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#1061507 - 04/14/19 03:02 PM McLeod RST clutch install  
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mmc427ss Offline
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mmc427ss  Offline
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Pottstown, Pa
For several years replacing the Clutch Friction clutch, now American Powertrain, in the 86 has been on the list of Winter projects. Although it was a must do on that list the time, costs and foremost the effort needed to pull the T56 pushed the project to the next Winter's project list several times.

This will be the third clutch going into the car. When the T56 was installed 17 years ago a Centerforce 10 3/4" dual friction clutch went behind the 305 using the Gbody mechanical linkage and G bell housing. That clutch was sweet, low pedal pressure, great modulation, very good manors, my wife could drive the car. It was reinstalled when the 427 and Lakewood scattershield got dropped in and drag raced occasionally with drag radials, still a good clutch for that. After finding no hook with the drag radials a set of Hoosier QTP bias slicks were bought, the Centerforce was changed out for more clutch to accommodate the more hook of the slicks. The new Clutch Friction 700 ft-lb clutch I didn't like from day one, almost an ON-OFF switch, chattered in reverse and required finesse to engage without annoying the wife sitting in the pass seat. It worked well with the slicks but otherwise was a PITA. Have lived with it for 7 years and never happy with it, except at the drags with QTP tires.

Now with what I suspect is a leaking freeze plug in the black of the block pulling the flywheel to inspect or repair the leak has pushed the clutch replacement to being a Spring project. My drag racing days are very limited to a few test/tune passes maybe twice a year now most likely with street tires instead of slicks so less clutch is needed. Always knew a twin disc was my next choice but price was always an issue, and the expensive lite weight McLeod steel flywheel I had made for the new engine I wanted to reuse.

Jegs just had 75 bucks off the normal pricing of the McLeod RST I needed and now an RST sits on a shop bench awaiting install. Before install the clutch the rest of the other parts will be ordered and will try to make one more trip to the drags using the QTP tires and old clutch. The RST clutch McLeod says is not a race clutch and needs to be broke in via street miles, I will respect that break in. This will be the last clutch the car gets!
Bob

#1061509 - 04/15/19 12:21 AM Re: McLeod RST clutch install [Re: mmc427ss]  
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1 Slow SS Offline
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1 Slow SS  Offline
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Small town USA
Well you made a good choice Bob. I hope although you say its the last clutch that you're still chipping away at the car for many more years! I think you'll be happy with that set up. I believe mine said 500 miles break in?

Regards,
Ron


Be a car builder, not a googler!
#1061511 - 04/15/19 04:08 AM Re: McLeod RST clutch install [Re: mmc427ss]  
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mmc427ss Offline
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mmc427ss  Offline
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Hi Ron, good to see you still around.

If the RST lasts me another 10 years I'll be 78, not that far away.

Have been looking at all the possible twins for to many years waiting for the day when the choice had to be made. As a retiree funds for the toys isn't what it used to be, man's gotta know his limitation. But for more than a decade the twin was on the list, one of the last upgrades to do. The car just doesn't need a big clutch anymore, gearing is outrageous in all 6 gears with the 4.11s, the RST should hold up well.

There are a few Fri evening Test/Tune in the next month, will try to run the old clutch and QTP tires for the last time before before pulling things apart. Rounding up all the other essentials to do the swap takes a while. A used once, brand new trans jack did show up at the front door last week, borrowed from a friend. One less thing to acquire.

Aug is a 400 mile round trip to UMI, break in mileage.
Bob

#1061679 - 04/27/19 05:39 AM Re: McLeod RST clutch install [Re: mmc427ss]  
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mmc427ss Offline
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mmc427ss  Offline
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Not much progress on the clutch R&R, when you're retired it's hard to find time for the things you want to do.

Ordered the extended pilot bushing from Speedway tonight. Have been using an extended bushing for several years now. The some what unique T56 setup I run moves the input shaft nose out of the pilot bearing. Running the shorter standard length bushing only showed about 1/2 of the input journal in the bushing. When the trans is pulled this time will see if the longer bushing shows a better wear pattern.

https://www.speedwaymotors.com/Speedway-SBC-BBC-Chevy-V8-Extra-Long-Bronze-Pilot-Bushing,6974.html

Stick install is a combo of a 15015 Lakewood shattershild for 82 F with mechanical linkage and the 18 degree fork angle , which is no longer made. A Lakewood blocksaver plate which moves the trans back about .100". A T56 that was original designed for the Mustang GT and that Ford deal fell through. That trans became the aftermarket T56 to replace the T5 in the 3rd Gen F. An adapter plate which is a 1/2" thick steel plate to adapt/mount that T56 to a canted T5 or old school 4 spd bolt pattern. It is a hefty piece of steel. The adapter plate is what makes things unique, besides allowing the T56 to mate the old school bellhousings it's also a mounting surface for the retainer which the throwout bearing rides on.
Have had problems with the throwout bearing scaring the bearing retainer where the throwout bearing rides back and forth. Have replaced that retainer several times due to scarring, it a pretty soft cast steel material. Last time a clutch was done I sent a new bearing retainer out and had it hard chromed. That is another area of concern. Hoping the hard chrome on the retainer held up to the hardened surfaces of the throwout bearing.

