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Rebuilding my 32RH transmission (fully successfully)

OP
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Where's the update? I'm bitting my nails in suspense!!

I thought this turned into a what lift is @U8MYDZT running thread.

I’m gonna order the new cable & new PS hoses, not gonna drive it till the new hoses are in. But I’m also adding a trans cooler in front of the radiator, so I’m gonna do all that at once this week, after family checks out. Have 12 people at the house right now.
 

U8MYDZT

Wrong guy to follow
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I thought this turned into a what lift is @U8MYDZT running thread.

I’m gonna order the new cable & new PS hoses, not gonna drive it till the new hoses are in. But I’m also adding a trans cooler in front of the radiator, so I’m gonna do all that at once this week, after family checks out. Have 12 people at the house right now.

I honestly was totally lost by the question. Couldn't figure out why my TV cable needed a spacer... LMAO.

I will be patiently waiting for an update. GL!
 
OP
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Drained the trans this morning. Not sure why I didn’t start that process sooner…seems like no matter now long you let it sit for another gallon always comes out of the case once you remove the cooler lines. I haven’t started it since Saturday morning so it’s had 3 full days to drain to the pan, although I think we determined that when full & fully “drained” down to the pan, the level may still be above the level of those lines….hence why I should’ve drained it Saturday after I solved my early shift problem.

My catch bucket had about 1/3 of a quart from that leak off the bell housing. Impressive for under a week. I think the plan is to drop the trans today & hopefully solve the leak. I’ll have a helper tomorrow to re-mount it. I also may bring my siezed(?) Adam’s driveshafts to a driveshaft shop to see if they can work magic on them.

Lastly, found a TV cable on Extreme Terrain for $44. Was tempted to buy a fancy one but didn’t want to hassle with anything other than a direct fit. Should be here Thursday. I’m always tempted by stainless/braided components…it’s my kryptonite. I don’t have any in place yet, but that trans cooler I’m putting in is a good opportunity, as are my leaky PS hoses.
 
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HDRider

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let's not bury the lead — I rebuilt a mother f'ing automatic transmission. I feel like I deserve a badge or something.

Congrats - Hat's off to you.

I got my back from the shop today. It was in there since June 1. Crazy town. Over a month in the shop and $1,962.

I told you I would share what he did. I wish I knew. All the receipt said was "Rebuild Transmission". I asked, and he said it had a new torque converter. That is all I know
 
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OP
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Congrats - Hat's off to you.

I got my back from the shop today. It was in there since June 1. Crazy town. Over a month in the shop and $1,962.

I told you I would share what he did. I wish I knew. All the receipt said was "Rebuild Transmission". I asked, and he said it had a new torque converter. That is all I know

If I'm paying somebody 2 large to do a job I'm going to need him to at least challenge himself by fabricating an inventory of tasks completed. Although referring back to my economics post on page 1, for $2k it needs to be rebuilt with a significant warranty. It's hard to verify the rebuilt-ness, so the best you can do is probably to have it stop doing whatever caused you to bring it to him in the first place and then pray you never need to see if he honors the warranty.

Speaking of which, do make sure you read the fine print on the warranty, it likely includes you bringing it back to him for a checkup in the first 30 days. I know the one time I paid a shop to rebuild a trans that's what the deal was.
 

Moglocker

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Congrats - Hat's off to you.

I got my back from the shop today. It was in there since June 1. Crazy town. Over a month in the shop and $1,962.

I told you I would share what he did. I wish I knew. All the receipt said was "Rebuild Transmission". I asked, and he said it had a new torque converter. That is all I know

2 grand is about right for a 3 speed,if I was going to have to r/I it several times,im paying the 2 grand,when I was in h-s in the early 80s it was 800.00
 

HDRider

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If I'm paying somebody 2 large to do a job I'm going to need him to at least challenge himself by fabricating an inventory of tasks completed. Although referring back to my economics post on page 1, for $2k it needs to be rebuilt with a significant warranty. It's hard to verify the rebuilt-ness, so the best you can do is probably to have it stop doing whatever caused you to bring it to him in the first place and then pray you never need to see if he honors the warranty.

Speaking of which, do make sure you read the fine print on the warranty, it likely includes you bringing it back to him for a checkup in the first 30 days. I know the one time I paid a shop to rebuild a trans that's what the deal was.

It is 12 months parts and labor. Three years on parts.

The guy was, well, you'd just have to see for yourself. Both of my other cars are new, so this mechanic was new to me. Hopefully I never see him again.
 
