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Discussion Starter #1
My goal is 25MPG tank average not a snap shot. 1995 CCLB 4x4. After reading 14 pages I have come up with a list of necessities:
Stock tires
Bed cover
G/V Overdrive
Auto to manual swap (awesome I’ve wanted to do this for a while… nice excuse)
Driving habits...(maybe :lookaround: )
Maintenance!!!
Gears

Now for my questions:
Aluminum wheels? 16x8's better or worse than a stock sized 16x7 steel wheel? Would it be cost effective to gain one inch width with a lighter metal? I would still use the stock tires, so?
Transmission Swap, anyone have an extra ZF5 with transfer case laying around?
Bed cover. tonneau or fast back? I really don’t want it to look like crap one way or the other. I need to have self storage on the truck when I am using the bed. Another thing is a 5th wheel tailgate? Would it be worth the money for a bed cover?

I am getting around 13MPG hand calculated right now with 315/75R16's and 4.10 gears with the motto: Drive it like you stole it! I do not haul over 10,000 maybe once a year, so can I safely go down to 3.55 or possibly even lower without any major issues towing.

Any thought on electric fans? I have been sitting on the idea for a while now for performance reasons, but with my newfound influence on mileage (the financial advisor (my wife)) is there any MPG gain with this mod?

Is 25MPG even possible on a OBS while obtaining around 400Hp?
 

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You said the words "cost effective" once in your list. How many miles do you drive per year? What's the reason for mpg upgrades? Is it fuel range, cost savings, coolness?

Making changes for mpg savings is a good idea when you want to replace something anyways such as tires or even gears. But you can quickly spend much more on your truck to save fuel than it would have cost to just buy the fuel. This is where "cost effective" can prevent you from doing anything.

You can only expect low 20s on the highway cruising empty at 60 with that truck.
 

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Id say setting your goal at 20 with a handshaker is a really good goal to work towards. But i wouldnt expect to get it at 400hp.

People claim many many things, but when it comes down to it 20mpg is a lot out of a 7.3
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Id say setting your goal at 20 with a handshaker is a really good goal to work towards. But i wouldnt expect to get it at 400hp.

People claim many many things, but when it comes down to it 20mpg is a lot out of a 7.3
Ya i understand that thats why I asked about 25MPG goal... It is a little higher than the"average" good MPG OBS. Meaning a better goal to shoot for even if it is impossible. 400HP is just a number I do not have 400HP and probably never will but i would like to get as close to 25 MPG as possible with stage 1 injectors.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
You said the words "cost effective" once in your list. How many miles do you drive per year? What's the reason for mpg upgrades? Is it fuel range, cost savings, coolness?

Making changes for mpg savings is a good idea when you want to replace something anyways such as tires or even gears. But you can quickly spend much more on your truck to save fuel than it would have cost to just buy the fuel. This is where "cost effective" can prevent you from doing anything.

You can only expect low 20s on the highway cruising empty at 60 with that truck.
The "cost effective" I was referring to buying a bed cover when I have a fifth wheel tailgate. I am curious as to the aerodynamics that are normally right behind the tail gate… but I really do not know that’s why I asked. As far as my MPG goal, I am trying to maximize my range per tank and save as much money as possible. I realize the it will cost money to change over these things in my truck, but they will be a one time payment (hopefully nothing breaks) I am more interested in the savings earned after... for example my 315/75r16's need to be replaced right now, at around $200 a tire that will last a year or two. Stock sizes are cheaper= saving money there. Gears, I suppose i could leave everything alone and just buck up and buy another set of 315's but i would not get any better mileage, and I really want lower RPM's at Higher speed= gears. I drive right around 16,000 a year, mostly highway miles so oversized tires really dont get used the way were ment to, and 3000 miles around a holiday to drive from California to Washington to be with family.

This is just a goal id just because I said 25MPG doesnt mean I am going to get it. If that were true...50MPG with 1000HP.
 

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Stock height tires are ideal and there is no reason that you need 315 wide tires to get a tall tire. There are plenty of tall skinny tire sizes out there.

The things you do to increase empty cruising mpg will mostly do nothing when you are towing the 5th wheel.

A manual tranny and low gears would make a big difference at a high cost. With your low miles per year and the expected life of the truck, I don't think it would ever pay for itself.

Bed cover does not cost much at all and is supposed to get you a significant, 10%, mpg improvement. That one is a no-brainer and is my next mpg improvement.

It appears that you have a lift. Do you need a lift? Dropping to stock height will gain you mpg and make stock size tires look much better.

Efans are a sticky subject around here. Flex-a-lite makes a kit for our trucks that pulls lots of air but not as much as our fully locked up engine fan can pull. This becomes a durability, dependability issue. If you can't work it like a truck for fear of overheating then why drive a truck? They are not cheap either and the fan clutches seem to hold up well.
 

