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Old 05-20-2006, 09:48 AM
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Default Manual Transmission FAQ

Manual Transmissions FAQ

1. What is the drill mod?

To sum it up, basically GM didn’t think things through all the way when selecting the hydraulic lines for your T56. The steel braided line that plugs into the master cylinder has a tiny, tiny hole in it, which causes unnecessary restriction. During a quick, high-rpm shift, fluid cannot get where it needs to go fast enough, so basically it will feel like you are shifting without a clutch. It may be difficult or impossible to shift into 2nd or 3rd, and you may have some problems with the pedal itself.

When performing the drill mod, you remove the master cylinder, separate the line from the cylinder, and drill it out. To visit a site with full information and pictures, click HERE. It will be listed under the Transmission section, along with the adjustable master cylinder install (although you can do the drill mod without changing the master).

2. Where the heck is the bleeder screw for this thing?

One of the more difficult things about a T56 is accessing the bleeder screw. You cannot see it without a mirror, so you must rely on feel. If you are beneath the car and you are looking at the transmission where the master cylinder line connects to the slave cylinder, reach straight upward. At the very top of the transmission you will feel a hex-shaped rod about two inches in length. That is the bleeder screw, which comes directly from the slave cylinder.

To bleed the system, you will need a 7/16th” socket, thin-walled, in ¼ drive. It would behoove you to use a few swivels and extensions. I also highly recommend taping the socket to the extension/swivel/etc. If for some reason you drop the socket, it will end up at the bottom of the bellhousing and you will have a hell of a time fishing it out.

If you plan to bleed traditionally, you will need two people. One under the car opening and tightening the bleeder screw, and another in the car operating the pedal.

If you are not squeamish about cutting into your car, you can make traditional bleeding a one man job. Underneath the car, do your best to put a dent in the transmission tunnel, straight across from the bleeder screw, with a punch. Get into the car and pull back the carpet around the pedals, and cut a small ‘access square’ so that you can also fold back the plastic, foam-lined piece beneath the carpet. Under that you will find the dent you made. With a 1” holesaw, cut a small part of the tunnel out. Now, with a 7/16” socket and a few extensions, you can reach the bleeder while being in the car! From here you can operate the pedal with your hand and use your other hand to tighten/loosen the screw. When you are done, simply put a piece of duct tape over the hole and recover with the carpet. It does not introduce any more noise into the cabinet.

Here is what the hole looks like (I had to drill mine a couple times to get it right)


3. Different options for bleeding the system

Your best bet for learning how to bleed would be to search this forum. People have posted many different ways of removing air from the system, from using a traditional way, a mity vac, etc. If you want to do it traditionally (whether by yourself or with help) it is very simple. The reservoir needs to be full of fluid the whole time, otherwise you will just continue to introduce more air into the system. With the bleeder closed, push the pedal to the floor. Open the bleeder (fluid and air will come out). Close the bleeder, release the pedal, bring it all the way back up. This process gets repeated until you have a firm clutch pedal. Don’t panic – it can take up to 30 minutes to get it bled correctly.

The fluid that dribbles out will end up in the bottom of the bellhousing, and it will seep out that rectangular hole in the bottom and take care of itself. If you would like, you can spray some brake cleaner into the cavity to speed the process along.

4. Is installing a clutch something I can do myself?

It depends. Do you have the appropriate tools, do you have strong jackstands to get the car HIGH in the air, are you strong, are you knowledgeable of how the transmission goes together? You can read a few clutch installation how-to’s and decide if you can do it or not. The transmission is very heavy so you will need to exercise caution when removing/installing it.

5. Nevermind, it’s not for me. How much will it cost to have it done by a pro?

Clutch installs range from $250 - $500 depending on where you take the car.

6. Can I use that old bread/wet toilet paper trick to remove the pilot bearing?

NO! This trick (which involves stuffing either bread or wet toilet paper into & behind the bearing to force it out) does not work because the area behind the pilot bearing is simply a freeze plug. If you force a lot of bread/tp into it, the bearing may come out but it can push that plug through the crankshaft and into the oil pan. This can cause an insane amount of oil to be lost, which in turn will ruin all of the friction material on the clutch. To remove the pilot bearing, either carefully cut it with a dremel tool, or use a very small puller for it (buy it or rent it from Auto Zone).

