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Old 04-05-2010, 09:30 AM
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noob transmission rebuild ... for the poor man

I plan to update this thread as I make progress on it. here's the background though...

2000 f-250 long bed 4 door 7.3 4r100 transmission 4wd non-pto around 250k miles on truck.

I screwed up my transmission by continuing to drive it after I noticed a leak, figured "I'll keep it full". Don't do that, it doesn't work, I'm speaking from experience here. Eventually the transmission just quit moving forward, checked the fluid and it was off of the dipstick. I figure at the very least I've burnt up my forward clutches, maybe more damage.

I finally got my parts today, still need to order the torque converter and a new pump. I think my pump is "ok" but with 250k on the transmission, might as well replace what I can afford to. Price is definitely a factor, I'd love to do all the fancy upgrades I've read about, but just absolutely don't have the money no way no how, it's a stretch for me to just get the basic rebuild kit.

I have a little experience inside auto transmissions, and alot of experience in general automotive and fabrication work. For the 2,000 dollar difference between me doing it and a shop doing it, it's worth the time to me.

Yesterday I put the transmission on the home made tranny holder I made, sprayed it with engine cleaner and cleaned it up some. ready to start this afternoon...

I bought a very good book from ATSG, and it seems pretty simple. Most of the tools look very easy to make them if I have to. The shifter actuator timing tool would be the only one I would absolutely have to buy, but according to my book as long as I don't take it apart I'm good to go... we'll see how it goes from here.

I'll try to give updates every day that I work on it, maybe it will help someone who is in my situation where their work truck is down and just flat out don't have the money to fix it like everyone on here wants you to. again, I'd love to do a fancy transmission but just can't.

bear in mind your transmission problems may not be like mine, but one thing is for sure, don't be scared of a transmission, they are not that bad to work on. If you have the money to spend, get someone else to do it at least you'll have a warranty, but if you just don't have the money then I hope this write-up will help.

If I posted in the wrong section please move this correctly
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Old 04-05-2010, 12:07 PM
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first update...

everything went smooth until the pump removal. I had borrowed a big slide hammer from a friend, but the two threaded inserts on the pump for the slide hammer were pretty large, the "fancy" slide hammer would have needed some serious fabrication (welding,drilling of retainer) in order to work, since it wasn't mine I couldn't do that. I had bought a cheap "bondo" brand slide hammer at advance auto parts for $12.99. It threaded right up in there without any bolts or any other parts, worked like a charm. It's built in threaded rod was a little smaller diameter, but enough that it held the threads fine when pushed all the way in.

so before you start make sure your slide hammer can hold a really big bolt, or get one of the crappy "bondo" brand $12.99 slide hammers ;-)

p.s. I'll post pics of progress at the end of the day...
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Old 04-05-2010, 04:32 PM
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so far so good, the low-reverse clutch roller assembly did not come out like the book said, you have to remove the big snap ring for the low-reverse clutch pack and remove it all as one unit, then separate it. The book says to remove the roller assembly first, then remove the snap ring for the clutches...

I've nearly got it completely disassembled, one bit of advice don't plan on getting a kit and being able to take it apart and then put it right back together again. You will need thrust bearings and thrust washers, there are several types of them for the transmission and you won't know what you need until you can actually measure them. I guess that's why they aren't included in the kit.

Mike at trans-parts in california has been very helpful, he knows his stuff and has been able to answer all my questions. He answers the phone every time I call, not some secretary who doesn't know anything. I went with trans-parts because their internet site showed that not only do they have the kits, but they have every single component in stock as well, so when you get into it like I did you can call him for a thrust washer.

I've read about a bad company called tranz-parts (with a "z") out of florida, I'm pretty sure these are not the same folks...

as promised there will be pictures this evening, including the clutch spring compressor tool I made. Just taking a dinner break right now.

so far I have not had to buy one "special tool" we'll see how re-assembly goes...
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Old 04-05-2010, 06:46 PM
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as promised here are some pics of the disassembly. It will be this weekend at the soonest before I can start the assembly, but I will update with the component rebuild part of the transmission rebuilding process.

first off I made my own transmission holder, the cheapest I found them for was over $400 bucks just for the holder, you didn't even get an engine stand with it for that price. I made this out of 1/2 inch by 2 inch flat stock, it's ugly but works great





next is the "bondo" brand dent puller I bought for 12 bucks at advance. It actually worked better than the fancy slide hammer I borrowed. the threads on the end did not match up perfectly but they were good enough that they held and did not booger up anything...



