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Delayed shifts to D or R

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Torino_Chris View Drop Down
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    Posted: 21-November-2016 at 11:14PM
Hey all,

not sure which section this topic would fit best, so I'll just try it here.

I have the following issue with the 3-speed automatic gearbox in my 73 GTS and I was wondering if that can be fixed, is normal, or means it's all falling apart soon...
When I go from P to D or from N to D (or to R, same thing there) it always takes around a good second or almost two seconds until the gear actually engages. So I select R or D, then I wait, and then I feel the car making the usual wobble when the gear goes in.

I've never experienced an automatic transmission with such a delay. Is that just how they made them back in the 70s or might there be something wrong?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote stanman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22-November-2016 at 12:10AM
I think it's a sign of a leaking pump in the transmission. It'll probably keep going like that forever but to correct the problem it'll need a rebuild. In my opinion of course. Could be wrong.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote aquartlow Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22-November-2016 at 12:54AM
Usually a sign of hardened seals inside the trans. If it does this all the time it could be a pump issue, if it doesn't do this when the trans is fully warm=hardened/hardening seals(especially the lip seals), once warm the seals regain some of their elasticity. Like Stanman mentioned, a rebuild is required to fix the issue with either of these culprits.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote unlovedford Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22-November-2016 at 12:57AM
I'm betting it is an FMX. Some of those transmissions have delayed engagement because of the pump issue. Others have that from lack of vacuum - either from the modulator valve (which also controls shifting characteristics)or from the vacuum hoses off the engine to the transmission. Like Stan said, it may run forever like that. Just resist the urge to tap the accelerator pedal to speed the process.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote californiajohnny Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22-November-2016 at 4:28AM
Is the fluid full? Check the vacuum hoses they should fit very snug! How does the fluid look and smell?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Torino_Chris Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22-November-2016 at 5:05AM
I don't think it's because of the fluid. That was changed when it was in the workshop before I took it home, so fluid is full and new.
BUT it was bad and low before. Maybe that caused the issue to come up..?
I'll have to see if I can check the vacuum hoses next time I work on the car.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Rockatansky Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22-November-2016 at 5:58AM
there's an old myth that says don't change the trans fluid if it's really bad, just drive it till you rebuild it or sell the car. there must be some truth to it because it still happens. at this point adding a bottle of Lucas or similar Automatic Transmission Fluid Conditioner can't hurt.
 
i might also take down the pan & inspect the filter install, if there's a rubber O ring involved & it's not sealed the pump may not have a good pull on the fluid and may be drawing some air from around the O ring ... again I'm not sure if your trans has any O ring seal on the filter?


Edited by Rockatansky - 22-November-2016 at 5:58AM
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote 72FordGTS Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22-November-2016 at 6:14AM
Your car likely has a C6 if it's a 400.  There is a chance that it could be an FMX since 1973 there were some 400's that came with the small bolt pattern and the FMX transmission in 1973 (this is actually I highly desirable engine block if you have it).  If you had a Marti report, check it and it will show you what transmission you have otherwise we can decode your transmission code.
 Is it only slow when cold or does it always shift the same regardless of temperature?  You could try a fluid and filter change.  In my experience, I have done this to several neglected transmission and never had any issues.  I have had a few slow shifting transmissions in old cars before too.  I just kept driving them as is, never had any issues.  Ultimately though you may need to get a rebuild down the road if you want it performing like new again.
 
Welcome to the wonderful world of owning an old car, where there is always something to fix.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Torino_Chris Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22-November-2016 at 6:38AM
Vince, thank you, but I've been there for some time already. I've got a 1988 Porsche 944, too Wink

Now you have to help me a little: what's an FMX?

My Marti Report says it's a C-6 Select Shift Automatic Transmission with a 2.75 Conventional Rear Axle. As far as I remember it always shifts slowly, no matter if cold or not. Maybe a little bit quicker when warm, but still too slow.
As I said, the fluid is brand new and they also put in a new seal for the pan because it leaked a little before. So I'm guessing they would have fixed any obvious issues if there had been any...
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote mtburger Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22-November-2016 at 8:13AM
Plus 1 on hardened seals, have had the same symptom on many C6, FMX, & C4's over the years.

On start up, the unit is cold, fluid will bypass the pump seals, as the unit warms up, they soften and expand, and the unit will engage.

I had a 429 C6 Galaxie that did it for years, sold the car like that.

If you give it throttle, you can force it to engage, but it is harsh and can be a precursor to a call for the hook.

I would start looking for a core unit and someone to build it so you have the spare ready to swap before it gives up.

Thanks, Mike H.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote dave302 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22-November-2016 at 8:30AM
Originally posted by Torino_Chris Torino_Chris wrote:

Now you have to help me a little: what's an FMX?
The Ford-O-Matic Transmission was the first automatic transmission widely used by Ford Motor Company. It was designed by Borg Warner Corporation and introduced in 1951 model year cars. The three-speed Ford-O-Matic evolved into the "MX" and "FX" or Cruise-O-Matic transmissions in 1958 and the FMX in 1968. This line (the fmx) continued in production until 1980, when the AOD was introduced. Like Ford, variations of this same Borg Warner design were used by other automobile manufacturers as well, such as International Harvester, Studebaker, Volvo, Jaguar and AMC each of them having the necessary unique adaptations required for the individual applications.


