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Old 11-06-2006, 09:37 PM
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ford toploader noise

hello all,

I have an interesting noise comming from my transmission. it's a 77 4spd toploader or toploader imposter if you will. it's the one with overdrive. I just got it installed and it's making a noise. it's some sort of grinding noise. the only time I don't hear the noise is when I put the clutch in. even if I put the trans in nutruel and let the clutch out I still hear the noise. the car does move but the noise is veary loud, the more gas I give it the louder the noise. any idea on what this is.


thanks
mustang302
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Old 11-06-2006, 09:50 PM
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Input shaft bearing is on its way out. It will eventually destroy some gears if you don't deal with it.
I'm not 100% sure, but I do not think you can change that bearing without dropping the countershaft.

Mikey
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Old 11-06-2006, 11:15 PM
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is there a way to tell if it's just the inputshaft bearing and not the rear one as well. can I replace just that one bearing or is it best to just get a rebuild kit. I have never rebuilt a transmission, how hard is it to rebuild the ford toploader.

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mustang302
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Old 11-06-2006, 11:36 PM
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The rear bearing won't make noise in neutral with the clutch out. Usually the front bearing is slightly further along than the rear.

How hard is it?
I rebuilt the toploader in my 69 on my living room table when I was 20 years old. All I had was this old book called "Fix your Ford" by Bill Toboldt with 1 exploded view picture and 1 page of text. My diet at that time was mostly beer and special brownies, so you know I was not a "super intellectual".

I made a short dummy countershaft out of a broomstick so I could install the countershaft gear. From the local ford dealer I got a bearing set with all the little needle bearings, a blocking ring set and some circlips. I should have spent the extra 5 bucks for the springs that go behind the locks that grab the blocking rings, it would have made it shift better. But I didn't and it worked anyway.

All the tools I had at that time could fit in a toolbox I could carry with one hand. (you don't need a giant tool collection)

That should indicate the sophistication of a ford toploader.

In other words, if you can feed yourself, you have what it takes.

You could spend a bunch of time trying to get it perfect, with micrometers and dial indicators and collections of oversize bearings and end play shims and stuff, but even after all that, it will still be a toploader. Slam a new set of bearings and small parts kit in it and run it for another 150000 miles.

Use that redline gear oil in it. I know it makes loose trannies sweeeeet.

Hope this helps, mikey
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Old 11-07-2006, 07:56 AM
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ford toploader noise

I like that broomstick deal,really, that's pretty slick.

More than likely it is the front bearing,but here are some other considerations.

With engine running,foot off clutch,the input shaft is turning,push clutch in and noise goes away,shaft stops turning,suspect input shaft bearing.

Drive the vehicle,noise in 1st,2nd,3rd,but noise goes away in 4th,suspect input bearing.The load is on input bearing until you shift to 4th,then the load is on rear mainshaft bearing.

If you have a 5 speed and you have a bad input bearing,you may have no noise in 4th but noise returns in 5th.Because in most 5 speeds power goes back thru the cluster,thus load returns to input bearing.

However, under these conditions I've described noise can also come from the bearings located on the inside of the input shaft where the output mainshaft fits into.This usually means the output shaft is bad[pitted]and the input shaft,and shaft bearings will be bad as well,so you have to check.

More obvious is a bad wear pattern on maindrive[inputshaft]where it meshes with cluster,that's expensive.Hope this helps.
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Old 11-08-2006, 01:00 AM
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If it's an o/d toploader then 3rd is direct so a bad input bearing (or cluster needle rollers) would make it noisey in 1st,2nd & 4th, quiet in 3rd.
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Old 11-08-2006, 05:24 AM
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transmission

If it's the SROD (single rail overdrive ) you need to be real careful when you take it apart... There are some suprises inside, not like the old top loaders...

The biggest thing to look for is the dogs under the slider. The 1st and second gear dogs are .060" longer then the 3rd/od dogs. If you get them mixed up the trans will not shift into 2 or 3 gear.....


