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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
V10 Excursion Tranmission Cooler Only:

Some of you may remember that I bought the Excursion V10 tranmission cooler and installed it, while removing the heat exchanger in the radiator end tank completely from the loop. I had been running it like this all summer with no ill effect and saw no temps above the usual 203F. The problem was I had not towed with it to really push the limits.

I finally got a good trip with the travel trailer, 4.5 hours each way, and up some pretty solid hills. One was 2 miles of 9% grade at 65 mph. The tranmission fluid never got above 210F which is pretty typical for my truck while towing.



So overall, I would say this mod was a success and I am hoping it took some load off the engine coolant.

AFE Intercooler:

I can't decide if this thing does much. I saw manifold temperatures in excess of 100F on a day that got no hotter than 65F. So basically a 40-50F temperature differential when under heavy load. I imagine on a 100F day ill be in the 150's or so. Not sure what other people get from their intercoolers but this isnt that great to me.

"TMAP" in the above picture is my manifold temp.

Gearhead Tow Tune:

I know we have a lot of Gearhead fans here, and I run their tune daily, but this was my first experience with the tow tune where I actually exceeded 55mph and towed for more than 30 minutes. This was everything from 70 mph on I-15 going up and down some solid grades, to some 65 mph 2 lane roads, to 2 miles of 9% grade at 65mph, etc. All of this on was Chevron or P66 91 Octane fuel.

I gotta be honest, the 5Star tune is better. Even my 87 Octane tune. The Gearhead tune just does not have the refined shifting and low end grunt of the 5Star. I often found myself approching hills and waiting what felt like an eternity for the transmission to downshift. I would lose speed and then it would go for the downshift. Using cruise control was obnoxious because it would slow down and speed up on every hill. Eventually I would just start preemptively downshifting it in preparation for a hill. Part of the issue was the lack of low end power that is inherent with the Gearhead tunes. It would try to hold the taller gear but it didnt have the balls. I guess if they lowered the downshift threshold it might feel better, but then it might not hold 6th on the freeway, I dont know.

The good news was that the LOR was pretty much pegged at -1 the whole trip on the 91, only at the very end did it drop to -.8. KR's generally were in the negatives, especially under load.
 

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Excellent post.

I'm taking notes from all of these towing and overheating threads for when we purchase a TT. The only significant tow I've done was in December, so there's no telling how my temps will do towing heavy in summer I guess. I already have the Wagner, which I hope will be a huge step in the right direction.

Baaaaaaaaaaa
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Excellent post.

I'm taking notes from all of these towing and overheating threads for when we purchase a TT. The only significant tow I've done was in December, so there's no telling how my temps will do towing heavy in summer I guess. I already have the Wagner, which I hope will be a huge step in the right direction.

Baaaaaaaaaaa
From what I gather, the 2015+ trucks don’t seem to have as much trouble with overheating. I would imagine you might be in a pretty good spot with just the CAC.
 

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I hope you're right. There doesn't seem to be much documentation on how the little guy fairs though. When I have towed it did great. But it has always either been flat towing, or when it was through mountains cold weather.

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Maybe I missed it, but a few questions if you don't mind..

1) What is the weight of your trailer?
2) This is on the stock radiator?
3) Is the excursion v10 tranny radiator the same as the larger radiator that was used in the middle-east market for the f150 which some folks have installed?

Bummer Gearhead doesn't want to modify their tune at the low gears. I have been keeping up with that thread and it seems to be the biggest negative about that tune. Others have raved about the shifting, so I'm surprised you didn't like it (although you're not the only one.) I totally get what you mean though. My current stock tune really hangs in high gears before it realizes it should downshift. Annoying as HELL. I have to do it manually to maintain my speed uphill when pulling. I don't quite understand what the hesitation is about regarding increasing power in lower gears. Is there an increased likelyhood of damage to the motor? Can this only be done by increasing boost, which affects the entire RPM range?

Thanks for the detailed followup with your setup! Definitely helps those of us that tow.
 

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The way Matt puts it is be believes in keeping it "soft" below 2500 rpms to protect the motor. I also wish his tune had more tip in.

