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Mechanical advise needed 98 tracker tranny/clutch/shifter

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by BullsBucksandBoars, Jul 4, 2015.

  1. BullsBucksandBoars

    BullsBucksandBoars The right place at the right time, OR Active Member

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    I recently ended up with a 98 tracker as my little beater rig. Yesterday I ran some errands in it. At my last stop I thought I got a whiff of clutch. I was in a parking lot and didn't think much of it. When I went to leave it wouldn't go into ANY gear and the shifter felt very loose and spongey. Through a series of clutch pumping and trying to slam it into a gear I got it backed out of my spot and started on my way home. The whole 15 mi home I could barely get it into any gear. I had to slam it and pump the clutch (as a result a lot of grinding happened). By the time I got the the last couple stop signs before home I couldn't get the clutch to disengage and the rig would die. To get it to move out of the intersection of have to put it in gear while it was off, stand on the gas, turn the key and hang on because I COULD NOT get it into gear while it was running.

    afyer a buchnof googling I have found causes and solutions for similar problems but nothing for exactly what I'm experiencing. Has anyone else had this problem? Can anyone offer some more suggestions/solutions? I have very basic mechanical knowledge and tools, is this something I can fix or is a stay in the shop and a huge bill in my near future?

    Thanks for anything you can offer
     
  2. deadeye

    deadeye Albany,OR. Moderator Staff Member

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    Clutch master or slave cylinder are most likely bad. Replace BOTH as a new one of either will cause the other to go bad.
     
  3. DieselScout

    DieselScout S Clackamas County Well-Known Member

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    This, but I'd also recommend replacing the line between them as well. Don't forget to bleed the system when done.
     
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  4. Mark W.

    Mark W. Silverton, OR Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    yep clutch hydraulics kaput
     
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  5. Jamie6.5

    Jamie6.5 Western OR Well-Known Member

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    If the slave cylinder is bad, it will leak fluid.
    The master cylinder however, can leak/bleed past the plunger cup, so that it won't develop pressure enough to move the slave cylinder plunger and depress the clutch fork.
    Other issues beyond the hydraulics are a seized/dragging pilot bearing, or a grenaded throwout bearing. both of those usually come with some nasty noises when the engine is running and you attempt to disengage (push in) the clutch.

    Here's hoping it's the hydraulics. Much easier and cheaper repairs!
     
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  6. BullsBucksandBoars

    BullsBucksandBoars The right place at the right time, OR Active Member

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    So does this mean the clutch itself should still be good? Minus the throw out bearing? Will that fix the spongey shifter or is that a separate issue?
     
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  7. Jamie6.5

    Jamie6.5 Western OR Well-Known Member

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    Any resistance beyond the shifter mechanism itself, internally in the trans, will cause the shifter to feel a little sloppy, as that resistance causes every bit of play in the fulcrum and the slider rods, and forks to be taken up before it firms up.

    With the engine shut off, does the shifter still feel spongy/sloppy? Or does it firm up?
    If it still feels spongy without the engine running, the front bearing in the trans may be going, and causing alignment problems in the input shaft, which has been known to cause what acts like a clutch problem. Front trans bearing issues are almost always accompanied by a pilot bearing problem, which allows excess play in the alignment of the tranny input shaft.
    Those problems are rarely without the nasty noises I referred to in my initial post though. When bearings fail, they invariably growl/grind, and let you know there are issues.

    Try draining/sucking a little of the lube out of the trans and see if it has a metallic look to it. If internal trans parts like bearings/bushings etc. are failing, it will resemble metallic paint, as the little metal pieces look like metal flake.
     
    Last edited: Jul 4, 2015
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  8. jbett98

    jbett98 NW Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    Try adding some hydraulic fluid to the clutch master cylinder reservoir if it's empty or low, then pump the pedal and see if that helps a bit.
    If it does, do like the first poster recommends and replace master/slave units and the connecting hose.
     
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  9. Jamie6.5

    Jamie6.5 Western OR Well-Known Member

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    Don't waste money replacing the slave cylinder if it's not wet/leaking, and the plunger moves freely.
    Beyond seizing from sitting for extended periods, the secondary components (hoses, lines and slaves) in simple hydraulic systems only fail by allowing pressurized fluid to bypass the seals, or by rupture.
    When that happens they leak the fluid out.
    Too many pounds of pressure to do otherwise.
     
  10. mjbskwim

    mjbskwim Salmon,Idaho Well-Known Member

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    After that trip home I wouldn't expect the transmission to last long.
    Be nice to it now
     
  11. Redcap

    Redcap Lewis County, WA Well-Known Member

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    I always found those little rigs to be quite fragile.
     
  12. v0lcom13sn0w

    v0lcom13sn0w Keizer, or Well-Known Member

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    if it goes into gear fairly easy when the truck is off you can eliminate it being a tranny problem. that being said replace the master, slave, pressure plate, pilot and mic the flywheel to see if it can be resurfaced or replace it too. if youre in there u might as well do it all and dont forget to locktite everything.

    im a GM technician PM me if u have any questions man. good luck
     
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2015
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  13. BullsBucksandBoars

    BullsBucksandBoars The right place at the right time, OR Active Member

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    Yes it does firm up a bit when it's off but it's still spongey compared to last week...

    I did experience some noise but it would only happen when I would first start it and it hasn't had a chance to warm up. The noise would go away after a couple minutes with a couple of gooses. I would say it was more of a squeal like a belt but not quite...

    Like I said I'm not very mechanically inclined :(
     
  14. BullsBucksandBoars

    BullsBucksandBoars The right place at the right time, OR Active Member

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    so regardless what exactly the issue is at this point it's sounding like its outta my league. I'm finding myself having to look up a few of the terms some of you guys are using. Any idea on what a shop would charge for this?
     
  15. mjbskwim

    mjbskwim Salmon,Idaho Well-Known Member

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    Do you really want to know?
    Probably somewhere in the neighborhood of what you paid for it?
    That is ,I would guess around $2000? Maybe less.
    The low price of a car almost never reflects a low price for repairs
    Yeah,especially when the wife AND the nanny decide to wreck it. Friend's tracker
     
  16. Mark W.

    Mark W. Silverton, OR Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    Clutch Doctors in Beaverton will do most clutches for $600.00 and they have a 1-2 day turn around. If its just the hydrallics it will be much less.
     
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  17. Tbucket

    Tbucket Olympia,Wash. Active Member

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    I suspect a damper spring came apart on the clutch disc and wedged between the disk and pressure plate not allowing the clutch to disengage. If the clutch pedal feels normal then i doubt it is a hydraulic issue, Pull the trans and take the pressure plate off, see if a piece of metal falls out, then inspect the damper springs on the clutch plate. The throw out bearing may have grenaded also, no matter what the trans has to be removed. Good luck, if you have any questions let me know.
     
  18. Dyjital

    Dyjital Albany, Ore Flavorite Member Bronze Supporter

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    Depend where you are located maybe there is a NWFA'er who could stop in and give a good diagnosis. Maybe offer to build some face time with another member in a fixing party.
     
  19. BullsBucksandBoars

    BullsBucksandBoars The right place at the right time, OR Active Member

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    I'm in stayton
     
  20. FA9

    FA9 Hillsburrito, ORgun Well-Known Member

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    I had a similar problem except I had a lot of vibrations. Turns out, the flywheel bolts were backing out...