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T5 tailshaft swap for dummies, with pictures.

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Zor, Jul 20, 2008.

  1. Zor
    Joined: Aug 4, 2003
    Posts: 287

    Zor
    Member
    from Phoenix

    Last thursday after work I swapped the tailshafts between a world class unit from an F body and a non-world class from an S10 for it's more ideal shifter location. I know this is super simple and easy and it almost seems silly to do a post on it, but for anyone intimidated by the T5 I'm gonna show you how is this is. (even for a dummy like me).

    First off, I didn't use a tech manual, or even an exploded view, so some of this may be incorrect and there may be easier ways to do some of this.

    Let's start out with what you'll need. Find a good world class unit with a good gear ratio. Go to flat ernie's post to see how to identify WC from NWC and a link to a site that identifies your gear ratio from the tag on the trans. Then go to the junkyard (maybe the same one you got your WC unit from) and snag a T5 from an S10. Get out your metric sockets or wrenches, a hammer and drift, some ultra black RTV, degreaser, a few quarts of quality ATF, a little vasaline and some rags and absorbants. And I recommend some safety glasses.

    Clear a spot on the old work bench and sling one of your trannies up there. I use chunks of 2x4 and 4x4 to support it in different postitions.
    [​IMG]

    We'll start by romoving the shifter if you didn't already remove it at the junkyard. Remove the 4 bolts and pull it out. Note the plastic bushing that the shifter ball rides in, I'd pull it out and set it aside so it doesn't fall out and go under your workbench later.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Then go ahead and drive out the roll pin that holds the shifter assembly to the shaft. Make sure the gearbox and tailshaft are well supported and drive it all the way through.
    [​IMG]

    Now you can remove the 8 bolts that secure the tail housing to the gearbox. Note in the picture the tag I'm holding. That's the tag with the id number for that particular tranny. All the jucy info for the trans is on that tag. The numbers on the case don't tell you anything important.
    [​IMG]

    Before we continue on I recommend putting some pig mat or other absorbant or a pan under the trans to catch the residual fluid that's still living in there. Once those bolts are out (make sure you get all 8) go ahead and tap on the tailhousing to seperate it from the gearbox. I use a plastic mallet since it's aluminum. If you don't have a deadblow or something soft try putting a piece of wood between your hammer and the case before wacking away. I also wouldn't reccomend prying since it's soft and there's no gasket just RTV so you don't want to scar that mating surface.
    [​IMG]

    Now that the seal between the gearbox and tail housing is broken you can slowly pull the two apart. Keep an eye on the shifter assembly while you do this. The shaft slides out and stays with the lid on the gearbox and the rest of the assembly stays with the tail housing. When these to pieces seperate the spring and ball from the shifter assembly will try to take off and hide under your bench, don't let this happen.
    [​IMG]

    Now that we have those apart we can set the tail housing asid for now and get the lid off the gearbox. Remove the bolts from the lid (note 2 of them ar dowelled). Once all the bolts are out tap on the lid to break the seal between the lid and the gearbox. I'm pointing at a good place to tap. Remember gently tap and no prying.
    [​IMG]

    Once the seal is broken push the lid toward the drainplug sid of the trans. Just use your thumbs. You can see where I'm pushing with my left thumb and if I wasn't tiking a picture my right thumb would be pushing where the shifter shaft comes out of the lid. After you push it all the way over the cover should easily rise out of the gearbox.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    OK that's pretty much it for that one, now you can repeat the process on the other unit. Now for a little intermission, you can see that the trans in the pictures so far (the S10 unit) is a filthy mess, so I took it to the car wash and pressure washed it which I should have done before I started. And we should also discuss the oil flinger for the overdrive cluster. There are different flingers for different tailshafts and the casting in the tail housings is different. If mismatched the flinger and the housing might not get along and the gearbox won't seat fully to the tailhousing, or you might not get the proper amount of oil slung on the gear clluster and prematurely fail your new T5. So all this bing said, use the plastic flinger from the trans that the tailhousing came from, or make sure that the one in the other trans is IDENTICAL.

