Originally Posted by KonkeyDong
My 2000 Trans Am is a T56 car. First thing. 2nd gear will grind sometimes when I shift rather quickly from 1st or even downshifting from 3rd. Also Reverse will rake and cause the car to shake sometimes. I also have to keep replacing my Reverse Switch underneath because it goes bad causing the Reverse/Turn Signal fuse to pop when I put the car into reverse.
Can be slightly more difficult to shift gears during high RPMs as well. Is this a Master Cylinder issue (not enough fluid being pushed) or a Synchro issue, or both? Clutch seems fine - grabs well and has some play left. I believe it is stock. Car only has 56,6xx miles.
That can sometimes be a master cylinder issue, sometimes just a clutch issue. As the stock clutch wears, it is known to do that. It could also just be some air in the system resulting in the clutch not quite fully releasing. It would be worth bleeding it before you tore it apart. This is the first thing I would do. Second, if you still have the factory fluid int here, I would change it. Check the fluid for debris, metal flakes, etc. Replace with a quality transmission fluid. There are plenty of threads that argue over that for your searching pleasure.
Would the drill mod help or should I just look at getting a T56 rebuild, new clutch setup and master cylinder, pilot and throwout bearing?
Generally, the drill mod is only good for reingagement, NOT disengagement. What I mean is, the drill mod helps on the fluid return to the master when you let the pedal up, but does not affect when you push the pedal down. Imagine you're a GM engineer and about a month before you are going to roll out the 1998 LS1 F-cars, someone discovers that the LS1+T56 combination is destroying rear axles. you have two solutions available. You either punt on the rears, delay the car launch, eat all the money in rear axles you've already bought and paid for, etc. Or you find a way to cushion the clutch so it doesn't hammer the rear so hard. So, you decide to opt for the $0.62 o-ring restrictor in the clutch line to soften the blow to the rear.
What tends to happen is the drill mod tends to help when you are not getting full return pedal height or you get that random sticking/low pedal thing. Drill mod CAN help with that. Unless the real issue is the pressure plate finger adjuster mechanism that ALSO reduces the fluid return to master and presents with the same symptoms.
All that to say, most of the time people when they encounter these clutch pedal symptoms end up doing a master and a new clutch without the pressure plate and the drill mod before it is truly resolved.
Now, regarding the synchros. They're probably not damaged yet, but avoid the shifting situations where you get gear grind until you get the clutch fully releasing again. Again, i'd start with a good clutch bleed and transmission fluid change.