Forest River Forums
Sunline User Photos


Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 04-17-2011, 03:15 PM   #1
Senior Member
 
campfirefun's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 160
express van gear change?

After a long winter search. I have found a chevy express van 2007( don't want to start the ford chevy thing here) it is a 3500 6.0 with v8. 3.73 rear end. Right now it is rated at 7700 towing max. The manual says online says that if equiped with 4.10 axle it jumps to 9700 towing max.

Would it be hard and really expensive to have the axle changed. If we buy the van we plan on keeping it for many years. It would be the tow vehicle not really an every day driver. we would be towing our rockwood 8316 that comes in dry at 6600. my other question is along the same lines. I have found many 3500 2010's. in the chevy manual they are rated at 7600 towing and the chevy manual only shows them with 3.73 gearing. the 2500 show 4.10 gearing and towing 9600. could you put a 4.10 axle in a 3500 express.
__________________

__________________
campfirefun is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-17-2011, 03:31 PM   #2
Senior Member
 
sherdep's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Saint Cloud FL
Posts: 1,554
most likely if the van came with the 4.10's it had a tow package which would have consisted of tranny cooler, 4.10 gears, hitch reciever and possibly an oil cooler as well. If it did not come with the 4.10' then most likely it didnt have the tow package -

to answer your question - you could change the gears out (not the axles) and it would have to be done by someone who knows and has the proper tool's (Depth Gauge) to replace the gears - I am thinking in the range of $1,000 or maybe a little higher or you could go to the junk yard and get a complete rear end for $300 to $500 and you would just need to do a gear oil change and swap your brakes along with bleeding the brakes to install it - which is alot easier then doing a gear swap.

I am not sure what the diffrence between the 2500 and 3500 chevy vans so cant answer that one.

If it was me, I wouldnt try to make something work because if ever stopped or got into an accident and DOT looks at the door sticker even though you did the work to make it carry more weight you could be in trouble - just my .02 cents and you may get more then one answer on this one.
__________________

__________________
2011 Rockwood Mini Lite 2306 - Matt
2004 Dodge Ram 1500 Qaud Cab 4x4 with 35" tires and 3.92 gears, Dynatech Longtube Headers & Fabtech 6" lift + Superchips with shift Tuning
Nights Camped 2011 (37)-2012 (16)-2013 (2)
2014 (3)
USMC 91 - 95 - F/A-18 Aviation Ordnance
sherdep is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-17-2011, 03:39 PM   #3
Senior Member
 
campfirefun's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 160
2500 3/4 ton van 3500 1 ton
__________________
campfirefun is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-17-2011, 04:00 PM   #4
Senior Member
 
sherdep's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Saint Cloud FL
Posts: 1,554
Quote:
Originally Posted by campfirefun View Post
2500 3/4 ton van 3500 1 ton
I understand that part - just didnt know what the diffrence between the two to help you answer your question since the two vans are identical with the exception of the designation and something else causing them to have a tow rating diffrence
__________________
2011 Rockwood Mini Lite 2306 - Matt
2004 Dodge Ram 1500 Qaud Cab 4x4 with 35" tires and 3.92 gears, Dynatech Longtube Headers & Fabtech 6" lift + Superchips with shift Tuning
Nights Camped 2011 (37)-2012 (16)-2013 (2)
2014 (3)
USMC 91 - 95 - F/A-18 Aviation Ordnance
sherdep is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-18-2011, 06:41 AM   #5
Senior Member
 
Dodge Guy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 567
Changing the gear ratio will not alter the GVWR of the van. it will change the tow rating which is what you are after. definitely worth the $$$ to do the gear swap.

And you can change the gears in almost any vehicle. I know you can swap the gears in the 3500. I personally swapped out the gears on my Excursion from 3.73 to 4.30 (4.30 was an option on the X). alot of people do gear swaps even to non factory optioned gears.
__________________
02 Ford Excursion V-10 4.30 gears 5 Star Tuner Y-pipe mod Hellwig sway bar Rear Airbags
Prodigy and Dual Cam
07 Cherokee 32B
Better to have a bad day of camping than a good day at work!
Dodge Guy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-18-2011, 08:17 AM   #6
Senior Member
 
campfirefun's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 160
thanks Dodge guy and sherdep-