Have looking at available throwout bearings manufacturers. Last two throwout bearing were GM, the one in the car now has been singing when you engage the clutch for some time now. It has become like the wife, sometimes you hear it, sometimes you can tune it out. But it needs to go, but not sure what's what when it comes to quality anymore. Timken, SKF, National, GM, McLeod, Hayes, RAM, CenterForce they are all most likely imported anymore. Have always ran a standard height bearing used by most any GM mechanical linkage stick setup previously. The fork geometry was good with both the clutches installed in the car. Not sure if the new RST has the same installed finger height as the old clutches. Will call Mcleod at some point to hear what they have to say about that.
Also not sure why the two bearing they sell cost twice as much as other offerings, another question for them.

It would be nice to open up the T56 and throw a few new parts in it when the trans is out, Changing the 3/4 syncros, the upgraded pads for the forks, maybe a couple bearings but just don't have the time or effort needed to crack that case again. 15 years ago when I broke the 3/4 keys some upgrades were done. Solid keys in 1/2 3/4, steel 3/4 fork, steel inserts in the 1/2 fork and a few other tweaks. After 12 years of 500 lb-ft it's due for some love, but that will need to wait.
Bob

#1061710 - 05/02/19 04:20 AM Re: McLeod RST clutch install [Re: mmc427ss]  
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Onebadbowtie86 Offline
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Traverse City Michigan
Hope all is well Bob, hope you get down the track and get some new best numbers!


'86 Monte carlo ss-Frame off resto-mod.
Ls2/t56/8.5"
#1061720 - 05/03/19 02:47 AM Re: McLeod RST clutch install [Re: mmc427ss]  
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mmc427ss Offline
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mmc427ss  Offline
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Pottstown, Pa
Good to see you still stop by here. The weather up your way is almost play time for your 86, get it out and wear some rubber off those tires. New tires get to be 7 years old pretty quick, like the kids. Put some miles on the car.

Being retired and "all is well" don't go together. Now that you have more time to do things there are ten times as many things to do. And what you used to do in 4 hours takes four days now. Four weeks to do door seals, A week to replace the Innovate Wide Band O2. Expecting the RST project to drag out too.

For more than a decade have wanted to do a twin in the car, finally it's sometime this year. My goal every year is to drive the 86 2K miles for fun. Yesterday took a fun drive to the plumbing supply to get a transformer for the shop's Beckett that decided to die on possibly the last day I would have needed it this year. Sat the wife's 02 SS was on jackstands in the shop to replace brake lines front to rear, used the 86 for a day. A few weeks ago my daily Astro was on stands for "brakes all around", again the 86 was out for a ride and some coffee. I just like jumping into the 86 and rowing some gears as you run up the highway. The clutch that is in the car I have learned to live with it's chatter in reverse, firmer pedal, and harsh engagement, no longer. I was another year older on Mon, time to do the twin I've wanted for years. If I waited much longer it would take me a year to install it. It's May already, UMI K of the M event is the end of Aug (that's a 400 mile round trip), Chevrolet Carlisle is June, spending a week in sunny FL at the end of the month. Just hard to find the time, and effort needed to do the RST.
But it will get done!
Bob

#1061727 - 05/03/19 04:33 AM Re: McLeod RST clutch install [Re: mmc427ss]  
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Onebadbowtie86 Offline
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Traverse City Michigan
Roads are clear, throw the parts in the trunk and drive it up to my house, I will put it in for you! That should get you close to your mileage goal, and by the time you get home the clutch will be broken in!


'86 Monte carlo ss-Frame off resto-mod.
Ls2/t56/8.5"
#1061730 - 05/03/19 01:14 PM Re: McLeod RST clutch install [Re: mmc427ss]  
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SSLance Offline
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SSLance  Offline
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Peoria, AZ
Now that sounds like a plan!!


Lance
1985 Monte Carlo SS Street Car
#1061734 - 05/04/19 01:09 AM Re: McLeod RST clutch install [Re: mmc427ss]  
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86ttop Offline
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86ttop  Offline
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Brooksville, Fl
Bring it to Florida, I won't help with the clutch, but we can find a local shop to do it!! The Lovebugs will be gone by then too!!


