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63 Riviera Dynaflow rebuild DIY


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So, I want to DIY rebuild the dynaflow on the 63 Riv I just bought.  1st time tranny rebuild.

Couple of questions;

1. best kit purchase source options from those with experience?

2. I need to rebuild and/or replace the torque converter right?

     Separate rebuild kit or buy ?

3. Manual/guide source or other resource? Perhaps video?

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I guess the first question is the most basic: why?  Does it leak, not function well, etc.?

 

Dunno that there's any reason to replace the torque converter unless there's a problem with this one.  It might make sense to replace the seals if it's already out of the car, but I don't know that you need to operate from the assumption it's bad.

 

The 1963 service manual has a lot of info on rebuilding/repairing this Dynaflow.  That's a good place to start your education.

Edited by KongaMan (see edit history)
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The service manual is very easy to follow for rebuild instructions.   The problem is you wont know what you need until you break into it.

 

The easiest way to do an automatic transmission, remove the converter, lay it on the bench.  Then removing one component at a time, front pump first, stack them on to the converter as you remove them.  They way everything stays in order.  Inspect all seals , bushings and springs as you go.  Make note if specific parts you may need.  When you order the rebuild kit make sure those parts are included.  Most rebuild kits do NOT include bushings of any sort, just basic seals and clutch/steels.

 

The torque converter should be fine, no need to replace unless you had problems with it.

 

I didnt rebuild my trans, its the only thing I didnt do.  I tore it down and found all the bushings bad and felt it better to let a pro deal with it because there are so many different variations, sizes and applications i didnt want to order the wrong stuff.

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I think it would be a good idea for who ever is contemplating overhauling a Dynaflow (Triple Turbine in '63) to take a good look at the actual make up of one of them before ever thinking about tearing into one.  They are NOT a typical automatic transmission.  

 

I've copied and pasted the following.  If you want to dive into a transmission that has multiple elements in the torque converter, "you're a better man than I Kunga Din."

I know a few older gemntlemen around here who can overhaul a TH400 with their eyes closed but won't even talk to me about overhauling a Dynaflow.  If they won't do it, I'm not getting close to one.

Ed

 

The Dynaflow’s reliance on its torque converter was both its greatest strength and most pronounced weakness. It employed a converter with five elements, including two stators. These caused turbulence during all phases of operation, including the coupling phase. The vehicle itself started in high gear, relying on the converter to boost acceleration. The process was slow, earning the transmission the nickname “Dynaslush” among drivers, due to its lack of initial get-up-and-go. Despite these misgivings, drivers did enjoy the smooth acceleration the design allowed.

In 1953 Buick went back to the drawing board, releasing the Dynaflow in a new Twin Turbine design. They reduced the number of stators to one, added twin turbines, and linked one turbine to the ring gear and the other to the planetary gears. This boosted engine performance while retaining the trademark smoothness of its operation. The Twin Turbine also included a rear pump, which allowed for push starting.

The transmission was refined again in 1955, this time gaining a variable-pitch stator that further improved overall performance. In 1958 the designers went to the drawing board once more, adding a third turbine, a new stator element with two blade positions, and a passing gear option.

 

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Another consideration on a Dynaflow is this: a complete rebuild kit alone might run you $350.  There's a fellow not far from me who will rebuild the unit for $1000.  In that situation, the marginal price drops to $650.  The question then becomes if your time and his expertise are worth $650.  Only you can answer that.

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Most DON'T KNOW that the DynaFlow converter comes apart in pieces. It's unlike a "Normal" converter that you slip off the end of a shaft. MANY thrust washers, parts & pieces. Keep that shop manual handy. CLEAN, CLEAN CLEAN is the operative word here.

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13 hours ago, RivNut said:

I think it would be a good idea for who ever is contemplating overhauling a Dynaflow (Triple Turbine in '63) to take a good look at the actual make up of one of them before ever thinking about tearing into one.  They are NOT a typical automatic transmission.  

 

I've copied and pasted the following.  If you want to dive into a transmission that has multiple elements in the torque converter, "you're a better man than I Kunga Din."

I know a few older gemntlemen around here who can overhaul a TH400 with their eyes closed but won't even talk to me about overhauling a Dynaflow.  If they won't do it, I'm not getting close to one.

Ed

 

The Dynaflow’s reliance on its torque converter was both its greatest strength and most pronounced weakness. It employed a converter with five elements, including two stators. These caused turbulence during all phases of operation, including the coupling phase. The vehicle itself started in high gear, relying on the converter to boost acceleration. The process was slow, earning the transmission the nickname “Dynaslush” among drivers, due to its lack of initial get-up-and-go. Despite these misgivings, drivers did enjoy the smooth acceleration the design allowed.

In 1953 Buick went back to the drawing board, releasing the Dynaflow in a new Twin Turbine design. They reduced the number of stators to one, added twin turbines, and linked one turbine to the ring gear and the other to the planetary gears. This boosted engine performance while retaining the trademark smoothness of its operation. The Twin Turbine also included a rear pump, which allowed for push starting.

The transmission was refined again in 1955, this time gaining a variable-pitch stator that further improved overall performance. In 1958 the designers went to the drawing board once more, adding a third turbine, a new stator element with two blade positions, and a passing gear option.

 

  

  Good afternoon.

 

  Actually, the 1963 Dynaflow is the "Twin Turbine", not the "Triple Turbine".  Buick used the "Triple Turbine" from 1958 to 1959 as an option.  In 1958 the transmission was

  also know as the "Flight Pitch Dynaflow".  From what I have read, we are better off with the Twin Turbine unit due to its reliability, parts availability, and overall performance.

 

Marty

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This sounds like a good group activity for the meet in June.  Everyone can bring in a beat up Dynaflow, we can set up a bunch of tables in a conference room, then we can tear them down and rebuild them together.  I can't see the hotel having any objection to that. ;)

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17 hours ago, KongaMan said:

This sounds like a good group activity for the meet in June.  Everyone can bring in a beat up Dynaflow, we can set up a bunch of tables in a conference room, then we can tear them down and rebuild them together.  I can't see the hotel having any objection to that. ;)

 

I am willing to buy the rights to the video.

Bernie

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There are several Dynaflow videos on YouTube where fellow Buick enthusiast "Mudbone" rebuilt  his '55 dynaflow. Search for 1955 Buick Dynaflow. 

They are great to watch. He did a wonderful job at documenting the process and rebuild.

 

 

 

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