1939bcoupe

39 Buick linkage problem

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I have a 39  Buick, I need help with the wire that goes from the linkage to the transmission and connects with the selector shaft.  The wire is frozen in the cable.  I wanted to remove the cable and work on it but I cannot figure out how to disconnect it form the transmission.  The 39 has a very unique shifting linkage, I have been told is was a one year feature.  Any help would be appreciated.

Thanks

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I think you have to open the tranmission cover to disconnect the shift cable.  Here is a diagram, if that helps.

 

 

E35FA2FE-0C66-4F07-A493-6B19890861CF.png

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Don't need to go inside transmission! Looking at the bottom photo in Billy's post, that prominent hex near the center is actually part of the inner cable and threads into the shift selector shaft. Just screw it out to remove the cable but first loosen the retaining clip for the outer cable housing, just below the hex in the picture mentioned previously. With the cable frozen the entire assembly will have to turn when unscrewing the cable retainer hex. Be sure the other end of the cable is detached from the shift lever end, both inner and outer. And good luck, the inner cable will probably break. Bob H

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Some more info

(Previously pdf were able to uploaded, but sadly no longer)

1928-52 Master Parts book pg 117-A.jpg

 

Edit: other threads on this topic

http://forums.aaca.org/topic/310504-39-buick-linkage-problem/

http://forums.aaca.org/topic/310773-39-buick-linkage-problem/

 

Edited by 1939_Buick (see edit history)

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If memory serves (it's only been a year) - the hex nut spins freely around the cable end - like a ball & socket arrangement.

 

Now determine - is the cable seized or is the transmission stuck like mine was?  Never hurts to pull the transmission cover and have a look-see.  Then disconnect that cable and operate the gear selection from the side of the transmission.

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Thanks all, the  problem is not in the transmission.   Took top off and selector shaft moves freely.  Wire does not move in cable.  There is a small nut and bolt and bracket that holds the lower selector cable in place,  I can't get that off, not sure how?  I've taken off the small bolt and could not get piece to  come off of the cable.   Could  be a problem there?  It looks like it is compressed on the cable to hold in place.  There is nothing in the shop manual or  blue Motor manual book that talks about disconnecting the cable or wire from the transmission.😫

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Does anyone know how the lower bracket that holds the cable in place comes off?  Once the bolt is removed should it slip off or  be pulled off.  It does not move on the cable.

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OK - so you have removed the cable/stud from the side of the transmission - right?

 

268787570_selectorside.thumb.jpg.863b9588c09caa468f66e42528b1608f.jpg

 

Now your question is how do you get the cable out of the "stud".  I was wrong above when I said it was a ball & socket arrangement.

It is clearly a press-fit arrangement and I cant figure out how to separate them either.

 

The guy I got my spare from opted to cut the cable.

 

I am understanding your question though - right?

634647121_selectordetail.thumb.jpg.0ef5d4a6e73e09dc9a04b958b8dbb593.jpg
 

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Yes, that is my question. ( actually it screws in to the bracket and selector shaft, not the transmission.) I guess the nut is permanently attached.  Can the nut be removed without turning the cable with it?  I guess it all comes in one piece.  Do you have any ideas on where to find a complete new cable?  I can't figure out how the wire is frozen in the cable.  No kinks, bends are smooth curves.  I guess I can take it out and try to break it loose..  I hate to break the wire without a replacement. Thanks for your help.  What is the 39 Buick team?

Frank

 

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2 hours ago, 1939bcoupe said:

 What is the 39 Buick team?

Frank

Just a group of us '39 owners on the forum.  Is only some text under your name.

Some of us email info to others (off line).  Very occasionally we swap/sell/gift parts.

http://forums.aaca.org/topic/207201-39-buick-team-membership/

(many of the links no longer work due to software upgrades/downgrades)

 

And we like photo's 😊

Edited by 1939_Buick (see edit history)

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I have no experience with the problem you are dealing with, but if there is any chance of freeing up the cable inside its outer sheath, I would suggest that it will be by using a 50/50 mix of acetone and automatic transmission fluid. This is the cheapest and best solvent for freeing up rusty frozen parts that I have found. Soaking rusty parts in that overnight has been very useful in my 1938 Buick restoration.

