Manual transmission not shifting in to 1st or 2nd

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by sontakke, Oct 15, 2012.

  1. sontakke

    sontakke Senior member

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    The three quotes are in that ballpark. On ebay I am seeing the lowest about $900 shipped for a used transmission. The pickings are very slim as only 2000 and 2001 are the bolt-on. At least that is what I think is happening. From 2002 on-wards they went 6-speed and before 2000, it was different generation.
     
  2. JCH13

    JCH13 Diamond Member

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    Well, you've come to that timeless used car owner crossroads. The way I would look at an expensive repair is this: you're paying $2500 for a car that you know the history of. If you sold the car right now as-is, plus the $2500 and bought another car you'd be getting into a whole new mess of issues that you don't know about.

    $1k for the transmission
    $150 for the clutch
    10-12 hours $90-110/hr in labor to R&R everything isn't that outrageous... the numbers add up, more or less.

    Are they replacing anything else in there too? Like the throw-out bearing, rear main seal, transmission shaft seal(s)?

    Also, ROFL@ 'new from dealer transmission for $1500.' You can't possibly be serious about that, can you? MSRP on a new manual transaxle is $3500, listing price at ~$3100.
     
  3. sontakke

    sontakke Senior member

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    How does warranty on used transmission is handled? If mechanic were to source it himself, do they usually warranty the used transmission for a year at least?
     
  4. JCH13

    JCH13 Diamond Member

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    That'd really depend on the shop, I've seen widely varying numbers, from a few months to 2-3 years.
     
  5. Ketchup

    Ketchup Lifer

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    This is what I wanted to focus on as well. You might be surprised what placing the car at the local shopping center with a For Sale sign might get you. I know I was on the last car I sold.

    I just don't see putting more money into a car than the car is worth. With that mileage, there is a good chance something else is just around the bend.

    Don't know, just my 2 cents.
     
  6. phucheneh

    phucheneh Diamond Member

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    I put Nissan manuals (into Infinitis) that were priced at somewhere between 2000-2500. After that specific dealer's extra markup. If his trans is more, I guarantee it's just because that part is basically at the end of its life (they don't have to carry it anymore), so they price the remaining units they have at absurd prices. My apologies for not thinking $1000 for some piece of shit 100k+ transmission is a good deal.

    Also...'onlinemazdaparts' is a Nissan dealer?
     
  7. JCH13

    JCH13 Diamond Member

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    I don't know what to tell you... used transmissions for the 2000 Maxima seem to be in pretty high demand, especially the manual transmission because they're much less common. Doesn't make $1k for a used transmission a "good deal" it's just the price of the transmission in the current market, apparently. Used automatics seem to start around 500-600 with similar milage (100k-120k).

    This might mean that the car is not worth repairing. It might also make the case for rebuilding the current transmission. It's all up to OP to decide. I just wanted to inject some perspective and facts into OP's decision.

    And yes, onlinemazdaparts started off with all Mazda parts, but now they carry parts for a lot of import cars (Honda, Toyota, Kia, Nissan, Hyundai, etc). I don't know if the parent car dealership opened up corresponding franchises though.
     
  8. sontakke

    sontakke Senior member

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    One of the website (AARC) which lists the labor times shows

    Transaxle Assembly, R&r Or Replace (b)
    Labor Times
    Comments Factory Regular Severe
    0.0 6.8 7.0

    @ $70 per hour and independent shop, that should be about $500 in labor for trans replacement. I am seeing used transmissions on car-parts from $500 through $1300! Let us assume $700 delivered after core. Exedy clutch kit is under $150 from Rockauto. $1500 for whole thing is not an unreasonable number.

    - Vikas
     
  9. sontakke

    sontakke Senior member

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    Update:- Spent the big bucks and had the transmission replaced (and brand new clutch); along the way, the radiator support bracket got done too. [total was way over the cost of the car!] Whole saga lasted more than two weeks. The first transmission he put in had massive leak, so he had to get yet another transmission.

    However, now there are vibrations *during* the clutch engagement. This condition never existed before. Now it is very difficult to do slow speed driving. Clutch is NOT slipping. Given that the shop essentially had to redo the job twice, there is no way he is going to go at it third time to figure out what is going on :-(

    I drove the car after not driving it for more than 5 months but I *think* new transmission gear ratio is different (taller gearing). My son also thinks the same. I also noticed that idle speed of the engine is lower. Those two factors could combine to cause the car to vibrate when releasing the clutch at idle. The car has ample power that it can indeed take off at idle from dead stop. I do not think what I am feeling is clutch chatter. There is no noise associated with it. The shop assured me that engine and transmission mounts are good. I do not know if he had the flywheel resurfaced. I suspect not as there probably was no need. I wonder if the clutch kit that he put in is causing the vibration/shudder *during* the engagement. Is it possible that the friction material is very hard and is not "progressive" which causes shock during the engagement? May be the friction disk he put in has no springs to absorb the shock? Is the transmission not aligned to the engine?

