Hard to shift/gear grind

Discussion in 'Drivetrain' started by amf201091, Apr 23, 2020.

  1. amf201091

    amf201091 New Member

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    Hey all,

    I have a 98' gt with approx 126k miles which I purchased about 2 months ago. Shifting seems to be pretty inconsistent. By that I mean, it doesn't like to go into gear much of the time and or likes to grriiiind. Up-shifting from 1st to 2nd will grind and or requires a lot of force to get into gear. Downshifting from 3rd to 2nd likes to grind also, and or doesn't fully go into gear. Sometimes it feels like I get locked out of 3rd completely when I'm driving and also does this when I try shifting to 1st at a red light. Overall, the shifting just feels like it requires an exceptional amount of force and isn' t very smooth. The car has an SR performance short throw shifter along with a firewall clutch adjuster kit that the previous owner installed, but I'm not sure exactly how to use it, or why and when I should... Could adjusting the cable be a solution to my problem? I plan on getting into open track/autocross this summer but with how inconsistent it is... I'm not going to do very well lol.
     
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2020
  2. lwarrior1016

    lwarrior1016 Moderator Staff SN95 Supporter

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    First off, welcome to the forum!
    Secondly, I highly suggest that you look up the firewall adjuster and learn about so you can learn and understand how it works. Knowing how things work will save you a bunch of headache later.

    Trying to adjust the clutch would be your best first step. Jack the car up and crawl under there. Take the dust cover off the cable and shine a light up in the bellhousing, take a look at how far the throw out bearing is away from the pressure plate. Push the fork toward the rear of the car and see if there is any slack. It may be as simple as tightening the cable to remove some space between the bearing and the pressure plate.


    Let me ask this though, how far is your foot off the floor when the clutch starts to release?
     
  3. amf201091

    amf201091 New Member

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    Thank you, glad to be here!

    I would say the clutch start to release about 3" from the floor.
     
  4. lwarrior1016

    lwarrior1016 Moderator Staff SN95 Supporter

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    I would try to adjust it first. Take some slack out of that cable and see if that fixes it.
     
  5. Darkhorse95

    Darkhorse95 New Member

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    I had the same issues with mine when I first got it about 11 years ago. I went ahead and replaced the quadrant and added the firewall adjuster (and watched a lot of YouTube videos on how to use it) and it fixed the problems
     
  6. waynenorcross

    waynenorcross New Member

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    Been awhile since my '94 Cobra went to Rochester, NY. I would love to see if still on the road. Wasn't there a clutch adjust procedure done from inside the car?
     
  7. Darkhorse95

    Darkhorse95 New Member

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    I’m not sure about. Some of the other guys on here may know. I just used the firewall adjuster on mine, and tweaked it to my liking.
     
  8. amf201091

    amf201091 New Member

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    I turned the adjuster counter-clockwise (tightening the clutch cable) and as soon as I shifted it into gear, it just popped out of gear... So I'm guessing I'll just have to mess with it and turn it both ways???
     
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2020
  9. amf201091

    amf201091 New Member

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    I'm not sure if it's a particular year but from what I have read, mustangs came from the factory with a self adjusting clutch and you could pull up on the clutch to make it adjust sooner instead of waiting for the clutch to adjust itself
     
  10. Addicted

    Addicted Active Member

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    The factory clutch quadrant is a plastic piece, you have to pull the pedal back towards you to adjust it. It's kimda a self adjusting piece. The aftermarket quadrants are aluminum, and they come with an adjustment screw on the cable itself where it attaches to the clutch fork. If you end up ditching the plastic quadrant piece, and you don't want to spend alot of $, Zoom makes a nice piece. Good luck bro.
     
  11. lwarrior1016

    lwarrior1016 Moderator Staff SN95 Supporter

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    Do you have an aftermarket shifter?
     
  12. Adfalenski

    Adfalenski New Member

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    If your cable is too loose, your clutch will not fully disengage and you will grind gears. If the cable is too tight, your clutch will not fully engage and you will burn up your clutch(yes, I burnt up a clutch). I have a firewall aftermarket clutch cable adjuster and I adjust it so that If I pull on the cable casing at the adjuster, I get about 1/8 to 1/4 inches of pull from the adjuster. The cable core itself causes some springiness and that is the amount I try to leave in. If you feel slop at the pedal(not springiness but outright slop) your cable is probably loose.
     
  13. amf201091

    amf201091 New Member

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    Yeah, an SR short throw shifter.
     
  14. lwarrior1016

    lwarrior1016 Moderator Staff SN95 Supporter

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    Make sure your shifter stops aren’t too tight, if they are, it won’t let the handle move all the way in to gear.
     
  15. Black95

    Black95 New Member

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    That's 99 and up
     
  16. Black95

    Black95 New Member

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    Delete
     
  17. evilcw311

    evilcw311 Most Evil Member! SN95 Supporter

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    Nope. 94 and up.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  18. Addicted

    Addicted Active Member

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    My 87 fox had one.
     
  19. amf201091

    amf201091 New Member

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    So I've just been gradually tightening the clutch cable as I drive it, but it is still giving me troubles of locking me out of 3rd and 1st.. Grinding seems to have reduced somewhat. I've noticed though that when it locks me out of a gear, I put it into neutral and when I release the clutch I can hear a "thud" underneath the car. Not sure if this is normal or not lol... but after putting it into neutral and releasing the clutch, it will let me put it into gear. Could whatever is causing this "thud" be the problem? Maybe the transmission is loose or something?? lol
     
  20. Addicted

    Addicted Active Member

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    There's your clue, both 1 and 3 are in the same direction.