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Can one still lug modern engines?

Discussion in 'Technical Chat' started by island808, Feb 16, 2011.

  1. Feb 16, 2011 at 1:10 AM
    #1
    island808

    island808 [OP] Me l've got brains.

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    Ok, I mean on cars as new as the 4.0 tacoma.. and many others.
    We all know what lugging feels like. You hit fifth instead of third on a steep hill at a speed that was maybe slow even for third. The engine jerks, the transmission vibrates, you hear detonation pinging from the hood. Or do you?

    SO, first, lugging as I understand it, is at least supposed to be a couple things.

    You're potentially overheating the engine. Ok, well we're not doing this all day.

    Detonation causes the cylinder walls to get dinged up because the force is not pushing equally, fast enough down the piston. Basically, forced piston slap. Eventually you have bad ring seal.

    Oil pressure falls. Doesn't seem to be a problem unless you were jerking along at 5 mpg in 5th gear. Lights don't come on till it actually stalls. Is it just slow to react vs old timey oil pressure lights? We run a lot higher pressures now a days.


    Anecdotal evidence:
    Just miss shifted the truck, and I do generally keep the RPMs real low, but above 1000, and the truck didn't complain. I mean I hit fifth instead of third at like 15mph. Just cruising on a flat in a 20 zone at night. It dipped way down to low idle or beyond. I noticed it was still smooth, so I rode it out. So I tried it a couple more times. Trying to find where lugging was, so I'd have a low end to stay away from. No lugging. Pulled up to a stop, shifted into third and tried to start out. sounded like transmission noise, but I suppose It could have been engine knock transmitted through the transmission. But it smoothed right out after a few mph.

    Is the ECU, spark advance and all capable of preventing or greatly mitigating the lugging effect?


    I'm not looking to make this a habit at all, don't get me wrong. Its just got my curiosity up. Is lugging more or less, a thing of the past (gave way to piston slap? :) )

    When I miss shift my KLR it's like riding a mechanical bull. Bang bang bang bang.. shift, vrooom.
     
  2. Feb 16, 2011 at 5:52 AM
    #2
    dexterdog

    dexterdog My pee parts itch

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    The ECU will detect knocking and retard the timing to prevent damage.
     
  3. Feb 16, 2011 at 5:53 AM
    #3
    PB65stang

    PB65stang Well-Known Member

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    I agree with above. I wouldn't be surprised if the ECU has some kind of sensor to limit the throttle or retard timing in that situtation. The last manual car I had was an '03 Mazda6, and you could definitely lug that thing. In short, I'd say YES, you can still lug a modern car.
     
  4. Feb 16, 2011 at 9:22 AM
    #4
    island808

    island808 [OP] Me l've got brains.

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    yea. The third start was probably lugging. But only for a couple mph.. FROM ZERO.

    An 03 mazda 6? Eh.. its borderline new for the sake of this discussion, but evidence.

    The toyota also has truck timing. It pulls respectably from 900-3000. Just get the added bonus of getting 7k out of it.

    Its just nothing like any other engine lugging I recall. If it's lugging, its being very polite about it.

    ANd yea, that's what I mean. THe engine won't allow its self to be lugged. IT cuts fuel, and indeed doesn't open the butterfly wide enough to get a lot of volume in the engine. Thereby mitigating any detonation that would happen to very small levels.

    I'm pretty sure it has to be less violent than in the past at least.
     
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