4-spd vs 5-spd - Chevelle Tech
Transmission & Driveline Transmissions and Differentials

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post #1 of 42 (permalink) Old Oct 18th, 19, 1:54 PM Thread Starter
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Shawn
 
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4-spd vs 5-spd

Hi All,

I recently picked up a Muncie M20 to convert my '68 to manual and I think I have everything to make it happen, but I'm starting to second guess my decision and wonder if I should put a 5-spd in it instead. I currently have a 700r4, which we all know is a 30% OD and 1:1 3rd gear. Fourth gear in the Muncie is 1:1. I'm running 275/60/15 and 3.73s, I think it would be fun, but I'm not sure now if I want to have it run ~2500 rpm just to cruise on the two lane and probably ~3k if I ever hit the interstate.

Thoughts/recommendations on 5-spd units? It will likely never see a track, just a street cruiser. I don't need a bulletproof race unit, just something that will handle ~450 HP/TQ. Ultimately I'd like to do the Power Tour someday, so some fuel economy might be nice. I'm not apposed to a 'junkyard' swap either.

If anyone is interested in a clean M20, it could be bought. Recently rebuilt, I can send you the contact info for the guy who did it. I've got everything - new clutch kit, new flywheel, complete from bellhousing to tailshaft, Hurst shifter, etc. It's an early one, '63 I believe, 10 spline input shaft - I know, I know, not the most desirable of them all, but given it's been refreshed it could be nice for a guy like me that wanted a 4-spd specifically to street cruise and/or a guy looking for a '63 to do a numbers restoration. I'm thinking I only want to do this project once haha.

As always, I appreciate all the feedback, you guys are awesome!

'68 300
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post #2 of 42 (permalink) Old Oct 18th, 19, 2:03 PM
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Bruce
 
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Re: 4-spd vs 5-spd

Take a look at a T-56 "Magnum (which is "better" than the regular T-56)." But, you're going to have to do significant surgery on the transmission hump. A T-56 Magnum transmission and all the doodads will see about $6,000.00 to 7,000.00, as I recall.

There are some 6 speeds out there which are even more expensive.

Between the hump surgery, my well-used left knee, and the overall cost I decided to stick with mu 700R4. Call me shiftless, but a manual is no longer viable for me.
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post #3 of 42 (permalink) Old Oct 18th, 19, 2:50 PM
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Justin
 
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I have a Muncie 4 speed m20 with 3.73s. Awesome in the street but sucks on the highway. I will be going to a T56 in the future when I get time and money. In my opinion a 5 speed does not satisfy my wants for an OD selection. It’s either too much of an OD or no enough. The 6 speeds give you both options and shift smoother too.

1974 chevelle with 73 laguna nose sbc 357 Brodix IK180 heads Comp Cams XE274H Edelbrock RPM airgap 650 AED double pumper, M20 muncie, Truetrac with 3.73s
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post #4 of 42 (permalink) Old Oct 18th, 19, 2:52 PM
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Freddie
 
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Re: 4-spd vs 5-spd

Talk to Jody at Jody's Transmissions or Paul at 5 speeds.com. They can fix you up with everything that you need.


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post #5 of 42 (permalink) Old Oct 18th, 19, 4:06 PM
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Chris
 
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Re: 4-spd vs 5-spd

As Bruce said, T56 Magnum is major surgery. It is also a heavy transmission. I'd guess a good 40-50 lbs heavier than an aluminum case Muncie. The double OD is nice though

I think a good 5 speed is good if you don't want to cut your floors up. I think the Legend LGT-700 and McLeod 5 speeds are direct fit. Good luck getting an LGT though.

If you want to see how much cutting is involved, I made a bunch of install videos on you youtube channel.
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post #6 of 42 (permalink) Old Oct 18th, 19, 4:29 PM
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Drew
 
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the magnum seems overkill for you.
Get the t56. The Od is nice.
I was unable to really go on a highway before in my 4spd. I do have a magnum
Only bc my car has over 700hp. And I love it.
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post #7 of 42 (permalink) Old Oct 18th, 19, 5:35 PM
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Re: 4-spd vs 5-spd

