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Vehicle Problems

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by John Deppel, Mar 18, 2005.

  1. I have been noticing my truck doing something strange over the past week or so.

    Truck in question is a 1985 Toyota Xtra Cab P/up, with just under 120,000 miles on it. Whenever I'm in 4th or 5th gear (don't seem to notice it in lower gears), and push the accelerator down past a certain point, it feels as if my truck has dropped into neutral. I can feel (and hear) the engine rev up, but the vehicle maintains the current speed. Spoke with a couple of my coworkers, who can't figure out why it does that. One of my coworkers thinks possibly a stuck e-brake would do this, but I can't see that being the problem, as the vehicle is perfect aside from this one problem.

    Anybody have any idea what's going on?
  2. Bob Lee (QSC)

    Bob Lee (QSC) In case you missed it, I work for QSC Audio! Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jul 3, 2001
    Costa Mesa, Calif.
    Technical Communications Developer, QSC Audio
    Manual transmission, right? Sounds like the clutch is slipping. If it isn't just out of adjustment, then you need a new one.
  3. Yes, it's a manual. If the clutch is slipping, is it safe to drive until I have a chance to either fix it myself or get it in to see a mechanic?
  4. Bob Lee (QSC)

    Bob Lee (QSC) In case you missed it, I work for QSC Audio! Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jul 3, 2001
    Costa Mesa, Calif.
    Technical Communications Developer, QSC Audio
    For short distances it may be okay. It won't get better until you fix it, though, so if you keep driving around you may eventually find it slips in third and second gears, too.

    Does your clutch have a cable or is it hydraulic--that is, with a master cylinder on the firewall and a slave cylinder on the clutch?

    If it has a cable, you might need only to adjust it.
  5. It's a hydraulic clutch. I've checked my fluid level, and it's good, also checked my freeplay adjustment, and it seems in specs. I'm gonna make an appointment to get my truck in the shop, as I just don't have a lot of free time right now to be trying to get my vehicle back up and running.

    Are there any other things I should be on the lookout for, that may point to a slipping clutch, i.e. burning smells, strange engine noises, or anything of that sort?
  6. Bob Lee (QSC)

    Bob Lee (QSC) In case you missed it, I work for QSC Audio! Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jul 3, 2001
    Costa Mesa, Calif.
    Technical Communications Developer, QSC Audio
    Well, the friction material on your clutch disk has probably just worn out. It's like when the material on your brake pads wear out and there's nothing more than the backing plates to grip the rotors. If there's little or no friction material left, I don't think you'd get a burning smell.

    While the tranny and clutch are off the engine, it might also be worthwhile to also have the rear crankshaft seal replaced.
  7. An old car had sort of the same problem- really sluggish after shifting... I don't know if it was the clutch or transmission in my 88 Mustang that went, but I dumped it because it was nickle and diming me. I did have 146K on it though. The engine itself was probably good for a lot more, but the top was cooked (convertible) and all kinds of "little things" were going on it.
  8. Beefbass

    Beefbass Guest

    Feb 4, 2001
    It very well could be a clutch problem. It is still safe to drive, just that over time, it will start slipping more and more.

    Sometimes the clutch slave cylinders go bad on those too. However, since you are not losing fluid it is probably still ok. Might as well have it checked though.

    If it is your clutch, and it has to be replaced, make sure the flywheel gets turned also. Otherwise, the new clutch will chatter like you wouldn't believe.
  9. I think Beef here is right - I don't know of a hydraulic clutch system that doesn't use a slave cylinder down at the fork if only to readirect the push-pull action to a more fore-aft direction. You might check that too but Bob probably had it nailed from the description you've given.

    BTW, it's not a guarantee that your clutch will just gradually fade through the gears as Bob has alluded. Nope, one day, you could be stopped at a stop light with the clutch in and when you try to take off again...nothing. It's happened to me when I thought I could get by a little longer. Just a warning to not put it off too long or you could be left in the middle of the road.
  10. I bought a new clutch kit today, and tomorrow, I've got a friend who's gonna tow me to his house and help me replace the clutch.
  11. Mike N

    Mike N Missing the old TB Supporting Member

    Jan 28, 2001
    Spencerport, New York
    Geez, with all the bases Bob covered, I'm thinking he's trying to put me out of a job. ;)

    Like Beef said, turn the flywheel too. Also, change the pilot bushing while you're there (that's the piece that goes into the back of the crankshaft to support the transmission input shaft). Hopefully your kit came with one of those.
  12. Mike Money

    Mike Money Banned

    Mar 18, 2003
    Bakersfield California
    Avatar Speakers Endorsing Hooligan
    I had a similar problem with my 86...

    well not really.

    I'd push my clutch in, and it would get stuck... but the pedal would come out.. So i had to drive it with the pedal depressed so it didnt lose any play...

    turned out to be a problem with the hydralic fluid pump thingy..
  13. Thanks everyone for your posts and input.

    My truck is sitting on a lift at the local Auto Hobby shop without a tranny or driveshaft. Found out I really burnt out that clutch (NO friction material left). Need to get the flywheel turned (major grooving), but after 4 pm on a Sunday, that's impossible. So tomorrow, I should be able to get my flywheel turned, and get everything back together.

    Found that it really sucks not having my truck. :bawl:
  14. Bob Lee (QSC)

    Bob Lee (QSC) In case you missed it, I work for QSC Audio! Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jul 3, 2001
    Costa Mesa, Calif.
    Technical Communications Developer, QSC Audio
    I did one clutch replacement in my life, and now that I know I can do it I'm happy to let someone else do it from now on.

    About 20 years ago I did an engine rebuild on my 74 Capri. It was a little 2 liter 4-cylinder engine, real easy to work with and a fun, decent project for a first-timer like me. I examined the clutch, and it looked fine. There was plenty of material left on the disk, there was no grooving on the flywheel, the pressure plate looked good, everything. So I put it all together and was really proud of myself driving the car around.

    About 1500 miles later a spring on the clutch disk broke and jammed the release mechanism. I was close to home so I was able to limp back to the driveway. So I had to buy and install a new clutch anyway. Replacing a clutch on a car that's resting on jack stands is about 500 times harder than replacing one on the flywheel of a removed engine. ;)
  15. cassanova


    Sep 4, 2000
    I had clutch problems with my 94 Ford Ranger a few years back. I knew it was starting to go. One day I stopped at a Gas station to fill her up, when I put her in gear and tried to take off the truck wouldn't move an inch.
  16. My truck is back together, and up and running. Had a little trouble pulling out the pilot bearing...that thing was in there good! Also found out while putting it back together that my slave cylinder has a slight leak on it, so I'll have to replace that, once the one I ordered comes in. My clutch is now tighter than heck...I've managed to lurch a few times, which is rare for me. Clutch is starting to break in though and smooth out.
  17. Beefbass

    Beefbass Guest

    Feb 4, 2001

    Slave cylinders are pretty common on the older Toyota trucks. I had an 86 pickup, and it blew a slave cylinder-but I got 200,000 miles out of it first, so I wasn't upset.

    Once you have that in, you should be good to go. :hyper:
  18. Trevorus


    Oct 18, 2002
    Urbana, IL
    I guess you have an external slave cylinder, that makes that a bit easier. My '85 ford ranger has a concentric slave that mounts between the bell housing and trans main body. Kinda funky, but I guess it works. Generally, when I do a clutch, I'll replace the flywheel. Turning it generally costs nearly the same as a new one, and you get a new friction surface, and ring gear.