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Big update:

Dropped the trans last night, expecting to see evidence of fluid all around the bottom edge of the pump. Instead, the whole thing was bone dry with the exception of a puddle right at the bottom/outer edge of the bell housing. So I guess fluid was leaking out the pump seal then dripping down off the torque converter; the puddle was directly below where a drip would form on the TC. Besides the puddle, there was no evidence of runoff, so It had to be coming from directly above. There was a ring of fluid on the TC in the area where the TC contacts(?) the seal and the seal itself was wet on the surface, and then a "dribble line" from that recessed portion of the TC down to bottom edge, directly at the 6 o'clock position....I'm assuming that dribble line wasn't from me removing the TC. The engine hasn't been started in several days, but we did have to rotate the TC to undo the bolts so I'm surprised there was no evidence of it having rotated with a curved dribble line or something, or spray from the TC spinning when the motor had been running.

So I pulled the pump, replaced the seal, gasket, and sealing washers on the pump bolts. Sorry no pics. My Right Stuff was all dried up so I couldn't goop up the dipstick last night so I didn't put any fluid in, will do that today. Got the whole thing down, pump pulled, seal replaced, trans re-mounted in about 5 hours. It's a little bittersweet that we're getting good at this. Working on the trans is fun and I look forward to doing it again on somebody else's jeep. Dropping/replacing is a whip and I hate it.

When I removed the bolts there was the slightest bit of evidence of thread damage (the threads in the case) so I chased them with a 5/16-18 tap. If they gave me any trouble I had heli-coils on standby, but I was able to get them all torqued to 175 INCH-lbs. I fully expected to find fluid around the pump from that mistake but nope!

This is now the 3rd time we've re-installed the transmission, but the other 2 times my helper did the TC bolts while I rotated the engine. This time we traded jobs so I got to see it from a new perspective, and now I've got questions. When I put the first bolt in there was a decent gap between the TC & flexplate, like maybe 1/8" or 3/16". I got the bolt in, but not by a lot (I'm still surprised how short those bolts are for what they need to do). When I got to the 2nd or 3rd bolt, the TC slid back to close that gap & be mated to the flex plate. Maybe this is normal, IDK. So my confusion is that when I put the TC onto the input shaft you have to put some effort in to get it to click ALL THE WAY IN. I'm a little surprised that part of the mounting process involves the TC coming back out a smidge. I realize the TC shaft doesn't actually seal to the trans so it probably doesn't matter, just not at all what I was expecting.

New TV cable should be here today. But I dropped my seized Adams driveshafts off at a DS shop, won't have them back before Friday so no test drive for another 24-48 hrs. Which is fine because my grille swap & trans cooler project is still in mid flight. Should have that done today.
 

hardtailpan

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Big update:

....and now I've got questions. When I put the first bolt in there was a decent gap between the TC & flexplate, like maybe 1/8" or 3/16". I got the bolt in, but not by a lot (I'm still surprised how short those bolts are for what they need to do). When I got to the 2nd or 3rd bolt, the TC slid back to close that gap & be mated to the flex plate. Maybe this is normal, IDK. So my confusion is that when I put the TC onto the input shaft you have to put some effort in to get it to click ALL THE WAY IN. I'm a little surprised that part of the mounting process involves the TC coming back out a smidge. I realize the TC shaft doesn't actually seal to the trans so it probably doesn't matter, just not at all what I was expecting.

This sounds perfectly normal. I've replaced several autos and this is what you want to see. It's only a problem when the torque converter is already pushed up against the flywheel/crankshaft and there's still a gap to put the transmission bellhousing bolts in. That means the torque converter didn't fully engage the pump in the "slots." I've known people who tried to "pull" the transmission in and ended up snapping bellhousings.

Sounds like you got it right to me!
 
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U8MYDZT

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Big update:

Dropped the trans last night, expecting to see evidence of fluid all around the bottom edge of the pump. Instead, the whole thing was bone dry with the exception of a puddle right at the bottom/outer edge of the bell housing. So I guess fluid was leaking out the pump seal then dripping down off the torque converter; the puddle was directly below where a drip would form on the TC. Besides the puddle, there was no evidence of runoff, so It had to be coming from directly above. There was a ring of fluid on the TC in the area where the TC contacts(?) the seal and the seal itself was wet on the surface, and then a "dribble line" from that recessed portion of the TC down to bottom edge, directly at the 6 o'clock position....I'm assuming that dribble line wasn't from me removing the TC. The engine hasn't been started in several days, but we did have to rotate the TC to undo the bolts so I'm surprised there was no evidence of it having rotated with a curved dribble line or something, or spray from the TC spinning when the motor had been running.

