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C4 won't shift into any gear!!!!

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by custom100, May 7, 2009.

  1. custom100
    Joined: Oct 22, 2007
    Posts: 59

    custom100
    Member

    Ok, I have a 351w with a C4. I bought the C4 from a local guy who was selling it for a friends widow. He said he wasn't sure what was done (or not done) to the trans. It's a 74 C4. I pulled the pan when I bought it, and it looks like it was rebiult. everything in it looks new. I bought a brand new factory stall converter, filled it with a couple of quarts if fluid and installed it. I started the truck without putting any more fluid in but only for maybe 30 seconds. Today, I filled it with fluid and put it in reverse. It started to move backwards then stoppped. Now it won't go into any gear or go anywhere. The vacuum modulator wasn't hooked up. Would it not go in gear because of the vacuum??? Did I fry the pump by running it without enough fluid??? Does anybody have any suggestions???
     
  2. FORD FAN
    Joined: Feb 17, 2003
    Posts: 238

    FORD FAN
    Member

    When you put the converter in you must make sure it is recessed all the way. As you rotate it the converter will go back a little further; maybe 1/4". If not fully engaged you can damage the front pump as the bell housing bolts are tightened. If this is not the case, then you may not have sufficient fluid.
     
  3. Shifty Shifterton
    Joined: Oct 1, 2006
    Posts: 4,964

    Shifty Shifterton
    Member

    I don't have any helpful suggestion except that in the future, never ever ever try to turn a tire with an automatic transmission with anything unhooked or when you know it's less than full. Every transmission design tolerates different things, and if current practice is continued it will bite hard at some point, hopefully it hasn't already.

    good luck, wish I could help more.
     
  4. Malcolm
    Joined: Feb 9, 2006
    Posts: 7,887

    Malcolm
    Member
    from Nebraska

    When you say you filled the trans with fluid, how much did you put in it? Are you sure there's enough? I've had a C4 also not 'move' because it didn't have enough fluid in it...


    Malcolm
     

  5. alchemy
    Joined: Sep 27, 2002
    Posts: 18,191

    alchemy
    Member

    Does the dipstick say it's full? I'd say check that again after it idles a while. Torque converters take a surprising amount of fluid, and sometimes it takes a bit of spinning time for the fluid to fill them.
     
  6. They hold a ton of fluid - add more. The trans holds 5 1/2 quarts, the converter another 4 quarts plus any cooler capacity. When you start an automatic they start to pump the fluid thru the trans and the level will instantly drop.The vacuum modulator isn't the cause.
     
  7. SlowandLow63
    Joined: Sep 18, 2004
    Posts: 5,957

    SlowandLow63
    Member
    from Central NJ

    Me too! Add a couple quarts and try it.

    When you installed the converter, it should have clicked on twice more after you put it on the input shaft. Then when you go to bolt it up, you should have a small gap between the face of the converter ansd the flexplate.
     
  8. custom100
    Joined: Oct 22, 2007
    Posts: 59

    custom100
    Member

    First, thanks for all the advice. I know the torque converter is installed correctly. It went in three times while I spun it when I was installing it and sat about 1/4 to 3/8" away from the flex plate when I bolted the trans to the engine. I didn't ever put it in gear without fluid in the trans. I put at least 4 quarts in plus the two that were in the converter before I put it in gear. After reading the posts I would say there is a real good chance that I just need to add more fluid. The dipstick showed it full but I didn't let it idle for long because I was afraid I was gonna screw the trans up further. I'm headed to my shop now and will check the level and add some fluid. I'll let you know how it turns out. Thanks again.
     
  9. The pump drive on the converter hub only engages about 3/8ths .
    Converter pull -up should only be about .125- .150.
    Were the studs even into the flexplate when you bolted up the trans?
     
  10. custom100
    Joined: Oct 22, 2007
    Posts: 59

    custom100
    Member

    Well I checked the fluid level and now it didn't show on the dipstick. I added about 2 more quarts of fluid and let it idle for a minute and just as was suggested it shifts into gear just fine. Thanks again for answering what seems like a really stupid question now. I had no idea I needed that much fluid.
     
  11. Willy301
    Joined: Nov 16, 2007
    Posts: 1,426

    Willy301
    Member

    Not to hijack, but with his problem solved, any clues why a C-4 might lack 2nd gear? I rebuilt the trans, followed every instruction down to the letter, checked and rechecked the holes that needed drilling bigger for the appropriate shift kit, put the little balls in the the appropriate slots and torqued everything to spec. I adjusted the bands and put a brand new pump and torque converter in the mix. I added 6 quarts of fluid and fired it up, added 2 more while it was running and then topped it off before I shut it down. I had installed the "adjustable" modulator and had friend adjust it, he is experienced at this. Still will not achieve second gear. I can wind it out in first, slow way down and it will shift directly to third. Could the new band facing have come unbonded? Lots of guys scratching thier head on this one, including myself.
     

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