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Technical I need help with a '39 Tranny

Discussion in 'Traditional Hot Rods' started by Late to the Party, Oct 15, 2018.

  1. Howdy -- I am building a T-V8 Hot Rod, and it's almost finished. You can see my build thread here: https://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/threads/t-v8-build-thread.1011604/page-6

    I have driven the car around the block a couple of times, but I still have some bugs to work out. I'm having trouble sorting out some issues with the transmission and need some help with it. I put the info in my build thread, beginning on page 6 at post # 176. I was advised to start a new thread about the tranny situation, so more folks would see it. So here it is.

    It might not be a '39 after all, according to some advice I got on that thread. Or maybe it is a '39 box with an earlier shifter tower. If you have read this far, please use the link to my build thread to see what has been said so far. If that's too much trouble, maybe I can figure out how to transfer that info to this thread to make it easier.

    Thanks for any help.

    Mike.
     
  2. F&J
    Joined: Apr 5, 2007
    Posts: 13,223

    F&J
    Member

    Here is a Copy from your build thread that you wrote.

    This one post below should give the audience enough info to get this thread going.

    I've never messed with modifying early Ford transmissions, but because you have two issues, meaning won't come out of first while moving, and...it's not going all the way into 2nd.....I can see why you are frustrated.

    COPY:
    "Well, those "pesky little issues" kept me from doing much of anything on the Hot Rod for several months. This is my first offense at hooking up a hydraulic clutch, and it turned out to be a bear for me to deal with. The clutch slave cylinder kept "pumping up" and wouldn't release unless I opened the bleeder valve to let it relax. I didn't know it had to have some "slack" in the pedal, so it took some help from a more experienced friend to sort that out. And I had to take the car to another friend who has vacuum bleeder equipment to get it bled. Thankfully, all that seems to be taken care of and the clutch now appears to be working correctly.

    But I'm not out of the woods yet and I need some help. When I take off in 1st gear, the tranny doesn't want to slide out of 1st gear while those parts are moving. I have to stop the car to get it to release. This has me mystified and I haven't a clue what to do to correct it. And there's another glitch in the tranny. When it feels like I've shifted to 2nd gear, it's not in gear yet. I have to push the lever farther up to get it to actually engage. I suppose that could be a bent shifter fork, which should be easy enough to check for. Other than that, I don't know what to look for.

    The tranny is a '39 box with '48 gears in it, behind an 8BA Flattie. I had read that the later trannies had better gear ratios, and that the gears would interchange. Besides, the gears in my '39 box didn't look very good and I had a spare nice '48 lying around. So a few years back I took both trannies to a friend and mentor who was an older mechanic and had him make the gear swap and check everything out. He worked as a professional mechanic since he got out of the Army at the end of WW-II, so he knew 30's and 40's cars inside and out. He said it all looked good, so I went with it. Now that I have the car running and realize that some things aren't right, he has been deceased for a few years so I can't ask his advice.

    Obviously, I am hoping not to remove the tranny if I don't have to. It contains the rear motor mounts, so pulling it will be a major job. But I'm also aware that I might have no choice in the matter, depending upon what is going on in there. I have the floorboard out (for the umpteenth time), so it's easy to remove the top of the tranny and look inside. To my uneducated eye, everything looks as it should. I can also take pics of the gears and such inside there, if that would help in making a diagnosis of the situation. Hopefully someone here has encountered these problems before and can advise me on what my next steps are. Thanks in advance for any help."

    .
     
    Late to the Party likes this.
  3. F&J
    Joined: Apr 5, 2007
    Posts: 13,223

    F&J
    Member

    Just me thinking about "not coming out of 1st while moving". This makes me think that the clutch is not disengaging all the way. But, if that was true, it would be almost impossible to get into 1st or reverse while stopped. If a clutch is not quite disengaging, you normally have to go into 3rd first, to stop the input shaft with less clashing than trying clash into first (or reverse)

    As I said, I'm not experienced in those Ford shift towers, so I don't know about the different styles of detents. But, if you shift into 2nd, but then you say it needs to get pushed farther...that seems that if there is a detent for 2nd, then the fork is not in the right spot when the "rail" is in that detent? If true, the fork is wrong?... or bent?? But I don't know these Ford parts at all, I'm just going with basic early 3 speed transmission data.

    ..
     
    Late to the Party likes this.
  4. Mart
    Joined: Mar 3, 2001
    Posts: 4,440

    Mart
    Member

    I put a lengthy reply on the other thread. Hopefully it should help you get to the bottom of it.

    Mart.
     
    Late to the Party likes this.

  5. Will Kimble
    Joined: Feb 12, 2007
    Posts: 400

    Will Kimble
    Member

    Yeah, you gotta use the correct 91A shift fork (3"). Even though you have ground it out to fit the later synchronizer sleeve, it is not positioned correctly and will bind things up. If everything else in the tower is stock you should be able to swap to the correct 2/3 fork with no problems.
     
    F&J and Late to the Party like this.
  6. F&J & Mart -- Thanks for your input. It helps a lot.

    Will K. -- Thanks for that info. Maybe I won't need to pull the tranny after all. :D
     
    F&J likes this.
  7. Will K. -- I was able to procure a good 91A-7230 shifter fork today, and I shall proceed to swap it for my incorrect one.

    Everyone else -- This discussion has continued on my build thread, so use the link at the beginning of this thread if you want to see what has been said there. Thanks again for everyone's help.
     
    F&J likes this.
  8. It turns out that ClarkH's suggestion of starting a dedicated thread (this one) about my situation was a very good one indeed. It elicited participation from several knowledgeable folks who had not seen my inquiries on the build thread and found it here. That participation resulted in finding the solution to my problem. So thanks a bunch to Clark, and to the knowledgeable folks who offered information and suggestions based upon their experience. I couldn't have done it without your help, and I really appreciate it.
     
    Dick Stevens and F&J like this.

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