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  1. #1
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    Added power, want to increase durability of transmission

    I just added heads/cam to my 2006 Daytona with 100k miles, adding over 100 wheel hp. NAG1 transmission, I've owned the car since 83k miles and I've never touched the trans, unknown if the previous owner did any maintenance on it but somehow I doubt it. No issues at all with the trans currently.

    I'd like to take measures to ensure the reliability of the transmission, but the options I see out there kind of confuse me.....I've never modified or maintained an auto transmission in a muscle car before. I drive, uh, shall we say "spiritedly" on the street, and next year I'd like to drag race more, specifically to participate in the Modern Street Hemi Shootout.

    Thus far, I've done the following:
    Shifts set to increased firmness w/Diablosport
    Shift points set to 6400rpm

    Ive seen the following options, and I'm not sure which ones would be the wisest choice or choices:

    Fluid - Full exchange? Pan dump and filter change? Don't touch it?

    Solenoids - Blue Tops seem like the top choice, they increase shift pressure right?

    Valve body - no idea what this does Added power, want to increase durability of transmission

    Converter - This and a stall are the same thing right? And it makes daily driving easier with a cam, and you launch harder from a stop right? Or, you can hold higher rpm's on the starting line? I'm not sure, I'd appreciate a newb friendly explanation.

    TCM - Controls the transmission, but I see several options. Does this only raise the shift pressure, shift point, etc? Or does it change the overall behavior of the trans to be more performance oriented?

    Thanks for reading, and thanks in advance if you can shed any light on this!

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  2. #2
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    You approached / slightly surpassed SRT HP / TQ, which is well-within the NAG1 (WA-580 = 580NM) transmission's torque handling capabilities...

    The focus should be on the initial health of your transmission. If you've never changed the fluid and filter, that would be a no-brainer (don't buy into the rumors that performing a proper flush - somehow results in transmission issues / problems). Transmission fluid, just like engine oil, is the life-blood of a healthy transmission. It needs to be changed regularly if the vehicle is driven aggressivly. Second thing is to carefully assess the 2/3, 3/4, 4/5 shift events. You can easily data log all events looking for flare (slippage) through to 5th --> 5th at WOT. Any hint of flare means the frictions and steels are already compromised. This is a one-way trip once frictions have been glazed (burnt - even just slightly). Glazing can't be reversed.

    If the assessment results are healthy, then consider making modifications;
    - Blue Tops solenoids work extremely well on their own at decreasing shift event duration and increasing hydraulic pressure across the frictions / steels assemblies. Shorter shift events are very important to reducing(!) built-in slippage, especially with the RT's TCM programming that always biases towards smooth / extended shift events for comfort (drive adaptives means sedate driving quickly and constantly drives transmission operating parameters towards comfort). Any reduction in shift duration is a direct benefit to frictions / steels as they are simply slipping less. Expect firmer shifts, both up and down. Firmer means shorter shift events. Do not misconstrue this as somehow hard on the transmission or damaging in any way, the reverse is occurring! Less slippage means less wear to the composite clutches (frictions). Some think damage is occurring with such jerky / firm shifts - simply isn't so. Its important to perform an Adaptive Relearn (though OBDll port with StarSCAN / MOBILE, WiTECH or other similar device) after their installation, otherwise, during WOT events with an immediate back off of the throttle can force the transmission into Limp Mode (this is because the TCM thinks you are needed to decelerate quickly, so downshifts the transmission to assist with braking).
    - Valve body (VB) modification by an Aftermarket Vendor is somewhat ambiguous. Too much to type to explain (probably better as a phone conversation Keith), but I'm not convinced it can stand on its own without supporting programming changes to the TCM in order to allow the physical modifications t function properly. Over the years, I've kept close tabs on VBs, installed them for others and tried one myself. In my and another's case, we elected to remove them.
    - Torque convertors are really straight forward; they require no supporting equipment to allow for stalling (the act of getting pretty close to hydraulic lockup) at a higher rpm (based on internal turbine / stator veins angles). Simply choose where you want the convertor to apply stall. Where depends on what you're wanting a higher rpm to accomplish as it relates to rpm and torque.
    - The Transmission Control Module (TCM) is the single most effective component when it comes to altering (amongst others) modulation / shift pressures (throughout idle / WOT operation), torque management, convertor clutch lock-up windows, idle rpm versus gear lever position, operational parameters versus fluid temp, fill rates and other variables. The OEM's MOPAR TCM offerings are great devices that was designed by Mercedes / Siemens to operate properly with the NAG1. Recently there are now options to have someone reprogram some of the above parameters using your standard TCM. An extra advantage is an actual lock-up feature that further enhances the speed differential (less) between the turbine / stator to get closer to a true lockup (1:1). The MPTCM's automatically locks prior to the 1/2 shift event the closer the gas pedal reaches WOT.

