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Old 03-13-2003, 03:57 PM
4 Jaw Chuck's Avatar
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Post AXOD Ford trans rebuild advice.

94 Taurus SHO 165 000kms AXOD auto, trans is exhibiting slippage when shifting into higher gears under heavy load...as a matter of fact if I don't lift off it feels like it will slip until the car reaches speed! At regular to intermediate loads it works fine except for the OD slipping at low speeds (I turn off the OD in the city).

Obviously it needs an overhaul but where do I send it? I have heard horror stories about this car/trans combo and it's well known tranny problems. I want a good reliable car that I can lay the boots too every now and then without worrying about overstressing the underbuilt design.

Is there any specific information our forum readers can give when rebuilding this trans? I would give it to a reputable trans shop with explicit instructions on setup if I knew what to tell them? I don't want a 20 000 rebuild but a like new trans with shift kit that firms up the shifts a little and can take some abuse. The motor will always be stock just because I need reliability and it's fast enough for it's intended goal.

How much control does the CPU exert on the trans shift pattern and shift firmness in these newer cars? The check engine light comes on after a heavy throttle application so I suspect a few electronic components are malfunctioning (mileage is atrocious but the plugs are clean?) and I'm not sure if the CPU could cause the driveability symtoms I have seen? The mechanicals of the car need work and I am now sorting that out. Is it possible for the CPU to cause a delayed shift or hold the engine in one gear? Pushing the OD button (on) seems to stop the symtoms.

As you can tell I'm lost on where to begin, this is the newest vehicle I have ever owned and had to work on. She's too nice to discard and deserves a hotrod hip transplant to suit that silken engine.

Thanks, Chuck.

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Old 03-13-2003, 05:22 PM
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take it to a trans shop and have them put it on a diagnostic computer, i had one that did all kinds of strange things, took it a buddy's trans shop, put it on computer and found a glitch in speed sensor, replaced sensor and trans was like new.
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Old 03-13-2003, 05:53 PM
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Thanks, Bob. Is this diagnostic computer like the trans dynos I have seen?
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Old 03-13-2003, 06:07 PM
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Well, since you are not in Texas I cant help you. I do have a friend who does repair work at a used car dealership. I had noticed he had several of the SHO Tauras in and out so I ask him about them one day. He said that they are notorious for eating trasmissions. He said the last one he had lasted 2 months at the foot of a teenager. He said if you drive them like they are racecars they just will not last. Apparently the SHO V6 is just too much according to him.

I know this doesnt help, but it is just what I have been told.

Chris
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Old 03-13-2003, 08:48 PM
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I've heard the same thing, luckily I am not a teenager and the original trans lasted some 100 000 miles before acting the way it is now. Thankfully Dad drove it like a school teacher .

I have visited the SHO forums and everything I have read says to have Company X rebuild for a ridiculous fee just because they know how to make them last, I happen to think it can't be rocket science and with the right parts and the right skilled tech I can get the same build quality without the rip off profit margin.

Apparently this trans is a king size version of the trans installed in Escorts?!!! I shudder at the thought. I know with careful assembly and new parts thoughout it will be like new...problem is I want better than new and nice butt kicking shifts when I jump on the loud pedal. Even new these transmissions were slide shifters and that ain't good for longevity or durability.

There has to be a better way, are there any trans mechanics out there that know the in and outs of this trans? <img src="confused.gif" border="0">
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Old 03-13-2003, 10:36 PM
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You need to purchase yourself a good quality scanner and a FORD shop manual detailing the throttle valve cable adjustment. If the cable jumps out of adjustment, the trans will enter a fail safe mode that gives symptoms such as yours. Does the trans have a suitable size oil cooler?

Also contact Baumann Engineering as they are supposed to be getting into modifications on the AXOD/AXODE.

It is a very complex trans with many service updates.
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Old 03-14-2003, 04:28 AM
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Thanks Duke, the car came factory with a nice big cooler so I am one step there already. I guess the ohmeter to check diagnostic pulses is passe now, maybe your right I need more tools.

Twist my rubber arm!

I might as well, I'm going to have her for awhile.
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Old 03-14-2003, 11:44 AM
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Looks like I found what I was looking for and also another great site all about transmissions,

http://www.transbuilder.com/freetips1.html

Check it out.
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Old 03-15-2003, 04:38 AM
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The TAURUS SHO is a very nice automobile. FORD had many design flaws with the AXOD/AXODE, but most have been overcome. There is no reason that a properly prepared trans will not take the power output of that engine.

I think when -Baumann Engineering-[/b]</a> gets into modifications that most of the problems will be answered.

If you are planning on keeping it, you really need a shop manual for information regarding valve adjustment etc., and descriptions of special service tools for it.

<a href="http://www.helminc.com/helm/homepage.asp?r=seo11502]-HELM Incorporated-
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Old 03-15-2003, 06:46 AM
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Thanks again Duke, I noticed a little product that Baumann Engineering is selling and basically it is a little spring loaded device that goes on the TV cable and absorbs any stress put on the cable to prevent stretch. I understand that preventing stretch on the cable allows the adjustment to be maintained but I am unclear what a TV cable is supposed to do?