7. What’s the deal with 01-02 hydraulics? My 98-00 stuff seems to work fine.

If you are going to go through the trouble of dropping the transmission, you might as well change the master and slave cylinder while you are there. While your master & slave may be working okay now, it is a good idea to replace it with the 01-02 hydraulics anyway…because otherwise if your slave fails later on, you will need to take the transmission down again to get to it. The 01-02 has an improved design. Be advised that the line still requires the drill mod!

8. Maintain your clutch hydraulics by keeping the fluid clean through periodic clutch master fluid flushing.

Lots of problems with these transmissions are caused by hydraulic issues.
A good way to ward of problems is to maintain the clutch hydraulics fluid condition by flushing it through bleeding the system.
The fluid will eventually become contaminated. Flushing it out is the only cure.
Great info on these issues here, Thanks Ranger for the link!
http://www.rangeracceleration.com/Clutch_Care.html

Remote slave cylinder bleeder thread link;
https://ls1tech.com/forums/manual-transmission/688278-remote-clutch-bleeder.html

Service manual for the T-56 from tremec free download!
http://www.ttcautomotive.com/English...ice_Manual.pdf

Other tremec T-56 info;
http://www.ttcautomotive.com/English/products/T-56.asp

LT1 to LSx T-56 conversion pics;
https://ls1tech.com/forums/manual-transmission/916777-lt1-t56-ls1-t56-pictures.html


9. MANUAL TRANSMISSION DRIVING TIPS ( for the newbie)

1) Do not rest your foot on the clutch pedal. Pressure applied to the clutch pedal can cause the clutch to slip and reduce the service life of the clutch release bearing.

2) Do not use the clutch to hold the vehicle on a hill. Use the vehicles brakes. Holding the vehicle on a hill with the clutch causes prolonged slipping and this will wear out the clutch prematurely.

3) Shift into neutral upon approaching stops. If traffic and road conditions permit, consider shifting into neutral and hold the vehicle with the brakes at longer interval traffic lights. When the light changes select first gear and drive away.

4) Downshifting as braking. Downshifting can be used to reduce the speed of the vehicle; however, excessive or aggressive use of downshifting can increase the wear on the clutch. Consider using the brakes and shift into a lower gear to match engine RPM’s and road speed.

5) Do not lug the engine and drivetrain. Lugging is driving in a higher gear (5th or 6th for example) when road speed requires a lower gear to correctly match the engine RPM’s to the road speed. The use of a higher gear than the engine speed and road speed requires is called lugging and creates unnecessary strains on the engine, clutch and transmission.

6) Pickup trucks must not exceed the vehicles gross vehicle weight rating. Carrying or towing excessive loads will reduce the clutch service life. The GVWR can be found on the drivers side door or pillar on the certification label.

7) Starting loaded pickup trucks in motion. If equipped with a creeper gear transmission, the lowest gear should always be used to start the truck from a standing start when loaded. Using the correct gear to start the truck moving reduces wear on the clutch.

8) Refer to your owner’s manual. Your owner’s manual will contain any required adjustment or scheduled service requirements.

Clutches, when properly used, will provide a long and trouble free service life with a minimum amount of maintenance or driver attention.

Use caution and sound judgment when driving any vehicle!

