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Old 10-29-2002, 11:49 AM
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Exclamation TH-350 problems

About a week ago I decide to do an oil change on the car i just bought, a 72 chevelle malibu. While i was underneath, i decided that i might as well change the tranny fluid. It came out black with gray scummy stuff on top. It definately had some metal chips in it. I drained the transmission and refilled it but now its grinding during gear changes. The only way i can get around the grinding is if i manually shift it and really rev it out btween gears. Im only 18 and im trying to put myself thru school while fixin up my car and im kida hopin i can find some cheap way to fix this problem----

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Old 10-29-2002, 02:24 PM
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The gray gummy stuff was the clutch lining which is completely worn off your clutch disks. The metal shavings are from the clutch disks running metal-to-metal without lining. The grinding is the sound of the clutches engaging without composition lining. The reason you don't hear the problem during power shifts is that you raise the transmission oil pressure high enough that the clutches are engaging very fast and don't have a chance to grind. Finally, if you continue to drive the car in this condition very much farther, the transmission will be totally trashed, if it is not already. Your only option is a total major rebuild (not out of the question for a do-it-yourselfer. I have successfully done many auto transmissions and am totally self trained, or a rebuilt unit from the trans shop.

[ October 29, 2002: Message edited by: willys36@aol.com ]</p>
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Old 10-29-2002, 08:35 PM
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yea willys36 is right. My brother had the same problem in his 74 camaro after he did a netural drop at 4000 RPM. Needless to say i would try not to drive it to much beacuse you might loose reverse soon.
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Old 10-30-2002, 06:12 PM
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I am glad to hear that an inexperienced do it your selfer can rebuild an automatic transmission. I have always been afraid to tackle this job. Where do you buy the re-buid kits for the automatic transmissions. The parts house I normally buy from does not carry them.
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Old 10-30-2002, 09:12 PM
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I get my kits by mail order from Summit or Jegs. Auto trans are the best kept secret as far as something that is fairly easy to work on. The really complicated part of the trans is the valve body but there is no reason to ever go into it so the rest is a piece of cake. Just get a good step by step manual with pictures to keep all the parts in order and it is really quite an enjoyable experience.
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Old 11-01-2002, 02:13 PM
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Cool

I am about to rebuild my first TH350 tranny and am really looking forward to it. I bought the book Turbo-Hydramatic 350 Handbook by Ron Sessions and so far it is really informative and easy to read. I haven't bought a rebuild kit so was wondering if someone can give me a suggestion on that. I need everything. From valve body kit to modulator. Let you know how it goes.
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Old 11-01-2002, 02:44 PM
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hi,my name is bob & i am a transmission mechanic with about 36 years experience.if you run into truble i will help you out.first you must understand you must work clean.you need a gasket & seal kit with oil control rings.you will need a full set of friction clutches,if the steel plates are not worped or destroyed you can sand them with 120 emery paper & reuse them.i suggest you tear the trans down first & see what you really need & how much it will cost before you get too carried away.you might get some parts prices from a fiew trans shops on the parts once we know what you require.i will try to help you. bob
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Old 11-01-2002, 04:48 PM
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MJ2ndbase,
I gotta agree with bobthetran, I've been building transmissions since 1975, and the clean ones usually work, and the ones that get wiped down with a greasy rag on a gravel driveway don't. Talk to the guy who owns your local trans shop, and see if he'll sell you the parts you need once you get it apart (offer cash). If you hook up with the right guy, he might throw you a few tips, or drive in some new bushings for you. Probably save you some headaches too, if you can find a willing tutor. The THM350 shouldn't be too much of a stretch for someone with good mechanical skills, and a decent manual. Good luck with it.
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Old 11-01-2002, 07:29 PM
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i'll add an amature's endorsement to the above expert opinions. I have done neary a dozen auto trans major rebuilds and everyone is still on the road. Don't get scared off by the long list of special tools the books say you need. They are probably indispensable to the pro who needs to kick out 6 or 8 units a day but for the amature, you can find substitutes for every one of them in your tool box. Work clean as they say but once you tear into it, you will naturally work clean in respect for the beautiful craftsmanship they use in manufacturing these machines. They are gorgeous inside! Go for it. The biggest problem you will face is keeping the parts in order but the book will solve that one for you so you won't have any trouble.
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Old 11-01-2002, 07:39 PM
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Willys36,
The only guys I know that turn out 6 or 8 units a day either got burned out, or got run outta the business! :-) Gotta agree with you on marveling at the expert machine work in most of todays transmissions, I wish I had that skill.
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Old 11-02-2002, 12:46 PM
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Hey what do you guys recommend for installing new bushings. Can you rent drivers because those things are really expensive. Or is it best to have someone else do it. That seems to be the hardest part about rebuilding a tranny.
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