R200!!!
    Lee - 2/72 240Z

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    whats the capacity hp of r180 4:11 can handle..i know that r200 is lot powerful that r180..

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    Quote Originally Posted by jbuenviaje View Post
    me and friend was debating that 411 is too much on the street ,bad mpg and will whine on the freeway like a 4spd..pls help to clarify..
    I think you are spot on, I was going with 4.11 but now I settle for 3.7, its has the best of both worlds. You could go with the 3.9 too, 4.11 is too much IMHO.
    Pi = Pie = $3.1416

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    reason..someone trying to sell me a KR180 from 85' 200sx with 124k miles for $90..Dont know i should go for it or wait for 3:90..i just want something for street and autocross..

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    Usually the better solution is always to wait. If you have to decide, go with the 3.9 or 3.7. It is always better to err on the side of caution. During an autocross, you do not want crazy short gearing. Having to shift between 2nd and 3rd adds time and usually mistakes. Its better to have taller gears so you can leave it in 2nd 95% of the time and you can concentrate on being smooth and driving the right line. Autocross is 80% driver, 15% tires, and 5% car. Do not obsess on making your car the fastest it can be. If you are serious about autocross, make your car reliable, predictable, and make yourself faster.

    Go for the taller rear end, it will make you happier longer.
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    The R160 found in WRXs handle 300hp. The R180 diff used in the US prior to the introduction of the R200 were raced for nearly 5 yrs with lots of cars making over 300hp.
    The R190 (Z432 and Nismo) can handle over 300hp.

    Unless you are putting out more than 300rwhp and don't make 5000rpm launches from the line that R180 will be just fine.

    Depending on wheel size and tranny gearing the difference between the 4:11 and 3:90 is about just under 400rpm (4:11 higher than the 3:90). So at 80mph w/my 3:90 I do just under 3100rpm and if I had a 4:11 it would be around 3500rpm.
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    Quote Originally Posted by gnosez View Post
    The R180 diff used in the US prior to the introduction of the R200 were raced for nearly 5 yrs with lots of cars making over 300hp.
    Not really.
    The R180's that were raced ran 4 sypder gears - the OEM units have two. That is the weak point in the differential.

    The R180's that were raced by winning teams - were checked/rebuilt several times per season and many ran differential coolers for longer races.

    Nonetheless - I agree that the R180 in as new condition is strong enough - and stronger if you add a posi unit with 4 spider gears.

    The R200's are stronger - and in many cases you can find units that are far newer and have less milege on them. Even if they have the same mileage - chances are good that because they are stronger - they will run longer in lower torque application.

    Just my personal experience - but the R200's I've ran - all ran with far less noise in the cabin. For many reasons I'd take an R200 over an R180 every time for other than a single purpose race car - and even then the type of race would be considered.

    FWIW,
    Carl B.
    Last edited by Carl Beck; 01-19-2010 at 07:51 AM.

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    R180 4:11 with Nissan/Borg Warner T5 5-speed combo..is that good street and autocross

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    Quote Originally Posted by IdahoKidd View Post
    5 speed will lower engine rpm about 400 rpm. Later zx non turbo's had 3:90 gears to help move the heavier car. 280z's have 3:54 gears. 4:11's are a bit quicker off the line but you have to shift sooner. Early 5 speeds have taller 1st and 2nd gears. An early 5 speed with the 4:11's would make a good light to light car. In reality, you aren't going to notice a heck of a lot of seat of the pants difference. Neither are going to help mpg with "a wild cam", what ever that is.
    Disagree. The late 5 speed is what you want. The early 5 has too tall 1st and 2nd and a big ass hole in the gearing between 2nd and 3rd. Later has closer gearing and is much better suited to a motor with a big cam.
    Jon

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    Quote Originally Posted by jbuenviaje View Post
    R180 4:11 with Nissan/Borg Warner T5 5-speed combo..is that good street and autocross
    Again disagree. The T5 has very similar ratios to the early 5 speeds. I think they're actually wider gear spacing, but don't have such a huge hole in the 2-3 shift area. For a light car you don't really need the extra torque to launch it. Much more beneficial to have the close gearing to keep the rpms up between shifts, again especially with a big camshaft.
    Jon

