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Just bought a 87 spider, with 50K miles. I am 3rd owner from 2 earlier "non-abusing" middle aged owners. Immediate past PO advised us he had a clutch problem when he replaced the slave cylinder and thought there was still air in the system. On our pre-purchase review we heard no clutch noise, Now that we have it home, on jacks to bleed the clutch system (drove it via tow dolly, rear down, in neutral, about 13 miles @ 55 mph) we have new distinct clutch noises.

First is a "pop" as the clutch pedal is depressed about 2"s with engine running or not. With the engine running and with the clutch out there's an irregular click (like a bad bearing sound) , which increases in rapidity when the clutch is depressed.

If the clutch is maintained in the depressed mode for a length of time, with the engine running, she starts to smoke and sparks are noticed. With engine running she wont take first or second with out a bad grind (camera jump when I did this and scared my son, my photographer, who was abit under the car) but she will turn the wheels when put in second and the started and clutch is released, however there seems to be a drag in the system.

Please check out our YouTube post for our real-time video of our clutch problem symptoms/sounds.


I suspect there's some clutch parts in my future...please advise and what do you think I should have on my shopping list?

Thanks in advance
Paul
87 & 89 Spiders
 

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Wow, that looks bad! If it were me I'd pull the transmission so you can see exactly what is wrong before ordering any parts. I'm going to guess that one or more of the clutch cover springy tines that the throwout bearing sits on is broken or about to break off and making contact with the clutch plate.

Kevin
 

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The snapping or pop sound is the pressure plate tines when they reach a point to release the clutch which may indicate a broken tines or separated friction plate. The bearing sound is the throw out bearing making a bad contact with the tines or has gone south which is causing the smoke and sparks. I agree with Kredden wait until you see whats inside before parts are ordered. Worst case is throw out bearing, pressure plate and friction plate and the labor of pulling and replacing.
 

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Worst case is throw out bearing, pressure plate and friction plate and the labor of pulling and replacing.
Boy, it's hard to imagine a better case. The pressure plate is probably the culprit. And once you have things apart, even if the friction disk and T/O bearing seem OK, it would be prudent to replace them "while you're in there". So if you want to order parts in advance those three should probably be on your list.

Personally, I tend to follow kredden's advice and don't order parts until I have things apart and am confident what I need. But if you want to minimize downtime by pre-ordering parts, that's probably your shopping list.

You might also get the spring that holds the T/O fork in place and the clips that attach the fork to the T/O bearing - those parts are probably OK on your car, but they're also cheap.



 
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