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Old 07-06-2020, 10:03 PM   #1
tubman
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Default Determing transmission condition

I am in the process of installing an overdrive transmission in my '51 Ford. I have four transmissions, two '49-'50's and 2 '51's. Because of the differences, I would really like to use one of the '51's. I made a bracket and mounted the first '51 transmission on my engine stand. I removed the side cover, and all the gears and everything look good (even the lube looked decent).

What I am wondering is if there is some way I can determine whether this transmission is in good shape or not (appearances can be deceiving). Specifically can I get into it with some feeler gauges and check the clearances in the gears and synchronizers to determine if it is serviceable or not? Would Van Pelt's book have the information I would need to check this out?

Quite frankly, I am too old and stiff to pull the whole thing apart and do a complete rebuild, especially if it is not necessary.

Any advice would be appreciated.
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Old 07-07-2020, 05:19 AM   #2
flatheadmurre
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Default Re: Determing transmission condition

Synchronizers you can check the gap between them and the gear...thatīs an indication of wear.
Then pull the solenoid and insert a tool that looks like a ball on the end of a rod then you can engage/disengage the overdrive manually and check that it works as itīs suppose to.
You can easily make that tool on your lathe...not critical in size.
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Old 07-09-2020, 12:02 PM   #3
Automotive Stud
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Default Re: Determing transmission condition

If the gears aren't chipped and the teeth on the synchro rings aren't worn, I'd change the oil and run it.
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Old 07-09-2020, 06:34 PM   #4
rotorwrench
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Default Re: Determing transmission condition

I personally would want to look at the planetary gears and the condition of the sliding sun gear. I'd also make sure balk ring is still a snug fit and there is little or no wear in the sliding track of the pawl.

With a regular transmission, a person can get away with flushing and running it but on an old R10 overdrive, I'd want to make sure nothing is bad back there. If you've ever had one lock up while cruising along at 70 MPH, you will understand why I feel that way. It's a lot easier to do now than later. If it's good then all it will cost is the gaskets, a rubber band, and maybe a seal or two.

The Ford Service Manual should have info in the accessories section. I have the Lincoln Mercury Overhaul Manual so that works for me. Mac's book will help in the front section some but if it's a 51 then it may have the late diamond cut gears that are different from the early Ford stuff.

Last edited by rotorwrench; 07-09-2020 at 06:39 PM.
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Old 07-12-2020, 10:35 PM   #5
Dodge
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Default Re: Determing transmission condition

Van Pelts book is great and should have the information you need. There are places to
check with feeler gauges. Most of the rest is visual.
Buy the book and if you need more help Van Pelt himself is very phone friendly. He is
also a good source for any parts you may need.
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Old 07-13-2020, 07:44 AM   #6
Tim Ayers
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Default Re: Determing transmission condition

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dodge View Post
Van Pelts book is great and should have the information you need. There are places to
check with feeler gauges. Most of the rest is visual.
Buy the book and if you need more help Van Pelt himself is very phone friendly. He is
also a good source for any parts you may need.
I don't believe Mac's book covers these transmissions. Different that the top loader three speeds in early V8's
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