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So far I've determined the problem is in the wire inside cable and not the trans.  There is a type of clip holding the cable in place on the lower bracket, it is held in place with a small nut and bolt.  I've removed the bolt, but the clip is not coming off the cable.  It may be a type of press fit. It  doesn't pull off.  I think that is the only place where the wire could be stuck.  Both ends of the wire are moving and loose.  I guess I could try to cut it off and use a different type of clip.  I hesitate taking the cable out of the car because the larger nut referenced in the previous thread is a little rounded where someone has tried to loosen it.  It is attached to the selector shaft in the trans and would prefer not to have to take the shaft out of the trans or damage the shaft somehow in the process.  I appreciate all the comments from everyone,  don't stop with suggestions.👍Keep them coming please.

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Well, I really hope you can get the old one operating with penetrating fluid and lubrication.

 

If not - you're in a bit of a pickle.  I have not found any replacement shifter cables for a '39 Buick.

 

What I have found is a '39 Olds cable repair on an episode of "Restoration Garage".  They were adjusting what appeared to be a brand new cable on a nicely restored Business Coupe.

 

I also found this link in a Chrysler forum.  This guy made his own cable in what sounds like a similar configuration.   https://forums.aaca.org/topic/178865-1939-shift-cable/

 

Best of luck - and keep us posted!

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Yea, I got the cable out of the car.  What is the best penetrating oil. Not much room to put the lubricate in with the wire but  I'm not giving up.  Tried WD 40 and 30 weight.  Got the wire to move a small amount.  Worried about breaking the side with the bolt attached.  Any suggestions for penetrating fluid?  Your photos of the bolt were very very helpful.  Thanks

Frank

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Many people use ATF and acetone 50/50.

Remember WD-40 is a Water Dispersant not a lubricant contrary to the label.  If WD-40 loosens something make doubly sure that you lubricate it with a real lubricant.

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In disassembly of my 1938 Buick project car after it sat outside for 23 years, I found that a 50/50 mix Automatic Transmission Fluid and Acetone was the best and cheapest solvent to use. Basically the entire car was disassembled by using a squirt gun fillled with that mixture to soak all the rusty parts, allowing them to sit overnight, and then disassembling them in the morning. If that solvent won't work, I don't think you will find one that will.

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Hello ALL, thank you all.. I broke the wire loose inside the cable, took me 2 days of working the wire and using the 50/50 mixture.  Should I just leave the  mixture in side cable or/and add some oil?  Now I must get it all together again and hope i find the right place for all in  the bag of parts.😀  I'll let you know if it all goes back together and works properly.🤞

Frank

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That's great news.  Good job diagnosing the real problem.

 

Hopefully the internal cable is not too compromised. Can you pull it completely out and be able to get it back in OK?  It would be good to get as much abrasive debris out of the casing as possible (jets of WD-40?), then clean & lubricate the cable.

 

Some people might say grease is too heavy, but I would consider it as a protective measure over its lubrication role.  Anyone disagree?

 

Do you have the repair manual to walk you through the installation & adjustment?  From reading it the sweet-spot might be difficult to hit.

 

If you need replacement springs, especially those detent horseshoe springs, (see fig. 7-10 on post#2 above) Bob's has them whereas other suppliers don't. 

 

Good Luck!

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Got it back together and it works good.   Not sure what the designer of that linkage was thinking!!! 

Do you close the valve on the heater hose during summer?  Would that have an effect on the heater core (rust).

I'm thinking about closing it all year long.

Frank

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4 hours ago, 1939bcoupe said:

Got it back together and it works good.   Not sure what the designer of that linkage was thinking!!!

And others in the Buick must have thought the same, as this a 1 year only design.  1940 & later stayed design the same for years

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