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View Full Version : Question for guys with Marlin Ultimate


DaveInDenver
12-16-2007, 07:20 AM
Trying to figure out a truck budget for the next few months. I'm still holding out hope that I can go to Rubithon this year, so I'm laying out the plans for the next few months for things I think need to finished before I can honestly try the Rubicon. One of the big ones is a Bud Built cross member and skid. Talking to Bud he says I can run a single case with a double case cross member, he's got a spacer that makes it work. A full Ultimate is not in the financial cards right now, but I might, just might be able to swing just a set of low gears for my single case this winter.

Shooting the breeze with Scotty Desnes the other day I asked about his transfer case, which is an ultra low single. He says he doesn't miss the stock range, which brings up my question. I'm starting to think of going with a single ultra low and a single case cross member and just call it good. Anyone think I'll miss the stock range case? Is the ability to double up in a truck not destined for true rock crawler status all that much benefit? No plans to SAS the truck, at least not for a long while (like many, many years). So I've started to think of just giving up on an Ultimate and doing the single case option for good, so then there's no reason to bother with a double case cross member if I'm gonna run a single case for the next several years. The difference in price between single and double cross members is about $100, so that $100 can go towards low gears right now...

Some days I think double cross member and just run that for a few years. Then I rationalize and say it's pretty unlikely I'll ever go to a double case, so save the money and weight and just do a single cross member. At some point I also need shocks, have to address the rear bumper (swing out, move spare, add second gas tank), add a second battery, winch, fridge. All that stuff will preempt an Ultimate at this point. So she'll be done with school in 2010 and so the very soonest I would do an Ultimate would be 2011 or maybe 2012. Yeah, I think I've convinced myself, single 4.7 case and a single Bud Built. My truck will never be a hard core crawler, just needs to get me places. If 33" tires, 5.29 diffs, two lockers and a 4.7 case doesn't get me there, then I have no business going with a top heavy, 122" wheelbase truck.

leiniesred
12-16-2007, 12:05 PM
I would miss 2.28 low range. On most club runs, I find myself in the 2.28 low range. with the 4.7 case, I wheel along in 3rd or 4th gear.

Don't get me wrong, life with a single 4.7 is nicer than life with a single 2.28. Plus, no driveshaft mods which reduces the cost a couple hun'. You can always go double down later.

AxleIke
12-16-2007, 01:56 PM
I have a 4.7 single case currently. I miss my stock low on all but the hardest runs, and I wish for the ability to go to double low. I feel like a single case would be great for a big engine in a crawler, but the gearing is what helps me keep my truck together, and free from mechanical and body damage. The slower you can go, the more time you have to correct for slips off of your line, and to avoid body damage.

However, I do think that it is a GREAT first step. I'm really happy that I did mine this way, and am going with the dual set up later.

If you care to wait a few months, say feb-march, I should be putting the second case in about then. I'd be happy to sell you my single case budbuilt for a discounted price, though I HIGHLY recommend you look at it first before you decide. It's been beat pretty good, though still VERY functional.

Red_Chili
12-16-2007, 09:54 PM
I would miss 2.28 low range. On most club runs, I find myself in the 2.28 low range. with the 4.7 case, I wheel along in 3rd or 4th gear.

Don't get me wrong, life with a single 4.7 is nicer than life with a single 2.28. Plus, no driveshaft mods which reduces the cost a couple hun'. You can always go double down later.
What Spanky said.

I use and would miss my stock low range. I do tend to wheel 60% of the time with the 4.7 though. Not having the stock low would SUCK in snow. Having either/or, or both, is the best possible combination; I have no gear duplications so I always have the right gear.

Take the incremental approach: start out with the 4.7s, knowing that you will pick up a stock reduction box and ultimate kit and do the full meal deal when budget allows.

AxleIke
12-17-2007, 09:46 AM
Well, like i said, you can have my single case xmember for cheap. If you want to.

Red_Chili
12-17-2007, 09:56 AM
Not much difference between 4.0 and 4.7 except in the higher gears, but even then... Except the 4.0 is easier to install. IIRC, the 4.0 does not come with Marlin's Total Spline design. Don't go cheap, that TS design is VERY much stronger.

