clutch fork slipped off - Pontiac GTO Forum
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-16-2018, 04:05 PM Thread Starter
 
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clutch fork slipped off

Some how I let the clutch fork slip of the pivot ball when I was installing the transmission. Can it be slipped back on the ball without pulling transmission?
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-16-2018, 06:45 PM
 
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Some how I let the clutch fork slip of the pivot ball when I was installing the transmission. Can it be slipped back on the ball without pulling transmission?
Yes, just pull it back into place catching the spring clip over the ball. HOWEVER, it really should have not slipped off. You may have the wrong clutch fork.

There is an aftermarket generic clutch fork that is advertised to fit GM cars - Pontiac, Buick, Olds, Chevy. The opening that looks like a big "C" that slides over the collar on the throw-out bearing is too large and will allow the fork to go to far over the collar and drop off the pivot ball. The impression/dimple did not seem as well formed as the original. I also used an aftermarket adjustable pivot ball and the ball end seemed wider and flatter than the original. I recall I reshaped it for a better fit. And, the arm angle/shape was a little off as well.

If this happens while driving/shifting, you will bust off the throw-out bearing's thin retaining back edge and drop the piece into the spinning pressure plate/clutch. Took out mine this way and luckily it did not grenade and do more damage. We have another member have the busted throw-out bearing because of this. Replaced the fork with an original fork that was in better shape than mine, but later also purchased a new fork specific to Pontiac and matched it up - same as the original.

A factory replacement fork for a Pontiac is available. If you look at the photo, you can see how the opening that slides over the throw-out bearing is smaller and won't allow the fork to slide over the bearing. https://www.opgi.com/gto/G240853/

So if you can push the large "C" opening that goes over the collar of the throw-out bearing past it's center and off, then you have one of those generic forks.
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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-16-2018, 06:57 PM Thread Starter
 
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Stuck clutch?

I aligned every thing up and got someone to work the clutch pedal for me and every thing is working fine. The fingers on the pressure plate are depressed by the throw out bearing. could the clutch be stuck to the fly wheel?. I have tried adjusting the rod both ways with no change in the car lurching when I hit the starter. I put the transmission and clutch back in after sitting out for about 4 months.
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-16-2018, 08:45 PM
 
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I aligned every thing up and got someone to work the clutch pedal for me and every thing is working fine. The fingers on the pressure plate are depressed by the throw out bearing. could the clutch be stuck to the fly wheel?. I have tried adjusting the rod both ways with no change in the car lurching when I hit the starter. I put the transmission and clutch back in after sitting out for about 4 months.
Yes, quite possible it is stuck. Some discs have metal in them and can stick after sitting awhile.

BUT, there are also 3 different length of throw out bearings and a better likelyhood that you have the wrong bearing. It is not uncommon to buy a "kit" and you get a Chevy throw-out bearing which is too short and won't work - clutch disc will not release because the pressure plate fingers are not being pushed far enough down. I bought a McCleod "kit" and it had the wrong bearing and you would think with their reputation they would have gotten it right. Another member had the same experience. I had to go to my local parts store and order the correct one - which of course means pulling down the trans to replace. (Could also be the clutch fork I warned you about as the angle of the fork arm is not correct.)

If you have the correct throw-out bearing, you should be able to have your buddy press the clutch and see some gap, either between the disc/pressure plate or disc/flywheel. You should be able to slip a feeler gauge in between as this is a recommended procedure to set the "air gap" on the disc. If you see no movement or no gap, then you most likely have the wrong bearing.

IF you do have a nice gap between the disc/pressure plate, then the disc is stuck to the flywheel. If you have a nice gap between the disc/flywheel, then the disc is stuck to the pressure plate. So if you have this nice "air gap"on either side, but the disc is stuck to the other side, I might have my buddy hold the clutch pedal down and try slipping a putty knife gently between the stuck surfaces to see if I could free the disc.

