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Thread: Clutch died

  1. #1
    Senior Member Bitsyncmaster's Avatar
    Join Date:  May 2011

    Location:  Leonardtown, MD

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    Clutch died

    I was driving to a tech session this morning. I was in 5 th gear going about 60 MPH and suddenly my engine RPM shot up. Thinking maybe it slipped out of gear I continued on. Shortly later it did it again. Kept trying and it just keep getting more often so I pulled off the highway and checked the clutch fluid. Fluid was OK so I turned around and tried to get home (1 hour drive). Well I would get less distance each time and finally stopped and called a tow truck.

    There was really no sign of slipping it would just act like the clutch was depressed suddenly. Happened in all gears. When I got home I was able to back up and pull forward into the garage.

    So anyway, without a lift what's the best solution? I'm just guessing the clutch plate is to thin but I thought that would show slipping going up a hill.
    Dave M vin 03572
    http://dm-eng.weebly.com/

  2. #2
    Senior Member Bitsyncmaster's Avatar
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    My photo of shame First time on a tow truck.
    Attached Images
    Dave M vin 03572
    http://dm-eng.weebly.com/

  3. #3
    Senior Member Rich's Avatar
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    Location:  San Francisco Bay Area, Calif.

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    Yes, classic symptoms of a worn-out clutch disc. Sorry to see the sad picture but no shame since there's no preventive maintenance for clutch discs.

    Clutch hydraulics aren't the problem since the failure mode for that system is a fully-engaged clutch. The slip problem may come and go with temperature in there, perhaps a reason it worked OK after the tow home.

    Very small chance your pressure plate failed but the access for that is the same as for the clutch, so in you go.

    If you plan to do it in your garage then the engine and tranny come out the back together. Plenty of guidance on that method in Section C:04 of the Workshop Manual - and in this forum. The manual also tells how to drop the transmission, engine-in, in a different section but that's a lift job.

    Good time to renew your motor/transmission mounts, among several other things.
    Last edited by Rich; 09-30-2017 at 11:01 AM.
    March '81, 5-speed, black interior

  4. #4
    Senior Member Bitsyncmaster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rich View Post
    If you plan to do it in your garage then the engine and tranny come out the back together. Plenty of guidance on that method in Section C:04 of the Workshop Manual - and in this forum. The manual also tells how to drop the transmission, engine-in, in a different section but that's a lift job.
    Thanks. I have steel I beams supporting the ceiling in my garage. Would it be possible to lift the engine and tranny with a come along and push the car out? So in other words do I need the car off the wheels when removing the the engine and tranny?
    Dave M vin 03572
    http://dm-eng.weebly.com/

  5. #5
    Delorean Guru
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    You do not have to remove the motor. It can be done by lifting the car up high on jack stands and taking the transmission out underneath using a floor jack. Hardest part is getting all of the covers off of the bell housing. If you do leave the motor in you must support it. Other things to consider while you do this job, splitting the case and replacing the roll pins on the 2nd rail shift shaft, new seals for the transmission and the rear engine seal, resurfacing the flywheel, replacing the clutch plate, pilot bearing, pressure plate, and throw-out bearing, lubricating the shift fork. Drain the gear oil from the transmission BEFORE you take it out. You may also want to check and replace the clutch slave and master cylinder and if you don't have the S/S hose, now is a good time to put it in. Check the rubber bushings in the shifter linkage and readjust the linkage after putting the tranny back. Another task is to clean and relubricate the C/V joints. Don't let the half-shafts hang and then bend the cups that hold the boots.
    David Teitelbaum

  6. #6
    Senior Member Rich's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bitsyncmaster View Post
    Thanks. I have steel I beams supporting the ceiling in my garage. Would it be possible to lift the engine and tranny with a come along and push the car out? So in other words do I need the car off the wheels when removing the the engine and tranny?
    First, David's right that you can drop just the tranny if you get the car up high enough. F:05:01 covers it. Note all of his points as well.

    As for the question of lifting the assembly and pushing the car if you pull the motor/transm, yes, that would work. The car can be on its wheels. Sounds like you're sure there's room to get the car far enough forward for you to get clearance on the motor/trans to break the clutch/transmission from the engine. You'll need to get under the car beforehand to take off the transmission mount bolts and the linkage so jackstands are involved at some point.

    Here's a reference post you might find worthwhile: http://dmctalk.org/showthread.php?1912
    March '81, 5-speed, black interior

  7. #7
    Senior Member
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    Location:  Burnsville MN-Moving to Kalispell MT. in June 20111

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    tranny woes

    Iv'e pulled my trans twice and replaced it once using jack
    stands. Amen on every thing Dave said plus check trans
    mounts for cracks {weld 'em]. Don't put ring gear in backwards
    or you will have 5 speed reverse and 1 speed forward.....

  8. #8
    Not a DeLorean Guru
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    Quote Originally Posted by SS Spoiler View Post
    Iv'e pulled my trans twice and replaced it once using jack
    stands. Amen on every thing Dave said plus check trans
    mounts for cracks {weld 'em]. Don't put ring gear in backwards
    or you will have 5 speed reverse and 1 speed forward.....
    The ring gear is on the flywheel, so...
    -Mike
    1981 DeLorean, heads/cams/exhaust, EFI
    1999 Corvette, heads/cam/exhaust, 440 BHP
    2005 Elise, stock
    2016 Chevy Cruze

  9. #9
    Senior Member tommyrich's Avatar
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    Dave,
    Sorry to hear about your clutch woes...from my experience...it is not an easy job to do on jacketands, but doable. I struggled the first time. The advice I can think of is there there are 2 dust shields, one on the passenger side that holds the magnetic pickup (that is not used) and one on the bottom. They must be removed for the transmission to come out. They can be tricky. Also, it is a good idea to replace the engine rear main seal while the tranny is out..also tricky. But what isn't tricky on the DeLorean 🤐
    Good luck,
    Tom

  10. #10
    Young Padawan With The DeLorean kings1527's Avatar
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    Probably not the answer you're looking for Dave, but I happily paid Danny at DMC CA to replace my clutch a few years ago and it's been perfect since. I don't have the equipment to drop the trans and I understand they're a couple things indigenous to the DeLorean clutch system that you have to be proper with. Can't remember exactly what it/they are. While the trans was out, it was a perfect time to replace the rear main since it was leaking. It was money well spent with me rather than hassle with the time and the "I think I know how" just to find out something isn't right and I have to do it again. It's an undertaking. But on the other hand, there's only one way to learn.

    Alex Abdalla
    6575

    Late 1981, Grey 5-speed, 61k miles. Built 11/11/81

    DPNW Toby Fans, DPNW Wings-A-Loft Elite, DMCMW Fan Sequencer, R12 AC, Full LEDs, DMCH Digital Door Lock Module, DPNW Door Lock Actuators, DMCH 140A Alternator, Infinity Kappa 3.5"/5.25", JL XD700 Power Amp, Alpine CDE-HD138BT, DMC CA 8" Sub, Dave McKeen RPM Relay, DMCH Replica Carpet Set, NOS Seat Covers

    A full restoration with step-by-step "what I did" is in progress at www.delorean6575revisited.blogspot.com

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