Volcom
12-17-2007, 02:16 PM
I wouldn't trade my dual ultimate crawler for anything :D I mostly spend my time in 4.7, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th gear on the easy parts of the trails. The 10.8 to 1 low in double low is what's fun :eek: Makes the 4.7 to 1 seem like stock :D

I also use my stock 2.28 on the really easy stuff. I could see how you would miss the stock low range while snow bashing though.

I say get the 4.7 case now and save your money for another case, Marlin adapter, and reworked driveshafts in the future.

Uncle Ben
12-17-2007, 02:23 PM
I wouldn't trade my dual ultimate crawler for anything :D I mostly spend my time in 4.7, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th gear on the easy parts of the trails. The 10.8 to 1 low in double low is what's fun :eek: Makes the 4.7 to 1 seem like stock :D

I also use my stock 2.28 on the really easy stuff. I could see how you would miss the stock low range while snow bashing though.

I say get the 4.7 case now and save your money for another case, Marlin adapter, and reworked driveshafts in the future.

Sounds like good advice! 4 to 1 sucks in the snow unless you can float on the top!

J Kimmel
12-17-2007, 02:45 PM
I think your best bet is to get an adapter and put two stockers in, suck up the DS changes. Selectibility is really nice to have, you get the best of both worlds you are comparing. If you shop around for a used adapter, or even spring or new, you can find the reduction box pretty cheap and install. Changing driveline lengths won't cost you much either. Last time Front Range went through mine including building a spare from parts I had lying around it was under 200 bucks.

Then you can always add to it later...

neliconcept
12-17-2007, 03:15 PM
Oh, nevermind. I was just explained it to me. I can get a brand new 2.28 crawler for $700 and his 4.7:1 gear set goes for $399 (or $750 for a clearanced and assembled case). Well, duh. I thought a dual case meant $1,500. I really need a vacation, my brain is mush.

well for someone that used to have a chain case it runs more money

but since you have a geared case stock, its easier to deal with adapters wise.

another vote for duals instead of single low, i probablly wont ever get a second tcase with the 2.28 setup but i sorta do miss it, i just usually put it in high and haul ass.

RockRunner
12-18-2007, 08:55 AM
I vote for the double with the 2.28 I really enjoy driving the 4Runner in the snow pulling people out etc. I tried it in 4.7 and it just seems like you are killing the engine. As for crawling you already know what that is all about. Keep an eye out for a used set up, there have been two sets sold on Colorado4x4.

Another thing that may help you decide is that with the crawlability your need for sliders is a little diminished. Your shocks too should last a little longer.

As for snow runs, not sure what to tell you. I am running 5.29's with 37's and the snow run has me worried. I am hoping to get enough wheel spin in 4.7 and 3rd but we'll see.

Red_Chili
12-18-2007, 09:19 AM
Marlin's newer adapter has a wider bearing surface that stabilizes the shafts between the reduction boxes more adequately. Couplers can and do wear out. Just some things to think about/look at when buying used, or non-Marlin crawler plates.

Shoot Marlin a call. He is always educational.

AxleIke
12-18-2007, 09:25 AM
You can just do what I'm doing and get a triple shifter. No need to move anything then, and same cost as a twin stick.

Man Jerk
12-18-2007, 09:46 AM
You can just do what I'm doing and get a triple shifter. No need to move anything then, and same cost as a twin stick.

Link??

Man Jerk
12-18-2007, 10:02 AM
It doesn't look like anyone is actually producing this yet though...am I wrong?

I've been thinking about doing duals or 4.7's myself. I don't want to cut up my center console though.

Red_Chili
12-18-2007, 10:25 AM
Dave, your existing forward shift reduction section remains forward shift, unless you want to change it to top shift and block off the hole in your tranny tailpiece ($$$ with no upside that I see). This is how mine is set up, but only because the R151 was designed for a fwd-shift tcase, and my existing was top shift.

The rear reduction section MUST be top shift. The crawler plates have no provision for the forward shift, and neither does your forward reduction box into which the rails would protrude. Just clarifying.

