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Projects Damn my knees, manual transmission is a killer

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by 62rebel, Oct 18, 2019.

  1. brokedownbiker
    Joined: Jun 7, 2016
    Posts: 506


    My '66 Mustang (OT, I Know) just sits anymore, staring at me with those sad eyes. I've discovered that 4-speeds and ruined knees don't mix well. That's why my '51 Ford has an AOD and the '50 Chevy has ma TH350 ready to install when I get to it. I'll just build the motors a bit hotter so I can still burn tires...
  2. deathrowdave
    Joined: May 27, 2014
    Posts: 2,146

    from NKy

    I’m with the rest of the crowd , getting older isn’t as fun on the old body as I wanted it to be. Years of labor as a Stationary Engineer , climbing , crawling , squatting as taken its toll rather hard as with the rest or us . Left side not so bad yet right side tough , it hampers me from the kicker on the old scooter from time to time . Years ago you forget to retard the timer on the old kicker and you became a true believer , the power of a kick back . I think what a hated most was the stroke through when the starter gear would disengage , that was a true SOB to deal with .
    classiccarjack likes this.
  3. How bad do you guys want it ?
    What would you do to the car to be able to drive your manual shift car?
    Where’s the limit on compromise?
    Where is the price point what are you say the hell with it and just give in and swap in an auto or sell it?
    Cosmo49 likes this.
  4. That old scooter have a mousetrap in the clutch cable?
    Truckdoctor Andy likes this.
  5. Might as well join in. Left knee has been an issue now since last October. Doc says the MRI shows radial tear in the Miniscus and near bone to bone in the knee. So, he says he can replace the knee and will schedule me for surgery in two weeks. Had a heart to heart discussion with him next and said "now Doc, if I were your Dad (he is like 40) what would you be telling me". Amazingly he said he would give me a script for a offloader knee brace which cost me 600 bucks, wore it two weeks and that was in Feb. Only wear it now when it feels like I need it or when I am walking my mile for exercise. going to keep my real knee as long as I can.
    I will say that Ibuprofen prescribed by the Doc helped a lot. Took 3 with every meal with lots of fluid and no alcohol for two weeks which helped to heal the knee. Rarely take it anymore. Ice was very helpful during that period too.
    Admit that getting down and up isn't as easy as it should be but I still have my original knees and that is worth a lot.
  6. wicarnut
    Joined: Oct 29, 2009
    Posts: 3,624


    Aging is not for Pussy's and a lot of us say IF I knew I was going to live this long, I would have taken better care of myself. Age and Arthritis with CRS leading to CRAFT is all part of life IMO, Adapt and Enjoy life is my free Advise/BS this AM. Everyone have a Great Day !
    j3harleys likes this.
  7. sololobo
    Joined: Aug 23, 2006
    Posts: 8,093


    oh yeah, I am singin those ol man blues, put an automagic in my c-10 Verla Kay when going to a v8. Now if I just had some power steering!
  8. I’ve been fixing big trucks for 25 years and seen all kinds of different changes. The biggest change has happened in the last 7-10 years. This has been the switch from almost exclusively manual transmissions to automatics. In the medium duty side, Allison owns the market. 97% of the newer mediums have automatics. Even on the big class 8 side the automated manuals are taking over. Industry will tell you that younger drivers that have no concept of a clutch and stick have caused this, but I believe it’s because our older drivers are really hurting and dare I say it, the automatics are better. The are more efficient, easier on the drivetrains, and smarter than we are. When I bought my 2500 Dodge Cummins, I was bummed out that the dealer had no sticks. A year and half later, I love the automatic. There is no shame in an automatic.

    Sent from my iPhone using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
  9. I need to have some joints replaced, and the issue for me is going to be whether they can still get the parts. (My late father's excuse for not having the hip replacement he needed was that he was so old they couldn't get the parts.) I regret putting the T-5 in my truck, wish I'd gone with a Turbo 350 or 700R4.
  10. jazz1
    Joined: Apr 30, 2011
    Posts: 1,479


    Knee replacement has come a long way, might be worth looking into.
    Using a clutch can also be painful for folks with back issue, lifting leg while sitting wakes the hurt nerve in lower back.
  11. The technology is there
    Several companies
    Very popular concept in India where the majority of vehicles are manual and automatics are incredibly expensiv but their videos are hard to watch .
    Cosmo49 likes this.
  12. Yeah but it’s off topic ,
    So When I talk about really useful cool stuff but OT here it gets deleted.
    classiccarjack and Cosmo49 like this.
  13. ^^^^^ Yes, but it's neat how it's done. BM_ has a trick set up.
    31Vicky with a hemi likes this.
  14. dirty old man
    Joined: Feb 2, 2008
    Posts: 8,537

