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Poll
Question: are they good for street and strip or not?
yes! - 3 (60%)
no! - 0 (0%)
yes, but no slicks - 2 (40%)
Total Voters: 5

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Author Topic: rancho boxes: good or bad?  (Read 3148 times)
nicolas
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« on: April 21, 2008, 20:35:09 PM »

OK, not to upset anyone, but what is a good gearbox? and is a rancho gearbox a good option or not. maybe it is not a black and white question, but i would appreciate ALL comments and get information about what gearbox can be used for driving, racing, drag racing, paperweight or what not.

personnaly i want somethin that can handle some abuse (burnouts and hard starts, but no slicks yet... maybe someday) and a engine that has 160 - 180 HP and a lot of torque.
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richie
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« Reply #1 on: April 21, 2008, 21:54:30 PM »

Nicolas,
there are several differnet versions from most gearbox suppliers,it already sounds like you are stuck between 2 versions,one for regular street driving is not so suitable for drag racing,the closest to a perfect box will be the berg 5 bus box conversion,pretty much bullit proof and 4 close gear for the track,then a sensible 5 gear for cruising home after Smiley

cheers richie,uk
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Good parts might be expensive but good advice is priceless Wink 

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j-f
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« Reply #2 on: April 21, 2008, 22:07:09 PM »

Some Belgian racers broke their Rancho gearbox last 2 years. But, as Richie say, this kind of gearbox were probably not built to resist the use they do with.

I buy a Pro street Rancho last month to use on my 58. I hope I don't make a mistake...
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roland
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« Reply #3 on: April 21, 2008, 22:22:56 PM »

Belgian guys breaking ranchos that i know of had pro-comp ones, not strong enough for slicks + 180hp + track grip...
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John Rayburn
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« Reply #4 on: April 21, 2008, 22:42:46 PM »

Just curious, are you guys pre loading the trans when you launch? If Mike Herbert built it at Rancho , it's going to be a good box, but you must pre load and not bog the thing, or you're bound to break parts!
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Christofe
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« Reply #5 on: April 21, 2008, 23:06:46 PM »

Hi guys,

I have to reply here because, my experience (6 gearboxes in total) and wallet will tell Nicolas to think twice before buying, but more about the precise use of the gearbox.
My first Rancho was a pro street - broken
My second one was a pro-comp - broken

If you want to go drag racing and with slicks  you have to go for a pro drag Rancho...

As the car i'm driving is 170 HP, 210 NM, PHOENIX slicks, I finally bought a gearbox made of all 4 gears and Super diff from Erco.

PS: I do always pre-load my gearbox.....

Christofe
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2manytoys
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« Reply #6 on: April 22, 2008, 06:47:22 AM »

I have a Rancho and two KCR boxes. So far good luck with them all,....knock of wood. They are full race style with spools and nice parts inside. I think if you can afford the internals, you will have good luck. All have been able to handle the burnouts, the pre-load and the hard launch.  I would stay away from the spool if you are going to drive on the steet more often, but it can be done.

Good luck and have fun.
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Bruce
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« Reply #7 on: April 22, 2008, 07:00:47 AM »

My first Rancho was a pro street - broken
If you want a gearbox to survive, you first have to stop using the silly marketing names like "pro-street".  As soon as you ask for that, you are guaranteed to break it.  That's because Rancho's pro-street is pretty much the same spec as anyone else's pro-street.  And since they are the same, they all cut corners to make the price good enough for the CHEAP VW people.  A prime example is the fact that a Rancho "pro-street" gearbox does not come with a 9 tooth mainshaft, it gets the weak 10 tooth version.

If you want a Rancho gearbox that you won't break, pick up the phone and talk to Mike.  Tell him exactly what you are going to do with it, and how much hp.  Your tire type is also needed.  Mike will then design a gearbox that fits your specific needs.  Open your wallet, strong gearboxes are not cheap.
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Bewitched666
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« Reply #8 on: April 22, 2008, 07:20:18 AM »

Call or mail Rancho and tell them what you want and they will give you some advice on what to buy Cool
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ESH
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« Reply #9 on: April 22, 2008, 08:57:23 AM »

If you want a gearbox to survive, you first have to stop using the silly marketing names like "pro-street".  As soon as you ask for that, you are guaranteed to break it.  That's because Rancho's pro-street is pretty much the same spec as anyone else's pro-street.  And since they are the same, they all cut corners to make the price good enough for the CHEAP VW people.  A prime example is the fact that a Rancho "pro-street" gearbox does not come with a 9 tooth mainshaft, it gets the weak 10 tooth version.

If you want a Rancho gearbox that you won't break, pick up the phone and talk to Mike.  Tell him exactly what you are going to do with it, and how much hp.  Your tire type is also needed.  Mike will then design a gearbox that fits your specific needs.  Open your wallet, strong gearboxes are not cheap.

I think that's a good answer, who ever the box is built by talk to the guy actually building it about what you want and how you're going to use it. With the right spec a box can easily cost double on what you think it might but there's a reason for that. I have what I'd consider to be a pretty good Type 1 4 speed which in terms of cost wasn't far off what a lot of people would put into a Type 1 5 speed. I should have a 5 speed for what I want but I couldn't afford it at the time, if you have to compromise consider carefully what compromise is acceptable to you, for me it wasn't strength as I had been nursing my car on a reasonably stock box for quite a while and fancied kicking the hell out of it for a change. Instead I had to give up something on the ratios side of things.