Dodge guy you pointed out what i am trying to do(increse tow ratings). I like the 2500, 3500 chevy express because they have the 6.0 v8 which is about the last bigger engine you can find. Most come with 3.73. Tow 7700 with that set up. I need at least 8400 with the 4.10 they go up to 9600 ish tow rating. Dodge guy is right on with what I want to do. Just increse the tow rating using a 3/4 or 1 ton frame van which gets a little beefer supension and brakes 4 wheel disc.
__________________
campfirefun is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-18-2011, 09:15 AM   #7
Senior Member
 
prof_fate's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Beaver, PA
Posts: 769
You'll need to confirm what rear end is in the van. I'm not up on what model rear ends they use these days but back in the day ford (whom I'm more familiar with) had several rear ends, the 'ford 9 inch' always being the more preferred as it was much more stout than the 8" or 7.5". You also have transmission differences too - so you should verify what trans is in a HD3500 w/ tow package and what is in the van you are looking at. Probably the same, but possibly not. Gearing and strength vary from trans to trans.

I've changed the rear ends in jeeps and didn't find it all that daunting other than it's not something many mechanics ever do so finding help is pretty hard -but that was pre-internet and youtube so it may be easier today.

Bigger brakes also affects towing capacity -as least when it comes to stopping.

When I was looking at TVs over the winter I considered vans for a brief while but you have to find just the right mix of options and I figured that was gonna be like searching for a needle in a haystack.
__________________
Jill & Chris, Wills (13) Evie (10) & Toby our collie (4)
2011 Grey Wolf 28BH
2013 Chevy K1500 Crew w/ Reese StraitLine Dual Cam

Nights camped 2011: 11 2012: 18 2013: 12 2014: 9 so far
prof_fate is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-18-2011, 11:06 AM   #8
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Jacksonville Florida
Posts: 1,260
That 6.0 with a 3:73 rear should be able to pull your rig around without too much trouble as is, depending on your tire/rim size. My Ram Hemi (5.7) with 3:54 rear and 265 70 17's does okay pulling my 7575 dry weight V lite (probably around 8700 loaded with fluids), unless you are planning a lot of strenuous driving in the mountains. Gas mileage will suffer, what little there is, when swapping to a steeper rear gear, as well. That said; I personally want to switch my truck over to a 3:92 rear. I also installed LT tires, that made a WORLD of difference when towing. Randy
__________________
/SIGPIC]'08 V-lite Flagstaff 30WRLS
'06 Ram 1500 QC hemi Reese dual cam sway control,
K&N series 77 intake, Hellwig helper spgs. LT tires,
Flowmaster "true duals", 380 h.p., Bilstein shocks
08flagvlite is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-18-2011, 11:18 AM   #9
Senior Member
 
campfirefun's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 160
that is what I was thinking. It should work and maybe use it until it doesn't and than replace with a sturdier rear end gear. Most trips would be midwest/great lake area. If it does happen soon we get a van we would make one trip to the estee park area this summer for a wedding we are attending. That would be the only mountain trip most likely.
__________________
campfirefun is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-18-2011, 06:34 PM   #10
Senior Member
 
M109Rrider's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Chesapeake, Va
Posts: 737
I changed the ring and pinion in my 1500 dodge from a 3.92 to a 4.56. $250 for parts and $400 for labor. As stated it doesn't "offically" change tow ratings but man -O- man did it pull better. Best 650 I ever spent.
__________________

__________________

Jason and Billie
2005 Dodge Ram 2500, 4X4, QC/SB 5.9L Cummins
15k non-sliding Hidden Hitch (they lied, it's not hidden at all)
2011 Prime Time Crusader 320RLT
"PT Crew Member Since 11/2010"
M109Rrider is online now   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off






ForestRiverForums.com is not in any way associated with Forest River, Inc. or its associated RV manufacturing divisions.

Our Communities

Our communities encompass many different hobbies and interests, but each one is built on friendly, intelligent membership.

» More about our Communities

Automotive Communities

Our Automotive communities encompass many different makes and models. From U.S. domestics to European Saloons.

» More about our Automotive Communities

RV & Travel Trailer Communities

Our RV & Travel Trailer sites encompasses virtually all types of Recreational Vehicles, from brand-specific to general RV communities.

» More about our RV Communities

Marine Communities

Our Marine websites focus on Cruising and Sailing Vessels, including forums and the largest cruising Wiki project on the web today.

» More about our Marine Communities


Copyright 2002-2012 Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 05:29 PM.


Forest River RV News right to your Email!

Stay up-to-date with Forest River news to your inbox

unsusbcribe at anytime with one click

Close [X]