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2015 Power Wagon towing with AEV Dual Sport Lift Kit Report

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  • 2015 Power Wagon towing with AEV Dual Sport Lift Kit Report


    I wanted to report here that the AEV Dual Sport lift kit significantly improved the towing, and handling while towing with my RAM Power Wagon. For those that don't already know the AEV kit for the Power Wagon requires that you swap in the OEM coils from the standard 6.4L V8 Ram 2500.
    If you look at the pictures when my RAM had the chrome wheels (this is the before picture) you will notice the rear end squat, but what is worse is that the front end suspension would top out. That previous arrangement made the front axle steering much lighter. Therefore, the AEV kit not only improved the load capacity in the rear, but increased safety by no longer unweighting the front end. If you notice the pictures with the black wheels (the after pictures) the truck sits correctly. I drove with a 30' Airstream West from Kansas City over I-70, and the Vail pass. The trip was to camp and four wheel in Moab Utah for a week. We went on this trip a couple of weeks ago, and I was extremely pleased with my choice on the AEV lift kit.
    My trailer is a 30' Airstream with a loaded weight of 8,800lbs. My 2015 Power Wagon with all the steel accessories weighs 7,575lbs. So, my combined weight (GCWR) is at 16,375lbs. A stock PW with the stock linear rate springs has a GCWR limit of 17,500. So, by that math I just barely make it.
    I am however having issues with the new 37" tires on the 4.10 factory axle ratio when towing and extended off-roading. I had two moments where my automatic transmission got too hot. It overheated and got mushy after driving all afternoon on the White Rim trail, and Gemini Bridges in Moab. The transmission then did it again coming back over the Vail pass (I-70 Rockies) it got too hot i.e. above 200 degrees, and started acting up. I have since flushed the ATF fluid, and it works great now without a load, but I am now in the planning phase for a custom G2 axles 4.56 ring and pinion. Does anybody have some advice on ring and pinion brands for a 2015 Ram Power Wagon 2500 6.4L V8 with AAM axles? I see most aftermarket support for the Diesel arrangement.
    Attached Files
    Last edited by California_RAM; 04-08-2017, 05:17 PM.

  • #2
    I replied to your thread on the Power Wagon Registry. There's a guy with a 2015 or 2016 Power Wagon who made the jump to 4.88 gears.
    2012 Ram Power Wagon
    Truxedo Deuce Bed Cover with Bed Lights, Black Line-X Rocker Panel, Custom Built Rock Rails Sprayed with Line-X, Front & Rear Bumper and Grill sprayed with Line-X, Husky Mud Flaps, Four VisionX Xmitter Low Pro Prime XP LED Light Bars Behind the Grill, LED Lights Mounted in the Rear Bumper, Heated Seats, Interior LED Lighting, NAV-TV, Camera Mounted in Front Grill, Custom Headache Rack, AEV Raised Air Intake, Salta HD Wheels, 285/75/17 Toyo A/T II Tires

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    • #3
      Originally posted by California_RAM View Post

      If you look at the pictures when my RAM had the chrome wheels (this is the before picture) you will notice the rear end squat, but what is worse is that the front end suspension would top out. That previous arrangement made the front axle steering much lighter. Therefore, the AEV kit not only improved the load capacity in the rear, but increased safety by no longer unweighting the front end.
      Changing your rear springs is not going to affect the weight on your front axle. The claim that adding the AEV Ram suspension changed your truck to make the front 'heavier' is false.

      To 'top out' your front suspension would require a tongue weight of around 18,000LB and a load on your rear axle of about 25,500LB.

      A couple of things -

      1) The tongue weight (around 800LB on an 8K trailer) is loaded on the rear suspension. This is the intuitive action and the only one that most people ever consider.

      2) The tongue weight is being applied well behind the axle. This creates a lever with the fulcrum at the rear axle. This causes a lifting of the front axle. The amount of unweighting is the ratio between the rear overhang and the wheelbase. Lets say that your wheelbase is 12 feet and your rear overhang is 3 feet. This results in a ratio of 0.25. This would equate to 200LB of lift on the front axle. This decreases traction on the front of your truck.

      3) The weight that comes off the front does not disappear, rather it is applied to the rear suspension. So the load on your rear suspension is 1000LB, not 800LB.

      To reduce lift and squat you need a properly set-up weight distributing hitch.

      To eliminate lifting of the front end you can apply the load over or in front of the rear axle. You can diminish lifting of the front end by getting a truck with a longer wheelbase and/or adding more weight in front.
      Ram Laramie Power Wagon
      AEV Wrangler Unlimited Rubicon
      Land Rover Discovery SD Series I
      Land Rover 110
      Unimog U1200
      Husqvarna TR650 Terra Touratech

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      • #4
        I have a '16 6.4 prospector with 4.10 gears and experience similar issues. I find that i need to lock out 6th gear and engage tow hall while pulling. Unfortunately the lower speed towing around 30 to 40 the gear spacing in the trans is wide so it hunts for the right gear. 4.88 are mathematically a little deep are what I have decided on after factoring in larger tire size drag, inertia etc. I assume that Yukon Gears are the best ones out there but i haven't heard any complaints with nitro.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by RF2200 View Post
          Changing your rear springs is not going to affect the weight on your front axle. The claim that adding the AEV Ram suspension changed your truck to make the front 'heavier' is false.

          To 'top out' your front suspension would require a tongue weight of around 18,000LB and a load on your rear axle of about 25,500LB.

          A couple of things -

          1) The tongue weight (around 800LB on an 8K trailer) is loaded on the rear suspension. This is the intuitive action and the only one that most people ever consider.