Last edited by wrencher; 05-15-2008 at 12:22 AM. Reason: additions
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Old 06-08-2006, 06:23 PM
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Drill mod correction:
Actually the GM engineers did think things through. They new that the ls1 was the uber engine, and they new that the 10 bolts on our cars are prone to breaking on hard shifts. Hence the smaller hole. This in effect limits the flow of hydralic fluids through the line limiting how quickly the clutch is able to be engaged and disengaged. The engagement limitation is a good thing, because it saves the rest of the drivetrain from some of the abuse that power shifting puts on the driveshaft and rear end. The limitation on the disengagment is a compromise. So if you feel like you have to power shift to get the good times, then by all means the drill mod will allow you to accomplish this. However if your worried about your rear end, then maybe its smarter to leave this intact.
Just my 2-cents.
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Old 08-21-2006, 10:46 AM
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Originally Posted by Formula1996
Drill mod correction:
Actually the GM engineers did think things through. They new that the ls1 was the uber engine, and they new that the 10 bolts on our cars are prone to breaking on hard shifts. Hence the smaller hole. This in effect limits the flow of hydralic fluids through the line limiting how quickly the clutch is able to be engaged and disengaged. The engagement limitation is a good thing, because it saves the rest of the drivetrain from some of the abuse that power shifting puts on the driveshaft and rear end. The limitation on the disengagment is a compromise. So if you feel like you have to power shift to get the good times, then by all means the drill mod will allow you to accomplish this. However if your worried about your rear end, then maybe its smarter to leave this intact.
Just my 2-cents.
I don't/never have powershifted, and I still had problems with shifting. I had to do the drill mod just to be able to shift at wide open throttle, otherwise it just wasn't happening. I see what you are saying about GM trying to protect the 10 bolt but I think they could have gone about it in a better way (like providing a $2,000 voucher towards a 12 bolt ) Truthfully, not doing the drill mod is not going to make or break your rear end, there are more important contributing factors (fluid level, gear setup, tires, how much you race, suspension, doing donuts, etc).
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Old 09-04-2006, 11:42 PM
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Here's the direct link: http://installuniversity.com/install...r_cylinder.htm

Or with that other link click on "Install Documents" and it's under "Transmission"
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Old 12-17-2006, 04:59 PM
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Originally Posted by Castrellon
Shouldawouldacoulda! But I didn't so now I'm FUBAR.
I shoulda researched this topic. I woulda read it, I coulda used the puller.
I didn't. I stuffed grease into the crank to get the bearing out, knocked the freeze plug ascew. Ended up using the puller to get the thing out. NOW I have to drill a hole, install a long self-tapping screw into it and pull the plug out. What's the specific depth to set the new one at? Is it a special thickness plug? Should I put shalack or some thing on it to make sure it won't come loose?
So you did recover the freeze plug, correct?

I don't know what the thickness of the plug is, I am sure you can get it at a dealer. Should be press fit (no 'shalack' needed). When all is said and done, it should be deep enough so that the new pilot bearing is flush. I am not sure there is a specific depth or not for the plug.
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Old 01-04-2007, 12:45 PM
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Default Clutch Bleeding Method

Thought I would toss this up for bleeding air out of the clutch system. This is the method textralia recommends:

If the pedal is soft or spongy, I would look at ensuring there is no air in the system. Many folks bleed a system the wrong way. The best way to bleed air is to have someone help you. One person cracks the bleeder screw open. The other person who is in the car pushes the pedal to the floor and holds it there. The person under the car then closes the bleeder. Repeat this process 3-4 times to ensure all the air is out. The issue we see is that folks pump the pedal, hold it down, and then crack the bleeder. This doesn’t move any fluid, and you can bleed the clutch 1000 times, and not get the air out.

Last edited by bowtieman81; 01-14-2007 at 01:15 PM.
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Old 01-29-2007, 07:24 PM
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Originally Posted by TAGIRL99
ok when i drive to work in the morning it is still really cold outside i'm having this problem with my clutch pedal. when i shift the pedal sometimes doesnt engage and it will stick to the floor of my car! can someone please help me and tell me whats going on??? thanks
You just need to bleed the hydraulics.
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Old 02-02-2007, 01:02 PM
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If your clutch pedal goes all the way to the floor your hydraulic system(master,slave and hose) isn't providing enough force to overcome the spings in the pressure plate and disengage the clutch disc from the flywheel. Most of the time it's due to the seals in the master which wear out and you have to replace the master, but it could be the slave or less likely the hose. It is strange that it only acts up on cold days. I wouldn't want to have to guess what causes that condition.
Actually pressing the clutch pedal BEFORE opening up the bleed screw does allow air to escape from the system IF there is air trapped in the fluid that is expelled when the bleed screw is opened. It depends on where the trapped air is in the system when the bleed screw is opened as to whether the air comes out or not. If you push the pedal down and open the bleed screw enough times you will end up getting all the air out as long as you remember to keep the fluid in the resevoir full. Don't forget that the resevoir is quite small and you can empty it pretty quickly and end up sucking more air into the system instead of pumping it out. Even if a very small amount of air is still trapped in the system after you finish bleeding the system those tiny air bubbles with work their way into the resevior after a few days. You pedal will feel stronger and there will be less freeplay. This is the way the MiteyMite does it, but the MiteyMite does it much faster.
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Old 03-29-2007, 09:55 AM
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Talking Frequently Asked Questions about the T56 from our perspective

