The shift pattern is:
R 2 4
1 3 5
I agree, the ratio in 1st is extreme, I can pretty much redline the thing in 1st and casually walk past it!
Reverse and 1st aren't synchronized, but it is really easy to just start in 2nd and go from there. In fact 2nd is also a pretty low ratio. The jump from 4th to 5th on the other hand seems like quite a wide jump and if I don't get the rpm's in 4th up over 3000-3500, when I shift to 5th I end up lugging along at 2000 or so and it takes a while to finish getting up to highway speeds (3500 rpm).
Of course all this is just my experience so far. I have since recurved the distributor and advanced the timing to a more appropriate level for running with propane, so I will need to take it out for another test run to see if my bottom end torque had improved. It should, because I lightened the springs and now I get full advance by 2250 rpms.