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Old 08-18-2004, 09:56 AM
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Flathead Clutch Problems

Hi Guys

Here it is.... I have a 8BA flathead with a 10" clutch which has been re-lined all this is surrounded with a 32 toploader which has come from a Canadian truck...

Here starts the fun...I originaly took the box off the car as I couldnt get the clutch to unbite and so couldnt select a gear due to the grinding. I naturaly thought the clutch plate was stuck to the flywheel or pressure plate. When I took it apart the clutch plate just fell out. On inspection the plate was down to the rivets so I had it religned.

I have now put the whole thing back together again and I have the same damn problem. I jacked the back of the rod up and Selected 1st....CRUNCH.... the gear is selected, but even with my foot to the floor with the clutch she is still engaged. when I pull on the brakes the car slows and then stalls. I have adjusted the pedal to the max but still no joy. Is there a quick fix or am I going to have to remove everything and take the clutch plate out and skim it on the laithe a couple of mm?.

Before you state the obvious... I know the set up I have should have a 9" clutch but as the car came with all these bits already put together I had no reason to think it wasn't going to work when I got it running and although a 10" set up is unusual it was still used on most trucks.

I am at my whits end now and have missed the whole show season over here. so any help would be great.

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Old 08-18-2004, 10:12 PM
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Can you

Do this?
Raise all four wheels off the ground.
Remove any access cover to the clutch.
Have an assistant depress the clutch pedal.
With the pedal depressed can you turn the clutch plate with the end of a screw driver?
Does there appear to be any clearance at all with the pedal depressed?
Perhaps the pilot bushing in the back of the crank is too tight or the input shaft is too long.
If either of those problems exist it could give what you are experiencing.
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Old 08-20-2004, 06:08 AM
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Sounds like it's not fully disengaging, and the re-lined plate gave it more to hold on to.

Did you happen to inspect everything when you had it all apart to have the plate re-lined? And if so, what did you find.

Like stu said, see if you can get a view on what's going on before you pull it apart- you could oversee a problem if you don't.

Also to be considered is if the pressure plate is even able to allow full disengagement of the clutch plate, if it comes down to removing the whole thing again you may run into whole new problems trying to get an assembly that functions properly without fully fabricating one from scratch.
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Old 08-20-2004, 07:37 PM
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It's been a long time since I messed with that old stuff. I was ready to tell you that grinding going into first gear on those old trannys is normal because they are not synchronized, but after further reading, it's obvious the clutch is not releasing. The two things that come to mind is the throw out bearing/release fork is not installed correctly or the fork pivot point is not installed correctly. Is there any way you can get some pics of your pressure plate etc. It seems there were two types, one with three fingers with adjustable tabs to contact the throw out bearing and one with a multitude of flex fingers that did the same thing. You had to have the correct matching hard ware for them to work properly. Again it has been a long time, but I do have some old literature to reference.

Trees
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Old 08-21-2004, 04:55 AM
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Well thanks guys...this is where I stand at the moment...

The pressure plate is of the 3 fingered type...The fork and thrust bearing are both fine and when depressed push the preasure plate in.
The pressure plate was definately original but to what I am not sure. I presume the engine as the flywheel is definately set for a 10" clutch plate. the fingers on the pressure plate have what looks like a hammer head on the outside of the pressure plate fingers which at some time have been modified so they dont bash on the gearbox housing. I cant seem to get a good look inside but It seems that now the pedal is at its maximum adjustment that the thrust bearing is permanently against the pressure plate finger adjusters.
When I put my foot on the pedal and I watch it through the little inspection hole the thrust bearing goes in and when I am within the last 2" of pedal the thrust bearing doesnt go any further in.
I have the back of the car off the ground and when she is running I put her into any gear with a crunch and with my foot to the floor on the clutch pedal I pull the hand brake on and the clutch is still on. The car just stalls.
I inspected all the parts when they came off the car but apart from some rust and a worn plate everything seemed fine.
I was told the engine and gearbox were a runner at some point so I have no reason to think it is a case of the wrong bits stopping it working.
Which brings me back to the clutch plate again. could it just be too thick???
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Old 08-21-2004, 05:07 AM
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did the clutch disc move free on the gear box shaft? i would say the imput shaft is jamming on the flywheel so itis not freeing the clutch fully
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Old 08-21-2004, 07:23 AM
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I would say that the car 'always' had this inherited problem, because that was the reason why you took it apart in the first place., to fix the crunch!!! You have a mis-match of parts there, either the imput shaft is too fat for the clutch plate / pressure plate to slide on; or the 10 clutch is rubbing the pressure plate housing; or the thrust bearing has a burr. Through the inspection hole, you say, you can see the clutch moving and you have two inches left of pedal and no action is happening, tells you the one of the above ior all is the problem. At an rate you have to fo back in and take it all apart and look for marks and wear indicators on the parts. When you put it pack together cover the imput shaft, clutch center, pressure plate fingers and center, thrust bearing with Dikem, machinist ink stain, so that you can visually see the contact points when you re-remove it. It is hard to work with unknown parts, so you may have to go back to the guy you bought the car from to see what he used. Enclosing drawing of clutch assembly, for your edification.
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Old 08-21-2004, 08:07 AM
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oh boy

It's been a long time since I've seen one of those.
Ah the good old days.
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Old 08-21-2004, 09:59 AM
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Check the input shaft support, it's probably too long, you can shorten it if needed.
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Old 08-22-2004, 07:39 PM
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I read this thru again. Have you checked to make sure the clutch disc is not installed backwards? Been there, done that and it behaves about like what you have described! I also did some research. The older truck had a 9 3/4 inch clutch disc and each disc lining new was .140 inches thick The newly faced disc should be near 3/8 inches thick. Your pressure plate should be 10 inches diameter. If you are still unable to get the clutch pedal all the way to the floor, check and make sure the lever is not hitting an obstruction such as poorly routed battery cable. I just recently did some clutch adjustment on a 36 Ford that I had helped a friend assemble after restoration. I was not involved in the clutch rebuild, but it need extensive adjustment to get it correct.. By the way, you need to make sure you have about 1 inch free clutch travel before the throw out bearing contacts the pressure plate forks. This to ensure the throw out bearing is not continually spinning when the clutch is released.

I'll keep looking in our library of service books for more information.

Trees
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