Okay guys I get alot of emails, phone calls and pm's asking questions about the T56. I thought it would help the guys that are not familiar with the T56 and the problems they usually have. Here are some of the questions we get along with the answers so hopefully this will help you guys:

Q: Why is my transmission hard for me to put into 1st gear and reverse? It seams like all of the other gears are fine. What could my problem be?

A: Most of the time if the clutch is not releasing the first sign is 1st and reverse problems. Check the clutch to make sure it is not worn. Bleed your hydraulics and replace if more than 30,000 miles on the slave and 50,000 on the master. While most of the time this is a clutch related problem, check the fluid in the trans to make sure it is full. Transmission fluid should be replaced ever 10,000 miles or 1 year which ever comes first. You wouldn't let your engine go 10,000 miles without changing it!

Q: Why does my transmission pop out of gear? It doesn't do it every time but seams to do it quite often.

A: You have a damaged blocker ring, broken slider key or a damaged shifting fork. While the blocker ring and fork are possible problems, we have rebuild 827 T56's to date. 99.9% of the time the slider keys is broken and is what causes all of your problems. You can not fix any of these issues without rebuilding the unit. If you continue to drive it with it damaged, you run the risk of causing gear damage and the rebuild process is more expensive.

Q: My transmission is stuck in gear? What do I do?

A: Have it rebuilt! While this answer might not be what most of you are looking for this is a sign of damage. Again this could be a blocker ring problem, broken or bent shift fork or slider key. I still lean more towards the broken slider key since the majoridy of the ones we have seen always have broken keys. We have only seen 4 bent or broken forks.

Q: Why am I having problems shifting at high rpms? It seems like the car just does not want to go into gear.

A: You have worn blocker rings (Synchronizers). This is a common problem since the stock blocker rings are made from paper. When you rebuild have them changed to the carbon blocker rings. While both sets are designed to wear out, the carbon ones tend to wear out slower than the paper lined ones.

Q: My car will not move. I heard a loud pop and now it will not do anything?

A: This is either a sign of a clutch failure or a major transmission problem. This should be checked immiediately. We have seen many high horsepower cars shear the teeth off the cluster and input shaft. When that happens you loose function of the transmission all together. This needs attention.

Q: Do I need to change my hydraulics with a new transmission rebuild.

A: YES. I always recommend replacing the clutch master and slave with a new rebuild. You want to make sure the money you spent does not go to waste. Hydraulic problems are the leading cause of transmission failure. Solve the issue before it becomes a problem is our motto.

Q: How much horsepower will a rebuild with your parts hold?

A: If you use the carbon blocker rings, billet keys and bronze fork pads, we have been making 700rwhp and 700rwtq for 2 plus years without a failure. The blocker rings are designed to wear so there is a possibility you will need to replace those but that depends on how many miles you drive and how much hard play you do.

Q: What clutch do you recommend?

A: While we don't recommend any particular clutch, we do tell customers to check out the manual form to get a good idea of what other guys are telling them. We hear alot of good things about the mcleod, spec and textrailia but we have no preference. Our race car has a mcleod, our street car has a spec and our toy has a textrailia. We use them all

Q: What transmission fluid do you recommend?

A: We use Mobil 1 ATF in all of our daily drivers. While Mobil 1 is what is desired some customers have trouble finding it in there locations. We also use GM Synchromesh. Royal Purple should not be used in a stock transmission as it has been known to cause premature blocker ring wear.

Q: What hydraulic fluid do you use?

A: The cheapest Dot 3 available. All DOT 3 fluid is good and as often as some people bleed there systems, O'Reillys or Auto Zone DOT 3 fluid will be just fine.

Q: What transmission fluid do you run in the high horsepower applications?

