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Old 06-03-2018, 01:45 AM   #1
samgray20
 
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Clutch Not Disengaging Fully

I took the car to my local 1/8 mile track tonight for the first time. I've done plenty of spirited street driving and practiced launching as well, so I have a good feel for the car. This track is notorious for poor traction. I have had horrible traction with previous cars, so I expected worse tonight. I went ahead and gave it a good hard launch to see what it would do and I wound up spinning badly through 1st and 2nd. I caught my bearings and finished it out.

This where it went south. I got onto the exit road, having coasted there in neutral, and could barely get the car into 3rd gear. I managed to cram it and made it back to the pits. 1st and 2nd gear were incredibly hard to get into with 5th and 6th being about the same. 3rd and 4th were a little easier but still not good by any means. Reverse was next to impossible. Keep in mind that this was all with the car running. I shut the car off and everything moved like butter.

I let the car sit and cool off for a little while before going back to try again. I think it improved slightly after sitting, but still not good. I made the decision to make the 45-mile drive home, having concluded that for some reason, the clutch wasn't disengaging fully. I have no reason to believe that it is slipping, and that car is driveable once you get past the initial point of getting it going. If the RPM matches the speed of the gear I am going into, it shifts relatively smoothly like it always has.

This is stretching beyond my knowledge here. The part that confuses me so much is that it happened so suddenly. Mods relevant to this are Hurst short throw, McLeod RXT, RAM TOB, and the trans was gone through and slightly upgraded by a previous owner but I don't know all the details on that. Any advice or suggestion is greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance for reading and responding.
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Old 06-03-2018, 02:18 AM   #2
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Is it easier to go into gear with the clutch pedal partially down? Like halfway, 75%, etc.
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Old 06-03-2018, 06:34 AM   #3
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Change the title of your post to Clutch not ENGAGING Fully. How long ago was the clutch & TOB replaced? Did the feel of the clutch pedal change? Does the pedal come up all the way? What color is the clutch/brake fluid?
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Old 06-03-2018, 03:44 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 0-120 View Post
Is it easier to go into gear with the clutch pedal partially down? Like halfway, 75%, etc.
The position of the pedal makes no difference.

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Originally Posted by camguynj View Post
Change the title of your post to Clutch not ENGAGING Fully. How long ago was the clutch & TOB replaced? Did the feel of the clutch pedal change? Does the pedal come up all the way? What color is the clutch/brake fluid?
I believe I was correct when I said disengage. Perhaps you misunderstood me. There doesn't seem to be a complete disconnect between the engine and transmission, meaning that the clutch is still partially engaged. If it were not engaging fully, it would just be slipping. The clutch and TOB were both replaced at about 20k miles. The car has 39.5k on it now. The pedal feels the same to me as it did before and does come all the way up. Fluid is a tan color.
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Old 06-03-2018, 05:34 PM   #5
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Have u checked the vents on the bottom of the bellhousing for brake fluid signs? Get a flashlight and peek through the vents,and see if the TOB is moving far enough to disengage the clutch.
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Old 06-03-2018, 07:33 PM   #6
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Update: I bled about six ounces of fluid from the clutch and it is about the color of coffee. The fluid in the reservoir is tan like I stated previously.

Quote:
Originally Posted by eLeSthree View Post
Have u checked the vents on the bottom of the bellhousing for brake fluid signs? Get a flashlight and peek through the vents,and see if the TOB is moving far enough to disengage the clutch.
I looked up through the vents and I can see everything moving, but I'm not entirely sure what I should be seeing as I've never watched it move before
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Old 06-03-2018, 10:14 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by samgray20 View Post
Update: I bled about six ounces of fluid from the clutch and it is about the color of coffee. The fluid in the reservoir is tan like I stated previously.



