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Quick Question Regarding Dynaflow...


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Hey all,

I own a 1951 Buick Special equipped with the dreaded "Dynaslow", "Dynaslush", or however you prefer to call it. It's honestly not that bad, granted I've only driven it for about a month. But, I was wondering, how much wear would it put on the transmission if I started off in low gear and then proceeded to switch to drive at around 30? You've probably got this question plenty of times at this point, but I couldn't find any other threads regarding this topic. Thanks for your time.

Sincerely,

Jacob

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Jacob,

I have a '52 with Dynaflow and once I put new seals in it I haven't had a bit of trouble out of it. I rather enjoy the smooth take-offs of the non-shifting Dynaflow. Starting off in Low and then shifting to Drive is a perfectly acceptable operation. It's even described in the owners and service manuals. The only thing it cautions against when performing this is to never exceed 40 mph before you shift into Drive.

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Jacob,

My first car was a '55 Special, that's the way I drove it and I drove it hard. I didn't have any trans trouble. I once had my brakes fail and the only way I could get the car slowed down quick enough to keep from running off a bridge into a creek was to drop it into REVERSE at about 40 mph. It wheel hopped and slid the tires a bit but got me slowed down. I then slipped it into drive and went on my way albeit a little more carefully. They are tougher than some people give them credit for.I don't advocate abusing a trans like that but I got away with it.

I currently have a '55 and won't hesitate to use Low gear and shift if I want acceleration. Others will disagree but I haven't read of anyone actually experiencing a failure from the practice. It seems to be mostly anecdotal wisdom not to do it. Maybe someone with first hand experience will weigh in on the subject.

The dynaflow was known to fail the reverse band or anchor pin when abused so I don't advocate dropping into reverse while in forward motion.

Edited by TexasJohn55 (see edit history)
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Dynaflow gets a bad rap undeservedly.

Shifting from low to drive , I do it when I have to start from a stop on a steep grade.

And when driving at low speed , sometimes I leave it in low to keep the cooling fan speed up

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Do not use Low on a regular basis. And when shifting, do so with your foot off the gas, so it goes in gently. Otherwise, you tear things up.

I have driven a '54 with Dynaflow for a lot of years. I use Low for parking lots, stop-and-go freeway driving, and the occasional quick start. Otherwise, Drive is what it was designed to use...

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Do not use Low on a regular basis. And when shifting, do so with your foot off the gas, so it goes in gently. Otherwise, you tear things up.

I have driven a '54 with Dynaflow for a lot of years. I use Low for parking lots, stop-and-go freeway driving, and the occasional quick start. Otherwise, Drive is what it was designed to use...

Good Advice

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While 'helping' my transmission builder tear apart a dynaflow, I told him how I used to repeatedly do full throttle shifts at 65mph (about the time the valves and/or points floated :D ). I was expecting a lecture on abuse, but he just gave me a puzzled look and said "won't hurt it".

I don't do that much anymore...like at one of the Flint meets I declined a trip down the dragstrip since that thing had to get me 1400 miles to home. :eek:

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