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ChrisJ
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Bed covers actually don't work for fuel mileage. Best fuel mileage in a pick-up truck not towing is with a stock tailgate. Air behind the cab circles and the air coming over the cab top rides this to a semi smooth transitional rejoining behind the truck bumper. Putting on my 5th wheel screen tailgate (as well as a bed cover) pulled the over cab air into the bed and turbulence in the bed and behind the truck caused my fuel consumption to increase. I am going back to a regular tailgate when I find one.
 

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I have a stock 94.5 RCLB, MT, 265 tires on that are not even AT tires and i have done the math 3 times on my mileage for a whole tank. 2 of the 3 times I came up with 18 range and then the last time I did I was very easy on the truck and I got it to that 20 range. 25 might be a little bit of a stretch but if you were to cruise at 55 (no higher) the whole tank you might be able to get 25mpg
 

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RPMs affect mileage more than anything... That said, going to a smaller tire will cause your RPMs to go up. If you're looking for a tall, skinny tire, look at 255/85R16. It's essentially a narrow 285/75R16. With 4.10 gears, you're looking at about 65 MPH at 2000 RPM. 65 MPH with 3.55 gears will lower that a couple hundred RPM.

In your situation, the most cost-effective way to increase your mileage would be to purchase smaller tires and find someone with which to swap axles.
 

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I think 25 MPG with a CC is do-able but won't be easy. You won't be able to leave any stone unturned.

Gotta lose the lift and go back to OEM-size rubber. Skinnier is better. Skinnier also drives better in the rain.

Changing your driving habits costs you nothing and is very powerful.

A stick is not a project for the faint of heart but it buys you a solid 2 MPG.

With a stick you can easily live with 3.31 gears. If the engine lugs on a hill - step on the clutch and yank the lever.

Maybe a soft tonneau to clean up the bed, but easily get out of the way of using the fifth wheel. Lots of room for innovation.

A GV is for the guy who drives a lot of miles.

At some point the truck ceases being an economic exercise and becomes a hot rod that uses a different parameter of performance.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
My avitar is my old F-250... the cclb F-350 is stock height but the previous owner threw 315's on it. But that is why I was asking about the aluminum rims they are a 16x8 inch rim, the stock steel rims are 16x7. Most of the driving I do is empty so towing isnt a real big issue, besides your towing your going to get worse mileage. And so efans are a no then... ok one thing off my list.

As far as the manual trans and gears. I would perfer a stick the only reason I bought this auto was because 1 it was a cclb 2 it had the dana 60 under it 3 it had 70,000 less miles than the red truck, and 4 the guy was practicly giving it away. and gears i suppose if i can find a tall skinny tire to match the 4.10's i could get by.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I think 25 MPG with a CC is do-able but won't be easy. You won't be able to leave any stone unturned.

Gotta lose the lift and go back to OEM-size rubber. Skinnier is better. Skinnier also drives better in the rain.

Changing your driving habits costs you nothing and is very powerful.

A stick is not a project for the faint of heart but it buys you a solid 2 MPG.

With a stick you can easily live with 3.31 gears. If the engine lugs on a hill - step on the clutch and yank the lever.

Maybe a soft tonneau to clean up the bed, but easily get out of the way of using the fifth wheel. Lots of room for innovation.

A GV is for the guy who drives a lot of miles.

At some point the truck ceases being an economic exercise and becomes a hot rod that uses a different parameter of performance.
Thanks Dave. So GV is out due to cost x use. Stick is still on as soon as I can either afford all the parts or find some one to swap one with. Gears deffinatly on the plate as well as some stock sized tires.

Dave what are your thoughts on the aluminum rims? I know stock is a steel 16x7.
 

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Aluminum rims might help some.

Don't get tires over 31.7" outside diameter. Bigger diameter tires are not a substiture for gears.
 

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Id say setting your goal at 20 with a handshaker is a really good goal to work towards. But i wouldnt expect to get it at 400hp.

People claim many many things, but when it comes down to it 20mpg is a lot out of a 7.3
I have got 20-21mpg on the highway with my truck, that was with 3.55s stock size tires and in my race tune from Tony. Around town I would get high teens with those same tires and some used 285's M/T tires
 

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I think its doable, but like Dave said it wont be easy to get there.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Start with this. It costs nothing.

Beating the EPA - The Whys and How to Hypermile - CleanMPG Forums

No can't do all of it but you can do a good bit of it.

A pyrometer will really help. Keep the temp below 600 degrees. It ain't easy at first but it gets easier once you get the knack.
I knew you would say that... I saw and read that link twice in previous post. And yes gauges are definatly the next thing on my list I have a pod already... it was laying around in my garage.
 
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