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Projects Gasser on Maui..... but it's just another '55

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by 2Loose, Nov 19, 2009.

  1. 2Loose
    Joined: Nov 9, 2005
    Posts: 404

    2Loose
    Member

    Yup, I definitely got lucky on this one, it coulda been much worse!
    And since I was able to get all the bearings I needed, except the reverse idler gear bearings, which are on their way from Richmond, I went ahead and started reassembling the mainshaft and countershaft.

    Assembled the counter shaft from the front back, as far as third gear, when the new 2nd gear set comes, will finish it:

    [​IMG]

    Then started assembling the front portion of the output shaft back to where second gear has to go on:

    [​IMG]

    Originally the detent keys under this 3-4 gear slider were broken, but they are the same as the 1-2 detent keys, which are ok, so I put them in here, and will put the new ones in the 1-2 slider when they come....

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    The input shaft portion of the mainshaft went together quickly....

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Lubed up the needle bearings for the input shaft/output shaft assembly with assembly lube...

    [​IMG]

    And everything fit together quite nicely....

    [​IMG]

    I still have to put new detent keys in under this slider, but that's easy, just pull the input shaft apart, slide the slider off, and put the keys in....

    [​IMG]

    Waiting anxiously for the new Richmond Gear parts to arrive!

    So far it's all looking good!
    Aloha,
    Willy

    LINK to rebuild page 1
    LINK to rebuild page 2
     
  2. 2Loose
    Joined: Nov 9, 2005
    Posts: 404

    2Loose
    Member

    Some of the Richmond Gear parts came, the detent keys I needed for the 1-2 and the 5-rev sliders came, and the 2nd mainshaft gear came.

    Was not able to get replacement needle bearings for the reverse idler gear, but the originals look ok, so cleaned them up, lubed em and put it back together...
    [​IMG]

    Put the new detent keys in the 5-rev slider:
    [​IMG]

    Put the new 2nd main gear on and put the new detent keys in the 1-2 slider:
    [​IMG]

    Put the new rear main shaft bearing on:
    [​IMG]

    Put the speedo gear back on, and the mainshaft is finished:
    [​IMG]

    Just for fun, stuck it in the box with the unfinished cluster shaft (still waiting for that second gear to arrive) to see how it looks and feels. There are new front and center bearings on that shaft:
    [​IMG]

    It all rotates smoothly, the sliders shift smoothly and with a good solid "click" into and out of each gear. When the 2nd cluster gear arrives I can put that and the new rear bearing on and finish up the cluster shaft assembly.

    Aloha,
    Willy
     
  3. 2Loose
    Joined: Nov 9, 2005
    Posts: 404

    2Loose
    Member

    Got the new 3rd gear from Richmond Gear, and got a new snap ring to put on the cluster shaft by the 4th gear, that was missing when I disassembled the trans. I wonder if it broke and that's what caused the trans failure, if it got up into the second gear set about the time I hit the gas???

    There were so many small shreds of metal in the trans case, that could have been the cause....

    New snap ring holding 4th gear in place:
    [​IMG]

    Assembled the rest, new second gear:
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Buttoned up the case halves with RTV, and tested the shifters, nice solid clicks into and out of eachgear.

    I'm a happy guy!
    Willy

    LINK to page two, added more photos....
     
  4. 1971BB427
    Joined: Mar 6, 2010
    Posts: 6,080

    1971BB427
    Member
    from Oregon

    Ready for the next drag race Willy! Nice work!
     
  5. bill3337
    Joined: Sep 30, 2007
    Posts: 231

    bill3337
    Member

    Hi Willie,

    I'm sure glad it's you doing that repair, not me. I don't think it would matter how many pictures I took, I'm not sure I'd ever get it back together....

    We'll be back in Maui in early March, so maybe you'll be back on the street by then. Good luck with it all. Bill
     
  6. 2Loose
    Joined: Nov 9, 2005
    Posts: 404

    2Loose
    Member

    Yes, I printed that 4dr to 2dr thread out, its in my 55 shop manual. I have a pair of doors too. I just got used to the 4dr and grew to like it. My grandkids love it! They named it "Patches" cause it's all patched up! So we decided to leave it that way....

    I should have it back on the road sometime tomorrow, we'll see, it's raining pretty hard right now and the car is outside, under a tarp....
    Willy
     
  7. 2Loose
    Joined: Nov 9, 2005
    Posts: 404

    2Loose
    Member

    Added a few more pix:

    Cut a new gasket for the "nose cone"...

