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Transmission troubles?

868 Views 11 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  Beeman
while back to visit the family at xmas my clutch quit. so stupidly i took my vehicle to pep boys because they were the only people i could find to do the work on short notice. a new clutch and slave cylander later when i test drove the truck i found it somewhat hard to get into second gear. i complained and had both the service manager and store manager take it out for a test run. of course they said it seemed fine. before the new clutch it was totally fine. now, less than 1000 miles later it has been more and more difficult to get into second gear and i almost have to jam it in now. there is no grinding but something seems to prevent it from going into second. the other gears work decent. any ideas? are my troubles just coincidence or was the clutch installation botched. any help much appreciated.
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Without knowing what vehicle you have it is hard to give an educated answer, but generally if there is a problem with the clutch then it will show up every time you shift, not just in one particular gear. Since it is a hydraulic clutch there should be no real adjustment to do. It would also be useful to know why the old clutch failed. If the input shaft seal leaked and ruined the clutch disk, it is possible the fluid ran low and there is some damage internally to the transmission. Again depending on what vehcile you have, if they had to pull the transmission out to get at theclutch it is possible they damaged the shifter or some debris fell down inside and got into the second gear shift rail.
You wouldnt think a particular gear should be troublesome but it can. I helped friend put new clutch on Ford 350 with the 7.3 diesel and a 5 spd. Reverse can still be a pain. Ford didnt allow for any adjustment on rod from slave cylinder to throw out arm. You end up spending day or two trying to bleed the system to absolute perfect and then find out that after milling the flywheel you were suppose to use special shims to make up the difference. By the way the master and slave are plastic and sold as a prebled unit for some ungodly price. I ended up welding couple washers on throwout arm and got it to work but as I said reverse still occasionally causes a problem. Why in the world Ford came up with this stupid design when they had perfectly good system previously is beyond me. Gets even better, the newer Fords (and Chevies too I think) now dont even have a throw out arm, the slave cylinder is now part of the throwout bearing INSIDE the clutch housing. Must save 50cents going down the assembly line but big pain in rear for everyone dealing with it after that. I am of the opinion that modern engineers take a special course in how to make life difficult for mechanics and how to make cars unnecessarily complex and expensive for buyers/owners.
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In that the clutch works with the other gears, it is unlikely that clutch its self is the problem. The transmission must be removed to change the clutch, which allows oppertunities for linkages to get bent or out of adjustment. If this were a colume shift I would look to linkages, but I have never seen a 5 speed on the colume. I would suggest you take it to an expert and have a look at the bottom portion of the stick itsself, where it is out of sight inside. There could be a burr or normal wear on the stick or with the internal shift slides. There is also the posibilities of a bent shift fork caused by rough handleing, fairly easy to fix if the trans is a top loader, meaning there is a removeable top plate that can be lifted out.
I had that problem with my truck shortly after I bought it new years ago. Turned out a bolt or screw fell out and was wedged in it, I couldnt get it into second gear either.
One time, I hit a bump in the road 'really really hard' and my motor mount cracked and gave way, shifting my engine in the compartment. I didn't know this, until I had stopped driving, and had great difficulty in shifting to 'Park'. I was puzzled, until I popped the hood and found my engine was leaning to one side - the car mechanic was amazed the car kept running.

Could it be possible that your transmission was jarred out of line?
Reread my post and guess I didnt make it clear that the transmission shifted fine previous to clutch job. Now it very difficult in reverse and so-so in first I think. This because the clutch now just barely disengages the transmission from the engine. Right on the edge where it works as opposed to where it doesnt. I assume as clutch plate wears it will start to work better and next clutch redo, shims will get put on back of the flywheel. You see on older hydraulic clutch systems like I had on my '60 chevy pickup, the system was designed with some built in slop and you used a linkage adjustment on rod from slave cylinder to throw out arm to take up slop and as clutch wore, you just readjusted this rod to keep same pedal height. No shims, no plastic anything, hey it just worked without headaches. Why Ford thought this was an improvement, I dont know, maybe just an improvement on profit for replacement clutch parts and labor bills.

Thinking about it, I suspect some modification of the throw out arm and making pushrod adjustible would eliminate need for shims. If it had been my truck, I would have made these and couple other modifications including using cast iron master/slave cylinder off older verhicle. Owner of truck doesnt believe in modifying things. He didnt like it that I even used the washers. Told him we could either take it apart and use shims that nobody ever mentioned and I finally found out about on ford forum on internet or he could take it to a shop in town/ Ford dealer to do this, or we could try adding couple washers that would take about 15min. More washers wouldnt help due to design of throwout arm. It just couldnt push throwout bearing into fingers of pressure plate any further unless it was redesigned.
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I would be glad to give you an educated answer if you would provide more info. need to know what type of truck,year of truck,engine size, transmission type, original failure or what actually happened.
If its a Ford go Find the forum that pertains to your problem give them as much info. as you can. And I'll borrow a dollar to bet some one will be able to help you. Not that someone on here couldn't help you :eek: but these guys sleep eat and bleed Ford
thanks for all the input. it has taken a while to get back because i use the library's internet. anyway i am the same person who a few weeks ago posted with the starter problem and i wanted to thank everyone for their help and information. well i finally replaced the starter with a friend of mine last week and he noticed there was a small leak in the slave cylinder. obviously nothing major as there has been no noticible decline of fluid in the master cylander. nevertheless could a small loss of hydrolic pressure be the reason for shifing ease declining (second is the most difficult gear to engage but there has been a decline with all)? the slave is under warreanty and i should be getting it replaced this week. by the way its a 1994 chevy 1500 2wd 4.3l v6. thanks for all input and any additional opinions welcomed. this is the first vehicle i have ever bought and have much to learn.
Yes, a leak in the pressure end of the slave cylinder can cause the problem, because the piston that pushes the throwout bearing can suck back in air, because it is sealed at the sides. This would cause air to be in your fluid area which when compressed will fill a space made by absent fluid. Fluid does not compress, but air will many tines smaller that atmosphere volume. Set in the vehicle with it running and 'pump' the clutch, same as you would when bleeding brakes, now try putting it in gear; if it goes very easily or normal, the problem is obeviously the leaking cylinder.
A leaking cylinder will definetly cause a problem. You should notice the problem more in 1st or revese. Be sure the trans is full of the CORRECT fluid. 2nd gear should offer no problems at all once the vehicle is moving. Is the problem going into 2nd when you are shifting from 1st. or are you taking off in 2nd? That trans can be easily shifted without the use of the clutch once the vehicle is moving if you time the speed and rpm's if you know how. If it gives problems with or without the clutch you might have internal trans problems.
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