So I pulled the pump, replaced the seal, gasket, and sealing washers on the pump bolts. Sorry no pics. My Right Stuff was all dried up so I couldn't goop up the dipstick last night so I didn't put any fluid in, will do that today. Got the whole thing down, pump pulled, seal replaced, trans re-mounted in about 5 hours. It's a little bittersweet that we're getting good at this. Working on the trans is fun and I look forward to doing it again on somebody else's jeep. Dropping/replacing is a whip and I hate it.

When I removed the bolts there was the slightest bit of evidence of thread damage (the threads in the case) so I chased them with a 5/16-18 tap. If they gave me any trouble I had heli-coils on standby, but I was able to get them all torqued to 175 INCH-lbs. I fully expected to find fluid around the pump from that mistake but nope!

This is now the 3rd time we've re-installed the transmission, but the other 2 times my helper did the TC bolts while I rotated the engine. This time we traded jobs so I got to see it from a new perspective, and now I've got questions. When I put the first bolt in there was a decent gap between the TC & flexplate, like maybe 1/8" or 3/16". I got the bolt in, but not by a lot (I'm still surprised how short those bolts are for what they need to do). When I got to the 2nd or 3rd bolt, the TC slid back to close that gap & be mated to the flex plate. Maybe this is normal, IDK. So my confusion is that when I put the TC onto the input shaft you have to put some effort in to get it to click ALL THE WAY IN. I'm a little surprised that part of the mounting process involves the TC coming back out a smidge. I realize the TC shaft doesn't actually seal to the trans so it probably doesn't matter, just not at all what I was expecting.

New TV cable should be here today. But I dropped my seized Adams driveshafts off at a DS shop, won't have them back before Friday so no test drive for another 24-48 hrs. Which is fine because my grille swap & trans cooler project is still in mid flight. Should have that done today.

This is exactly how mine went together. But my TC pilot got hung up on the crankshaft and made a loud pop when it finally seated. You're fine 🤙🏻
 
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OP
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New problem.

Got everything put back together (mostly). Put a bunch of ATF back in, fired her up. NOTE: I don't have my driveshafts because they're at the DS shop. Park works, reverse spins the rear yoke one direction, drive spins it the other. The problem is that the yoke also spins in neutral. The speedo reads about 15 mph in drive at idle, around 12ish in neutral. Fast enough that we didn't want to attempt to grab it, and it beat up a block of wood we introduced into the equation. What I don't know is maybe that's normal? Maybe there's enough fluid coupling inside the trans to actually makes stuff spin if there is no load on the output shaft???? If so how much? If I give it some gas, the yoke spins faster in both D and N. So it feels like I don't have neutral; seems to act just like drive.

Debugging info: Reverse only uses the front clutches while all the forward gears use the rear clutches, so the fact that it spins the opposite direction in R tells me that the front clutches aren't applied in R. If they were that would give 3rd gear (3rd is both sets of clutches engaged). If they aren't applied in R that means whatever mechanism un-applies them is able to function to some degree.

All I did was follow the pump removal process:
  1. tighten the kickdown band to hold the forward drum in place
  2. slide hammer to remove the pump
  3. replaced the seal & pump o-ring
  4. Turned the trans upright
  5. set the pump in place ==> I normally use three 5/16 studs threaded into the case to help guide the pump in with the correct orientation. This time I wasn't able to get them to slide over the guides. I removed all but one and was able to get it lined up no problem. But weird that they weren't lining up. Makes me wonder if my threads are weird now.
  6. loosened the kickdown band adjust to allow the pump reaction shaft to slide home & pump to seat fully ===> last time the pump literally fell into place. This time I had to push it to get it home. Just my bare hands, but I'm trying to pay attention to these small differences.
  7. Torqued the pump bolts
  8. Set the kickdown band adjust (72 in-lbs, backed off 2.5 turns)

I could have the driveshafts back tomorrow at which point I'll obviously be able to know more. Or it could be Monday. This will be a long wait unless somebody can chime in and tell me to chill out this is totes norms.
 

Claytone

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It's normal. If you think about how close all those components are it makes sense that they'll freewheel along with the input shaft rotation.
The older Benz transmissions would actually move the car a little in neutral if you revved it up.