          2) The tongue weight is being applied well behind the axle. This creates a lever with the fulcrum at the rear axle. This causes a lifting of the front axle. The amount of unweighting is the ratio between the rear overhang and the wheelbase. Lets say that your wheelbase is 12 feet and your rear overhang is 3 feet. This results in a ratio of 0.25. This would equate to 200LB of lift on the front axle. This decreases traction on the front of your truck.

          3) The weight that comes off the front does not disappear, rather it is applied to the rear suspension. So the load on your rear suspension is 1000LB, not 800LB.

          To reduce lift and squat you need a properly set-up weight distributing hitch.

          To eliminate lifting of the front end you can apply the load over or in front of the rear axle. You can diminish lifting of the front end by getting a truck with a longer wheelbase and/or adding more weight in front.
          Best thing to do is get that thing over a cat scale, 3 passes. First with just the truck, second with truck and Airstream, WD not applied. Third pass with truck & airstream and WD applied.

          That will tell you where you need to make adjustments to your WD setup.

          My 27ft Airstream international Signature has a tongue weight of 960lbs and I have zero squat with the stock Power Wagon springs because the weight is properly distributed. Didn't need bags either.

          I also see a lot of guys with lifts who don't have proper drop shanks either. Make sure your hitch is properly adjust on height too.
          2015 Ram Power Wagon Expo/Tow Rig
          Moab Tested 16/17

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          • #6
            2015 Power Wagon towing with AEV Dual Sport Lift Kit Report

            Originally posted by BoldAdventure View Post
            Best thing to do is get that thing over a cat scale, 3 passes. First with just the truck, second with truck and Airstream, WD not applied. Third pass with truck & airstream and WD applied.



            That will tell you where you need to make adjustments to your WD setup.



            My 27ft Airstream international Signature has a tongue weight of 960lbs and I have zero squat with the stock Power Wagon springs because the weight is properly distributed. Didn't need bags either.



            I also see a lot of guys with lifts who don't have proper drop shanks either. Make sure your hitch is properly adjust on height too.


            Exactly.

            I can help with equalizer brand. When it's dialed this way the trucks level, trailers level, and anti-sway is awesome. Amazing what 1 or two washers will do.


            Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
            2014 CCSB Tradesman 2500 -- G56 -- AEV dualsport -- AEV Katla -- 37x12.5r17 Toyo R/T -- 315/70r17 Nokian Hakkapeliitta -- AEV bumper -- VisionX 6.7" light cannon -- Warn 16.5TI -- Mopar flares -- 8.4" Uconnect swap w/ customtronix jailbreak (front/rear/trailer cam) -- 3.73 gears w/ ARB front and rear -- Switch-Pros 8100

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            • #7
              Good to hear on the towing etc.

              On the transmission...
              Just going to 4.56 will not guarantee the transmission will not overheat on something like the white rim or any slow going trail...nor will extra coolers etc. Its all about understanding what causes heat and how to drive to eliminate that.

              What causes most heat in an auto transmission is when the torque converter is unlocked. So if you're driving around in deep sand at slow speeds and the converter is slipping away, you are building massive amounts of heat. ANY auto in ANY car can overheat this way...

              The way to eliminate this is to get the converter to lock up. That is typcially done by taking stress of the transmission, and that can be done with a lower ratio...but going from 4.10 to 4.56 while good in general, probably will not fix what you experienced. The easist way to eliminate the stress on the trans and to ensure the torque converter is nearly always locked is to use 4 low...yes of course 4 low is not required for traction etc, but 4 low has a relatively high speed limit and will eliminate heat from the trans.

              So as a tip, use 4 low to get the torque converter to stay in lock up mode when do trips on the sand, up slow dirt grades, ect...all of this is even more effective at altitude where coolers are less effective.

              (There are also 2 Low kits for the 4th gens with axle disconnects that make turning easier)
              2015 Ram 3500 Cab Chassis SRW
              2009 Brute DoubleCab 5.7VVT Supercharged, 37s
              2015 KTM 1190 Adventure R
              2013 KTM 450XC-W

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              • #8
                Thanks Dave. I will definitely take those driving techniques into account i.e using the 4-low range more to cool trans temps, and proactively down shifting on the column shifter while towing up grades. I also found a Diff shop who can install AAM manufactured 4.56 gears. That's the plan. I wanted to stay with an AAM brand R&P for fitment and noise concerns. I'm told that AAM doesn't have a 4.88, which was my alternate choice.
                Last edited by California_RAM; 04-24-2017, 06:00 PM.

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                • #9
                  Be careful on the AAM 4.56, I was under the impression that they did not have a 4.56 with the newer larger pinion diameter in the rear. Hopefully that has changed.

                  dh
                  2015 Ram 3500 Cab Chassis SRW
                  2009 Brute DoubleCab 5.7VVT Supercharged, 37s
                  2015 KTM 1190 Adventure R
                  2013 KTM 450XC-W

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                  • #10
                    I contacted AAM about lower ratio for a PW and they said that lower ratio AAM 11.5 ring and pinion were a no-go on the Power Wagon. I had asked specifically about 5.13 gears and this is what they said: "I checked with our engineering people and they say the 11.5 5.13 gears we offer for the 11.5 will not work on the 2014+ powerwagon. I will work with them when I get back to the office to see if we can take the designs we did for older models and make changes to make gears for the later models."

                    I later followed up with them and they said: "At this time I have no further news. The current 11.5 5.13 will not work in the 2014 and newer powerwagon.
                    Sorry we cannot help you."
                    Ram Laramie Power Wagon
                    AEV Wrangler Unlimited Rubicon
                    Land Rover Discovery SD Series I
                    Land Rover 110
                    Unimog U1200
                    Husqvarna TR650 Terra Touratech

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                    • #11
                      What about running the Yukon brand 4.88? Does that set work well with the 11.5 axle?

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