Edited by dave302 - 22-November-2016 at 10:53PM
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote dave302 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22-November-2016 at 8:31AM
In 1966, Ford introduced the C6 automatic, which left them with three heavy-duty automatic transmissions and crowded conditions at the Livonia Transmission plant. Ford decided to combine the best attributes of the MX and FX transmissions and ended up with an improved version of the "X" called FMX. This transmission used the stronger MX-type rotating parts in the smaller FX style case. This cut down on both weight and the number of transmission components Ford needed to make. This transmission was manufactured at the Fairfax Transmission Plant, freeing up capacity at Livonia for the new C6. The FMX was manufactured from 1968 to 1979, when the Fairfax Transmission plant was closed.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote dave302 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22-November-2016 at 8:32AM
Although the FMX was phased out in the United States in 1979 in favor of Ford's then-revolutionary Automatic OverDrive (AOD) transmission, the FMX was sold for another four years for use in V8 Ford Falcons built in Australia. The FMX ceased production when Ford Australia phased out the 351 Cleveland V8 engine in 1983.
 
FMX Gear ratios
First: 2.40:1
Second: 1.47:1
Third: 1.00:1
Reverse: 2.00:1

Edited by dave302 - 22-November-2016 at 8:46PM
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Big Bird Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22-November-2016 at 10:39AM
The Lucas trans additive is worth a shot, Helped mine with the same problem (FMX)
When FMX went out of production, that same basic Borg Warner design had an overdrive added which is the AOD. Liner material was updated at that time to use Dexron type fluid instead of type F.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote californiajohnny Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22-November-2016 at 11:23AM
Originally posted by dave302 dave302 wrote:

when Ford Australia phased out the V8 engine in 1983.
 
" it's the last of the V-8's"Cry
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote dave302 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22-November-2016 at 8:44PM
Originally posted by californiajohnny californiajohnny wrote:

Originally posted by dave302 dave302 wrote:

when Ford Australia phased out the V8 engine in 1983.
" it's the last of the V-8's"Cry
I meant to say that they phased out the 351 Cleveland V8 engines in 1983. And 1983 was the last year of the fmx transmission in australia.

Edited by dave302 - 22-November-2016 at 8:46PM
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote unlovedford Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23-November-2016 at 4:06AM
Quick check is to look at the transmission. If it is cast iron, it is an FMX. If it aluminum, C6 (and C4 on smaller engines).
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote californiajohnny Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23-November-2016 at 4:12AM
Originally posted by dave302 dave302 wrote:

Originally posted by californiajohnny californiajohnny wrote:

Originally posted by dave302 dave302 wrote:


when Ford Australia phased out the V8 engine in 1983.
" it's the last of the V-8's"Cry
I meant to say that they phased out the 351 Cleveland V8 engines in 1983. And 1983 was the last year of the fmx transmission in australia.
no it's a line from mad max...when the mechanic Was showing him the blower

Edited by californiajohnny - 23-November-2016 at 4:13AM
JOHN
74 GRAN TORINO S&H CLONE
74 VETTE CUSTOM
90 S10 BLAZER 4X4 LIFTED
77 CELICA CUSTOM
75 V8 MONZA SUPERCHARGED
79 COURIER VERT. SLAMMED
75 VEGA V6 5 SPD
70 CHEV C10 P/U
68 MUSTANG FB CONVERSION
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote BadHabit351 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30-January-2017 at 8:40AM
I might catch some flack for this; but...my buddy has a 72 Mustang with a 351 & an FMX. It was doing the same thing (only longer when it was cold.). My cousin is a auto tranny tech. He advised that the something another valve (he said the proper name, but I don't remember) was sticking. He advised dropping a quart of fluid and replacing it with "Lucas Transmission Fix".

That Mustang has been shifting slick as whistle ever since and that was 5 years ago.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Big Bird Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 30-January-2017 at 10:57AM
Just noticed he has it down as a 400. if the 400 and trans are original, that should be a C6.
Look for a vacuum leak to trans modulator or modulator full of fluid.
Got a Mark V this way years ago. Friend's father wanted it gone because the dealer told him it needed a trans. $200 later, it was mine. I was gonna put a trans in until noticed the headlight covers drooping. Found a cracked vacuum tee on the manifold. $3 part, and headlight covers worked, and bonus, so did the trans.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Torino_Chris Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20-February-2017 at 11:38PM
Originally posted by Big Bird Big Bird wrote:

Just noticed he has it down as a 400. if the 400 and trans are original, that should be a C6.
Look for a vacuum leak to trans modulator or modulator full of fluid.
Got a Mark V this way years ago. Friend's father wanted it gone because the dealer told him it needed a trans. $200 later, it was mine. I was gonna put a trans in until noticed the headlight covers drooping. Found a cracked vacuum tee on the manifold. $3 part, and headlight covers worked, and bonus, so did the trans.


It is a C6, yes. Thanks for the tip, I'll check that!
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