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Old 05-17-2018, 11:05 PM   #1
RB_Nielsen
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Default Transmission locked up - FIXED!

I dropped off our '31 coupe at an auto-body shop located a 90 min drive away to get the fenders, etc. repainted. Just as they were putting the repainted items back on the car, they discovered that the transmission had locked up.

After walking them through the simple process of taking off the tranny cover in order to re-align the gears, they were stopped cold unable to separate the cover from the case. So next thought I suggested was to jack up one rear wheel, then press down the clutch in order to relieve any built up strain, which they tried, also to no avail. The cover remains stuck on the case. My last question to them was to ask whether the cover moved at all - thinking the problem might be one of permatex holding the two parts together. They reported that the cover moves about 1/4 inch back/forth when trying get it off.

I'm starting to run out of ideas primarily because of the simplicity of the tranny's construction, and trying to figure out what in blazes could possibly prevent the cover from straightway coming off.

I'm keenly looking for some higher, more knowledgeable help/suggestions. Thanks in advance for sending ANY enlightenment my way

RB

Last edited by RB_Nielsen; 05-26-2018 at 06:12 AM. Reason: to note this problem was fixed
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Old 05-18-2018, 06:07 AM   #2
Tom Wesenberg
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Default Re: Transmission locked up

If either shift fork is in 1st or 3rd gear, then the shift rail shaft is forward and engaged in the bellhousing hole.
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Old 05-18-2018, 06:39 AM   #3
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Default Re: Transmission locked up

Did not think of that (duh,,,, smacks forehead) of course! So. when the shifter is stuck/cannot be moved what is the next step towards freeing things up?
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Old 05-18-2018, 08:31 AM   #4
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Default Re: Transmission locked up

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Originally Posted by RB_Nielsen View Post
Did not think of that (duh,,,, smacks forehead) of course! So. when the shifter is stuck/cannot be moved what is the next step towards freeing things up?
only thing i can think of is jack up one wheel and rock it back n forth as someone else trys to get it out of 1st or 3rd...

also how does a trans just lock up sitting there?
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Old 05-18-2018, 08:51 AM   #5
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Default Re: Transmission locked up

I do not think it happened just sitting there,some how they jammed the trans,they will never admit it.
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Old 05-18-2018, 09:43 AM   #6
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Default Re: Transmission locked up

Here is my post from last month:

Might relate to this problem! If this happened to your transmission it might cause your lock up problem.


Old 04-20-2018, 08:37 AM #13
Benson


A few years ago there were some REPRO shift levers that were made in two pieces and screwed and threaded together.

Some of them came apart into two halves or loosened up so lever "flopped around" and the lower 1/2 of lever did not move forks very far.

I do not remember whether they came unscrewed or if female end split and the shaft came apart.


In any case, the steel looks flimsy to me ... because it it threaded together.

Last edited by Benson; 05-18-2018 at 01:12 PM.
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Old 05-18-2018, 10:04 AM   #7
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Default Re: Transmission locked up

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Originally Posted by rocket1 View Post
I do not think it happened just sitting there,some how they jammed the trans,they will never admit it.
Probably didnít know the difference between the gear stick and hand brake. Donít laugh, Iíve seen it done.
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Old 05-18-2018, 12:50 PM   #8
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Default Re: Transmission locked up

A club member got in touch with me, and explained how he solved this problem that involves use of a rubber-head mallet. He started by explaining the shifter is wedged up, and the only way to "undo" it is to hammer on the tower from all directions until it frees up enough for the cover to be taken off the case. When you think about it, this approach does make some sense since there is no other way including removing the whole transmission. After getting it out using that approach, the thing is still going to be stuck. My autobody friend is going to load it onto his trailer using a couple wheel dollys so I can at least tow it home to work on further. At least, now, I have a good sense of what I am up against, and some experienced club members who have dealt with this kind of problem before. More later....
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Old 05-18-2018, 03:04 PM   #9
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Default Re: Transmission locked up

I know they said that they tried to push it with the clutch in, but if they got a little mixed up, it may be your engine is stuck on the starter pinion. If the engine will not turn in any way, have them put it in third and push it backwards to break it loose. Happens all the time.
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Old 05-18-2018, 03:59 PM   #10
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Default Re: Transmission locked up

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Originally Posted by Jacksonlll View Post
I know they said that they tried to push it with the clutch in, but if they got a little mixed up, it may be your engine is stuck on the starter pinion. If the engine will not turn in any way, have them put it in third and push it backwards to break it loose. Happens all the time.
If the starter pinion is causing the problem they should still be able to remove the shift tower, shouldn't they?
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Old 05-19-2018, 12:13 AM   #11
Tom Wesenberg
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Default Re: Transmission locked up

Does the shift lever move in any direction?
Does it feel like it's still in one of the fork notches?
If not, can you lift it up and stick it back into the notch?
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Old 05-26-2018, 06:56 AM   #12
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Default Re: Transmission locked up

To reiterate: my transmission somehow slipped into two gears at once thus locking up the whole drive train. The shift-lever rod also slipped out of its position, and was lodged against the tower making it totally immovable. Finally, one of the shift-fork shafts/rods had been pushed into the bell housing. Not only were the gears locked up but getting the tower lid off was locked up as well. This was a genuine Chinese puzzle.


When looking at the top of the transmission it appears there is hardly any room to move the tower because of the universal joint housing - there's maybe 1/4" (or less) movement. With a shift-fork shaft/rod pushed into the bell housing, the tower lid appears completely encased but there's a secret to getting it free. Simply put there is enough clearance in the bell housing hole to allow raising the rear of the tower lid so it clears the universal case making it possible to slide it back far enough to come free. The clearances are tight, and lifting the tower too high will bind the shift-fork shaft/rod, and not lifting high enough will bind against the universal joint housing. Once the right angle is achieved, however, the tower lid easily slides back using a screw driver to gently move it back. Easy as pie, and takes just seconds to find the sweet spot and free up the tower lid.


My thanks to larry40 for his two-sentence description of how to get out of this very nasty problem. As to how things got so messed up I have no idea at all.
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Old 05-26-2018, 08:24 AM   #13
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Default Re: Transmission locked up

Thanks for the update, good to hear that you got it sorted out.
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Old 05-26-2018, 11:33 AM   #14
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Default Re: Transmission locked up

I would now take a good look at the transmission to determine the true cause of this happening. There is definantly a reason that should be addressed before it happens somewhere out on the road or while going at speed. Look at everything especially the tower and its components.
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Old 05-26-2018, 02:49 PM   #15
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Default Re: Transmission locked up

If the shifter ball, on the shifter shaft, has flat spots on side or is worn smaller than 1/2 inch diameter (is it 1/2 inch or ? ) overall it can slip out of notches in shifter forks.

Last edited by Benson; 05-26-2018 at 03:02 PM.
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