Powerstroke converters are sizzling
One of the hottest converters of 2005 thus far is Ford’s Powerstroke 4R100 converter. This converter is found in Ford’s light and medium-duty trucks featuring the 7.3 Turbo Diesel engine. This engine has been known to be modified to increase towing capacity beyond 900 ft./lbs. of torque with trailer weights alone exceeding 15,000 pounds. The ability to build this unit properly is very expensive. Let your billfold be your guide; however, this is not the converter to cut corners or cost.
Many aftermarket multi-disk converters are available and should be considered as an alternative replacement converter. For the rest, we will focus on what makes a good OEM replacement converter.
First we should start with disassembly. After the converter is parted, dispose of all materials that will be replaced including clutch assembly, front cover, stator caps, impeller hub, turbine hub and seals. This leaves us with an impeller, stator and turbine.
If the impeller or turbine are not furnace brazed, now is the time to do so. Under no circumstances should non-brazed items be used. Replacement of the stator caps with new roller bearing design or equivalent should be considered on the impeller side of the stator. You may opt for the replacement OEM cap on the turbine side. Replace the turbine hub with a new heat-treated part along with all new seals, thrust washer, turbine support backup ring and bearing.
At least of which clutch to use is made easy. New LUK is the only way to go. No relines should be considered.
The choice of front covers is limited to two. You can use a heavy-duty billet cover or a new OEM stamped steel item. If the vehicle is used for extensive towing, the decision is already made: use the billet. For moderate towing and transportation, the OEM co ver may be considered. Even though you have a choice, the OEM will not save a considerable amount of money and should be considered only by the price-driven rebuilder.
As said before, let your billfold be your guide but remember a few dollars saved may cost more if the converter fails.
Found in issue July 2005