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Im a tune junkie. I have GH auto adjust tunes and the BCB tunes. I prefer the BCB. Still tweaking it a little bit but I noticed the OAR is a lot more active on the BCB. It has more power for the daily driver one. The only thing I did not like is the 4-3 downshift was really rough. Casey fixed that and breaking in the new revision. So far I like it a lot more than the GH performance tune.
 

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Im a tune junkie. I have GH auto adjust tunes and the BCB tunes. I prefer the BCB. Still tweaking it a little bit but I noticed the OAR is a lot more active on the BCB. It has more power for the daily driver one. The only thing I did not like is the 4-3 downshift was really rough. Casey fixed that and breaking in the new revision. So far I like it a lot more than the GH performance tune.
I can't remember what year your truck is? I have the Gearhead tune and I like it. May try the BCB tune. Mine is a 2013.

Sent from my moto g(6) using Tapatalk
 

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Good to hear you've gotten good results.

Too bad you can't get numbers over 85F. My truck does great below that temp, never breaks 230F ECT and tranny not over 210. Once ambient goes over 85F ambient is when I start getting up into the 240F range ECTs and 230F TFT's. Got the Saudi Arabia tranny cooler I'm going to try next year while keeping the stock radiator unit and see how it does.

My scanner doesn't do IAT2, but I did run Forscan on a long pull once. In 100F ambient temp my IAT2 was about 165-170F with the stock I/C (+70F). (on the 8-mile 6-8% grade that usually kills my truck). From what I've read, you are supposed to be down within 10-20F of ambient with a good aftermarket unit.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Maybe I missed it, but a few questions if you don't mind..

1) What is the weight of your trailer? 5500 lbs. I dont think weight is so important with a travel trailer because air drag is so huge. I doubt the difference between towing a 5000 and 7000 lb travel trailer are that much when travelling at 65mph.
2) This is on the stock radiator? Yes, but it was fairly cool weather. I don't know if bypassing the radiator end tank is enough to keep the ECT's down in the summer.
3) Is the excursion v10 tranny radiator the same as the larger radiator that was used in the middle-east market for the f150 which some folks have installed? I'm not sure. It is 13 rows(about 2x the height of the stock cooler) and is the same width as the stock cooler that came with my truck.

Bummer Gearhead doesn't want to modify their tune at the low gears. I have been keeping up with that thread and it seems to be the biggest negative about that tune. Others have raved about the shifting, so I'm surprised you didn't like it (although you're not the only one.) I totally get what you mean though. My current stock tune really hangs in high gears before it realizes it should downshift. Annoying as HELL. I have to do it manually to maintain my speed uphill when pulling. I don't quite understand what the hesitation is about regarding increasing power in lower gears. Is there an increased likelyhood of damage to the motor? Can this only be done by increasing boost, which affects the entire RPM range?

Thanks for the detailed followup with your setup! Definitely helps those of us that tow.
See responses in red in your quote.

With regards to the Gearhead tune; I will still continue to use it as my daily driver. I do really like the tune for regular driving and my complaints above were strictly around towing. And its not even that its THAT bad, its just the 5Star tow tune is so much more refined.

I believe he limits torque in the lower RPM's to prevent damage but reducing ECT's may be another reason. By forcing earlier downshifts and spinning the engine faster you are also spinning the waterpump faster and reducing the required boost.
 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
Good to hear you've gotten good results.

Too bad you can't get numbers over 85F. My truck does great below that temp, never breaks 230F ECT and tranny not over 210. Once ambient goes over 85F ambient is when I start getting up into the 240F range ECTs and 230F TFT's. Got the Saudi Arabia tranny cooler I'm going to try next year while keeping the stock radiator unit and see how it does.

My scanner doesn't do IAT2, but I did run Forscan on a long pull once. In 100F ambient temp my IAT2 was about 165-170F with the stock I/C (+70F). (on the 8-mile 6-8% grade that usually kills my truck). From what I've read, you are supposed to be down within 10-20F of ambient with a good aftermarket unit.
The ambient temp never got above 65-67F. I dont know WTF was with the temps the truck was reporting to Torque.

I've NEVER had issues with my trans temps. Only my ECT's which is why I was trying to offload the transmission cooling for the radiator. I still think my ECT's will still get high but overall I think its better than its. I remember I towed to St George last year on a fairly cool day(~60F) and still got into the mid 230's, so seeing 224 is good.
 