The little I have read describes it as a sort of highly accurate shift down linkage that works in concert with the internal modulator to determine the best shift pattern? I'm not sure why they would use such a device when the TPS would give even more accurate info without having to worry about stretch? Have I missed something regarding it's function?

I have much to learn Master Yoda.
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Old 03-15-2003, 06:57 AM
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[quote]I noticed a little product that Baumann Engineering is selling and basically it is a little spring loaded device that goes on the TV cable and absorbs any stress put on the cable to prevent stretch.<hr></blockquote>

-TV (Throttle Valve) Cable Corrector-

This allows for full cable extension without upsetting the cable ratchet adjustment. I had a customer that the 700R4 TV Cable kept jumping out of adjustment. I figured the ratchet was damaged/worn so replaced the cable. Comes back, doing the same. Turns out the 305 TBI I redid for him ran so nicely that he would get on the beltway here and slam the go pedal and it would allow the ratchet to be pulled out of adjustment.

This nifty little deal allows the driver to slam the accelerator and not disturb the correct TV Cable adjustment.
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Old 03-15-2003, 07:07 AM
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Excerpt from Baumann Engineering;

[quote]A Brief Overview of Electronic Transmission Controls

Electronically controlled automatic transmissions now permit much greater flexibility and reliability than the old completely hydraulic transmissions of the past. At Baumann Engineering, we embrace this change and plan to be instrumental in bringing technology forward by providing the products and tools to enable everyone to exploit this new generation of transmissions.

The Ford E4OD and AOD-E/4R70W are two examples of the current generation of electronically controlled automatic transmissions. While these electronic transmissions still utilize a valve body to control their hydraulic functions, most of the decision-making and calibration intelligence is handled by electronics which direct a much-simplified (and thus more reliable) valve body via hydroelectric solenoid valves. Under the command of an electronic system, these valves control shift scheduling, line pressure, torque converter clutch operation and shift feel.

Our Baumannator TCS transmission control system provides complete tuneability for the Ford AOD-E/4R70W and E4OD transmissions* and allows them to be retrofitted to all earlier vehicles. If you are considering a transmission upgrade, an electronic unit will probably be the best choice. For more information, please see our Performance Guide.<hr></blockquote>

THE AOD uses a mechanical system to control line pressure and shift points. This is done with the Throttle Valve Cable which controls line pressure (along with the governor) for proper shift points. This is an update from the older vacuum modulator method.

The newer trans (AOD-E) uses control solenoids in the valve body to apply hydraulic pressure and these solenoids are controlled by the PCM (PowerTrain Control Module) which uses input data from several sensors (TPS for one) to control line pressure and shift points. A much better system.
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Old 03-15-2003, 01:18 PM
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Wow! Very interesting what has happened in trans design in the last 20 years.

I just purchased <a href="http://www.actron.com/cgi-bin/web_store.cgi?page=cp9110.htm&cart_id=4099121_2561 5" target="_blank">this scanner</a> for just over $500 CDN including taxes, the cheapest OTC scanner I could find was over $1400. (GULP!) and it didn't do ABS like this one does. It seems to be adequete for for the job, I'm still recovering from the sticker shock mind you. <img src="graemlins/sweat.gif" border="0" alt="[sweat]" />

I have much learning and work ahead of me this weekend, I'm looking forward to testing it out.

One last question if I may Master Yoda...

Is the TV cable adjusted by pressure gauge tap into the trans and cable length adjusted using the scanner? Is there any advantage to changing the pressure readings to improve shifts? <img src="confused.gif" border="0">
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Old 03-15-2003, 01:25 PM
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there isnt a t/v cable on 1994 axod-e(ax4s) transmission.the last unit that had a t/v cable was 1990 axod, the 91 year model was first year of computer control shifted transmission.the sho isnt the one you want to be your first transmission rebuild if thats your plan, trans isnt the hard part, its getting that puppie out of the car. sounds like it has the same trouble most axod-e(ax4s) transmission's do 2nd gear failer. do your home work before you start many good things can be done to improve this transmission start with buying 98 or later core.

[ March 15, 2003: Message edited by: airworld2 ]</p>
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Old 03-15-2003, 03:42 PM
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Yeah 4 Jaw...Your trans is conrolled by solenoids in the valve body. So you don't have to worry about cable adjustment.

Once you build the trans the way you want it;

<a href="http://www.txchange.com/transgo.htm" target="_blank">-Transmission Reprograming Kits-</a>

<a href="http://www.shoforum.com/shiftkit.htm" target="_blank">-Installation of Shift Kit Into AXOD-E SHO-</a>

...and the shift quality is still not what you desire, you can put a chip into the PCM to control the shifts. There are many ways around the shortcomings of this trans. Just do your research and decide how much money you want to put into it.
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