    The white plastic piece is the flinger.
    [​IMG]
    Here you can see the differences in the tailhousings. (WC on the right and NWC on the left) and in the next picure you can see a steel bushing or washer that aides in directing flow. I don't know which T5's have this set up, but if your tailhousing has it make sure you keep track of it and you remember to put it back before you do final assembly.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Now I don't know if it is necessary, but I swapped the shifter shafts in the lids. I don't know if the shift forks or the assembly in the lid are different. So just to be safe I put the T5 (shorter shaft) shaft in the lid from the WC unit. Just drive the pin out and pull the shaft out of that cluster of stuff up there, rinse, repeat and put the shafts in the other lids. You might want to take a picture for a reference of how it should look when you're done.
    [​IMG]

    OK now that everything is disasembled it's time to get everything clean and prepare for final assembly. I used some engine degreaser and sprayed anything that had built up crap and the bottom of the gearbox to get anything that lives below drainplug level out. I just pulled the drainplug and flushed it with degreaser. Then used compressed air to get any dry crap and dust out. Then gave everything a light rinse with clean ATF to get rid of all the degreaser and anything else left behind. Once everything was sanitary I put the tailhousing on to make sure that everything fit flush and I didn't have any oil flinger interference. I held the small steel washer/bushing for the flinger to the tailhousing with vasaline.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Now go ahead and clean all your mating surfaces. This is critical since there's no gaskets, just RTV. Once they're all clean you can lay a bead of RTV around the top of the gearbox then let it tack up for about 30 seconds to a minute.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Set the lid on the gearbox offset to the drainplug side the same way it came off. Line up the forks with the slots in the gears and ease the lid onto the gearbox. Once it's lowered slide it over to the center and try not to let it hit the mating surface with the RTV on it. Once centered ease it down to it's final resting place. Bolt it down finger tight starting with the 2 dowelled bolts first, then install the rest finger tight. Now I put the drift where the roll pin goes and shifted the trans and rotated the input shaft to make sure everthing was lined up correctly between the lid and the gearbox.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
    crozch likes this.
  2. Zor
    Joined: Aug 4, 2003
    Posts: 287

    Zor
    Member
    from Phoenix

    I had to go to the internet now and find torque specs for this stuff. I'm really cautious with aluminum stuff, so the lid bolts get 6-11 Ft.Lbs and the tailhousing to the gearbox bolts get 20-45 Ft.Lbs. and torque them in some kind of alternating pattern like in the picture of the lid.
    [​IMG]

    Put the spring in the shifter assembly and then the ball. I use vasaline to hold this stuff together. I also started the roll pin in the shifter assembly to make it easier once things are lined up. Go ahead and RTV the back surface of the gearbox now. Then put the trans in neutral with the drift and put the shifter assembly into the top of the tail housing in the neutral position and hold it down with the spring compressed. Hold all this together and slide the tailhousing onto the tailshaft and the shifter shaft into the assembly in the top of the tailhousing. Now it took some fiddlin around but I got the holes to line up and drove the roll pin back in place. Then I put the bolts back in and torqued to the desired spec. Also torqued in some sort of criss cross pattern.
    [​IMG]

    Go ahead and throw the shifter back on there (don't forget the plastic bushing) and you're ready to weld a handl on there that works for your application and make sure you pick out a good shift nob to top it off.

    That pretty much wraps things up. (oh yeah, those torque specs are from an unkown source not a tech manual, so they might be wrong, but I din't strip any holes)
     
  3. Zor
    Joined: Aug 4, 2003
    Posts: 287

    Zor
    Member
    from Phoenix

    Oh yeah, this can also be applied in the junkyard. Just don't do the cleaning and final touches on the final assembly. If they have a WC unit with a known desireable gear ratio and an S10 T5 in the same junkyard proceed as follows. Pull each trans from there respected vehicles, go find some full size work van in there and set up shop. do the swap, grab whatever extra parts you need and go pay for one transmission. By the way I got my WC unit from a local tranny shop for 250$ and the S10 tranny came from the U-pull it in Daytona last wednesday for 80$. There's plenty more in there for the same price and I saw a coulple of F-bodys but didn't bother looking since I already had my WC trans.
     
  4. Congested
    Joined: Oct 15, 2006
    Posts: 238

    Congested
    Member

    Thanks, thats one of the things I need to do on my list.
     
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  5. Great tech and thanks for the pics. What did you do to make the speedo work? Or was the Camaro speedo gear in the correct position for the S-10 tailshaft?
     