    dirty old man

    Reading the 40 posts now in this thread I see something that is coming up related to the subject at hand of difficulties with manual trans as you age or otherwise get less able to release a clutch. And that is "hydraulic clutches", or more accurately, hydraulic clutch actuation instead of mechanical linkage.
    Seems to be an almost universal opinion that a hydraulic clutch linkage somehow makes the pedal easier to depress. Not true, leverage is leverage and the same principles apply, whether it be mechanical, hydraulic, or pneumatic.
    As an example.if it takes 600# pressure at the T O brg. and you need to move it 1/2" to release the clutch, and you want to release it using 50# pedal pressure, then you are going to need a total leverage ratio of 12:1.You must have a usable pedal movement of 6" at this ratio to move that T O brg.the required 1/2". It makes no difference whether this is done all mechanical, all hydraulic, or a combination of the 2, whether it be compound or direct, that is what is required. Another factor involved in the mechanical levers involved is the geometry involved in the angles of levers in relation to their pivot axis, and this makes me wish I still remembered the stuff from that high school geometry class all those 65 or so years ago.
    Hyd. linkage is easier to install, and less chances for geometry problems, and takes less room. But maintenance and repair is required more often, and in the case of the direct action slave cylinders inside the bell housing, require removal of the trans to fix if they develop a leak.
    But they work no better than a properly designed mechanical linkage setup, and I wish that I had set up mine with mechanical linkage.
    s55mercury66 likes this.
  15. ^^^^^ Thick motorcycle (loosely) for a second. A hydraulic clutch activated/deactivated via a button on steering wheel using left thumb. It can be done with off the shelf parts.
  16. dirty old man
    Joined: Feb 2, 2008
    Posts: 8,537

    dirty old man

    Yall type faster than me and posted that stuff about the auto clutch while I was doing a hunt and peck for my post about clutch actuation. Would appreciate a PM about both the India one and the "BM" one from yall before this all gets deleted. Might be a better alternative for me than the dual disc clutch I'm planning.
  17. There’s a lot of fog in that post.

    Yes release pressure may be equal and
    Throw out bearing travel distance may be equal.

    But the differences between a Z bar, quadrant, slave cylinder and hydraulic throw out bearings is massive.

    Anyone besides me ever thought of adding a vacuum booster to the clutch master cylinder?
    fourspeedwagon likes this.
  18. They’ve had auto clutches for Harley’s now for decades maybe an eon
    Johnny Gee likes this.
  19. Yuck.....I would screw with cable vs hydraulic and pedal ratio first :)
  20. I said "(loosley)" Lol. Who wants this?
  21. Tri-power37
    Joined: Feb 10, 2019
    Posts: 510


    Switched my 37 Chevy to hydraulic clutch actuated standard trans 10+ years ago and it is butter smooth and very easy effort. But... I was 40 years old then now I’m 50 and 30 plus year son my knees doing bodywork and paint some nights my knees hurt so bad I can’t sleep. Most of the time the knees don’t bother me if I’m careful to put down dense foam padding if I get down on my knees. Oh well getting older with old cars I guess! Truly believe a properly set up hydraulic clutch takes less leg effort.
  22. BamaMav
    Joined: Jun 19, 2011
    Posts: 4,148

    from Berry, AL

    My Freightliner has a hydraulic actuated clutch, it's just as firm as any of the mechanical linkage clutches I've driven over the years.
  23. Blue One
    Joined: Feb 6, 2010
    Posts: 10,518

    Blue One
    from Alberta

    I had a lot of trouble with my left hip.
    Orthoscopic surgery fixed it up, if it deteriorates when I’m much older I’ll need a replacement.
    For now it’s good.

    In 2008 I sold my daily driver manual transmission Ranger truck and my 6 speed 2004 SVT Cobra Mustang and went all automatic.

    My 26 RPU has a C4 behind the Y Block.

    Life is good without the pain.
    I love it.
  24. DDDenny
    Joined: Feb 6, 2015
    Posts: 13,433

    from oregon

    I have had all the components for my roadster collected for many years, so long that health factors had not even enterered into the picture............yet.
    One item I'm glad I bought many years ago was the Centerforce clutch setup, renowned for their ease of operation, they were expensive then but I'm sure they have gone up in price considerably.
    Also, one of the best ways of making for smooth clutch operation is to replace any oem style linkage that relies on metal/metal pivot points with quality rod ends (Heim joint).
  25. deathrowdave
    Joined: May 27, 2014
    Posts: 2,146

    from NKy

    No mouse trap , it will make Popeye forearm after driving it for years . Same clutch was designed to be used by foot and leg , Harley just added a cable and hand lever . I still wouldn’t trade it for 2 new ones . It’s just my part of America .
    j3harleys likes this.
  26. Phil P
    Joined: Jan 1, 2018
    Posts: 268

    Phil P

    I was talking to my wife about getting old and this thread. I told her I'm looking on the bright side. Its my right knee giving me problems so
    I can still shift but braking might be a problem.;)

  27. Yep my motorcycle wreck in 1972 tore my knee into 3 pieces and the doc just wired it together as there wasn't the plastic shit out as yet and fixed my other broken bones....still going and so is he. Went to look at a 4 speed car just today - about a four hour drive to where it was - was happy I had the automatic and cruise control. Not sure what I'm going to do driving the Flathead drive out to California.....
  28. classiccarjack
    Joined: Jun 30, 2009
    Posts: 1,439


    Ahhhh.... I love the old Ironhead XLCH! The best guarantee to a hyperextended knee. I kicked a advanced Panhead once, lifted me up in the air, spooked me a bit! Got to respect those good ol 2 cylinder machine's!

    Sent from my Moto Z (2) using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
    Truckdoctor Andy and j3harleys like this.
  29. Mimilan
    Joined: Jun 13, 2019
    Posts: 561


    Use a remote mounted vacuum booster [PBR VH44] if your clutch is hydraulic.
    Off roaders in UK use vacuum assisted clutches.

    example here
    31Vicky with a hemi and enigma57 like this.

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