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64Bonneville

64 Bonneville Jetaway Transmission Problem

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I'm having problems with my 64 Bonneville's Super Hydra-matic 315 Dual Coupling Jetaway Transmission. It is "burping" about a half cup of fluid out of the dip stick tube each time put it in park and turn off the motor.:eek: I have put in new fluid, and checked it in neutral after driving in all gears, to ensure the fluid is at the proper level. Does anyone know exactly how much fluid this transmission holds, and/or have any ideas what could be wrong?:confused:

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Your vehicle is not a Classic Car as defined by the CCCA. I think you'd get better viewing and response to your question if you posted it in the Pontiac section.

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I'm not sure if your Pontiac transmission is the same as the turbo 400 in my Buick but I have seen the turbo 400 do that when the breather is plugged. I believe there are two. One is a short piece of bent pipe on the right side near the back of the trans and the other is above the pump inside the bell housing (if I remember right...... is been a couple of decades).

If you have a service manual for yours you should be able to look up where the breather(s) is/are.

HTH's

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315 Controlled Coupling Hydramatic (Hydramatic Division name-they made it) or Strato Flight-and later Super Hydramatic by Pontiac, and known to Olds people as the first Jetaway.

In Super Hydramatic the capacity is 18 pts.

I have never seen a controlled coupling puke because the secondary dumped to fast. The factory says draining and refilling of the S coupling happens in four tenths of a second and for racing we used to modify that by half.

I have seen the dip stick blow out of controlled coupling P 315 , "D" type single and dual range Hydramatic, Turbo 350 & 400 Hydramatic's because they were overfilled and have seen a T-400 with a problem similar because the vent tube was blocked.

Don

Edited by helfen (see edit history)

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There should be a baffle at the top of the dip stick to prevent this. Newer cars have a neoprene rubber baffle, in the fifties it was metal. Not sure what yours had originally but if there is nothing, you could stop at a parts store or transmission shop and get a rubber one.

Second, there is a big difference in fluid level between hot and cold. If you filled it when the car was cold, even though it was running, you might be surprised to find it very over filled after a 30 minute drive.

You should always check the level when the car is good and hot. If you check it before a trip as long as there is some on the stick you are OK.

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There can also be a "rebuild, dry transmission" total fluid capacity and a "filter service, drop the oil pan" fluid capacity. Possibly even one for if the main fluid coupling was drained.

Just because the engine coolant temperature is at "operating temperature" does NOT mean that other attached components are also at that temperature. It can take 10 full miles of road driving at highway speed to get the transmission AND engine motor oil to match the engine's coolant temperature. When the '84-era Corvettes came out with temperature displays for this, that's when I became fully aware of this situation.

On the later THM350 and THM400 trans dipsticks, there is the "HOTXXXXXCOLD" area, but below that is usually a few dimples, which is the "COLD" fluid spec at 0 degrees F. That's how much the fluid can contact at such low temperatures AND is indicative of how much it can expand with higher ambient temperatures.

In the later 1980s, there were some issues with GM automatics, in pickup trucks being "used" or in towing situations, puking fluid out the filler tube under high-load, high ambient temperature conditions . . . but with transmissions which were otherwise filled to the correct levels. End result was hot atf hitting hot exhaust manifolds and other hot engine parts! "Fix" was the trans dipstick with the rubber seal and "fold-over" lock (rather than the normal top of the dipstick). This would keep the fluid under the vehicle, coming out of the normal vent systems. Plus verifying that the transmissions hadn't been over-filled with the recommended fluid.

IF you can get a reliable number on the "filter service re-fill" amount of fluid, then you can get a new pan gasket and do a filter change (even if you just remove the filter and back-flush it with some brake clean) simulation. Then refill the pan with the recommended amount of fluid. OR, you might fill the pan up to just below the gasket line to see how much it might take -- the fluid level would NEVER be above that line in normal, active use, but possibly can if it might sit for a good while, at which time the integrity of the shift shaft seals can come into play. Either way, when you put the pan back on, you'll have better confidence that the pan has enough fluid in it. This could be termed a "hands-on" approach to things. Key thing is that when the trans is operating, there's enough fluid in the pan so the front pump will not "suck air" for any reason.

Similarly, with the pan off, you might eyeball how far the filter sticks down below the gasket line and see how much fluid it takes to keep it submerged in fluid.

During these checks, with the pan off, you might gently shoot some air through the vent tubes to see of they are open.

I do tend to concur that you might run it until it quits puking, then ensure that the fluid and trans are fully up to normal operating temperature and check the fluid in the recommended fashion, with the engine running. Some OEMs recommend running the shifter through all of the gears, pausing temporarily in each position to gain "full apply" in that position, before returning to either "N" or "P" for the final "hot" check at hot base idle.

It might also be appropriate to ask if the fluid has ever shown any signs of fluid overheating? Or if there appears to be any slippage when each gear engages? And that the car acts "normal" at highway speeds, with respect to engine rpm not being too high for a given road speed? Just thinking of things which might be adding unusual heat into the trans' operation.

