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Discussion Starter #1
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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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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Discussion Starter #3
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.

Thanks
mustang302
 

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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. :thumbup:

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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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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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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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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Discussion Starter #8
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.


Thanks
Mustang302
 

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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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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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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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Discussion Starter #13
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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Is it an SROD or an iron case? The iron case one uses 90 wt..
 

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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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Discussion Starter #16
ok it is not an SROD. it is an iron case trans. the shifter is mounted on the tail shaft and has the shift rods going to the side of the main case. ford did make an overdrive unit from 77 to 78, they were put in the granada's and so forth. I believe they were called the toploader imposter. because it still has the 10 bolt plate on top of the trans. if I have the correct information they reversed 4th gear (or something to that effect) to make it an overdrive unit. as for my pressure plate. I have the big bell and flywheel set up. the flywheel how ever is drilled for several clutch patterns. the one I have on there now is the 10 inch, witch I belive was stock for the 66 mustangs. the pressure plate is the long style with three prongs in the midle of it. it is not the diaphragm style plate. so could that be the difference. I got the flywheel, pressure plate and clutch from the same guy I buaght the trans from. I baught the throw out bearing from kragens,(I know I know) but they were the only one who had a throw out bearing, so first of all is there a difference in the throw out bearing from the long style pressure plate and the diaphragm pressure plate. if so how can I tell witch one I have or if the one I do have is defective. and I take it there is no way to tell if the bearings are good or not with the trans out of the car.


Thanks
mustang302
 

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The Granada trans you refer to is the SROD, other than being aluminum and having the internal shifter it is a Top Loader and uses a lot of the same gaskets,etc. Now that you know you have a Top Loader, the parts you need are off the shelf Mustang parts. I think 67 was the first year for use in the Mustang, they used Borg Warners earlier. If you have a throw out for that application it is the correct one. The 3 finger pressure plate is called the Long style and was used by Ford up until they went to the later trans. So there should be no problem with making sure the parts are correct. I mentioned it earlier, because you were thinking it was an SROD and I didn't know what parts you had purchased for which vehicle. The clutch parts for the earlier ones are pretty standard for many years. I think there may have been 2 diameter cluches and that would be dictated by the flywheel and pressure plate. An SROD will bolt up to an early bellhousing so it was very possible that you had put an SROD in it,I have done a few swaps like that, although they were mild motors because of the weaker strength of the SROD over the old style Top Loader. If the tag is still on it, that will tell you exactly what it came in and what (close or wide ratio) trans it is.
 

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woodz428 said:
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. QUOTE]

woodz428...I respectfully submit this info :)

mustang302 is correct

I have 2 different chiltons manual that shows a cast iron toploader with an OD as well as the SROD type. (that is what it says in the chiltons manual, anyway)

77 granada as well as some others had them. The SROD is a borg warner brand while the toploader is a ford design. They put the SROD in the 74 up mustangs, while the rancheros and granadas etc got the iron toploader with O/D.


mustang302, I really don't think that the clutch release bearing is the culprit of your noise, now that you have the trans out you can replace it just to be sure if you want to. If it was new I would run it.

Did your trans shift? Did it stay in gear? If so, you can probably just replace the input bearing and the rollers in the front of the mainshaft and run it for some time. If you want to go through the whole trans you could do that too.

That OD trans is no different in its basic construction than a mid sixties 4 speed toploader.

I'll bet kultulz has some pics of this trans also.

Later, mikey
 

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Here is a cool link with some info on that trans. :)

http://www.5speeds.com/toploader.html

scroll down the page a little when you get there.
Look for where it says...
in passenger cars from 1977 to 78 the toploader was offered with an overdrive fourth gear......
Later,
Mikey.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
I have not had this trans is third or fourth, but in first and second it stay'd in gear and it shifts from 1st to 2nd great. I think I will just replace the front bearing and the rollers on the main shaft. looks like I am going to buy another chiltons manual. I have one but it doesn't have any info on tearing a transmission down. I am hoping to find the bearing and the rollers here in town, I don't want to order them but if I must does any one know where I can do so. I know toploader heaven has kits for the 77 78 over drive units but I don't think they sell individual parts.

o and I completely forgot to answer the question as to where I am at. I am in Modesto CA, about 1 hour away from fremont (witch is right in the midle of the bay area) and about 30 minutes away from livermore CA.


thanks guys I really apreciate the help, and you can be sure I will post more questions if they come up during the parts replacements.


Mustang302
 
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