Red_Chili
12-18-2007, 11:22 AM
I know my crawler moved the rear tcase back a little over 6", corresponding to your 6.5" +/-. 4.5" sounds about right for how far forward the front shifter is from center of its reduction box. My current measurements would not be helpful to fix the forward shifter as a reference point (mine is top shift), but your figures sound rightish. My drivetrain is approximately 3.5" forward of stock, throwing everything off for you, but I easily fit a Samurai Tuffy box behind the rear shifter. With Marlin's offset shifter things may fit pretty well for you with some adjustment. If you have a body lift it can create more options, too.

FWIW, I also have the rare 4Runner cupholder (woohoo) behind my rear shifter, there's your ~3". It should fit.

J Kimmel
12-18-2007, 12:04 PM
there is also a short throw option, had it in another truck and it needs a smaller hole

AxleIke
12-18-2007, 12:12 PM
http://www.pirate4x4.com/forum/showthread.php?t=471768

http://board.marlincrawler.com/index.php?topic=22747.0

It doesn't look like anyone is actually producing this yet though...am I wrong?

I've been thinking about doing duals or 4.7's myself. I don't want to cut up my center console though.

No, the guy on pirate IS producing. We have exchanged emails, and I will be purchasing after the new year.

Should give him plenty of time to make it, and I'll be all set.

AxleIke
12-18-2007, 12:14 PM
How beat up is it?

http://www.risingsun4x4club.org/forum2/showthread.php?t=4298

The post at the end has the fixed version. It is really strong now, just ugly.

Its been painted since then too.

leiniesred
12-19-2007, 08:08 AM
My measurements are also useless. all 3 of my shifters have customized levers to get them to come up where I wanted them to be.

The R151F transmission shifter comes up about 3 inches forward from the R150 transmission shifter. This puts it in the middle of my RADIO. So that one gets customized.

The next case is a 4.7 reduction box. That shifter is customized about 3 inches back so it doesn't interfere with the relocated tranny shifter.

The final case is a stock R151F reduction box and 4x4 box. That shifter is relocated about an inch and a half to come up in the stock "cup holder." area of the stock console.

In summary: You can pretty much make the shifters come up wherever you want. I think you'll have plenty of room with the cup holders pulled. You MAY be able keep 1 or both of 'em with a customized shifter. But the shift boots never fit right with customized shifters.

(Mine haven't been screwed down in years and a lot of hot air blows up around those boots!)

Red_Chili
12-19-2007, 08:56 AM
I ran a 22RE for a good bit, so I wouldn't overgeneralize on that. Stock low range is killer in snow and good for many wheeling situations.

So you decided to go with a single tcase because of a cupholder?!? D00d, you can fashion many cupholder configurations that will be serviceable. As important as a cupholder is, they are like people: come in many shapes from many sources. :lmao:

AxleIke
12-19-2007, 09:12 AM
Dave, I agree with every one that the duals are awesome.

However, I've wheeled pretty hard for the last 1.5 years with just a single 4.7 case. As stated, aside from the crossmember, you aren't losing anything by going with the single 4.7 case. Its not like if you decide to go duals, you'll have to get rid of stuff. You can simply add to it, and be fine.

You can wind it out in 5th gear on the easy sections of trails. It'll go about 30 mph. Snow bashing will be hard, but I never did much of that anyway, so no worries for me. If you do a lot of it, then fine. But for just normal driving, it is easy.

For any sort of trail wheeling, it is AWESOME. You can drop it into first, and just go slow over the rough parts. No bouncing, no clutch slipping, just slow and steady.

Also, you can hold off on the crossmember for a while. Just use the stock one until you find a deal on a budbuilt or similar.

Having the stock low range and the double low is sweet, to be sure, but you can always go that road later on.

Red_Chili
12-19-2007, 11:52 AM
I see. No, it doesn't sound stupid when the entire situation is considered. Yours is a std. cab, right? Tight. Lots of guys go the single tcase route and are happy.

I too get the creature comfort thing. The Chili is pretty darn comfy and the missus has a cupholder, and I do too. The whole package was a design goal.