    [​IMG]

    Sealed up the counter shaft and reverse idler gear shaft holes with those disks and some rtv...

    [​IMG]

    Then bolted everything up in front...

    Those two disks are bolted up tight against the bell housing, so they don't come loose...

    [​IMG]

    Then bolted the tailshaft housing on with rtv sealer to keep it all dry...

    [​IMG]

    Aloha,
    Willy
     
  8. 2Loose
    Joined: Nov 9, 2005
    Posts: 404

    2Loose
    Member

    Well, it's together and running just fine!!
    Now to fix the busted headlight and straighten out the fender from the flat towing accident I had, so I can put the hood back on when I want to...
    Just easy drivin' for awhile though, make sure everything is ok...
    Aloha,
    Willy
     
  9. 2Loose
    Joined: Nov 9, 2005
    Posts: 404

    2Loose
    Member

    With a buddy's help, and a pair of 6" long guide bolts with the heads cut off, it eventually went in. Turned out the pilot bearing had popped out when we pulled the tranny, and was blocking the shaft from going back in, took us awhile to figure that out, not a lot of access with the blow bell I'm using!

    I'm beginning to doubt my mechanic's abilities, the tranny let go about an hour ago, the full power, power shift from 2 to 3 (or was it the 3 to 4 shift?) got really noisy all of a sudden! Shut it down and coasted to the side of the road. A buddy happened to come by with his rollback truck, gave me a quick ride back to my house....
    Now I get to pull it out again, should be gettin good at that my now....

    Not sure what I'm gonna do with it, I do have a built th400 in a bop case, and I have a 425 flex plate, they are balanced different then the 455 Olds flex plate with a slightly different crank flange bolt pattern, so I could put the th400 in, would require a different length driveshaft. No decision yet....

    The DN is rated at 450 ft.lbs, I'm probably giving it a little more then that....

    And that's usually the rating for first gear, the higher ratio gears will usually take more, it usually increases as the gear ratio decreases...

    And I always figgured my street tires would break loose before the rating got exceeded, a common experience in this car in first and second gear, third would sometimes break loose too, if I was up in rpm and on boost then I shifted, but not so much....

    Am also considering a Lenco ST1200...

    [​IMG]
     
  10. Proof is in the pudding......you are driving the car right....HARD!
    [​IMG]
     
  11. 2Loose
    Joined: Nov 9, 2005
    Posts: 404

    2Loose
    Member

    I think I see a turbo 400 in the near future....
     
  12. that could a good movie....can you lighten it...maybe go powerglide?
     
  13. 56sedandelivery
    Joined: Nov 21, 2006
    Posts: 6,445

    56sedandelivery
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Better make that a TH475 Willie, the "TH400" used in big trucks and motor homes with a thicker case and straight cut -planetary gears, hence being called a TH475. A little noisier with the straight cut gear gears, but you're not going to hear that with the blower/belt/exhaust, and I don't remember if you also have a gear drive. And I still say Clutch Turbo, since you already have the flywheel/clutch/scattershield assembly. It would be more "fun" too. Butch/56sedandelivery.
     
  14. 1971BB427
    Joined: Mar 6, 2010
    Posts: 6,080

    1971BB427
    Member
    from Oregon

    Lots of TH400's behind big HP engines, and if it's built properly a TH400 should serve you well.
     
  15. 2Loose
    Joined: Nov 9, 2005
    Posts: 404

    2Loose
    Member

    Been running a th400 behind a 502 in my 58 chevy prostreet truck 16 years now, it broke yesterday! And it is built up with all kinds of HD parts. This seems to be the month of breakdowns for me! A buddy who specializes in those tranny will look at it for me. Forward gears gone, still have reverse, so not the converter!
     
  16. 2Loose
    Joined: Nov 9, 2005
    Posts: 404

    2Loose
    Member

    short trial run after replacing the water pump and three v-belts, break in the v-belts a bit and then tighten if needed. First gear thru 20 mph zone, warm up the motor, about a1.5 miles, then a stoplite, then some 4 lane, took it up a bit per usual in first, shiften to second, and it wasn't there! Tried 3rd, it wasn't there, tried neutral, seemed normal, went back down, nothing until 1st, it was there, put it in neutral and reved it up good a couple of times, then pulled it back down to first with maybe 2500 on the tack, and first let go....

    Pulled over and still had reverse, so knew converter still working, was about 3 miles from home, wife came and towed me home. Reverse still working, nothing else. Got two other repairs going though, before I can get to this one. A buddy is good with these th400s, said to bring it over and let's take a look, so might squeeze it in somehow....

