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Need Gearchange Linkage Advice Please


matk

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I've been having some probs selecting reverse gear lately. Symptoms are that it is selectable when the car is first started, but after a long run you can't select it. This became worse and worse to the point that I lost reverse completely.

Routed around underneath, adjusted the linkage at the crossgate lever, job done all working fine.......... however Friday, same thing happened. I've just been under the car again, readjusted and it's fine again.

Questions:

1. Is there any reason why the linkage could be affected by heat? Why would my gearchange get worse (it only happens to reverse) after a run i.e. the engine is hot.

2. Please see the red arrow on the pic below which is of the gearchange mechanism at the gearlever.

IMG_0614.jpg

Sideways movement of the gear lever applies a front and backwards movement on the rod to the right that connects back to the cross gate lever. I have about 1.5 cms of free play where the arrow is, but at the cross gate lever end at the gearbox there is hardly any free play. Where is the free play being introduced into the linkage? I've been crawling around underneath all afternoon and can't for the life of me see!

HELP!

PS Don't think it's clutch or red hose syndrome. I have a braided hose, and a brand new clutch master cylinder, and adjusting the linkage always brings it back.

Regards

Mat

post-1-0302470001278592957.jpg

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Mat,

I know I'm as useful as a chocolate tea-pot but why is it only affecting reverse?

Surely, if its heat affecting the linkage then all forward gears would also but affected?

If it's reverse only then perhaps it's something else. But then how come you can get reverse again once you've adjusted the linkage? Unless adjusting the linkage is also adjusting something else on the reverse selector?

See, as useful as a chocolate tea-pot

Graham.

Wing Commander Dibble DFC<br /><br />
North Midlands Esprit Group<br /><br />
NMEG "the formidable squadron"<br /><br />
"probably the most active Esprit group in the world" Andy Betts, Castle Combe May 2007

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Lee/Graham

That's what's puzzling me. The transmission end of the linkage has nowhere near the same amount of play. Graham the fact that it's reverse only confirms to me it's linkage caused, e.g. sideways movement of the gear lever isn't being fully translated into forwards/backwards movement of the linkage, which then can't apply enough movement onto the cross gate lever. This would explain all other gears OK except reverse. Why it gets worse when hot escapes me!

Regards

Mat

post-1-0302470001278592957.jpg

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Are you sure it's heat related and not time related? Perhaps the linkage adjustment is changing over time as you drive and shift gears.

Before you readjust it to get it working again, do you find the linkage exactly as you'd left it or did it change?

Is the 1.5cm amount of freeplay on the rod normal?

-Dave

All Cows Eat Grass

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  • 2 weeks later...

Mat,

Could be unrelated, but check the condition of the engine mounting rubber bush on the exhaust side of the engine. I had the same problems selecting gear when the engine was hot and it was some time afterwards when I discovered the engine mount was badly affected by heat and severely mis-shapen. When this happens, the engine alignment in the mounting 'cradle' is affected and the gear linkage operation can be affected. In my case, there was contact marks on the linkage revealing that it had been rubbing on the engine at some point too. That also explained the very 'stiff' linkage I experienced too, again only when the car was hot.

Hope this helps,

Jon.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Mat,

I missed this thread earlier, but maybe I can help now. My white S1 has a perfectly functioning linkage and my whole interior is out, too, so if you have any specific questions of "how it should be", ask, and I'll go check on my car. :P

- T

Tony K. :)

 

Esprit S1s #355H & 454H

Esprit S2.2  #324J

1983 Turbo Esprit, Investor Edition #03

1991 Esprit SE

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Troy/Tony

Thanks for your support. I've managed to get reverse back last weekend, but have now picked up on a possible loose pulley on the water pump and my timing belt looks slack. Don't want to risk Castle Combe in this state. The cars going to PNM for Pete to have a look see in the next couple of weeks.

I'm therefore prob coming down in the Saab.

Regards

Mat

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  • 4 years later...