  6. Flat Ernie
    Joined: Jun 5, 2002
    Posts: 8,408

    Flat Ernie
    Tech Editor

    No - speedo gears won't line up. Inliners.org has a good piece on moving the speedo gear to line up with the S10 hole.Good tech. There is, however, no need to swap shifter forks/rails from one top to the other. There is functionally no difference between WC and NWC shifter tops. You can bolt the S10 shifter top right onto the Camaro T5 body - if you're doing this in a work van in the junkyard, save yourself some hassle and time - pop the S10 lid on as-is.Not super clear in your tech, but the shifter block, spring, & ball MUST be in place when you put the tailshaft on and you almost need 3 hands to do it. It will be obvious if you don't do it...Another good tip in here, although not stated, but pictured, is use the smallest bit of RTV on the sealing surfaces. If you use too much & it oozes out, it can interfere with shifting (one of the warranty issues on early T5 - factory used too much). I use Loctite 518 sealant instead of RTV.
     
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2008
  7. Zor
    Joined: Aug 4, 2003
    Posts: 287

    Zor
    Member
    from Phoenix

    What ernie said. I'm not running a speedo, just a tach. And ernie is right about the shifter spring and ball assembly and needing 3 hands, it took some fiddlin but I got it done with two.
     
  8. Great post Zor. Seeing it done will certainly help... if I can ever find a trans.

    I'm hunting a World Class T5 from an '86-'89 V8 Camaro or Firebird.

    Looking for one of these tag numbers:

    1352-159
    1352-160
    1352-175
    1352-176
    1352-177
    1352-195
    1352-196

    Thanks, JH
    <!-- / message --><!-- sig -->
     
  9. EXcellent DJ!
     
  10. You can take take the shifter apart and use the arm off of a Ford T-5 if you need one that goes straight up. You might break one of the tabs off but a couple of tack welds and you are good. I used a Camaro box with a S-10 tail piece in my wagon.
     
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2008
  11. nailheadroadster
    Joined: Jun 7, 2006
    Posts: 1,523

    nailheadroadster
    Member

    Zor - Good job and great pics! Thanks for taking the time to do the pics and the write up.

    Flat Ernie - Thanks for the additional info.
     
  12. Flat Ernie
    Joined: Jun 5, 2002
    Posts: 8,408

    Flat Ernie
    Tech Editor

    I strongly recommend using an aftermarket shifter with positive stops over stock shifters. The stock shifters are a marginal design and one of the leading causes of bent/cracked shift forks and damaged synchros...You should be able to adapt the commonly available (and cheap) Ford shifters to the GM tailhousing...
     
  13. Zor, Thanks a bunch! I am saving this one because I need to do it for a future project.
     
  14. Drive Em
    Joined: Aug 25, 2006
    Posts: 1,748

    Drive Em
    Member

    I did the S-10 tail swap onto a Mustang T-5 tranny for my '63 Ranchero. The S-10 tail put the speedo in a different place than the Mustang shaft. I measured the O.D. of where the gear rode on the Mustang shaft and built a small steel bushing with the correct o.d. and the i.d. of the shaft where the gear would now ride. I split the bushing in two, and TIG welded it to the main shaft in a couple of places. The gear slipped on, and was held in place with the factory clip. The speedo works great.
     
    gonzo likes this.
  15. Ice man
    Joined: Mar 12, 2008
    Posts: 968

    Ice man
    Member

    I'm gona assume that you need the factory gear lube. I could only get this stuff from Chevy. Very expensive down here. Its very light Wt. But didn't want to mess up with putting in heavy stuff and messing some thing up. Any recomenditions, or advise on that one. Ice man
     
  16. Abomination
    Joined: Oct 5, 2006
    Posts: 6,692

    Abomination
    Member

    I don't think this is posted anywhere on the web!

    ~Jason
     
  17. beater32
    Joined: Mar 23, 2008
    Posts: 330

    beater32
    Member

    Just what i've been looking for.Thanks for taking the time!
     