A: If you car makes over 650rwhp you should use 2 quarts of Mobil 1 ATF and 2 quarts of Synergyn Syngear II Manual Transmission Fluid. We have noticed a dramatic difference in the performance of our high horsepower units while mixing these 2 fluids. The Synergyn can be bought thru us or thru synergyn's website.


Know of course this is only a small portion of the questions I get every day but I thought this was a start. Feel free to post up your questions and I will be happy to add them to this list and the answers.

MODS PLEASE MAKE THIS A STICKY!!!

Thanks,
Amber
SixSpeedsInc.com/T56Rebuilds.com

Last edited by ls1 joe; 04-03-2007 at 11:41 AM.
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Old 03-29-2007, 08:45 PM
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Originally Posted by LSGunZ28
what if I just replaced my hydraulics 3 months before the rebuild?
Try bleeding them again. Sometimes air bubbles mysteriously appear for no reason and are a pain the your ***. That is a start. If that does not help check out the clutch setup.

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Old 03-30-2007, 09:17 AM
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Why does it seem impossible to buy just a tailshaft for a t56?
You can purchase them if you find someone that has it in stock. We just got ours in yesterday. We order them by the butt load. When someones driveshaft breaks it usually takes out the tailshaft housing so I have been keeping them on order.

Amber

Last edited by Ragtop 99; 04-06-2007 at 08:12 PM.
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Old 04-01-2007, 04:47 PM
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Anyone that needs help with something is encouraged to post up. I am more than happy to help you with your questions. Just remember on the weekends it takes me a little longer since Joe hogs the computer

Amber

Please post your questions in a regular thread if it is unique to you. Let's keep this a FAQ Thread. Thanks!

Last edited by Ragtop 99; 04-06-2007 at 08:14 PM.
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Old 04-02-2007, 10:22 AM
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Originally Posted by teke184
good info...

QUESTION...

any idea what the bolt size is for the 2 bolts that hold the slave cylinder to the trans??

one of mine stripped the last 1/8" of threads out when i installed a shimmed slave with my new SPEC clutch. i think the thickness of the shim resulted in fewer threads being used, and it just stripped them out. funny thing was that when i installed the bolt, i was using a 1/4" drive socket...and i never even tightened down on it...it basically stripped out with 2 fingers worth of force on the wrench

thinking i can put a longer bolt in it...but i need the thread/bolt size.

figure i may as well as before i spend an hour at the hardware store looking around
Its a 6mmX1.0. I would not suggest using a longer bolt.

Thanks,
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Old 04-02-2007, 10:24 AM
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Originally Posted by andypz28
so my tranny gets stuck in 3rd gear and wont move so it looks like i gotta rebuild. I took it to a local tranny shop to see how much the damage would be but it seems im getting more than i bargained for.
here are the pics i took
you can see the broken key
compare the synchros from 3,4,5 i believe (3rd being the farthest left)
4th, 5th gear synchros
3rd gear synchro

he said it would be wise to replace 3rd and 4th gear cuz its worn down compared to the other gears.
the hub/slider assemblies for 1-2, 3-4, 5-6
a steel shift fork for 3-4,
synchro kit and a bearing kit.

what do you think?




Well the pictures didn't come thru all that great but I can see 3rd is worn. You didn't show me a picture of 4th gear so I can tell you if it need replacing. Looks to me like 3rd and 2nd need to be replaced by the photos you are showing me. I also can't see the teeth on the slider so I can not tell you if they are worn to much or not. Sounds like he is giving you correct information.

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Old 04-02-2007, 03:15 PM
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I was racing my cammed SS over the weekend, and the first few runs i made, i wanted to see how it shifted, and it was like butter. i decide to powershift the car, and still shifts like butter. During one pass i went to hit third, and everyone told me my back up lights came on, and the car went straight on the rev limiter. i pulled it out and put it right back into 3rd, and kept going down the track. what would cause this?

ohh and btw, you guys WILL be getting my business very very soon.
thanks
Charlie
Charlie,
You went to far to the right. That usually happens when you hit the reverse gate and not 3rd gear. You would be suprised the number of people that do that. Nothing can really help that unless you make sure you go straight up and not to far to the right.
Thanks,
Amber

Last edited by Ragtop 99; 04-06-2007 at 08:17 PM.
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Old 04-02-2007, 03:50 PM
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Yea, i just wanted to make sure that my tranny is not hurt now because of that. I know there is no way you can put a T56 in reverse rolling, so i was just wanting to know what would let the engine rev like that, and allow the back up lights come on...