 Smiley
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Tobi/DFL
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« Reply #10 on: April 22, 2008, 09:08:46 AM »

As someone said before, you get what you pay for. A Rancho "Pro Street" costs about 900€ in germany (I think...) and is said to contain a super diff, welded 3rd and 4th, hardened keys and should be "completely overhauled".
This last winter I (or better: a friend of mine who works as a gearbox engineer at the Volkswagen factory) overhauled my own gearbox which after years of hard abuse from Hugo König/Udo Becker, then Jürgen/DFL and finally tha last two season from me, was still in pretty good shape.
I had to buy 1 or 2 new bearings, all synchros, a new super diff (as the old one nearly seized) and some minor parts. Furthermore a had some NOS spare parts (worth about 300€) that I could use. Anyway I paid 600€ just for all those parts (the work my friend had done was for free). For this reason I think that the most valuable gearbox would be a Rancho "Pro Street / Pro Comp" which you let check by someone who is good in rebuilding gearboxes. My friend recently checked a Rancho gearbox and besides minor issues it was well worth the money if your useing your car mainly on the streets.
I thinkthat if you order a full-spec drag gearbox from any of the usual suppliers you should get quality parts which have their price, but it should stand a lot of abuse.
Bye,

Tobi
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empicolector
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« Reply #11 on: April 22, 2008, 09:17:10 AM »

this post will help me a lot I have see mick from rancho and start to think buy one
that true he said to me that I have to say what I want to do with the box, what kind of engine, what kind of use .....
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GreenTom
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« Reply #12 on: April 22, 2008, 10:59:02 AM »

My first Rancho was a pro street - broken
If you want a gearbox to survive, you first have to stop using the silly marketing names like "pro-street".  As soon as you ask for that, you are guaranteed to break it.  That's because Rancho's pro-street is pretty much the same spec as anyone else's pro-street.  And since they are the same, they all cut corners to make the price good enough for the CHEAP VW people.  A prime example is the fact that a Rancho "pro-street" gearbox does not come with a 9 tooth mainshaft, it gets the weak 10 tooth version.

If you want a Rancho gearbox that you won't break, pick up the phone and talk to Mike.  Tell him exactly what you are going to do with it, and how much hp.  Your tire type is also needed.  Mike will then design a gearbox that fits your specific needs.  Open your wallet, strong gearboxes are not cheap.

true true Cheesy

Mostly the pro streets are totaly STD spec with superdiff only aded plus some toys like welded gears. Write, ask question and You will be happy. Paul @ VWspeedshop.com has rancho boxes in good spec http://www.vwspeedshop.com/store/product.php?productid=16535&cat=335&page=1
soon some really propper gear is coming Smiley wait and ask.
all best Tom.
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RedEx
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« Reply #13 on: April 22, 2008, 12:44:31 PM »

It always depends on how you use it... My brother (Muppet Racer) has a Rancho box he bought 7 years ago and the box is still alive... I don't think he was lucky and the other not. Just thinking there is a way to use a gearbox when you're going on the track...
Some people will say that he broke two gearboxes... yes that's true it was mine and the one of Fred Twins but in both cases it was driving reverse...  Grin
Maybe he should only drive forward...  Grin
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Peter Roberts
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« Reply #14 on: April 22, 2008, 23:31:02 PM »

I always fit Rancho boxes , if you are running tread-ed radial street tyres ( not DOT treads like M&H's ) , the Pro-Street or Pro-Comp will be fine .

If you are going DRAG Racing , the Rancho box you need , and the clue here is in the name folks , is the Rancho Pro-Drag , I don't know of anyone over here that has broken one .

Even Lester the lunatic , who ran high elevens , didn't break one , he ran 8" slicks ( too much we told him ) , he drives like an animal , and even ripped the shifter out of the tunnel once  Grin . But he did understand , and practise the principal of preload .

Andy that works with me , has a Cogbox unit , 4 speed , with chromoly main-shaft , pinion retainer etc , and it has been great , it was in another car , that ran 13's on treads , and ran low 13's in Andy's car , on BFG 205/70's ( not the grippiest tyres ) . We are trying the car on some M&H treads soon .

There is also a Cogbox unit in Ivan ( VolksWorlds ) 67 . He has hammered it for 10 years ( reverse gear burnouts too  Shocked ) , we took it out to get it overhauled the other day ( 3rd gear getting very crunchy ) , and the gearbox oil was silver , more like silver slimy paste than oil  Shocked , but it hadn't broken , so it's just being refreshed at the Cogbox )

So there are 2 choices for you  Smiley
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Speed-Randy
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« Reply #15 on: April 23, 2008, 03:36:49 AM »

nicholas, 3 words for you, all you need to know. DAVE FOLTS TRANSMISSIONS.  nuff said
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Udo
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« Reply #16 on: April 23, 2008, 06:01:07 AM »

Belgian guys breaking ranchos that i know of had pro-comp ones, not strong enough for slicks + 180hp + track grip...

Sounds like a lot of people want to save money on the gearbox ?  There are gearboxes for every needs , remember that the first and second gears are not strong to run with 180 + hp and slicks .
I made a lot of experience with gearboxes during the years and all of ours work well , same as the rancho which have much more experience, only tell them what you want .

Udo
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Bewitched666
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« Reply #17 on: April 23, 2008, 20:14:33 PM »

Right on Udo Cool
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Speed-Randy
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« Reply #18 on: April 24, 2008, 01:42:38 AM »

i'm tellin ya, DFT, never pops out of gear, downshift from 3rd to 2nd at 45 mph without a grindin gears, will not come apart at 200+ hp. the guy builds the best gear box period. he's definitly not cheap, but if you want bullet proof, he's definitly the man.
just remember this equation
good + fast = not cheap
cheap + fast = not good
good + cheap = not fast
 you do the math
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