Hopefully, you'll get something figured out as to why it's happening.

Please keep us posted . . .

Thanks,

NTX5467

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Thanks, "Helfen","Rusty_OToole" and NTX5467. Your experience and advise is appreciated. I have found a new filter and gasket set on E-Bay, and it should be here in a couple days. I also found and purchased both a dealership shop diagnostic manual and a service manual on CD for the 1960-1964 Pontiac Jetaway Controlled Coupling Hydra-Matic Transmission. I would like to know where I could purchase a new or better dip stick that would be appropriate for this transmission as well. The metal/rubber baffle is just as questionably seviceable as is the uncertain length and markings on my current dip stick. I will check the vent lines, fluid levels, and operation, "per above" advise when I replace the filter and gasket, then I will get back to you.

Thanks again all, Dave

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Thanks, "Helfen","Rusty_OToole" and NTX5467. Your experience and advise is appreciated. I have found a new filter and gasket set on E-Bay, and it should be here in a couple days. I also found and purchased both a dealership shop diagnostic manual and a service manual on CD for the 1960-1964 Pontiac Jetaway Controlled Coupling Hydra-Matic Transmission. I would like to know where I could purchase a new or better dip stick that would be appropriate for this transmission as well. The metal/rubber baffle is just as questionably seviceable as is the uncertain length and markings on my current dip stick. I will check the vent lines, fluid levels, and operation, "per above" advise when I replace the filter and gasket, then I will get back to you.

Thanks again all, Dave

_________________________________________________________________

Hi Dave, I don't want to sound to pedantic so please forgive me. It's just me but the trans is just called P 315 Controlled Coupling Hydramatic. I don't know why everyone in the world refers this trans in a Cadillac or Pontiac as a Jetaway. Jetaway is Olds terminology. But in answer to the question why don't you give Frank's Pontiac parts a call. They are at WWWfrankspontiacparts.com . If they don't have it they might know where to find it. Remember this trans is in all 1956-1963 Cadillac's and some 64 Cadillac. 1956 Pontiac star Chief and all Pontiac's from 1957-1960, and 61-64 StarChief and Bonneville. Oldsmobile from 1956 in super 88 and 98 and all Oldsmobiles from 1957-1960. There are some case differences through the years.

Another thing I would like to add is when this thread got started I went out to my garage to check the dip stick on one of my Controlled coupling hydros and also a Roto and T-400 trans. On the Roto hydro the dip stick umbrella/baffle could be slid up or down ( it's made just like the controlled coupling one ) causing a inaccurate reading if not noticed and repaired.

Also in the field working years ago a guy with a T400 came in the shop who overfilled the trans and the the only way we found the dip stick was to look for the trail of ATF it left behind. It was stuck between the rt ft fender and the radiator core support---lot of pressure there!

Don

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Usually, the dipstick and the dipstick tube need to be a "matched set". In many cases, in the area where the dipstick is stamped with the type of fluid and the level marks, there could be a GM part number (6 or 7 digit, for that timeframe) also stamped on the dipstick for identification purposes. It's also possible that their might be some service literature with illustrations of the dimension between the cap and the "FULL" mark, but that might take some digging OR could be in some older aftermarket "transmission shop" service ID information.

As I recall, many of the older dipsticks had the "cap" locked in with "stakes" on the edges of the dipstick itself. With time and age, I suspect the slot in the cap and/or the stakes could have wear issues, which could make any level checks inaccurate.

Please keep us posted as to your progress.