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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
Just wanted to update this. I warped my Manifolds on my last tow so I swapped to CRP Full-bore mani's and immediately took my travel trailer out and abused the new setup.

This time I headed down to Bryce Canyon National Park. Our campsite was at ~7200' and I live at 6500' so a +700' change overall, but tons of up an downs in between. Lowest was ~4000' and highest around 8000'. Temps were between 80-85* depending on the elevation.

I was also facing a 20mph headwind with 30mph gust on the way down which was a killer. I averaged 7 mpg instead of my normal 9.5-10. At some points I had to run in 4th gear on flat stretches of highway because of the wind so the truck was working very hard.

Intercooler: It did ok. It never dropped the temps down near ambient. IAT2 pretty much ran 25-30F hotter(110F) than ambient the whole ride, but at the same time I don't think I saw it get much over 130F, which is still a lot better than stock where I would see 190F.

Transmission: Never saw it go above 208F even with the radiator end tank cooler out of the loop. This was just the larger Expedition air cooler.

Engine Coolant: I just changed the engine coolant when I did the manifolds. I dont know the exact Coolant:Water ratio since I don't know how much was left in the system after draining, but I added a 40% coolant dilution back in, so I was somewhere south of 50%. I also upgraded to the SuperStant t-stat that operates at 188F. The problem seemed to be the head wind, because just cruising along on flat road I rarely saw the coolant drop below 220F. One big climb resulted in the engine hitting its power reduction mode maybe half way up and I ended up at 50mph in the right lane with the 18 wheelers. Other climbs I was paying more attention and killed the A/C at the start of the climb and turned the heat to max. This kept it from hitting the power reduction mode but I was still hitting high 230's. If I had longer climbs I certainly would have hit power reduction mode without slowing down.

So the summary seem to be that the AFE cooler is ok, not great but better than stock. The trans cooler seems to be stout enough on its own to keep the transmission happy. The engine cooling still sucks. I don't know what will fix the engine cooling, even a larger radiator may not do it.

Oh and this was on Gearheads Tow tune. I still don't really like this tune. It isn't super strong on the low end, which is part of his approach, but the biggest issue is its downshifting schedule. It just waits and waits and waits to downshift. If you don't preemptively lockout gears as you approach the hill you will find the truck slows down as much as 5mph(especially on cruise control) because it waits so damn long to go down a gear. It was almost like the PCM hits a point in the throttle where it won't make any more power, so pushing the throttle farther doesn't buy you anything, but to trigger the downshift you have to push the throttle much farther then the point where the truck stops making anymore power. It just feels unnatural and ****ty. I basically shifted for the truck the whole way home. I would lock out 6th as I started a climb and lockout 5th if it got steep. I started to watch the speedometer and if it started to drop i would shift for it.

This is where the 5Star tune shines. They have their transmission shifting so well sync'd with the power curve that it just always seems to be in the right gear. I don't even care that the Gearhead tune makes less power at lower RPM, as long as it would shift seamlessly.
 

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Did the tip-in improve on the GH tune at all with the new exhaust manifolds? My butt dyno tells me that I have little more power in the lower RPM range than before. The pedal seems a bit more jumpy off the line. This is on a stock tune however. Perhaps a custom tune will make better use of the manifolds?

The FR radiator helped with the cooling situation, but wasn't a panacea to fix the hot issue. Still need to remove more heat from the motor. I would start looking at oil cooling next, or even the high speed fan mod for when pulling grades.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Did the tip-in improve on the GH tune at all with the new exhaust manifolds? My butt dyno tells me that I have little more power in the lower RPM range than before. The pedal seems a bit more jumpy off the line. This is on a stock tune however. Perhaps a custom tune will make better use of the manifolds?

The FR radiator helped with the cooling situation, but wasn't a panacea to fix the hot issue. Still need to remove more heat from the motor. I would start looking at oil cooling next, or even the high speed fan mod for when pulling grades.
I really haven’t noticed anything. I was using 5Stars tunes up until the manifold warped and they are noticeably stouter on the low end anyways. I used GH tune for towing specifically because of the softer bottom end and the fear of blowing something else up, but i dont know that i can deal with it.
 

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Mass, what RPM's are you holding while climbing?
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Mass, what RPM's are you holding while climbing?
On big climbs, 3500+ rpm. Usually 4th but have dropped to 3rd here and there.
 
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