Now I have done this technique on an old 1965 Dodge Dart that had been sitting about 10 years. Jack up the rear axle and safely place it up on jack stands. Do this outside, not in your garage. Make sure no one is in front of your car, not anyone else's car, camper, house, tree, etc.. Start the car up in gear letting the tires rotate freely and get up to speed bringing up the RPM's slightly over idle. Push in the clutch and hold it down. Then slam on the brakes hard. The spinning engine against the slamming on of the brakes will force the disc to spin/break free. Your engine may stall if it does not let go right away. Simply repeat a few times. I think I did this about 3 times and the clutch finally broke loose from the flywheel. Problem solved.
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-16-2018, 09:44 PM Thread Starter
 
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Its the same clutch and throw out bearing that was in it before I rebuilt the motor. Every thing was working fine when I took them out. I put the new clutch and throw out bearing in about 6 months before I pulled the engine. I will try putting the rear on jack stands and try it and see what happens.
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-16-2018, 10:11 PM Thread Starter
 
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Also the possibility that I put the clutch in backwards
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-20-2018, 08:27 PM Thread Starter
 
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pilot bearing came apart

I found the problem. The pilot bearing came apart into small pieces. It messed up my clutch and throw out bearing. Has anyone ever had on the break apart like that.
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-20-2018, 10:46 PM
 
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I found the problem. The pilot bearing came apart into small pieces. It messed up my clutch and throw out bearing. Has anyone ever had on the break apart like that.
If you have the small sealed bearing style, it can do that. I prefer the solid bronze bushing just for that reasons, but then others will tell you the bushing is no good as it can wear out and the bearing is better. So it seems it is like many things, personal opinion.

I'd still rather have a bushing get a little sloppy and still work rather than a bearing to come apart and create more problems.
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-21-2018, 01:46 PM Thread Starter
 
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bearing slides in

I got a new pilot bearing from napa but it slips in without having to drive it in place. I can put it in and take it out with my fingers. Is that normal?
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-21-2018, 02:41 PM
 
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I got a new pilot bearing from napa but it slips in without having to drive it in place. I can put it in and take it out with my fingers. Is that normal?
Could be the crank hole is a tad bit distorted/oversized if the previous bearing seized on the input shaft and spun around for a bit. Could be an aftermarket part problems and the sizing is not factory correct, just a bit off - Chinese stuff.

I would want it to have some resistance going in as the input shaft on the trans will go into the center hole and be supported and spin in it. I don't want the bushing to spin inside the crank hole. There is an interference fit and it should take a few wacks to get it in and seated.

I had one bearing that was oversized and was supposed to be correct - but no way it was going to fit. So I rigged up the bearing centered on a drill motor and sanded it down to fit. Worked fine.

You could try another local sourced bushing just to see if they use a different supplier which may give you a slightly larger OD on the bearing or ask your parts guy to pull a couple other bushings and do some measuring if they will let you.

If me, I'd make it work. My thinking is that I want to shim the outside of the bushing with something thin to take up the play and give me a tight snug fit. Th first thing that comes to mind is aluminum foil. LOL I'd wrap a slice of it completely around the outer edge. Leave a little overhang on the back side so that when you insert the bearing, it will go in rather than catch if it were even with the edge. Front side won't matter as you can rip the excess off.

If that seemed to do the trick, I might pull the bearing out again, get another strip of the foil to fit, and use a very light thin coat of JB Weld to go around the bushing and place the foil over that and re-insert - unless I was happy with my initial fit and it took a bit of strength to pull the bearing back out.

There is a lot of play in the bearing on the input shaft on the trans, so the bushing does not have to be 100% perfectly aligned as you would with the later transmissions like the Tremec TKO line of transmissions where alignment of the bellhousing and pilot bushing are a must.

Just my thoughts on this and it may or may not work, but I would eventually come up with a fix that would tighten up the fit of the bushing.

Just make sure you do not damage/squash the center hole that the input shaft goes into when pressing/hammering the bushing into place.
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