Manual Tranny Prob: Not Good - Pontiac GTO Forum
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post #1 of 25 (permalink) Old 06-10-2005, 11:14 PM Thread Starter
 
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Manual Tranny Prob: Not Good

I was cruising along at ~85-90 with a 350Z on the 5 freeway on the Valley Floor about 8 miles south of Bakersfield, almost home from mt 115 mile commute, dodging the slower traffic and listening to music blasting. I glance behind me to see how the slow people live when I notice smoke...it took me a second, but I quickly surmised it was behind- coming from my car!

WTF?

I turned the radio off and glanced to the temp guage...which reported OK...WTF is that grinding sound?

I pop it out of gear, and the sound stopped. A stab at the accelerator confirmed that the engine was not the problem- it's the transmission.

OK...sh1t.

Still at least 5 miles from town, I back way off and put the car into 6th. The grinding noise continued, slowly starting to subside. Luckily, the dealership is on the south side of town just off the freeway, so I decide to limp her to the the dealership.

Getting off the freeway, the nasty sounds had almost fully subsided. I pulled into the closed service department (it was 8:15pm), and spotting a parking spot, tried to put her into reverse.

No joy. No reverse.

So, I pull on forward and found another spot.

I climb under the car...a small pool of gearcase fluid is forming under the bell housing...dripping pretty steadily.

Double sh1t.

I had installed a B&M shifter just last weekend. I was very careful to put plenty of RTV sealant on the base and to torque the bolts where they felt "right." These were instructions that did NOT give torque values nor did they instruct to Loctite the base / tranny cating attach bolts-- those instructions came out on Monday.

I have a feeling that I may have a serious non-warranty issue on my hands.

Tranny gurus-- do you think I've toasted my transmission?
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post #2 of 25 (permalink) Old 06-11-2005, 08:09 AM
 
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Sent ya a PM. Please keep us posted on what's happening -- as I've got the same unit in my car...
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post #3 of 25 (permalink) Old 06-11-2005, 11:25 AM
 
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My roommate, a CTS-V owner, is the Service Mgr for a major dealership here in SoFl, I showed him your post and his initial reaction was that the shifter install is the culprit. I would call B&M Racing and chew on them some for not including complete instructions with the kit. The shifter is responsible for how the forks inside the case move the gear sets and how much force they exert on them. What could have happened is that the gears were being held too tightly together causing excess friction thus heat. 6th is a 2:1 overdrive so the stress on this cog is greater than any of the other. The oil likely boiled, thus the foaming leak. If during tear down the gears or shafts are "blued" then metal was super heated and cooked the oil breaking it down and making it useless. I was a jet mech in the Corps for almost 2 decades. Oil is the life blood of anything the spins and heat is deadly to it. Good luck bro, hope it's a fluke failure.
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post #4 of 25 (permalink) Old 06-11-2005, 11:30 AM Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by ftlfirefighter
My roommate, a CTS-V owner, is the Service Mgr for a major dealership here in SoFl, I showed him your post and his initial reaction was that the shifter install is the culprit. I would call B&M Racing and chew on them some for not including complete instructions with the kit. The shifter is responsible for how the forks inside the case move the gear sets and how much force they exert on them. What could have happened is that the gears were being held too tightly together causing excess friction thus heat. 6th is a 2:1 overdrive so the stress on this cog is greater than any of the other. The oil likely boiled, thus the foaming leak. If during tear down the gears or shafts are "blued" then metal was super heated and cooked the oil breaking it down and making it useless. I was a jet mech in the Corps for almost 2 decades. Oil is the life blood of anything the spins and heat is deadly to it. Good luck bro, hope it's a fluke failure.
Ouch.

There goes my "Too much oil was coming out-- it couldn't be the shifter" theory...
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post #5 of 25 (permalink) Old 06-11-2005, 02:43 PM Thread Starter
 
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Went by the dealership today...the service dept was closed, but I had to pick up a rental car anyway.

My buddy Richard, the guy who sold me the car, was there. He's a good guy, a real gearhead and a long-time tuner type who deals with aftermarket stuff a lot. Anyway, he's pretty confident that it's a warranty issue. We looked at the car in the light of day-- there is gearcase oil all along the right side of the exhaust-- there's no way it came out of the little hole in the top of the tranny. Obviously a seal failed or the case cracked.

Even if the gears are "blued" that could be caused by the loss of fluid in the tranny...

These Tremec M12 trannies are known to be rugged SOBs...there are many out there, lots of them with B&M shifters bolted to them. Tales of catastrophic failure (like mine) are almost unheard of, especially during freeway cruising.

Either way-- when it's replaced I'm putting Redline fluid in the tranny...

We shall see Monday.
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post #6 of 25 (permalink) Old 06-11-2005, 02:46 PM
 
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Good to go Groucho! I hope so because I've ordered one of those shifters for mine, was thinking of changing my mind. Semper fi, Will
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post #7 of 25 (permalink) Old 06-11-2005, 04:27 PM
 
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Groucho - you were still running stock fluids??? One of the fearless leaders of our GTO Forum!?! Hope its covered under warrantee. Do you still have less than 36K on her?
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post #8 of 25 (permalink) Old 06-11-2005, 10:56 PM Thread Starter
 
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Groucho - you were still running stock fluids??? One of the fearless leaders of our GTO Forum!?! Hope its covered under warrantee. Do you still have less than 36K on her?
Tranny fluids were going to be changed at the next oil change.


32,000 miles on her...I bought the 100k extended warranty. We shall see.
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post #9 of 25 (permalink) Old 06-11-2005, 11:07 PM
 
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I am sorry for your loss....

dbl bummer...I hope it is covered under warrenty too.
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post #10 of 25 (permalink) Old 06-12-2005, 05:55 PM
 
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Groucho,
Very sorry to read about your troubles. I certainly hope this is a warranty issue.

As mentioned above, synthetics will hold up to heat much better than stock fluids as can be seen at the chart at the bottom of this product page:
AMSOIL ATF

This is the tranny fluid I run in my car which sees some pretty extreme use. At my last race I lost a left axle seal on my diff and lost about half the diff fluid during the race. Since I was winning and I had a pro-SCCA World Challenge driver behind me, I decided to run her until she broke. The diff got so hot that the heat passed up to the tranny (attached together on the Z06), causing a high temp warning at 277F on the tranny with six laps to go. Since my tranny temp sensor is on my tranny cooler return line, the temps in the tranny had to be much higher and who knows how hot the diff was.

But, both held together fine (and I won).

I personally feel the AMSOIL PAO based synthetic is a better match for tranny's with synchros than the Redline Ester based synthetics which is why I decided to switch to AMSOIL at the beginning of last season. But, both a very good lubricants and way better than stock.

FYI, the above linked AMSOIL ATF is the correct tranny fluid for both the automatic and manual GTOs.
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