Leo Paugh
It's not an attitude, it's just the way I am.
POW*MIA
You are not forgotten
If things improve with age, I must be approaching magnificent. thumbs
#1061750 - 05/06/19 12:19 AM Re: McLeod RST clutch install [Re: mmc427ss]  
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mmc427ss Offline
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mmc427ss  Offline
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Pottstown, Pa
Leo, drove once to Clearwater FL in an 85 Monte, straight through. Learned a lesson from that, flew the friendly skies the last six times, and the next one.
Jason, drove once to Minneapolis from Philly, last five times from 30,000'.
Neither the wife or I can do much more than an hour and a half in a car without stopping anymore."Beam me down Scotty", still waiting for that technology.

I'll be in Orlando for a couple days and then down to Port Charlotte with friends. Maybe even get over to Muscle Car City to relive the old days. Was there right after it opened at the old location years ago. Impressive collection of the GM of yesterday. Any GM fan should put that place on their bucket-list.
http://musclecarcity.net/

Kinda got a June 1 install start date in my mind. Chevrolet Carlisle is June 22 with the car, gotta say high to the kids.
Bob

#1061751 - 05/06/19 01:05 AM Re: McLeod RST clutch install [Re: mmc427ss]  
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86ttop Offline
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86ttop  Offline
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Brooksville, Fl
I hear you on that Bob, we usually don't do much over two hours at a time in the car anymore either!


Leo Paugh
It's not an attitude, it's just the way I am.
POW*MIA
You are not forgotten
If things improve with age, I must be approaching magnificent. thumbs
#1061925 - 05/15/19 04:52 AM Re: McLeod RST clutch install [Re: mmc427ss]  
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mmc427ss Offline
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mmc427ss  Offline
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Pottstown, Pa
Working on getting ready for the clutch install so most of the stuff is in hand before starting. The extended pilot bushing is here. Will make a trip out to see Bob Hanlon for an input shaft seal and bronze cup for the shifter. There are traces of AFT at the trans front bottom, maybe input seal needs replaced. That doesn't appear to be a big deal to replace. I had the T56 apart 15 years ago, 3/4 keys were destroyed, lots of upgrades were done then. Don't know if i would have the stamina to do that again, it's a PITA.

Will most likely refill with Mobil 1 ATF again, have had good shifting quality with it. But like it's brother Mobil 1 10-30 it like to seep out where ever opportunity allows. Had to have the driveshaft yoke's plug welded in because the Mobil ATF saw an opening.

Every time I've pulled this trans you pull that Lakewood Scattershield, the blocksaver plate and the 1/2" thick steel adapter plate used for the aftermarket T56 and think about how much all that weighs. This time will weigh all that, maybe close to 50 lbs. If that stuff was all alum I'd save 45 lbs off the front of the car. But I'll end up throwing some black paint on it and stuff it back in.

Hoping no surprises with bearing retainer that the throwout bearing slides on. The one in the car was hard chromed when the last clutch went in. Hoping that fixed the throwout bearing from gauling the retainer. Won't know until the trans comes out. The retainers are soft, the throwout bearing is hardened and has some sharp edges that wear the retainer

Will most likely be replacing the nylon bushings in the clutch pedal pivot rod. Almost 20 years now of use. With all the stuff stuffed up under the dash there that job is a challenge. At the very bottom of the clutch pedal stroke you can feel a sticking like feel, The neutral safety switch activates that far down so you need to push the pedal to the floor to start the car. When driving/shifting the car you don't need to depress the pedal that far so you don't notice the sticking. Only when you start the engine. Awhile ago replaced the rod ends in the mechanical linkage with QA1 premium ends and that didn't fix the problem.
Just more details to make this new clutch as sweet as it can be.
Bob

#1061932 - 05/15/19 07:53 PM Re: McLeod RST clutch install [Re: mmc427ss]  
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mmc427ss Offline
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mmc427ss  Offline
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Pottstown, Pa
What a gorgeous day here today. Jumped in the 86 and made the jaunt out to see Bob Hanlon for T56 parts. Surprised he remember me after 15 years. We have a few mutual friends.

His shop and garage are loaded with new, old Tremecs off every type. He said he's a month behind in rebuilds so that ruled out any thought of dropping mine off for a 3/4 R&R. It was nice to pick his head about the T56, fluids, power shifting, seals, syncros, lots of just good info that I concur with.
Bought a new input seal, which he says usually doesn't leak, and he talked me out of the bronze shifter insulator cup. You don't need it, more noise through the shifter, and they wear out over time. Stock nylon cup lasts forever and is quiet, I'm sold.
One more thing off the parts list.
Bob

#1061938 - 05/15/19 09:26 PM Re: McLeod RST clutch install [Re: mmc427ss]  
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SSLance Offline
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SSLance  Offline
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Peoria, AZ
Get busy!! I want to see parts spread all over your shop like they are mine right now... laugh


Lance
1985 Monte Carlo SS Street Car

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