    Have busted it 3 times before over the last 16 years, drag racing it with slicks. Sprag unit one time, rear bearing let go once (lube line plugged), torque converter let go once. Am thinking a clutch pack let go.
     
  17. bill3337
    Joined: Sep 30, 2007
    Posts: 231

    bill3337
    Member

    Hi Bill,

    Your year sounds a bit like mine, engine in my '33 self destructed at 5,500 rpm while down in the states, then a minor trans problem, damaged door, wire failure to a power window, speedo fitting started leaking.....can't seem to fix them fast enough, although I've had 15 years pretty trouble free, except for my own inflicted damage from heavy right foot. Now with the new engine (551 hp on the dyno) I'm losing oil pressure under hard throttle at higher rpm. I took out the windage tray with the new engine as it didn't fit quite the same, so will put that back first, then maybe weld in some baffling into the aluminum pan, now just fully open, and replace the oil pump c/w pressure relief valve and hope I solve it. I run it up to 6600 in all gears and it gets a bit unnerving to see the pressure drop from 60 to 30 for those few seconds.

    Bill (from Canada)
     
  18. 1971BB427
    Joined: Mar 6, 2010
    Posts: 6,080

    1971BB427
    Member
    from Oregon

    Yeah, it seems to be my theme lately too Willy! My engine let go when #8 rod bearing spun. At least it didn't throw the rod, but spun too badly to save the crank, so I'm building a better SBC for my Austin gasser.
     
  19. 2Loose
    Joined: Nov 9, 2005
    Posts: 404

    2Loose
    Member

    Well, a shortage of money has pushed me in the direction of just fixing my Doug Nash and just taking it easy for awhile, as it's obvious this gearbox won't take the HP this motor is making.

    When I pulled the tranny and opened it up, it wasn't the third gear that had blown, when I hit third gear, the main input shaft drive gear, and the cluster shaft driven gear is what blew:
    [​IMG]

    Here's a closeup, took these with my cell phone, so this one did not come out very clear, but you get the idea:
    [​IMG]

    The fact that I shut it down immediately I think saved me from more damage. The front mainshaft bearing is noisy, and the front cluster shaft bearing is also a little noisy, so I'm replacing them. The rest of the gear assembly is fine.

    Richmond Gear is sending out a new input shaft and gear, and a new cluster shaft driven gear. Nearly $600 for that, and probably another $100 for the bearings, which I can get locally.

    Looked at the new Richmond Gear "Super Street 5 Speed", which they say is rated at 600 hp, mine is rated at 450 hp. Would be fun to try one and see how it holds up, but the quoted price is $4,065 plus shipping! Think I'll wait awhile.

    http://www.summitracing.com/parts/rmg-7050526b/overview/make/chevrolet

    It's a mighty fun car to drive, but I can't keep breaking transmissions. Have upgraded the clutch (dual disk McLeod) and the rear end (35 spline 9" Detroit Locker) and the driveshaft with 1350 u-joints, now the tranny is the weak link!
    Aloha,
    Willy

    LINK to tranny repair pages
     
  20. bill3337
    Joined: Sep 30, 2007
    Posts: 231

    bill3337
    Member

    I was by your place the other day and saw the '55 under a tarp, so figured you were taking a little time out.....lol. I have the same problem with my '33, so I don't run drag radials on the street, I stay with my BF Goodrich T/A's, 265-15R, they become my trans savers, as they light up before the stress on the gears gets too destructive. Try fixing it and giving up some traction, it's easier to do than lightning the right foot. Good luck with it! Bill
     
  21. 2Loose
    Joined: Nov 9, 2005
    Posts: 404

    2Loose
    Member

    I'm wondring if I didn't just weaken some of the gears at the track running the slicks, the trans didn't give any trouble down there, but I just wonder if I weakened it enough that slammng the gear shifts on the street is causing those weaknesses to finally give up!

    But less sticky tires on the street should help a lot....
     