Gday Crew,

Was their a solution to this problem? My S2.2 suffered the same fate today! It has never done this before but once the car cools down I can select reverse again. I have braided lines so it can't be red hose syndrome. I drove to a destination and parked using reverse, no problems. Drove the same distance home, went to select reverse, and it was not there, tried everything to select it! I waited a couple of hours and was able to select reverse as per normal operation. Any ideas?

Regards Mark

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The red hose thing is a red herring....may have some effect on LH drive vehicles as the clutch line routes near the exhaust, but gear selection problems are usually due to crossgate adjustment. I had to look at this thread, as I have spent several days trying to invent a gear linkage from scratch for the monoposto kit car I'm building...! I would suggest the first thing you do is to inspect the crossgate part of the linkage, the cable, the bellcrank at the gearbox end...the point where the cable joins the bellcrank wears, the plain bearing bush wears and the cylindrical steel pin which fits into the selector shaft does as well. Any lost motion manifests itself as difficulty in getting reverse....to get the selectors across the gate to the reverse gear position means that the cable is having to push the bellcrank...and that's not a natural thing for a cable to do!

Try to get the problem to occur again..but this time be in overalls and have assistance with you....then you can grovel underneath and inspect things whilst your assistant trys to engage reverse. Assuming you have the fault, try moving the bellcrank a bit further so that the selector shaft comes out of the gearbox a bit more...you can lever it with some suitable levery thing...then the reverse gear ought to slide into mesh and you've found the cause of the problem!! Usually adjusting the crossgate cable cures the problem, but if you have too much free play in the linkage you may have to 1) replace the plain bearing bush 2) fit a larger diameter pin to the cable/bellcrank clevis 3) dismantle the thing and apply a bit of weld to the steel pin on the bellcrank, then file it carefully to fit. One or all of these may be necessary!

LOADS of fun ahead....but it's a cheap fix, unless you need a new crossgate cable.....

Edited by molemot

Scientists investigate that which already is; Engineers create that which has never been." - Albert Einstein

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The red hose thing is a red herring....may have some effect on LH drive vehicles as the clutch line routes near the exhaust...

Mine doesn't.

"If you can't fix it with a hammer, it's electrical." -somebody's dad

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Never having seen a LH drive Esprit, and noticing that the whole "red hose" thing seemed to originate in the USA, I made the assumption that there must be something in LH drive cars that brought the plastic hose closer to a heat source....wrongly, it seems! But I do still hold to the idea that it has little or nothing to do with problems engaging reverse gear...which I'm pretty sure is down to lost motion in the crossgate mechanism. Were it due to the clutch not releasing properly, surely that ought to manifest itself when selecting first gear as well? In any event, checking out the crossgate is simple enough and costs nothing....unlike changing the clutch hydraulic hose needlessly!

Scientists investigate that which already is; Engineers create that which has never been." - Albert Einstein

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The red hose thing is a red herring....may have some effect on LH drive vehicles as the clutch line routes near the exhaust, but gear selection problems are usually due to crossgate adjustment.

I live in the UK & all four of the Esprits I owned had gear selection problems of various sorts in hot weather (not very often I know) until I changed the plastic red hose for a steel braided hose.

Cheers,

John W

http://jonwatkins.co.uk

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Gday Crew,Was their a solution to this problem?

Its funny you should ask......

I now own the car which Mat used to own when he started this thread. The car has been off the road for 2 years having a respray and new interior, but when I got the car in April 09 it was doing exactly what Mat mentioned. Fine when cold, a nighmare once warmed up.

The car will be serviced in the next 2-3 weeks, and this problem addressed. Having spoken to Sportomotive, they think that if you can get reverse when cold it can't be the linkage. They did mention something else it could be but it was about a year ago so I can't remember.

Once its resolved I will update this, seems poetic to do so!

EDIT - having just re-read Johns reply, I think they suspected the clutch hydraulics.

Edited by Nelly9000
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All depends on the actual symptoms. If you can't engage reverse because it makes a dreadful grinding noise of gear teeth wearing themselves away....it's the clutch.

If you can't engage reverse because, no matter how hard you try, the lever won't go there..it's the linkage.

