jim1941

41 Buick Shifting

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Question about shifting gears in my newly acquired 41 Buick model 46S.  It grinds into third gear, sounds like a gear crunch,  but is silent if I double clutch. I made an appointment with a transmission shop that specializes in antique cars but am now wondering if I am shifting correctly. Do I have to use the clutch at all going into third?  I ask this because years ago I owned a 39 Studebaker and learned that clutch was only necessary for first and second gear.  Thanks, Jim

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48 minutes ago, jim1941 said:

Question about shifting gears in my newly acquired 41 Buick model 46S.  It grinds into third gear, sounds like a gear crunch,  but is silent if I double clutch. I made an appointment with a transmission shop that specializes in antique cars but am now wondering if I am shifting correctly. Do I have to use the clutch at all going into third?  I ask this because years ago I owned a 39 Studebaker and learned that clutch was only necessary for first and second gear.  Thanks, Jim

 

 Jim, sounds as though the synchonizer drum is worn out. I just had to replace the one in my 1950. Now I can't MAKE it clash.

 

  Ben

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Ben's advice is good, but I look at that as a last resort. Have you changed the oil in the transmission? I recall we had the discussion about it here not too long ago, but I don't recall which new 1941 owner we were talking to. If you have not changed the oil, then SAE 140 Sta-Lube from O'Reilly's or NAPA will work well and may cure the clashing. You may also just need to go a little slower and get a feel for the gears meshing. My '29 Cadillac has synchromesh, but dropping it into 3rd isn't just a slam-dunk every time. Go slowly and gently and let it naturally drop into gear on its own with just gentle guidance from you.

 

Does it go into 1st easily at a stop? If you have to fight it into 1st it may also be a clutch issue. It may also be the linkage. It's not often the linkage, but make sure the shift levers are getting a full range of motion. 

 

Let's try the easy stuff before we worry about tearing it apart and installing new synchros.

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Posted (edited)

Yes... you do need to use the clutch unless you are an old over the road trucker from the old old days....not many trucks back then had synchro's...you had to feel your way into gear sensing engine RPM or double clutch you way in to the next gear.

The shift gate in a 41 is kinda vague...not a crisp "H" pattern.

Also shift linkage gets worn and loose and should be tightened up with the bushing kits.

Do what Matt says first.

Edited by c49er (see edit history)

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Jim here again.   Going into first and second are fine. I don't rush into third, so there is something wrong. Guess changing the oil would be a good start. Thanks for the input. 

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On my '39 it is necessary to pause in neutral before shifting into third.  I suspect the 1941 40 series to be the same.

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1 hour ago, Dynaflash8 said:

On my '39 it is necessary to pause in neutral before shifting into third.  I suspect the 1941 40 series to be the same.

Same on my 1940.

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Jim here...  FIXED thanks to your help. I drained the transmission and hardly any oil came out (see photo) even when I returned the car to level and then jacked up the front too.  Used recommended gear oil to fill.  I assume, it is to be filled until it starts to back out of the upper side plug, right?  Took about one quart.   Went for a test drive and heard one little grind into third if I rushed into that gear. I gave the little pause as suggested by the last two posts and it's perfectly silent. Hooray. Thanks again,

Jim

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1 hour ago, jim1941 said:

Jim here...  FIXED thanks to your help. I drained the transmission and hardly any oil came out (see photo) even when I returned the car to level and then jacked up the front too.  Used recommended gear oil to fill.  I assume, it is to be filled until it starts to back out of the upper side plug, right?  Took about one quart.   Went for a test drive and heard one little grind into third if I rushed into that gear. I gave the little pause as suggested by the last two posts and it's perfectly silent. Hooray. Thanks again,

Jim

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 Dang!  That sucker was DRY.      Glad it is better.

 

  Ben

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Now....where is the oil leaking to....not into the torque tube🤯

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Bob,  Guess I jumped the gun with my "fixed".  Yes, after a day of sitting, I saw drops of oil on the floor coming from somewhere behind the transmission. The drips are showing on a lower cross support, but can't see where they are coming from above that.  Guess this sounds like a job for my transmission repair shop. I know my limitations.  Jim

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It's the torque ball. 100% normal for a Buick. Don't panic. Mine leaks, too. Eventually, they all leak. I recently asked about replacing it and while it's not a terrible job, it's a terrible job. Most common advice (which I agree with) is to leave it alone and let it leak, periodically topping it off, which should be once a season or so. It will just be a few drops now and then, no big deal. Mine leaves a silver-dollar-sized puddle overnight. I can live with that.

 

Old cars leak. It's the only thing you can rely on.

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A few months ago I spent a few days chasing leaks on our 1930 Cadillac. It was almost dry when I was finished. Drive it twice, and now it leaks back to where I started. Matt is correct, all the early stuff leaks, and it’s almost impossible to stop it. Just try to control it. As you saw with your transmission.......if it’s not leaking, it’s empty.

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Yup, they all leak.

I've  had that torque ball leak in my '40 LTD, since the day we brought her home.

Not much, just a half a dollar spot after a days driving.

Took my TX shop's advice and put a "diaper" on it.

No drips on the garage floor and I only have to change her diaper about twice a year.

I still keep a patch of cardboard under her, just in case the diaper gets too full.

 

Mike in Colorado

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Mike's fix is about as good as you can get.  

 

  Check the level frequently until you learn it's habits.  Live with it until you can't keep full . Adding a pint or so every six months. ?  GOOD.

 

  Enjoy

 

  Ben

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With so many of you weighing in with the same advice, that's what I'll do.  Thanks for the help. Jim

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Posted (edited)

And you wonder why all the old state highways have a greasy black strip down the center, and motorcyclists are advised to ride in the outer wheel track ??????

Answer is, too many Buicks on the road...................

 

Mike in colorado

Edited by FLYER15015 (see edit history)

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Sometimes the oil in the rear end gets so high it leaks out worn axle seals and lubes up the brake linings...

Not good.

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Jim back again with an update.  My leak is pretty bad. I wouldn't mind a few drops over time, but I'm getting one to two ounces over a couple of days. Back to calling my transmission repair service.

 

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