Keith
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Old 11-08-2006, 05:16 PM
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allright, the transmission is out. I took the top cover off and the front cover that goes over the input shaft. I noticed the input shaft is loose. I can crab it and move it up and down alitle. when I do that I can see the out put shaft moving alitle but not as much as the input shaft. the movment seems to suddnely get less right where the front syncro's are. not sure if that's the cluster or not. if I am not making any sence just let me know. any ways so could that still be the bearings or is the input shaft or another shaft warn down. I am trying to figure out just wht is wrong with the trans before I buy a rebuild kit. I have searched for a site that has an article on rebuilding toploaders and can't find any. do any of you know of one, I have no idea how to tear the transmission down any further then it is allready.


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Mustang302
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Old 11-08-2006, 05:17 PM
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I forgot to ask, how do I tell if it's an SROD or not?


Thanks
Mustang302
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Old 11-08-2006, 05:58 PM
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If the shifter is bolted to the side of tail housing
with rods going to the shift levers on the side,
it ain't an SROD.

K
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Old 11-08-2006, 06:06 PM
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First to answer the SROD question. It will have an internal shift mechanism instead of an external one... Single Rail Over Drive,SROD. I wish I had seen this before, because I think your throw out bearing was making the noise, the fact that it disappears when you depress the clutch, leans toward it. The input shaft will move some without the pilot bearing in the crank supporting the end, that's why a clutch will chatter when they go bad.. the input shaft is moving around and causing the plate to do the same.. which equals chatter. One other thing, because you referred to it as a Top Loader.. unlike a Top Loader they use ATF instead of gear oil. If it has been filled with gear oil the bearings won't get proper lubrication. I mention it because you didn't comment on the type of oil in it. From your experience(perceived) I would have thought seeing ATF in it would have made you comment.
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Old 11-08-2006, 06:17 PM
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My chiltons repair manual has a nice blow up view of both types transmission and the text to teardown and reassemble. You can pick them up at any parts store.

IIRC another difference is the SROD is aluminum and the old school toploader w/OD is iron.

Where in calif are you?

Mikey
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Old 11-08-2006, 06:32 PM
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I did not know they use ATF, I baught this transmission to put in my 66 because I wanted to get rid of the C4, and I just put 90 weight in it. I have plenty of ATF so I will use that. does it have to be a certin type of ATF. I have the type F for old fords. well I am glad to here that the input shaft bearing is supposed to move. now how can I determine if it's the relese bearing or the actual transmission. I should of been more patient before I took the trans out. and tried shifting in all gears to see if the noise goes away. the relese bearing is new but if I have learned anything it's that new parts don't always work.

and if it's not a toploader then what is it. the guy I baught it from just keept calling it that. I don't want there to be anymore confusion next time I need to do something to the trans.


Thanks for your help so far guys, I really apreciate it.
Mustang302
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Old 11-08-2006, 06:35 PM
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Is it an SROD or an iron case? The iron case one uses 90 wt..
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Old 11-08-2006, 09:05 PM
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I don't recall them making an O/D Top Loader as was suggested by one of the posts. If it's a Top Loader it isn't O/D. The term Top Loader would apply to it because it is basically a redesigned one. If it is an internal shift rail, it would be aluminum, I haven't seen an iron case SROD. When ordering parts for it though, you need to make sure that you refer to it as an SROD. They came in late 70s/early80s trucks and early 80s Mustangs with 302s. The throw out bearing may not be defective, it may just have been dragging slightly on the pressure plate.If it went away when it was depressed, I would venture it is good, adjustment was probably off. A mismatch pressure plate and throwout could also have that effect. Now days mercron is used, but I think at that time it would have been Type F. I would verify that with a shop manual for an '82 5.0 Mustang( I know it came in that). If you were using the heavier oil, that alone could have created the noise as the oil passages/ bearings aren't set up for that lube.
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