    My son drove it back yesterday from VA to MA and will be here for the Thanksgiving. I drove around the block yesterday night. The entire drive train feels different, NOT bad but JUST different. For example, there seems to be less of engine braking i.e. when I take my feet off the gas pedal, the engine RPM do not try to drop as much as they used to before. The gear shift lever is not as crisp as it used even though it is claimed that this transmission has half the miles than mine. The brake pedal feels little different. If he missed some sensor hook up, I would think there would be check engine light.

    I would do little bit digging around but I am resigned to think that we will have to live with it as it is. I guess as long my son can get couple more years from this car, we would be satisfied.

    - Vikas
     
    #59 sontakke, Nov 21, 2012
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2012
  10. NutBucket

    NutBucket Lifer

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    If you can look around the engine bay for the model of the transmission. Then you can figure out which car it came out of to know for sure if the ratios are different. Its quite likely that they are.

    The low idle doesn't seem to make much sense though, unless there's some secondary issue that developed in the process of replacing the trans.
     
  11. Sheep221

    Sheep221 Golden Member

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    Maybe transmission comes from car which was used by driver with different habits, as the systems in the car are very likely to customize to ways how you drive them. So I guess that's different.
    As I read also OP, how did he finish journey not using first and not even second gear? Releasing clutch on anything than first gear is likely nothing else than car shutdown.
     
  12. sontakke

    sontakke Senior member

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    My son drove it without 1st and 2nd for few days. We even contemplated of having him drive all the way from VA to MA but sanity prevailed! This car always had enough power to start from stop on level ground in third gear. The VQ30 engines are some of the sweetest engines ever made by any manufacturer.

    I am assuming that mechanic took all the necessary steps to do a good job. I mean his shop has done enough clutch jobs and he did replace one on my brother Talon couple years ago. A competent mechanic should be able to replace clutch/transmission without causing any complication but then again may be I am giving too much credit to the shop. There are ways to screw up that job which will lead to this type of behavior but there is also possibility that some clutch at least will have this shudder/vibration/chatter just because of their design/manufacturing.
     
  13. Ketchup

    Ketchup Lifer

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    Ever watch a NASCAR race when drivers lose gears? Happens quite often, and as long as they have 4th it's not too big a deal.
     
  14. Zenmervolt

    Zenmervolt Supermoderator<br>The Garage<br>Elite member
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    That's only true of automatics and even then only true when you're also replacing the transmission control computer. Since the OP is talking about a manual and since manuals don't even have a transmission control computer, your suggestion is simply impossible.

    To the OP:

    If the clutch is brand new, it will tend to be grabbier than an older clutch that has had some time to wear a little bit. You suggest that resurfacing the flywheel was probably not needed, but I'd disagree. Any time a clutch is replaced the flywheel needs to be resurfaced in the sense that there will always be some buildup on it from the clutch's friction material and resurfacing can go a long way to making sure the engagement of the grabbier fresh clutch is smooth. As far as clutches without spring centers go, I've only ever seen clutches like that in race-only applications and you'd absolutely know if that was what the mechanic had used. I guarantee that the clutch you have now still has a spring center.

    The linkages are always going to feel a little different. It's just variance. Unless it feels loose or doesn't let you select a gear or something it's probably fine.

    As for the brakes feeling different, that could just be from you not having driven the car in a while and it naturally being different than the other cars you drive. Or, if the shop bled the brake and clutch hydraulics as part of the service it may just be the feel of having fluid that's not waterlogged in the lines again.

    ZV
     
  15. sontakke

    sontakke Senior member

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    My real problem is the vibration/shudder during the engagement. I am hoping that after brake-in, it goes down.

    I emailed and asked point blank to the mechanic if he resurfaced the flywheel. He avoided answering that question :-( To be fair, researching on internet shows that resurfacing flywheel is optional at least if there were no problem before replacing the clutch.
     
  16. Zenmervolt

    Zenmervolt Supermoderator<br>The Garage<br>Elite member
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    It's "optional" in the sense that you're not likely to cause actual damage from not doing it. To my mind though, it's a required part of the job because if it turns out that it did need resurfacing, then it's a shit-ton of extra labor to get the damn thing off again to correct the issue and if you just do it while you're in there it's a hell of a lot cheaper.

    ZV
     
  17. CraigRT

    CraigRT Lifer

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    Yup... When I replaced the clutch on one of my old cars, I had the flyhweel resurfaced.
    I would also consider getting the shaft bearings checked out in your used trans. They are common failure points on the Maxima 5 speed of that generation. It is rare, but it it is one of the cases where the manuals are less reliable than the automatics in that generation of Maxima. My folks have a 2000 automatic and the trans has never skipped a beat. Still shifts like new. (Trans fluid drains bi annually)
     
  18. sontakke

    sontakke Senior member

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    Checked visually the engine vibration, the amplitude of the vibration is quite small, so that rules out mounts.