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    FWIW, in my '73 240Z I am running a 4:11 KR180 from a 200SX combined with a later model 5-spd from an '82 Maxima. These are behind a stock '82 motor from a 280ZX. I use the car for canyon carving here in Northern Colorado. This combo is perfect for that. It has great acceleration and turns a few hundred rpms less at 70-80 than my stock 4-spd/3:36 R180. Be advised that you will have to take the side buttons from inside your 3:36 and put them in the KR180 in order to use your current half-shafts. It's not hard and gives you the opportunity to put new seals in, You will also need to get a red speedo gear so your speedometer is accurate. Look on hybridz for a complete differential sticky thread that will tell you all you need to know about differentials and making the side button change.
    Cheers, Mike

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    Carl - actually a lot of us used the stock R180 and raced them on weekends and then drove the car to work on Monday. I completely agree that race teams and folks with more money had the diff modified but there were more of the OEM versions being run than the other way around IMHO.

    Jon - completely agree that the gap between 2nd and 3rd in both the 4-spd and early 5-spd is too wide for an under-powered car. We swapped out the 4 spd in the race car as it was killing us as we went from 2nd to 3rd going uphill.
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    I ran a R180 with a nismo LSD and 4.11:1 r&p with a Type-A 5 speed and then with a KA conversion 5 Speed in my 240Z. It was a pleasure to drive but required rapid shifting even in normal driving. The LSD finally had worn to a point of needing a rebuild. I opted to build a R200 with a Quaife LSD and 3.90:1 r&p. The car is much more enjoyable to drive and still pulls well with the lightly modified 2.4L. The best way I can describe this is I can actually get through an intersection from a stop without having to shift gears (assuming I wasn't running the rpm's up to 4000). If you're using the car primarily on the street then I'd lean heavily towards the 3.90:1 r&p. I'll qualify this by saying I don't autocross or race my cars anymore. The days of building fire-breathing-pain-in-the-arse-to-drive-constant-maintainance-breaking down cars are behind me. As someone who has owned over fifty cars and trucks (mostly performance intended) I now prefer good performance, reliability and longivity over 'anything goes'.

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    The difference between a 3.90 and 4.11 should be a couple hundred rpm in any given gear, and the 3.90 came stock in the ZX. I wonder if you didn't run a larger tire or something that helped to make a larger difference than the ratio alone would have done. I would think that the gear ratio change would by all means be noticeable, but not make one into a rapid fire shifting machine that had to be constantly changing gears while the other just loped along in one gear no matter what you did, if you get my meaning.
    Jon

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    Do u guys know the 5spd gear ratio for 1985 200sx N/A

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    Datsun/Nissan Transmissions

    MANUAL

    Trans Type 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th other Reverse *Notes*

    4sp RWD

    F4W63L 3.382 2.013 1.312 1.000 -.--- -.--- 3.365 *710*
    F4W71A 3.549 2.197 1.420 1.000 -.--- -.--- 3.364 *240Z*
    F4W71B 3.382 2.077 1.308 1.000 -.--- -.--- 3.382 *240Z/810/Maxima/620*
    F4W56A 3.757 2.169 1.404 1.000 -.--- -.--- 3.640 *B210/210*
    F4W60L 3.513 2.170 1.378 1.000 -.--- -.--- 3.764 *210*
    F4W63L 3.382 2.013 1.312 1.000 -.--- -.--- 3.365 *510*
    F4W63L 3.657 2.177 1.419 1.000 -.--- -.--- 3.638 *510 Optional*

    5sp RWD

    FS5W60L 3.513 2.170 1.378 1.000 0.846 -.--- 3.464 *210/510*
    FS5W63A 3.382 2.013 1.312 1.000 0.854 -.--- 3.570 *S110/610/510*
    FS5W71B 3.321 2.077 1.308 1.000 0.833 -.--- 3.382 *S12*
    FS5W71C 3.321 2.077 1.308 1.000 0.864 -.--- 3.636 *S12/280Z*
    FS5W71C 3.321 1.902 1.308 1.000 0.759 -.--- 3.636 *Z31 N/A*
    RS5R30A 3.214 1.925 1.302 1.000 0.752 -.--- 3.369 *Z32*
    FS5R30A 3.324 2.077 1.360 1.000 0.711 -.--- 3.382 *88-89 Z31 Turbo*
    FS5R30A 3.324 2.077 1.360 1.000 0.751 -.--- 3.382 *87 Z31 Turbo*
    *89-86 Pathfinder 2WD with 6 Cyl*
    *87-96 Pathfinder 4X4 with 6 Cyl*
    *86-96 Pickup 2WD with 6 Cyl*
    *86-96 Pickup 4X4 with 6 Cyl*
    FS5R90A 3.350 2.056 1.376 1.000 0.752 -.--- 3.153 *84-86 Z31 Turbo*