    If you are not going to do much more to increase power further, its hard to beat the MOPAR Performance TCM cost-wise. Same with Blues Tops and a mild increase in convertor stall increase.
    Last edited by Hemissary; 12-04-2018 at 11:36 AM.
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  3. #3
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    That was one of my worst posts ever for spelling and grammar...corrected now :^/

  4. #4
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    What's the stock stall, 2200? I eventually want a stroker, so would a 3000 stall be ok?

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  5. #5
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    It would - and remain drivable...

  6. #6
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    Also add another cooler. Heat is also a proven killer of transmissions. Now that's its "winter" here in Florida, my stock rebuilt Nag1 with just a Hemituner tcm shifts like the newer units. I notice a bit of a change in the Summertime and I need to do the cooler myself. Check out the Frankencooler threads.

    I have had heads/cam since about 80k miles and I noticed a bit of shift flare at 130k miles so I had the unit rebuilt to stock. I had a tranzformer but then went to a Hemituner TCM with 6800 shift points.
    The tcm made a big difference over the transformer. Part throttle shift were quicker and crisper but very gentle at the same time. Autostick is amazingly fast and crisp. You can layer the transformer over the tcm settings for additional control but lately I have just let the tcm do its thing.

    Mine is a daily driver so I didn't go with blue tops or a higher stall converter.

    The converter is only useful for launching on a prepped surface with drag radials or slicks. It's useless on the street since I even spin if I try to launch from 2nd with 315/35 Michelin PS4s. I do have 3.55 gears which helps immensely off the line and throughout the rev range.

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    Last edited by BM_SRT; 12-06-2018 at 06:06 AM.
    2006 300c SRT8
    PWR Ported Heads | HHP Stage 2R Cam | 3.55 Getrag | GTP Ported Intake Manifold | Kooks Longtubes | Corsa Sport / SRT Resonators | AMG 8 Piston Brake Calipers | Hemituner 6,800 TCM | BT Catch Can | LMI True CAI V2 | Tranzformer | MM 87mm TB | Johan Tuned | REM Adjustable Endlinks & Front/Rear Shock Braces | 33/22mm Front/Rear Sway Bars | Michelin Pilot Sport 4 315/35/20 & 275/40/20 | 10" Widened Oem Wheels | LC-2 Wideband Analog Output to Trinity | Mishimoto Full Aluminum Radiator

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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by BM_SRT View Post
    Also add another cooler. Heat is also a proven killer of transmissions. Now that's its "winter" here in Florida, my stock rebuilt Nag1 with just a Hemituner tcm shifts like the newer units. I notice a bit of a change in the Summertime and I need to do the cooler myself. Check out the Frankencooler threads.

    I have had heads/cam since about 80k miles and I noticed a bit of shift flare at 130k miles so I had the unit rebuilt to stock. I had a tranzformer but then went to a Hemituner TCM with 6800 shift points.
    The tcm made a big difference over the transformer. Part throttle shift were quicker and crisper but very gentle at the same time. Autostick is amazingly fast and crisp. You can layer the transformer over the tcm settings for additional control but lately I have just let the tcm do its thing.

    Mine is a daily driver so I didn't go with blue tops or a higher stall converter.

    The converter is only useful for launching on a prepped surface with drag radials or slicks. It's useless on the street since I even spin if I try to launch from 2nd with 315/35 Michelin PS4s. I do have 3.55 gears which helps immensely off the line and throughout the rev range.

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    Actually, higher stall convertors are a bonus on the street for the same reasons they are employed elsewhere. The added benefit is allowing for a higher idle due to lumpy cams to reduce the heat that is generated.

    Curious BM; do you actually rev to 6800rpm?
    Last edited by Hemissary; 12-06-2018 at 03:27 PM.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hemissary View Post
    Actually, higher stall convertors are a bonus on the street for same reason they are employed elsewhere. The added benefit is allowing for a higher idle due to lumpy cams to reduce the heat that is generated.

    Curious BM; do you actually rev to 6800rpm?
    I would imagine a cam that big to require a higher idle wouldn't be that fun to drive on the street. I can't imagine having any more power off the line, unless, is there a benefit from the higher stall tc once you are moving and lets say cruising at a higher gear and execute a kickdown?