  22. 2Loose
    Joined: Nov 9, 2005
    Posts: 404

    2Loose
    Member

    A few more pix of the tranny, waiting for parts to arrive:
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    The main drive gear on the input shaft:
    [​IMG]
     
  23. bill3337
    Joined: Sep 30, 2007
    Posts: 231

    bill3337
    Member

    It's hard to tell from the pictures, but do you think it was fully engaged in gear when it blew or could it have been only partially engaged when you hit it? I'm no expert on gear failures, just curious. I've seen lots with teeth sheared right off, but this looks somewhat different.
    It's been pretty windy down here in Kihei, I guess you're getting your share up there too. Looking forward to seeing this back together again. Bill
     
  24. 2Loose
    Joined: Nov 9, 2005
    Posts: 404

    2Loose
    Member

    Yes, it was. This part is always engaged, the power flow is in this shaft, over to the gear on the counter shaft, the counter shaft always turns, and all the gears on the mainshaft are always turning on needle bearings, but not connected to the output shaft until the slider is shifted to connect a specific gear to the output shaft. So the gears are always engaged. It's the sliders that connect them, and those are in good shape. I just overpowered the gears, they couldn't take that much torque, especially as I hit 'em hard with the clutch on each shift. It's just too much torque.
     
  25. 2Loose
    Joined: Nov 9, 2005
    Posts: 404

    2Loose
    Member

    Here's the deal...
    It looks like I can sell my rebuilt DN 5 speed for around $2500.
    and buy a new RG 5 speed for $4k that's supposedly rated
    at 600 ft lbs. I'd like to check that out...
    and give it the "2Loose" test....
    Willy
     
  26. bill3337
    Joined: Sep 30, 2007
    Posts: 231

    bill3337
    Member

    Sounds pretty tempting. $2500 seems like a good buck for the Doug Nash, so maybe that's the route to take. Is it totally interchangeable, or will you have to adjust driveshaft and shifter (or floor) etc? Have you ever run your engine on a dyno? It wouldn't be too surprising if you're over the 600 torque. I just repowered by '33 this fall with a modified 383 stroker and it puts out 513 tq, 551 hp, and I suspect you're quite a bit over that, particularly in torque.
     
  27. 340HilbornDuster
    Joined: Nov 14, 2011
    Posts: 1,911

    340HilbornDuster
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Hi Willy
    Wow, my grandmother have more teeth left than that....

    Permanent fix?
    Just move to Oahu, we don't have a race track (probably never will)...problem fixed man!

    Hope to see your "Monster" run on Maui one day!
    Tommy
     
  28. 2Loose
    Joined: Nov 9, 2005
    Posts: 404

    2Loose
    Member

    Looks like the overall size is the same, same driveshaft and bell mounting bolts, same input shaft, my clutch should work fine, but the tranny mount looks like it more rearward by about 1.5", I can handle that....

    ok, I did it, I just could not stand not having my "gasser" available to me, and I got really tired of busting my "450 hp" Doug Nash 4+1 !

    Of course, when RG (Richmond Gear) notified me that the input shaft I need to rebuild my box, will not be available to ship until AUGUST !!!, I sorta had a 'hissy-fit', as my daughter would put it !

    So I checked everywhere I had a few pennies hidden away, found a few that needed to be put to "good use", and went and ordered a 600 hp rated Richmond Gear "Super Street" 5 speed. I'm not real pleased that the 5th gear is an overdrive, and the first four are still pretty close ratio, except I went and ordered with the 3.08 (some sources say 3.01) ratio first gear, which will still work pretty well with my 3.50 rear gear. 5th is .7 or something like that, which I probably will seldom use except a very few areas on the island signed at "55", but everybody goes 65-70 and the cops seem to look the other way, unless the County is running short on funds........

    LINK to the Richmond Gear "Super Street" 5 speed

    If this tranny actually comes with any sort of guarantee, let's see if they live up to it.

    I remain....
    "2Loose" Willy
     
  29. bill3337
    Joined: Sep 30, 2007
    Posts: 231

    bill3337
    Member

    Sounds like the right way to go. I read up on that trans a bit ago on Jeg's site, looking for potential replacements for mine. I may have to go with a Tremec or a built up T5. They make a gear set for them now rated at 750 hp and I don't have any room for any real dimension changes in the '33. My T5 is a .66 OD, which is great for highway with my 4.11:1 gears, but it's touch and go in the quarter mile to get through in 4th without running out of RPM and 5th is too big a jump. I have my rev limiter set at 6600 and I'm getting right up there at the end of the quarter mile with a 28" tire. I can use my OD at 50 mph on level ground, so you might get some use out of that.
     
  30. 1971BB427
    Joined: Mar 6, 2010
    Posts: 6,080

    1971BB427
    Member
    from Oregon

    That Tremec is a big trans, and hope you have tunnel clearance for it! Just finished swapping out a TH350 to a Tremec in a friend's car and had to do some massaging of the tunnel. I was surprised the Tremec was bigger than a TH350!
     

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