  18. Truckedup
    Joined: Jul 25, 2006
    Posts: 3,838

    Truckedup
    Member

    This is how ya move the speedo gear on a NWC when swapping to an S10 tailpiece.Mock up the tranny with the tailhousing in place,using a sharp triangle shaped file,spin the shaft while carefully holding the file in the center of the speedo drive hole,it's needs to be very close,but not exact. .You can use a making pen if ya like.Then take off the tailhousing,estimate where to make the new hole for the speedo drive gear retaining clip by looking at the the existing speedo drive hole.The shaft is very hard,I use a small stone in a Dremel tool.Ok,now make up some shims,it's about .035 of shim material needed,18 guage steel and brass is what I used.The shim needs a slot to allow clearance for the retaining clip.You see the hose clamp in the photo? That's to squeeze the shim to allow the gear to slide on.JB weld won't work in the long run,use a system like I described.My speedo has been fine for a year,no problems.
    [​IMG]
     
  19. Oscar73
    Joined: Jan 23, 2006
    Posts: 115

    Oscar73
    Member
    from Seattle

    Exactly what I needed to see. Just picked up an S10 T5 for the tailshaft to swap onto the WC T5 I picked up early from a Camaro, so I can toss that compound low 4 speed outta my 60-something pickup, and actually drive the thing on the freeway with those 4:11 gears. Great photos and advice! Now, which clutch disc works behind a 292 I-6 w/ the T5?
     
  20. Flat Ernie
    Joined: Jun 5, 2002
    Posts: 8,408

    Flat Ernie
    Tech Editor

  21. Zor
    Joined: Aug 4, 2003
    Posts: 287

    Zor
    Member
    from Phoenix

    Tman, thanks, I figured it was time I contributed something useful.

    Abomination, I didn't see it anywhere either, so I thought I'd throw it up to show everyone that it's very easy it just sounds like a lot of work. The worst part is what Flat Ernie said about getting the shifter back on the shaft with the tail housing.

    Oscar73, my application is the exact same (1964 chevy C10 with a 230 I6), the clutch fix is simple. Count the splines on the input shaft of the WC unit. Also measure the OD of the shaft, example 14 spline 1 1/8" od. Then measure your flywheel probably 10" maybe 11". Call up dial-a-clutch or another huge clutch distributor and tell them you need a clutch for a whatever input shaft by whatever flywheel. Or find a good clutch shop and they might have it on the shelf. There's a place near me in Jacksonville that had it on the shelf. And if it's good the pressure plate can stay and you'll just have to buy the clutch disc.
     
  22. SlowandLow63
    Joined: Sep 18, 2004
    Posts: 5,953

    SlowandLow63
    Member
    from Central NJ

    I assume this goes basically hand in hand with A Ford T5 getting a S10 tail? Can we somehow attatch this to Ernies thread? Good stuff, thanks for taking the time. Now I just need to find an S10 tail.
     
  23. Dirty2
    Joined: Jun 13, 2004
    Posts: 8,903

    Dirty2
    Member


    Now thats what I needed to know !
     
  24. Abomination
    Joined: Oct 5, 2006
    Posts: 6,692

    Abomination
    Member

    You're the first, man! :D

    ~Jason



     
  25. jerry
    Joined: Mar 2, 2001
    Posts: 3,474

    jerry
    Member

    Only thing I can see that needs to be stressed is to remove the roll pin from the tailshaft before assembly. If you don't it will be hell to get it back apart if you need to!


    jerry
     
  26. brpowel4
    Joined: Jul 31, 2006
    Posts: 107

    brpowel4
    Member

    Awesome! i getting ready to do this myself. i need to find some donor transmissions though. Thanks for the tech.

    Bryan
     
  27. Flat Ernie
    Joined: Jun 5, 2002
    Posts: 8,408

    Flat Ernie
    Tech Editor

    Yep.
    I'll stick it in the thread of links in the tech archive later...
     
  28. Oscar73
    Joined: Jan 23, 2006
    Posts: 115

    Oscar73
    Member
    from Seattle

    Kool! Figgered it was somethin' like that... the clutch/pressure plate only has about 1K on it, so I was hoping I could just toss another disc in. Does the old Chevy yoke fit the tailshaft? I grabbed the S10 driveshaft, so I've got that at least if all goes wacky.

    And thanks for the speedo tech, too... it's all coming together!
     
  29. Scott
    Joined: Dec 23, 2004
    Posts: 2,684

    Scott
    Member

    Im running mobil1 15/50 fully synthetic in an older wc as suggested by a racer friend. works great

    Great thread by the way!!!!
     
  30. Truckedup
    Joined: Jul 25, 2006
    Posts: 3,838

    Truckedup
    Member

    Jack Halton wrote that article,I knew him well,he died before completing the project.on the speedo, I tried the epoxy,it didn't work for me so I modified his idea into the tight shim fit.
     

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