I looked up through the vents and I can see everything moving, but I'm not entirely sure what I should be seeing as I've never watched it move before
Well your aftermarket throw out bearing should be pushing the clutch fingers in about a half an inch or so. Enough to make the friction disk spin freely. I guess you could have one guy push the pedal, another guy spin the driveshaft with the back wheels jacked up and car in nuetral. You should see the disk spin free.
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Old 06-03-2018, 11:18 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eLeSthree View Post
Well your aftermarket throw out bearing should be pushing the clutch fingers in about a half an inch or so. Enough to make the friction disk spin freely. I guess you could have one guy push the pedal, another guy spin the driveshaft with the back wheels jacked up and car in nuetral. You should see the disk spin free.
The TOB looks like it moves about 1/2" to 3/4". The gap between the disks looks like it's about 1/16". With clutch pedal pressed, the driveshaft can be spun with effort and I can see the disks spin separately.

On a side note, I just saw RST written on the clutch as it spun by, so I guess that means I was lied to when I bought the car. Not a huge deal but still.

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Old 06-07-2018, 01:39 AM   #9
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UPDATE: After talking to McLeod and my local shop, it sounds like what I feared, that one of the disks has delaminated. One way or the other, the transmission has to come out. Got that process started tonight. I've got a transmission jack on order to help with the process. Just a couple more things to disconnect and it will be out of there. Will keep this thread updated with what I find.

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Old 07-16-2018, 02:26 AM   #10
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Finally getting around to updating this thread. I pulled the clutch out and found that it had taken some serious heat damage and was stacking material on the flywheel, floater, and pressure disk. That was clearly the source of my drag and failure to disengage.

Shipped the clutch off to McLeod to have it rebuilt. While I was in there I replaced the snap-on throwout bearing on the RAM assembly as well as the pilot bearing. I was advised by Joe at McLeod as well as my local shop to ditch the RAM and go back to stock. The primary question being "why replace the stock one in the first place". I had no reason to believe there was anything wrong with what I had so I decided to leave it in there. I did check clearances about ten times to make absolutely certain that I wasn't going to have issues.

With the fresh rebuild back from McLeod, everything back together, and fresh Amsoil fluids in the car from front to back, I went through McLeod's break in procedure of 1200 clutch cycles, constantly shifting in order to hit that number faster because I really wanted to run the car at CamaroFest.

I ran the CamaroCross event and the car ran perfect with no clutch issues at all. I managed to qualify for finals but had to pull the car out early during my session due to the toll the extreme heat and torture was taking on my tires.

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Old 07-16-2018, 11:38 AM   #11
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Good to hear your problem solved and you got to run at Camarofest. Curious did McLeod charge you for the rebuild? Also see this thread for why the eom TOB bearing needs replacing especially if you run your car https://www.camaro5.com/forums/showthread.php?t=422428 May want to consider if you start having problem again with the RAM TOB in there.
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Old 07-16-2018, 01:37 PM   #12
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Good to hear your problem solved and you got to run at Camarofest. Curious did McLeod charge you for the rebuild? Also see this thread for why the eom TOB bearing needs replacing especially if you run your car https://www.camaro5.com/forums/showthread.php?t=422428 May want to consider if you start having problem again with the RAM TOB in there.
McLeod charges $400 for the RST rebuild and I believe $500 for RXT. I paid $100 to expedite it when it got there in a Friday afternoon and they called back Monday afternoon and put it in the mail. In total, the rebuild cost me about $650 including shipping costs.

I had read that about the factory bearings being plastic and that blows my mind that that was ever considered adequate in the first place.

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Old 07-16-2018, 04:13 PM   #13
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McLeod charges $400 for the RST rebuild and I believe $500 for RXT. I paid $100 to expedite it when it got there in a Friday afternoon and they called back Monday afternoon and put it in the mail. In total, the rebuild cost me about $650 including shipping costs.

I had read that about the factory bearings being plastic and that blows my mind that that was ever considered adequate in the first place.

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Not a bad price to basically have a brand new twin disc clutch. Good luck with it but watch that TOB. First signs of any engagement or pedal issues I would go with the Monster bearing given power you’re pushing.
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