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Old 06-21-2018, 10:11 AM   #1
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Help with Gear Ratios

I am looking at a few buses at auction that have DT466 engines, AT545 transmissions, and a gear ratio of either 4.44 or 5.62. I hope to take these cross country, so lot's of highway driving. Are either of these suitable for that, and is one better than the other? Thanks for your help.
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Old 06-21-2018, 10:29 AM   #2
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AT545 is the least desirable transmission you can get, but it does work. I've driven mine around the country and back and while it could have been better I made it to the top of every hill eventually.

4th gear no the AT545 is 1.00. Don't confuse that with a lock-up gear, because it isn't. It's doing its best to spin the output shaft at the same speed as the input shaft, but in a very inefficient way.

My short bus has 19.5" tires and a 4.78 rear end, and MPG goes down really fast above 55mph. My big bus has 11r 22.5" tires and also 4.78 read end and seems good around 60 so far.

AT545 + 5.62 is crazy talk. You'll be redlining at 45mph.
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Old 06-21-2018, 11:47 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by tororider View Post
I am looking at a few buses at auction that have DT466 engines, AT545 transmissions, and a gear ratio of either 4.44 or 5.62. I hope to take these cross country, so lot's of highway driving. Are either of these suitable for that, and is one better than the other? Thanks for your help.
For cross country look for more than a 545.
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Old 06-21-2018, 02:36 PM   #4
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There is one bus that has an AT200o transmission, is that any better?

I guess I am wondering if I can get one of these buses for under $1000 if it is worth it?

How hard/expensive is it to change out a transmission later?

Thanks again.
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Old 06-21-2018, 02:44 PM   #5
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At2000 is a lot better for highway use. Changing transmissions is something you have to be nutty for, just ask Christopher!
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Old 06-21-2018, 03:06 PM   #6
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The bus with the AT2000 trans has a Cummins 5.9L engine.

So replacing a trans is a bad idea, how hard/expensive is changing your gear ratio?
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Old 06-21-2018, 03:49 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tororider View Post
The bus with the AT2000 trans has a Cummins 5.9L engine.

So replacing a trans is a bad idea, how hard/expensive is changing your gear ratio?
I would be leery of any bus where the asking price was only $1000.
The AT2000 is a much better trans than the 545. That combo of engine and trans is not bad, just not a stump puller. Replacing trans are not a bad idea, it's just going to cost a bit ($1300+ labor). I f I found the perfect bus and the only downside was the 545, I would not pass just because of the tranny if I had access to a 3060 or 643. Gear ratios can be changed by just replacing the center unit with a used one out of another bus, or rebuild with new gears.
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Old 06-21-2018, 04:15 PM   #8
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A school district as a bunch of buses at auction. Iím hoping to catch one under a thousand dollar, but they might all go to $3000. Just trying to do my research.
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Old 06-21-2018, 04:31 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tororider View Post
There is one bus that has an AT200o transmission, is that any better?

I guess I am wondering if I can get one of these buses for under $1000 if it is worth it?

How hard/expensive is it to change out a transmission later?

Thanks again.
2000 is MUCH better than a 545. Night and day difference.
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Old 06-21-2018, 04:33 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tororider View Post
The bus with the AT2000 trans has a Cummins 5.9L engine.

So replacing a trans is a bad idea, how hard/expensive is changing your gear ratio?
2000 series with a 5.9 is a pretty nice combo. I've got a friend's bus rt now with that setup and its good.
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