Hydraulics are not going to affect the ability of the gear linkage to engage the gears; there is no synchro on reverse, so trying to engage reverse with the clutch not being properly out will result in the aforementioned dreadful grinding noise.....exactly the same as you'd get if you tried to engage reverse without using the clutch pedal at all. However, my understanding of this problem is that the gear selector mechanism cannot be moved to engage reverse....and that HAS to be a problem with the selector mechanism itself. When you dig into the gearbox, you find that the selector mechanism needs to be set with some precision, or reverse gear selection problems will occur. Also, some owners don't seem to realise that the gear lever has to be lifted over a detent to select reverse....

My beast had exactly the same "can't get reverse when hot" symptoms. It was so bad that I snapped off the gearlever in frustration!! I changed the red hose for braided Goodridge...no difference. Turned out that cumulative lost motion in the crossgate selector mechanism was to blame; when I fixed that, no further trouble.

I stand by my reasoning ....I am sure that there has been much confusion over this in the past and that many lengths of "red hose" have been changed to no avail. Mine as well!!! I'm not saying that the syndrome doesn't exist at all...just that it has become "the thing to do"...and that investigation of the actual selector mechanism would probably repay effort as the very first thing to try.

Edited by molemot

Scientists investigate that which already is; Engineers create that which has never been." - Albert Einstein

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I had a similar problem on the S1 some time back.

It turned out to be the cross-gate cable its self. Although it looked like it had enough movement when it was disconnected it must have had enough friction through it to cause a problem getting the car into reverse.

Anyway, that was what cured my problem….never know you may have the same issue.

Might be worth disconnecting the cross-gate cable and getting someone to do the forward – aft movement while you move the cross gate mechanism just to check how much movement you need to get a clean selection of 5th gear.

Just as an aside, when I took my wife ( then girlfriend) out for the first time I was in the S1.

We parked outside a pub to go in for a drink and then when we got back out I did the gentlemanly thing holding the door open for her then got in myself in full view of the people sitting outside the pub.the pub…….James Bond couldn’t have done it better with Barbara Bach in The Spy Who Loved Me.

Started the engine …nice throaty roar which got the remainder of the people outside the pub looking over ……and then I couldn’t get reverse!!!!!!

Had to get out and push the car back 6 feet to get out of the parking space. :rant::getmecoat:

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Mark...why does it do it only when it's hot? Damned if I know.....but I would start by looking at the linkage!! Could try getting the fault manifest, then pouring cold water over the linkage to see what that did.... Might not even be at the gearbox end, the gear lever and front part of the linkage gets pretty hot and that could be causing the trouble....don't go pouring cold water over that, though! I shall find some time to squint at the gear selector details in the manual and parts list and see if I can come up with a credible suggestion. Seems everyone's experience is the same...when it's hot, the gear lever won't select reverse, but there's no sign of the grinding noise you'd get if the clutch was dragging/not disengaging....and from my experience, getting rid of the lost motion and/or stiction in the cable fixes it. So somewhere there has to be part of the linkage that binds up or increases the lost motion when it gets hot. Hot stuff expands...so that might make the thing more floppy and be just enough to create the problem? Some careful measurement of the linkage movement at various points and different temperatures, using a dial gauge and an infra red thermometer, would give useful information....I'd do it on mine, but that works nicely!!

Putting a gearbox into first gear and then reverse can work by using the synchromesh on first to stop the gearclusters rotating...but it's really for boxes (like on the MGF) that make grinding noises when you try to engage reverse.

Edited by molemot

Scientists investigate that which already is; Engineers create that which has never been." - Albert Einstein

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If you can't engage reverse because it makes a dreadful grinding noise of gear teeth wearing themselves away....it's the clutch.If you can't engage reverse because, no matter how hard you try, the lever won't go there..it's the linkage.

Mine was actually a bit of both. I really stuggled to get reverse, and when I finally did there was the crunch!

I will update this once problem solved.

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Of course, Neil, just because you have one problem, doesn't mean you haven't got two...!!

Scientists investigate that which already is; Engineers create that which has never been." - Albert Einstein

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