You think your stage 2+ would be good for a 55k mile t56?
Yeah the stage 2 should be fine. You really can't hurt the trans unless you removed the reverse lockout. Then you might be up the creek without a padel. Thats an old saying

Amber

Last edited by Ragtop 99; 04-06-2007 at 08:18 PM.
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Old 04-02-2007, 07:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Stang's Bane
Kind of a generic question, but here goes. Is the viper output shaft worth the money.

600 rwhp, 3400 raceweight, and I will not be easy off the line. No sidesteps, but I will not feather the clutch.

Keith

Keith,

Yes with that HP and race weight I would say 100% it is worth it. We torn the splines off the stock shaft with only 517rwhp and 3180 race weight. Anyone going to the track with that HP should invest in the viper output shaft. It is either $799 now or possibly $1950 when it takes out the whole transmission if it breaks in a certain spot.

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Old 04-02-2007, 07:40 PM
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Originally Posted by SSmokin99
Ok, I have a problem with my tranny or clutch. About 4-5 months ago I was racing my friend and I missed the 2-3 shift and I heard a loud BOOM!...After I heard that, I drove normally....everything seemed normal and nothing seemed out of the ordinary. Just last week I started to notice that everytime I downshifted, it wouldn't go into gear smoothly like it used to and I could hear a slight noise. Now, when I drive my car and leave from a stop whether it be in 1st or reverse I can hear this noise. Like maybe something is loose...I had my dad and friends listen to it and they all said it was the throwout bearring. What do you think it is? Everytime I release the clutch it will make a noise as soon as it catches...
Sounds like either a clutch disk issue or throwout bearing. With that kind of noise it is funny it drove fine until now. The only thing that would make me believe other wise is the fact it has been driving fine until now. I would bleed the system. If it still does it replace the slave and inspect the clutch. Your blocker rings inside the tranny are probably worn now if you are having issues down shifting.

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Old 04-03-2007, 02:06 PM
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my car grinds slightly in second gear only when the car/trans is cold, I just had a new clutch put in. If my tranny is slightly damaged will it hurt my brand new Tex clutch?
No it will not hurt the clutch but it could cause alot of damage inside the transmission. You should have that inspected ASAP before it takes out the trans.

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Last edited by Ragtop 99; 04-06-2007 at 08:25 PM.
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Old 04-04-2007, 10:46 AM
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Originally Posted by BLKWS.6
Sometimes (maybe 1 out of 50) when I come to a redlight it WILL NOT go into first if I try to put it there from Neutral after stopping. I push the clutch back in after letting it out again (shifter back to N after failing to go to 1st) and put the shifter in 1st. Either that or I put it in 2nd (goes in fine) and roll 6'' foreward and then put it in first. I have heard this is normal sometimes to have issues in 1st?

ALSO REVERSE... It usually takes me a bit of effort when the tranny is cold but it does not grind or anything. SOMETIMES I think I have it in Reverse but it is not totally there and when I begin to let out on the clutch I get a un-cool sounding noise and push it in and put it in reverse. There is never any grinding and I KNOW! the clutch is releasing sense the sound doesnt start until it's normal enguagement point.

I have told these 2 things (1st sometimes locking you out kinda when trying to go to 1st at a stop) and reverse being a bit more difficult are just T56 idiosyncracies.

Any thoughts/advice?

(First is very easy to get into gear any other time than that 1 out of 50 and reverse is only a problem if I wimp out and forget that I sometimes need to use a bit of force to get her there, it never lurches or bogs the tach or anything like the clutch is dragging though.)
Your clutch is not disengaging correctly. The 1st sign of a clutch problem is 1st and reverse being hard to get in. Try bleeding the system and if that does not work you need to check and make sure the clutch is working correctly.

Thanks,
Amber
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