Lotus Elan

S4 gearbox removeal

PostPost by: triumphelan » Sat Feb 02, 2008 10:19 am

I think I have a problem with the release bearing ,judder at take off .I rellaced the engine mounts ,clutch and release bearing Xmas 2006,to cure this problem I also had the flywhel skimmed .The judder has returned it is only at low rev`s take off if I do a "boy racer " start I do not get it
Can I remove the gearbox or slide it back far enough the get at the release bearing or is it a engine out job??
Regards John 1969S4DHC
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PostPost by: MintSprint » Sat Feb 02, 2008 12:04 pm

I think realistically you are looking at an engine-out job - if only becauseI would be very surprised to find that your clutch judder is caused by the release bearing!

If the problem has recurred after a new clutch plate and skimmed flywheel (assuming the job was done right) the most likely cause is an oil leak somewhere contaminating your clutch plate.

Check to make sure that the all the mountings and bushes in the driveline (engine & gearbox mounts, diff mounts and torque rod bushes) are secure and in good condition before you get into swapping the clutch again, though.
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PostPost by: elancoupe » Sat Feb 02, 2008 1:05 pm

I have removed the transmission without the engine ( on two occasions), but it's not a job for the inexperienced. I can give details, if needed.
Mike
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PostPost by: worzel » Sat Feb 02, 2008 2:22 pm

Hi

Are you sure you don't have a slight misfire at low revs- this can cause quite severe judder. The fact that a faster start eliminates the problem might indicate this (before you go to the lengths of removing the box).

Regards

John
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PostPost by: triumphelan » Sat Feb 02, 2008 4:49 pm

Thanks for the replies
Mintsprint ,all the bushes at the rear "look" ok the gearbox mount is new Xmas 2006.I was planning the refurbish the rear this year, shocks bushes etc
Elancoupe I cannot detect any missfire, the tickover is good and it revs freely from idle
Worzel any info would help I do have the use of a 4post ramp
Regards John 1969S4DHC
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PostPost by: 1964 S1 » Sun Feb 03, 2008 12:36 am

Hello John, I agree with the guys, possible oil leak onto the clutch, or the flywheel wasn't skimmed right. Do you see any oil drips at the bottom of the bell housing? Do you drive the car frequently? Surface rust can build on the metal surfaces.
As you've nothing to lose, I'd try and "heat it up" by slipping the clutch at higher revs during a few smooth take offs to see if you can eliminate the judder.
I doubt too that it would be caused by the release bearing.
Does anyone know of a way to check the pressure plate attachment bolt torque settings without separating the trans from the engine? It could be one or two are loosening.
Good Luck, Eric
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PostPost by: Tonyw » Sun Feb 03, 2008 1:34 am

Guy's,

For what it is worth in my experiance clutch shudder/judder is in most cases caused by a faulty clutch disc or pressure plate, by all means check engine and transmission mounts but if they prove to be OK then I would be pulling the engine and looking at the clutch disc and pressure plate.

Probably not what you are wanting to hear..................

Tony W
Second childhood? no just an extension of my first.
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PostPost by: elancoupe » Sun Feb 03, 2008 1:45 am

triumphelan wrote:Thanks for the replies
Elancoupe any info would help I do have the use of a 4post ramp


Ok, memory test for me. Remove exhaust, shifter and starter. Unhook the clutch slave and speedo angle drive and secure them out of the way. Unbolt the drive shaft and slide it back as far rearward as possible. I didn't have a reverse light switch to deal with, this would need to be unhooked if applicable.

Unbolt the bellhousing from the block. Slide the transmission rearward and rotate it (this may take some jockeying around)until it is far back as possible. There should be sufficient room for you to put your hand inside the bell and undo the release bearing from the arm. At this point GET SOMEBODY to help or use some type of support for the transmission.

Remove the four bolts holding the bellhousing to the transmission case, when the last bolt is removed, both parts are going to virtually fall out. Now you will have access to whatever items need attention.

I did this operation alone, with just a hydraulic jack for assistance.

During reassembly, one lower transmission bolt will require thread sealant.
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PostPost by: 1964 S1 » Sun Feb 03, 2008 4:11 am

I'll jump back in here hoping to save you from a lot of labor and parts cost.
Try driving around a bit, get everything up to normal operating temperatures and then burn a few off from a dead stop. By that I mean launch the car from a dead still start using a lotta revs and slipping the clutch while allowing wheel spin, think sloppy drag strip starts. Build up some friction heat on the disc and let us all know if the judder goes away.
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PostPost by: Rob_LaMoreaux » Sun Feb 03, 2008 7:26 pm

I had to replace the throughout last year, and I pulled the engine to do it. I find that pulling the engine is the easiest, but then I have a friends shop hoist in my garage. If I had a hoist then sliding the tranny back into the tunnel might be easier.

One question though. Could it just be the rubber donuts causing the judder? My Elan doesn't launch as clean as our other cars due to the rubber donuts, but it isn't too bad.

Rob
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PostPost by: steveww » Mon Feb 04, 2008 9:27 am

My S4 suffered from judder at slow speeds both forward and reverse. It turned out to be the diff mounting. After I replaced all the diff mounts, bushes etc no more judder.

Worth a try and a lot easier than pulling the box out.
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PostPost by: denicholls2 » Mon Feb 04, 2008 6:46 pm

Like others, I have trouble getting my head around how the release bearing can be a factor in clutch judder. The release bearing exists only to provide a means for the force of the clutch pedal to be applied to the pressure plate, which is spinning whenever the engine is running. As such, it only works at all when the clutch is fully disengaged from the flywheel.

The spigot bearing, on the other hand, might be a factor (if really shot). A faulty spigot bearing would allow the input shaft to wander off-axis and could easily induce judder. But if you had the thing apart and didn't replace this, you deserve the outcome, and if you did replace it, it almost certainly isn't your problem. (Unless you forgot to put the new one in!) :oops:

I agree that making sure things further back in the driveline are happy might be a more productive initial use of effort.

I'll offer additionally that while it may be easier to remove the tranny than the whole lump, diagnosing what's wrong if in fact it is inside the bellhousing will be much easier if all of the related bits are on your garage floor. So I don't see a lot of value in your proposed approach.
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PostPost by: triumphelan » Tue Feb 05, 2008 7:03 am

Thanks again
Eric; The Elan is my every day car and I have " slipped the clutch " the smell was sickening
1964 S1; there was no oil on the clutch when I replaced the clutch in Xmas 2006 and no oil leak from bellhousing now
Rob; I have TT drive shafts fitted
denicholls2; I fitted a new spigot bearing

Prior to fitting the new clutch in Xmas 2006 I tried all these suggestions ,I can feel the judder through the clutch pedal .
As the consensous is it`s not the release bearing.
It seems the next step is to renew the rear bushes and Locones
Regards John 1969S4DHC
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PostPost by: triumphelan » Tue Feb 05, 2008 9:06 am

One more thing ,when I replaced the clutch in Xmas 2006 I replaced friction plate ,diaphram,release bearing and spigot bearing,all of the replaced components were in good condition
Regards John 1969S4DHC
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