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Old 08-22-2014, 02:15 PM   #1
nvestysly's Avatar

1992 29' Excella
2010 22' Interstate
Van By The River , Georgia
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Gear Ratio... High or Low?

I watched a cool video regarding manual transmissions posted on another thread that you can find at the link below:

For reference, here's the video link:

On a related note I'm curious about the opinions of those who may want to comment on gear ratio. For example, in the video the gear ratios were 1st: 90:30 (3:1), 2nd 90:60 (1.5:1) and 3rd 90:90 (1:1). Similarly, differentials might have ratios in the range of 4.10:1 to 2.73:1.

In both cases I refer to "low" gear as the ratio with the highest numerical value. And, "high" gear as the ratio with the lowest numerical value. I've used this terminology all my life. Perhaps because 1st gear is the lowest (slowest, other than reverse) and high gear is the fastest. So a vehicle with a "low rearend" (differential gear) might be a 4.10:1 and a vehicle with a "high rearend" (differential gear) might be a 2.73:1.

I guess my OCD is acting up today. Otherwise, who else would be concerned about such matters?

Please forgive me if this has already been discussed. I have to admit I didn't take time to search before posting.
Lucius and Danielle
1992 29' Excella Classic / 2010 Interstate
2005 Chevrolet Suburban K2500 8.1L
2018 GMC Sierra K1500 SLT, 6.2L, Max Trailering
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Old 08-22-2014, 03:47 PM   #2
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Old 08-22-2014, 05:28 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by nvestysly View Post
On a related note I'm curious about the opinions of those who may want to comment on gear ratio.
Yeah. Not OCD, We all trip over that too

I think you are correct, a "low" gear is from the driver perspective because it is labeled with a low number on the shifter - but the numerical ratio is high e.g 4:1.

It has carried over to rear axle ratios as well even though drivers do not even think about the differential gear ratio. I will say that my truck needs a lower rear end gear, even though I know I need a high gear ratio.

FUnny who most peopel can identify with the concept of a "low gear" even thigh they have never been exposed to the concept of gear ratio.

Oh well....we are stuck with it. Context is everything! When needed I just say "higher ratio gear"
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Old 08-22-2014, 06:35 PM   #4
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One way to avoid problem is to not say gear ratio, but axle ratio and then the numbers must be used, which everyone understands.
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