    So i guess perfect tranny combo for KR180 4:11 diff is FS5W71C tranny

    FS5W71C 3.321 2.077 1.308 1.000 0.864 -.--- 3.636 *S12 (200SX)/280Z*

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    FS5W71C tranny from 1977-1980

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    His original post was for the street and highway. Somehow it got over to racing. I don't race, and I don't notice the big hole between 2nd and 3rd. Maybe the tranny I have isn't the tranny I think I have, but am still happy. In my world, highway is getting into 5th and staying there until I get there. That said, having read your posts for some time, I wouldn't even begin to challenge you. I am certain you have forgotten more about these cars than I'll ever know.

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    I have done the later 5spd and 3.90 in a '76 and my '70. The second to third gear shift is soo much nicer. The car is fine on the highway. This tranny and diff were designed to go together to move a ZX which gained a lot of weight over the years since it's birth as a 240z. It isn't radical, and is a great performance upgrade. Plan on new Ujoints and bushings while you are in there.

    Adamr
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    I have to agree with Pop's Z! In my 1970 w/N42, late model 280ZX 5spd, and R200 w/ 4:11 posi.....its a perfect combination for the twisties. When driving the freeway at 3000rpm however, I'm traveling at approx 70 to 73 mph. (my rear tire size is 235-40 x17....about 24" dia.) I had the 3:90 set-up before but with low HP the lower gearing certainly helps....my N42 is stock except for headers and upgraded ignition....maybe 150 HP at the flywheel. All in all, it comes down to personal preference.

    Tom

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    If any one is interested,i'm taking a 3.71 rear out of a 79 810 that i'm parting.
    Faster than anyone in Oceanside

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    I run a late 280zx 5 speed with 4.11 and love it. When I ran NA with a medium cam it was great because it didn't take long to get into the power band, and the cam pulled well to 7k so there was still a usefull rev range. With 225/50-16 tires (almost identical to the stock diameter) it's turning 3100 rpm at 75 mph. Given how loud the rest of the car is (it's a 73 so not much sound insulation) the revs really don't matter. And on the track it's great. 2nd is good to about 65, third to 95, and fourth to 125.

    Now that I've gone turbo it does seem a little short and if I was to do it again, I'd go for a 3.9 if I could find one. But the benefit of it is that the car can easily be left in third from below 25 mph up to 95.

    Given how hard it is to find these diffs, I'd suggest you go with whichever one you find first that is in good condition and hold out for a 81-83 5 speed.
    Daniel
    '73 240Z
    Castle Rock, CO

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    In my 5/71 Z I installed the early 5 speed and 4.44 lsd from Datsun Comp. I used the same gearing in the transmission as the 2000 roadster. I really enjoyed it on the open road, twisty roads, and in town. I look forward to getting her back on the road to once again enjoy it. Of course, due to a tranny change while it was out of my possession, (it had a 79 280Z tranny put in) I am looking for the 81 to 83 tranny.
    1971 240Z - HLS30-23305 2/71
    1971 240Z - HLS30-30855 5/71

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    The stickies that Pop's Z mentioned are here:
    http://forums.hybridz.org/forumdisplay.php?f=62

    I got (In my opinion) the best info out of this one. About a month ago, I printed it in color, made my notes, and put it in the z closet.
    http://forums.hybridz.org/showthread.php?t=114798

    For what it's worth, I would also wait on buying.

    Tom.
    Last edited by fiveleaf; 01-21-2010 at 11:53 PM.
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    I'm planning on running a '77 5-speed (early?) and an R180 3.9. The engine will be a 3.1L stroker with about 10:1 compression. The car will be for autox and some street driving (just for fun on nice days not a daily driver).

    Opinions?
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    '71 240Z - HLS30-018482 - Production Date 1/71,Corvette Yellow, driven under a 4Runner, bought for parts, hit lotto with parts on car, may fix and put back on road

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    If you've already got those parts, run them. You'll see how big the hole in the gearing is from 2-3 and when you hit 3rd how much it bogs down. Then you can switch to the later ZX 5 speed and report back about how much better it is.

    Thanks fiveleaf. Glad people are still getting good use out of that thread. Took me a while to compile all the info.
    Jon

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