    Yes, the HHP 2R cam I put in earlier this year likes the higher rpms, whereas the Srt Max was more of a 6400rpm limit cam. I feel like my setup with the larger cam, heads and equal length longtubes is ideal to ride out the higher rpms. I like the extra mph that I get out of each gear, although the tcm will not let me kickdown into the higher rpm range. That is probably a good safeguard to have though.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by BM_SRT View Post
    I would imagine a cam that big to require a higher idle wouldn't be that fun to drive on the street. I can't imagine having any more power off the line, unless, is there a benefit from the higher stall tc once you are moving and lets say cruising at a higher gear and execute a kickdown?

    Yes, the HHP 2R cam I put in earlier this year likes the higher rpms, whereas the Srt Max was more of a 6400rpm limit cam. I feel like my setup with the larger cam, heads and equal length longtubes is ideal to ride out the higher rpms. I like the extra mph that I get out of each gear, although the tcm will not let me kickdown into the higher rpm range. That is probably a good safeguard to have though.

    A dyno graph would show you otherwise. RPM is not the answer. Engines actually / purposely built to rev to the moon do not have any road manners.

    When you build an engine that is aimed at maximizing it's NA capabilities, outside of the typical envelope, idle behavior is a major issue. The camshaft is the heart that everything else supports. When it can be tamed idle-wise, everyone who know even a tiny bit about engines immediately recognizes that there's something magical going on.

    Only those with smarts realize its a speed-density controlled system that is mastering that idle. That in of itself is noteworthy...
    Last edited by Hemissary; 12-07-2018 at 01:01 AM.

  10. #10
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    I understand your point but what matters more to me is acceleration and torque to the ground. About 3-4 years ago when I first installed the tcm, I took some datalogs with this question in mind and I noticed it was quicker in certain mph to mph pulls.

    Although it's possible power might be down, the higher rpms allow me to stay in 1st or 2nd gear longer, and the math works out that the vehicle can accelerate quicker in certain situations due to the multiplication of 3.59 (1st) vs 2.19 (2nd) or 2.19 (2nd) vs 1.41 (3rd).

    Because of the wider gear spacing in the NAG1, I also then get the benefit of entering the next gear at a higher rpm. Sometimes if I shift too soon I can tell I enter just a bit below the ideal. A newer 8 speed would help immensely. Maybe there will be a retrofit kit one day while I still own this car.

    There is also the intangible fun factor of revving higher which is more important for me since I don't race and just drive this to work during the week. Once in awhile I get a nice empty stretch of road and I can safely enjoy this creature.


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    Last edited by BM_SRT; 12-07-2018 at 06:12 AM.

  11. #11
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    My biggest concern, is fun on the street during daily driving and stoplight to stoplight fun, and for that I want good manners and lots of torque. However I also want to be able to back it up with real performance and a high horsepower curve. The extra ~800rpm over stock that I get from shifting at 6400 is extra acceleration in each gear.....that wins races.

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  12. #12
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    I found a couple of dyno charts that are done with the cam I currently have and ported heads. I don't know the header setup so it not identical to mine but I think its the best info I have for this cam. Its clearly a top end cam although I find no issues with low end considering the gearing, tuning and other supporting mods. I think that looking at the curve, its bound to stay even or slightly decrease as the rpms near 6800.





  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beach Goat View Post
    My biggest concern, is fun on the street during daily driving and stoplight to stoplight fun, and for that I want good manners and lots of torque. However I also want to be able to back it up with real performance and a high horsepower curve. The extra ~800rpm over stock that I get from shifting at 6400 is extra acceleration in each gear.....that wins races.

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    A mild convertor upgrade would be very effective.

  14. #14
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    Adding a higher stall convertor will change the driving characteristics. At low throttle input such as easy daily driving you will notice it feels more sluggish off the line because the convertor is slipping more. Once you lean on the throttle more it almost springs to life. It’s not a bad thing, just something to realize. I have a 3200 stall in my truck now, going to a 3600 soon. My buddy has a 4000 stall and you really had to lean on it off the line to get it moving. Once it did, hold on...
    03 Ram 392 Stroker

  15. #15
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    Glancing through i didnt see anyone mention a Tranzformer from Zauto tech. I dont have anywere near as much power as you however it gives you the ability to fine tune the shift firmess and rpm to your liking.

    I have mine set to max firmness at 100% throttle across all shifts and at partial throttle it scales accordingly. Anything above 40% firmness at anything other than wot will be extremely clunky and probably hurt your neck around town.

    You can also set the shift points seperatly in case one gear is a bit slower than the others, so you can really take advantage of your powerband. You can change all the settings on the fly using the steering wheel controls, or plug in with a laptop for finer adjustment.

    It also has seperate profiles for autostick and D, and with 2 quick presses of your esp button its back to stock.

    Also gives you line lock so you can nail your burnout at the track. Ive accidently spun em up into 4th gear being distracted a few times.


    Just check it out. The pros are pretty great to me, and theres a lot more of them.

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