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Thread: Significant automatic transmission leaks

  1. #21
    Administrator Ron's Avatar
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    Ah, I misunderstood:
    I thought you were saying that your friend was confident...but you were worried about the cost of the special tools (mentioned in the manual). And on the die first, it seemed you were not sure if they were sharing. If you are, whether you are going to skip the clutches or not, don't forget the gear oil needs to be flushed out of your lines, cooler(s), and converter. Ya don't really need to add die after you have it back together (If you can tell now w/o it, after all of the cleaning, new fluids and level checking, you won't have any problem telling later ;-).

  2. #22
    Senior Member
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    No problem. My friend is confident he can reseal the transmission. He's not confident about replacing the clutch packs. Before he switched to classic cars he worked at a Mercedes dealership and had to change clutch packs a few times. He found that you could be doing everything right, and still knick the pack and damage something, so he's wary of doing that on any car now. I have no idea how that trans compares to the DeLorean's, nor how likely something like that is to happen when working on the DeLorean transmission.

    I sort of wish the trans was fried (or more fried), since then I'd be less worried about breaking something when taking it apart. With the engine swap, I was being really careful not to mess anything up in the 2.8L right up until I a hole in the block. After that, the engine became a learning tool to see how everything went together, and if broke something it wasn't a big deal. That, and a 3.0L engine is only a few hundred dollars, so if I screwed that up I could get another one pretty cheaply too. With the transmission, screwing up has a much higher price tag.

    We'll definitely flush the entire system, including the cooler and the torque converter. I was thinking the dye would be a way to be absolutely sure the repair was done correctly, but you're probably right that we don't need to bother. It took me a few months of wondering why I was seeing transmission fluid coming out nowhere near where transmission fluid normally is to realize that it was leaking into the final drive, but now I know what to look for.

    Thanks!

    -- Joe

  3. #23
    Senior Member
    Join Date:  May 2011

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    About a week ago my friend and I pulled the transmission, rebuilt it in the basement, and we re-installed it over the weekend. Here's what we found:

    The plastic tube that brings ATF from the gearbox part to the torque converter has some orange sealant that was clearly failing, and maybe a nicked O-ring. This is clearly how the ATF was getting into the final drive. We could have sealed it up again right there, but we decided to delve a bit deeper. The filter also looked very clean.

    We removed the final drive and looked at the B2 brake and the C2 clutch pack. The clutch pack was in great shape, with only minor wear on the discs, but we replaced them anyway since we were already in there. The brake also looked very good, although there were some burn marks on the metal ring that sits on top of the brake, and on one of the metal brakes.

    We were going to take apart C1, but we didn't have the tool to do it, and we were getting concerned about dealing in further than we really were comfortable with. That said, a modern plastic version of the tool is actually available on eBay for around $30, should someone need to do this.

    We were also going to take out B1. We got the clip out, then noticed we had to take out something closer to the opening of the casing, and after much effort we got that clip out, and then realized that this is where you need another special too (basically a block and a threaded rod) to push out the rings. This is also when we realized we needed a special tool to put the clip back in. Since we didn't have that tool, we bought a 6" metal bucket from Home Depot, deformed it a bit to fit over the spring retaining ring, and used a press to compress it enough that we could get the clip back on. I'm sure we could have fabricated the other tool as well, but since the discs were in good shape we decided not to risk doing something wrong and not being able to get it back together again.

    Everything went back in the car fine. We had a problem with not being able to get out of first gear, though. The solenoids were seized, but soaking them in a bath of penetrant overnight freed them up. Not sure how they got seized in a week, but whatever. A bigger problem is that we forgot to re-install the spindle that goes from the governor to the gears in the transmission, so it thought I wasn't moving and was just revving the engine. The governor had fallen on the floor and the spindle fell out, and we just didn't notice. Once it was reinstalled, it shifted just fine.

    We also replaced the O-ring behind the driver's side output shaft, being careful to mark it and get the right number of turns to avoid ruining the pre-load on the differential. This O-ring was the weak point through which the ATF leaking from the transmission was eventually seeping out of the final drive.

    The last thing we had to do was reseal the dipstick tube, which was annoying even with otterstat seals. We finally got it properly seated and sealed properly, though. Drove it home, and it works great. It doesn't seem to leak at all, which I think is a first for my car.

    Thanks again for the help!

    -- Joe

    Some of the old rings. Some are in such good shape the writing is still visible on them.
    IMG_3080.jpg

    Another pair of rings, one old (the darker one)and one new.
    IMG_3071.jpg

    The one burned brake disc.
    IMG_3079.jpg

    The failed seal on the tube that carries ATF through the final drive.
    IMG_2968.jpgIMG_2971.jpg

  4. #24
    Delorean Guru
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    First, I want to congratulate you for the courage to delve into places where most Delorean owners would never attempt to go. Second, I want to congratulate you on successfully fixing an automatic transmission. An accomplishment few can claim. Clearly you were not the first one to be inside, that sealant on the tube is not supposed to be there. Yes, there are a few special tools necessary to do a proper job but even without them you were able to get it done. A few suggestions. Cut the filter open and clean it or replace it. You cannot properly inspect it or clean it unless you take it apart. Do a line pressure check and adjust if necessary. Do all of the other external checks and adjustments and then check them again after 500 miles. Make sure all of the shift computer wiring is secured and away from the exhaust pipes. If you can get 500 miles on the transmission trouble-free you are probably fine and can go on to fix anything else that may need attention.
    David Teitelbaum

  5. #25
    Senior Member
    Join Date:  May 2011

    Location:  Norton, MA

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    Thanks! I wouldn't have attemptedthisit without my friend (who is a professional classic car mechanic), and even he didn't want to go in here, and definitely didn't want to get far enough to replace the clutch packs. Honestly, it didn't look THAT hard to me (which really just means that I'm being unreasonably overconfident, or my friend just made it look easy ), and if we had the time I probably would have had us take apart enough to get to the other clutch pack and brake, but at this point I'll wait until something else goes wrong. Also, I should have my own lift in my new garage in less than 2 months and won't have to rent bays anymore.

    I've put at least 100 miles on it so far, and it's been fine. There's sometimes a half second or so pause shifting between first and second, while there isn't any when going from second to third. It's not a real issue compared to how things could be, but I'm curious about it. We did make sure the electrical lines are clear of the exhaust (I have don't have the crossover pipe in mine, but the throttle cable to the transmission was burned though due to lying on the header, so that needs to be replaced, but we got it unkinked and out of the way for the time being until I can get a new one), and made sure it was adjusted properly (it was a bit loose previously).

    I'll see if I can hunt down a J-21867 so I can do a pressure test, although it might have to wait until I get that garage and lift. Given what the diagnostic chart in G:05:03 says, maybe that slight delay from 1st to 2nd above is due to slightly off pressure, although I don't see other symptoms of mentioned there. Still, it should be checked.

    I notice that DeLoreanGo sells new filters (while supplies last), so I'll see about picking one of those up, as well as a new silicone gasket from DPI (although they're reusable, mine has gotten to its limit from all the pan removals I've been doing, or so my friend says).

    Thanks again!

    -- Joe

  6. #26
    Delorean Guru
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    The delay may go away once it warms up. Check the trans fluid level as per G:04:02. Could also be the governor control cable adjustment. Might also be a problem with the shift computer. Replace the caps inside, very common for them to blow apart. Check the line pressure. Make sure the vacuum line to the vacuum modulator capsule is connected and not leaking. A slight delay is not a cause for concern as long as the shift is smooth.
    David Teitelbaum

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