This is the clutch spring compressor tool that I made, made it out of thin 1 1/2 inch angle iron. 26 centimeters long with the bolt holes centered at 24.5 centimeters. one hole in the middle with threaded rod and a nut welded on and one smaller 6.5 inch piece of angle iron to push with. pretty cheap "special" tool...




this is all of the parts inside of your transmission, not bad at all...



and finally this is the gutted case



so total all in all not knowing what I was doing other than the ATSG book to guide me I got everything out, labeled, and set aside in about 8 hours. That included making my "special tool". It would have gone much faster if I had known what I was doing, but hey I'm a noob...


When I get ready to start stacking clutches and rebuilding components I'll update this thread, should be in a day or two.
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Old 04-06-2010, 11:22 AM
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This is great, I will be the first to say, THANK YOU! I know my tranny is not going to last much longer and like you I use it as a work truck and can't afford the fancy tranny job so I will be using your guide when your done!

One thing that would be nice is if you could post up how much you paid for the parts and such and how much it ends up costing you total in the end, thanks again its appriciated!
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Old 04-06-2010, 12:05 PM
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Thank you for the write up great info so far.
If you get the Diesel Power magazine there is a write up in there with JW doing and sharing some tips if you havent picked one up or delivered to yo house you should.
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Old 04-07-2010, 06:39 AM
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costs:

transmission rebuild kit- all soft parts and seals, check valves, clutch disks, steel disks, replacement filter $210.00 shipped from trans-parts

Thrust washers- 2 were bad $14.68 shipped from trans-parts

"bondo" dent puller- $12.99

so far I'm about $240-$250 out of pocket on the transmission. I still have to buy a torque converter and more than likely a pump. I expect everything to come in around $600-$700 when finished. Of course mine wasn't that bad (I think), yours may have larger components that are broken.

I'll do a cost sheet when I am totally done and try to include everything. Right now I'm waiting on the thrust washers to come in the mail, when they are here I can re-assemble and try it out. I wish I could have afforded more upgraded parts for the transmission, but it was a real stretch for me to get the parts that it needed, when my truck is up and running I can start making money again but right now I'm stuck.

I found a used transmission out of a 60,000 mile wrecked truck that I can drive to try out for $1,000 dollars. It was tempting, but I've bought several used transmissions for various vehicles in my life and none of them have lasted more than 6 months. I figure that if I completely fail on the rebuild I've always got that as a backup, but I'd have to sell some guns or something to buy it.

Quote

"This is great, I will be the first to say, THANK YOU! I know my tranny is not going to last much longer and like you I use it as a work truck and can't afford the fancy tranny job so I will be using your guide when your done!
One thing that would be nice is if you could post up how much you paid for the parts and such and how much it ends up costing you total in the end, thanks again its appriciated!"

end quote

thanks for the kind words, glad if it can help you out.
If you are able to find one pretty cheap you should try and find a busted one now. Maybe a non-working core transmission, that way you can start rebuilding before yours goes down. If you can pick it up for the cost of a core, then you can sell yours when you swap for the same price. But if you're like me the extra couple hundred bucks would make a big difference...
I hope it will help someone, I looked and looked and could only find rebuilds that were putting $500 dollar clutches in their transmissions, I'm hoping to get my whole transmission done for what 1 set of the fancy clutches costs...

Last edited by wyndsurfr; 04-07-2010 at 06:49 AM.
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Old 04-07-2010, 09:19 AM
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Quote:
I found a used transmission out of a 60,000 mile wrecked truck that I can drive to try out for $1,000 dollars. It was tempting, but I've bought several used transmissions for various vehicles in my life and none of them have lasted more than 6 months. I figure that if I completely fail on the rebuild I've always got that as a backup, but I'd have to sell some guns or something to buy it.
wow thats a good price...of course depending on how long it would last like you said, still more self control than I got cause I would have bought that one! Now after reading in these forums though I probably wouldn't so you probably made the better choice.
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Old 04-13-2010, 07:41 AM
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I haven't forgotten about this thread, I just have not had time to put my transmission back together. I got my new thrust washers last friday, but have been helping put a flatbed on another truck. Gotta do something to pay the bills while mine is down...

I hope to get back on it this weekend and will finish up this thread.

I may have to buy the shift actuator timing tool, like a dumbass I removed the shift actuator sensor from the transmission and I did not need to. I was just following the steps in the book without thinking about what I was doing... it was one of the very first steps. Oh well, live and learn.

so word of advice, don't remove the shift actuator sensor unless you have to...
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Old 04-14-2010, 10:29 AM
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"shift actuator sensor"?????? Do you mean the switch on the manual linkage?? You don't need a tool to line it up. The outer and inner parts have a small line (ridge) that lines up in neutral.
It was a good idea to remove it. If the trans gets rolled over, it gets broke.
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