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blue63ram

1963 Rambler wagon -overdrive trans question

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I just purchased a 1963 Rambler wagon and the previous owner had replaced the manual trans with a different manual trans that he got from the back of a old trans shop. He didn't have any idea of what this trans came out of, but it did fit and shift with a floor conversion kit, thou not as smoothly as I would like.. I went underneath today and found that this trans is diffinently NOT the original model and it appears to have several electric wires coming out of a cylinder from the side of the trans. Could this possibly be a 3 speed manual with the electric overdrive model and if so, is it possible to hook up the overdrive to a switch to activate it.

Does anyone have a picture or diagram of what the overdrive trans looks like. I'm very new to Ramblers and I know very little about these cars, but am very willing to learn. Any help will greatly be appreciated.

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The late fifties and early sixties Ramblers did use the T-96 BorgWarner three-speed stick tranny with or without the overdrive. The first gear is not synchronized but 2nd and 3rd gear are. That cylinder you are referring to with the wires coming out of it is the overdrive solenoid. It's BW R11 model overdrive unit. The same overdrive was used in Studebakers for years and I believe in Packards too.

You need to get a service manual for your car, but I'm pretty sure overdrive diagrams for the BW units are available on the web. Some more information about the ramblers can be found at www.amcencyclopedia.org I believe. You also should google the AMC mail list and go to www.amcforum.com to get access to several hundred AMC guys, many of whom have old Ramblers.

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I am a member of the amcrc car club. The amcforum as stated will get you a lot of great info. I also own a '62 Rambler S.W. "Keep on Ramblin"

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You can wire the solenoid through a switch on the dash and have OD in any forward gear.

Not a good idea to use it in low from a dead stop (hard on the clutch).

It also acts like a hill brake when you stop on a hill with it engaged.

If you want it to only operate above 25mph or so, you can include the governor in the line.

It is an easy way to check to see if the OD works, before buying all of the other parts.

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Coley,

How do you wire it, directly from the battery to switch to cly. or do I have to use relays, etc. I will try your suggestion first and see if it works, but I do have to know how to hook it up. thanks

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On 2/7/2010 at 9:09 AM, Coley said:

You can wire the solenoid through a switch on the dash and have OD in any forward gear.

Not a good idea to use it in low from a dead stop (hard on the clutch).

It also acts like a hill brake when you stop on a hill with it engaged.

If you want it to only operate above 25mph or so, you can include the governor in the line.

It is an easy way to check to see if the OD works, before buying all of the other parts.

 

Coley, Wouldn't having the OD on while stopped on a hill be worst than having it in OD stopped on a level road?

Also , what I've heard is that the bearings or gears get damaged because of the excessive amount of torque.

Also, OD in 1st gear would be equivalent to 2nd gear in standard....wouldn't that stall the engine in a hill?

 

It seems to me that there are 2 main aspects here:  Engine and weight....which is all to do with the single main aspect of torque.

 

weight:

However, I think this applies more to heavier cars and big engines (R10 was used on some big heavy cars like the ford 427 on the 1600kg/3700lbs  Ford Galaxy ).

The OD was also used on Jeeps/willys. For the 'light' 1100kg/2200lbs Rambler american, I imagine using OD in 1st gear from a complete stop isn't as catastrophic as crushing gears or rollers. But do notice that a Rambler american carrying 6 slightly overweight people does weight as much as the galaxy without passengers.

 

Engine power: I also think that the torque of the engine also is important here. Those high torque engines with massive clutch plates are able to transmit a large amount of torque to the transmission and hence the overdrive. Thus the engine is basically stronger than the OD.

But with the much smaller flat head inline 6 195.5cu engines on the rambler americans, I think that indeed, the clutch would slip instead of the engine forcing that huge amount of torque through the clutch rollers of the OD.

 

Again, this is all suposition from my end, as I haven't actually tested doing this...It would be nice to know if other people have actually done what some many people are suggesting...can you verify that it is actually possible to use the OD in 1st with no obvious damage? Iv'e even heard of people using the OD transmission in light drag racing

 

 

However, for about $60 to $100(shipping included), you can buy the governor from ebay, so it's probably not worth causing excessive amount of torque on the transmission for $60. The easier you are on the parts, the more they will last right?

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On 1/15/2010 at 8:01 PM, blue63ram said:

I just purchased a 1963 Rambler wagon and the previous owner had replaced the manual trans with a different manual trans that he got from the back of a old trans shop. He didn't have any idea of what this trans came out of, but it did fit and shift with a floor conversion kit, thou not as smoothly as I would like.. I went underneath today and found that this trans is diffinently NOT the original model and it appears to have several electric wires coming out of a cylinder from the side of the trans. Could this possibly be a 3 speed manual with the electric overdrive model and if so, is it possible to hook up the overdrive to a switch to activate it.

Does anyone have a picture or diagram of what the overdrive trans looks like. I'm very new to Ramblers and I know very little about these cars, but am very willing to learn. Any help will greatly be appreciated.

 

If you like, there is a series/playlist on youtube  by 'Old Crow's Classic Cars' with the complete dissasembly, assembly, study and how the OD works if your really want to understand and know everything about them.

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