I have 373s in my 69. Used to have an M21. It sucked on the highway. I found that is was the loud/ constant exhaust drone that was an equal problem with the on the high side rpm. Couple years ago I was able to get my hands on a brand new Legend 5 speed. Got lucky as they are hard to come by. Found a guy that bought one and never installed it then ended up selling the car he purchased the Legend for. Nice thing about them is no tunnel mods. Another 5 speed overdrive that does not require tunnel mods is the Richmond Super street. Paul at 5 Speeds has a video out about mods he does to the Super Street. Nice thing about a Super Street is it is almost a direct swap with a Muncie. So for those that already have a Muncie most of the equipment is reused. Used Super Streets can be had. Nice thing about the 5 speed and the 373s is cruising at 70 mph and turning 2200 rpm. I have found the 5th gear to be plenty of overdrive.
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post #8 of 42 (permalink) Old Oct 18th, 19, 6:44 PM
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Re: 4-spd vs 5-spd

McCleod has a 5 spd isnt huge. Dont kno wmuch about it saw it in Summits catalog
You dont need a 6 sod. have one, nice to know its there but really dont need more than 5. And they arent cheap to do either

Junkyard ones are too old more than likely it will have issues so add on 1500 to rebuild it. Let us know..
I hear jody is good as posted above

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post #9 of 42 (permalink) Old Oct 19th, 19, 8:47 AM
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Ed
 
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Re: 4-spd vs 5-spd

Take your 700R4 out on a highway drive, leave it in D, see how bad it really is. If you can't take it, then go for the 5 speed.
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post #10 of 42 (permalink) Old Oct 20th, 19, 3:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by -SS454- View Post
As Bruce said, T56 Magnum is major surgery. It is also a heavy transmission. I'd guess a good 40-50 lbs heavier than an aluminum case Muncie. The double OD is nice though

I think a good 5 speed is good if you don't want to cut your floors up. I think the Legend LGT-700 and McLeod 5 speeds are direct fit. Good luck getting an LGT though.

If you want to see how much cutting is involved, I made a bunch of install videos on you youtube channel.
The double OD is worth the extra money and time.
In my case with my set up 6th year is nearly useless. I barely even use it on the interstate BUT it is nice having it.
5th gear is perfect
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post #11 of 42 (permalink) Old Oct 20th, 19, 4:58 PM
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Re: 4-spd vs 5-spd

You could stick with a 4 sp if you decided to change the rear end gear and then get a M23Z muncie best of both worlds with that set up.And probably close to the price of swap to a 5 sp.
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post #12 of 42 (permalink) Old Oct 20th, 19, 5:11 PM
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Re: 4-spd vs 5-spd

Quote:
Originally Posted by 71350SS View Post
You could stick with a 4 sp if you decided to change the rear end gear and then get a M23Z muncie best of both worlds with that set up.And probably close to the price of swap to a 5 sp.
I examined that option in pretty fair detail before I installed a 5 speed. I calculated that even with 3.08 rear gears and a 1/1 fourth gear I would still be turning about 2650 rpm at either 65 or 70 mph. Can't recall which one it was. So what I did was to go out on a lonely stretch of highway and ran my car at 2650 rpm for about five minutes. What I found was for my liking the exhaust report at that rpm was too much. Found it much better at 2200 rpm for sustained periods.
I agree that an M23z or even an M22z is the cats ass for a 4 speed. Just can't compete with an overdrive for highway cruising.
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post #13 of 42 (permalink) Old Oct 20th, 19, 5:16 PM
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Chris
 
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Re: 4-spd vs 5-spd

Quote:
Originally Posted by tacomatrd View Post
The double OD is worth the extra money and time.
In my case with my set up 6th year is nearly useless. I barely even use it on the interstate BUT it is nice having it.
5th gear is perfect
What rear gears do you have?

Even with 3.31s I was able to use my 0.63 6th gear on the highway.
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post #14 of 42 (permalink) Old Oct 21st, 19, 9:17 AM
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Re: 4-spd vs 5-spd

I have used both a TKO600 and the LGT700. Both are great 5-speeds. I like the LGT more, but the availability is lacking. I don't think you would go wrong with either transmission.

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post #15 of 42 (permalink) Old Oct 21st, 19, 9:33 AM Thread Starter
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Shawn
 
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Re: 4-spd vs 5-spd

My budget and driving style doesn't warrant a 6-spd. Whatever I do, ideally it would fit in the stock tunnel. I don't mind clearancing a little with the ole BFH, but I don't have the tools or skills to be fabbing a new tunnel. I saw the McCleod in the summit mag this weekend and I'll check out the M23Z. I'll have to figure out what's available w/o major floor reconstruction and what I can afford. 90% of the time, it'll never see the highway or at least not for more than 30 mins in this area. I didn't want to do this more than once, but hell I said the same thing about pulling the rear axle when I did gears (and not suspension at the same time) and that thing was out 3 times before I was done haha. Thanks for all the input.

'68 300
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