Thanks,

NTX5467

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:)"Cobravii", "helfin", "Rusty O'Toole", "NTX5467", and "coldwar": I'm Finally getting back to you guys about my 64 Bonneville transmission problem. My gasket and filter that I ordered online from Merlinn came friday, the 31st. Saturday, I drove it about 25 miles to my inlaws where a friend and I worked on it. He's owned some older pontiacs and is a reasonably good mechanic. Well, as soon as he got in the car with me to drive the last 10 miles to my inlaws, he suggested that the real problem may likely be one that he had found out years ago on his 69 Pontiac. As I drove with him, the transmission was "burping" fluid out of the dipstick tube onto the exhaust quite frequently; and the transmission was laboring into gears. He said that his exhaust was too close to his transmission pan, and that caused the fluid to overheat, expand and "burp" out the dipstick tube! We arrived safely at my inlaws, pulled under the shelter and popped the hood to take a look. To my suprise and hopefull relief, we saw that the bend of the dipstick tube was merely 3/4 an inch from the exhaust, just below the manifold! Needless to say that the fluid remaining in the pan was extremely hot. We took off the pan, and cleaned it to put on the new gasket and filter. We noticed that the bottom of the pan was free of metal, but that it had a thin coating of deteriorated material from the clutch plate from where it had been exposed to the super hot fluid. We also noted that for the filter to be submerged into the fluid; that the fluid would have to be at least 1 and 1/2 inches above the gasket, making it about 2 inches above the tube elbow and correctly at the top of the 1/3 inch long emblem between the "ADD" and "FULL" words on the dipstick. I found the refill capacity (from the CD that I bought online) for the transmission pan and torque converter drained, to be 9 and 1/2 quarts. After we got the gasket and filter and pan back on; next was how to "temporarily fix" the overheating problem caused by the exhaust. We were pulled under a shelter, in the dirt, and up on my car ramps. It was getting late, we were too far from town to go buy any exhaust parts, and my father-in-law didn't have a mig welder. My friend suggested that I cut the exhaust just past the weld below the "Y" of the manifold 1/2 through; and then comletely through just in front of wher it runs above the crossmember along side of the transmission tail mount, so to be able to pull it adequately away from the dipstick tube. This I did with a hacksaw.(We didnt have a sawzall:(! After that was done, it was well dark, but I was fairly convinced that when I was able to come back the following Saturday, with an exhaust patch and coupling, that I would have it back running and the "Problem Solved"!;) So, this past Saturday, my wife and I drove to her folks home, and I patched up the exhaust; finished filling the fluid with some "TransMedic", then backed old Bonnie off the ramps for a spin down the road to get her up to temp. She drove like the boat that she is and shifted smoothly. There was no "burping" of fluid; and my temporary exhaust repair worked fine. Yesterday I drove her to church and then to work at the airport with my wife. Still shifting fine and no fluid "burping" or leaking!:D As for the dipstick, I still need to find or make a rubber grumet for the end cap. I also learned that after running the car to get it and the transmission up to temp; you should let it run at idle for 3-4 minutes in neutral or park, before checking the transmission fluid level. When I checked it about a minute or two after running down the road and back Saturday night, the fluid was halfway up the stick!:confused: I checked two more times and shone a light down in the tube. Only after about 4 minutes did the fluid sink back down to an accurate reading on the stick. I wonder if this is normal, or if the check ball in the end of my tube is sticking? Well, thanks all for your interrest and help. I'll post a photo of "Bonnie Blue" if I can, she's still in the "gray", though! Primer I mean!;)

post-79195-143138690312_thumb.jpg

post-79195-143138690315_thumb.jpg

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Thanks for the update and neat pictures! I'm glad things are working better!

Enjoy!

NTX5467

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This was an interesting story. I have owned and do own cars with the dual coupling (olds, pont, cad) and t-400 (olds, buick, cad, chevy) and never had one to burp fluid. I hope your exhaust mods do the trick. Something to look at if that ever happens to me. Expect the unexpected?

Ron

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The filler tube on your transmission should have a large check ball inside the bottom of it where it screws into the pan.

But check to see if your vent tube is not restricted.

If you have the check ball style tube (I have 1 if you need one) and your vent isn't clogged, you may have an internal problem which is causing pressure to be present where it is not supposed to be present. It is probably because the internal seals are just not sealing efficiently.

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Thanks "Sevep"

I do have a check ball in the bottom of the tube and the tube is not restricted. The steel ball is approx 8mm in diameter. it is hed in place by two metal prongs attatched to the inside of the tube. I was wondering if the check ball might be worn to where fluid gets past it to easily? Anyway, it's not really "burping" out the tube anymore. The exhaust is still too close to the tube in my opinion. Its really only 1 1/2 inches awau from the elbow. I am going to buy some 2"titanium/lava header wrap and wrap the header past where the tube is close; and also where the exhaust runs up along side the drivetrain and over the crossmember very close to the rear passenger seat floorboard. One other thing is that the dipstick is missing the rubber stopper under the metal tube cap. The rubber grummet that is fixed along the dipstick about 6 inches down from the cap is there though. If you have any more suggestions let me know.

Thanks, Dave

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Dave, you know the distance from the exhaust pipe to the dip stick tube is about 1-3 inches and only in one small part. You did say you put in 9 1/2 quarts, when the factory service manual requires 18 Pt. so just remember you are over 1/2 quart and some trans will puke even that on WOT.

Don

______________________________________________________

I think I would trust the service manual over the dip stick

Edited by helfen (see edit history)

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I have rebuilt and filled MANY of these transmissions and have put up to 14 quarts of fluid in them. The usually take a minimun of 12 quarts of fluid.

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I just took apart the old filter. Wow! It sure was caked with burnt black RTV! How could someone be so foolish!? The exhaust is more like 1+ inches away from the tube. I also made a temp heat protective wrap on the tube in that area, until I get the header wrap. I also made an improvised rubber grummet for the dipstick cap. If my stick is correct, which I believe it is; and if it is correctly seating, then, according to how it reads on the stick at proper temp, I have the correct amount of fluid in it at 9 1/2 qts. The fluid just reaches the top of the 1/3" long small cylinder-like icon, just below the "Full Hot Oil" words. Do you know anything about possible wear or sticking of the metal check ball?

Thanks, Dave

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I have never had a problem with that check ball. You can test it if you have the tube in your hand.

The RTV may be a cause of your problem.

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