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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am certain this has been covered before, but my searches have failed to find the answer. So, here goes:

I have the engine and transmission out of a car that was not running when I acquired it. It is a 1988 Spider. I have rebuilt the engine, refaced the flywheel, replaced the clutch pressure plate and disc. And I have gone through the brake system and have a new clutch slave cylinder and throwout bearing ready to install.

However, before placing the engine and tranny back into the car it would make sense to address common problems with the transmission now -- especially the notorious second-gear issue. I'm on a budget and don't have a hydraulic press.

I'd like to freshen -- but maybe not totally rebuild -- the tranny. It would be nice if I tackled areas that leak fluids. What are some of the must-dos -- stuff I can accomplish in my shop with average skills and a reasonable budget that will make it into a better transmission?

Thanks. I look forward to your bb wisdom.

Larry
 

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12 ton hydraulic press only $129 at harbor Freight. Mine's 35 years old and still fine. Get a Parts Cleaner too - 20 gallon with pump for $99. I use 10 gallons of cheap mineral spirits in mine. Get a REALLY big circlip pliers and do the "First Gear Fix" (BB thread). 2nd gear and general worn dog teeth needs a kinda special puller or bearing splitter for the press. Read the factory TX manual.

Robert
 

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If you have a NAPA store near you, they generally also have a machine shop. A few dollars and a willing shop mech can press the main shaft for you. Keep every thing in order. (I use a stiff wire,a wire coat hanger works fine) Reassembly does not requrie a press.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for the input. I have resources for cleaning the parts, but really don't want to buy a press. So the NAPA solution sounds fine.

I assume there are seals that should be replaced along with the synchro parts for at least second gear. Anything else that should be addressed?
 

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One hard part on reassembly without a press: getting the bearings and syncro yokes on. It can be done - I did my first one sitting on my heels in front of my garage. These are all interference fits; cool the shaft in the freezer (put it in a big freezer bag to keep moisture away), and heat the outer part in a toaster oven. Align carefully and drop the parts together. Be quick as first contact and the hot part will begin to warm the cold shaft - it can lock up part way on!

Lay out parts in sequence and practice a bit before heating/cooling. You may have to do one at a time, and return to the freezer a few times. There are a few places that shims need to be measured and installed, so think this step thru carefully.

Press just makes it sooo easy. The second time you do it will pay for the press.

Robert
 

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A seal for the rear of the fifth gear section, and a seal for the bell housing input shaft hole. One wy to save money is to remove the sychro on fifth gear, turn it arround and use it on second gear. use the second gear sychro on fifth. Turning the other sychro around can also be done.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for the good advice.

Robert, you make a good argument for using a press. My luck would be to end up with some little element not quite on correctly. I'll check among my gearhead buddies to see who might have a press.

Lee, I've heard of the shifting-synchros-around tactic and, once I open it up, may find I need to do that. So, it sounds as if two seals are all that might be needed. I guess I'll learn if any bearings are going south once I get into it.

Now I discover that the CarDisk DVD I have doesn't have a transmission manual. So that's a resource I need to round up. Any suggestions on a source?
 

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Tha small Harbor Fright benchtop press can handle the trans and can be had on the cheap with a sale and coupons. It's worth every penny for this job.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Yes, Jon, the press is on the wish list.

But because the parts -- and I did order more than just seals -- are on the way, I may have to bum some time on a buddy's press while I save up my allowance.
 
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