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Old 08-30-2004, 09:58 PM
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manual trans problems


My Isuzu amigos transmission is getting worse. I can not longer shift it into first with out first shifting it into 2nd, or unless I hold it into first and grind it a bit. Other problem is that it will stick in a gear and not let go of the gear when I try to shift. This has stalled me out a few times and when I put it in neutral and try to restart the car it just grinds. I pump the clutch a bit and put it from a gear into neutral again and it will start.

Any clues? I'm guessing something about a syncro and the slave cylinder. Am I even close? Yes it has had these problems for awhile, but it only seems to get worse. No clutch fluid leaks.

I hate manuals!


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Old 08-31-2004, 04:57 AM
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Sounds to me like you have a hydraulic clutch problem. Either your clutch master cylinder or the slave cylinder (at the clutch) is going south. The fact that you can pump it and shift is a key. You might be lucky enough to just bleed it and get away with that.

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Old 08-31-2004, 05:25 AM Moderator

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I would say it's a clutch related problem for sure... Does it grind going into reverse?????? Usually thats the first sign....

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Old 08-31-2004, 12:57 PM
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Depends, it grinds going into every gear once and awhile. The rear main seal has been leaking for awhile now, would this help cause the problem? Also never have changed the clutch fluid on this car.

The main problem is stalling out and getting stuck in a gear and not being able to put in into neutral to restart it. If I put it into neutral(or I think it's in neutral) and turn the key, all it does is grind like it's still in a gear.

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Old 09-02-2004, 03:24 AM
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Okay, I'll give a few pointers that may be relevant to your case. Without being there and just going by your descriptions, I'd say the problem's in the box. Specially as it still won't shift with ease with engine off - is that what you meant? From my experience, I feel that your gearbox may suffering from hydraulic locking in the shift rail detent mechanisms or even in the synchros. The oil may be too thick or even overfull. Try draining the gearbox and see if it improves. You can even safely road test the car with no oil in the gearbox as it may take a while for the oil to leave the cavities. If it improves, I'd refill the gearbox with a 50/50 blend of gear oil and trans fluid. Speeds up synchros too. My auntie got me to check out her 4 speed Jap car once, as it was impossible at times to shift out of or into gears - with the engine off too! I took it to work and removed the filler plug to check the oil. To my shock, about 2 and a 1/2 pints of oil just poured out of the filler hole. When queried, my auntie said that her friend's son was playing back yard mechanics, as you do, and serviced cars to make a few dollars. He unbolted the shifter assembly from the top of the gearbox and filled it up to the brim.
Now with the oil level at the correct height the gearbox shifted sweetly like a bought one.
6 months later auntie rings again. Same thing, gearbox hard to shift. This time, the plastic bush/cup on the end of the shifter had broken up. A new bush cost $5.00 dollars and was fitted with ease. My auntie asked, with one squinting eye "was that the cause for the first gearbox fault?" Some people!
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Old 09-02-2004, 10:11 PM
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How many miles are on the tranny now? I rebuild manual transmissions for a living so I know a bit about them

It could be either the clutch or the transmission from your description. To rule out the clutch, does it grind going into every gear or certain gears are worse then others? Each gear has its own synchronizer blocker ring which acts as a brake to slow or speed up the gear its sychronizing. They wear with use and eventually bottom out so they spin freely, in which case it will grind when you try to put it in that gear. As for the sticking in gear, the shift forks are most likely worn. Does it only stick in gear when shifting from 2nd-3rd or 4th-5th, but not 1st-2nd or 3rd-4th?

Also as far as putting in a heavier gear lube, it generally does more harm then good. It sometimes will quiet the grinding into gear depending on how bad the blocker rings are worn, but only because it causes more friction and also more HEAT. And then it wont be long before the bearings start to go.
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