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94' GTS AT skipping 2nd gear... from what I can tell

 
Old 04-11-2019, 02:48 PM
  #16  
GregBBRD

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I'd figure out what is wrong and repair it, so the car starts in 2nd gear, like it was designed. With the torque of the 5.4 engines, it's a waste to start out in 1st all the time and it tough on the transmission (especially the rear planetary and the B2 brake band), which is why Porsche changed the cars to start in 2nd gear in 1987.

If you have the sudden need to accelerate, right after starting from a corner in 2nd gear, you can floor the car, hitting the electric kickdown switch (which is probably jumpered to make the car start in 1st gear, right now) on the floor.

If you need to have the car start in 1st gear (if you are on a crazy steep hill, or feel the need to be embarrassed by the Mustang beside you) shift the transmission down into 2nd and then back to drive. It will start in 1st gear.

If you think you need to manually shift the car, sell it, and buy a 5 speed.

The mechanical kickdown cable, out on the throttle quadrant, must be adjust correctly and the modulator must have vacuum present and hooked up to the proper source (about 18inches of vacuum at idle, dropping near zero, if the throttle is opened quickly.) The modulator must be correctly adjusted.

If after all this is done and the transmission slips in 2nd gear, or refuses to start in 2nd gear, the people that "rebuilt" it needs to "review" their work.
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Old 04-11-2019, 02:53 PM
  #17  
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Originally Posted by polecat702 View Post
Mine does too. Put it in drive and it starts out in 2nd. That's the way they were set up from the factory. If Doc Brown, rebuilds your automatic, he'll reprogram the tranny to start out in 1st if you like. My 928 is supercharged, it pulls just fine in 2nd from a light.
There's no question I know how to make them start in 1st gear, all the time (without jumpering the kickdown), but I try, very hard, to talk everyone out of doing this.

If one needs to start an S4/GTS in 1st gear, all the time, they need to either pay someone to repair their engine so it runs correctly, or buy another car.
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Old 04-11-2019, 04:20 PM
  #18  
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Originally Posted by GregBBRD View Post
There's no question I know how to make them start in 1st gear, all the time (without jumpering the kickdown), but I try, very hard, to talk everyone out of doing this.

If one needs to start an S4/GTS in 1st gear, all the time, they need to either pay someone to repair their engine so it runs correctly, or buy another car.
I knew you did. I'd never want my car to start in 1st every time there's a reason the factory set them up that way.
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Old 04-11-2019, 05:20 PM
  #19  
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Thing is there seems to be a misconception that they start in second all the time unless you mash it. That's not the case, you can use the gear stick to select any gear you want.
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Old 04-18-2019, 01:45 AM
  #20  
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Update:

Removed vac line from actuator at trans. Tested at 18psi and held for as long as I would want it to. Went up to the spider and removed that portion to test if line was holding. When I bent it upward to attach to vacuum it broke at the bell housing... ugh.

This is the only vacuum line i didn't replace when I was in there as it looked good and I was unsure how to remove with torque tube not being removed. Well, lesson learned. I will be re-routing a new line this weekend and will then report back.

I still don't know how 2nd could be the only affected gear but at least I'm ruling that out a vacuum leak as a possible cause.

Greg, I will be testing the vacuum at idle and blipping the throttle to verify loss of vacuum once the new line is installed as recommended. I do want it to start in 2nd (I don't have a need for first aside from the occasional launch which I rarely do) so once I verify vacuum I will check out the other items. I will also detach the bowden cable at the linkage to see what happens as Simon recommended above.

James, the previous shop rebuilt (sent it out) over 9 years ago and its traveled just over 1,300 miles since. There is no mention on the paperwork of any alterations to the trans other than rebuilding. I can see where they sent it but that's all I would know. Once I find out at least we would know how reputable the place is if well known in the community. Other than that any internal issues would be on me. At that point I would remove and send out...

Thanks for all the help and sorry for the delay, been away from the car and no time to work on it.
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Old 04-18-2019, 11:51 AM
  #21  
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A throw away comment- if the tranny has only covered 1300 miles in 9 years one wonders whether your issue might just be something "sticking" in the valve body or wherever simply due to lack of use. Sillier things have happened to these cars and if there is one thing they do not like it is not being used!
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Old 04-18-2019, 02:26 PM
  #22  
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Originally Posted by FredR View Post
A throw away comment- if the tranny has only covered 1300 miles in 9 years one wonders whether your issue might just be something "sticking" in the valve body or wherever simply due to lack of use. Sillier things have happened to these cars and if there is one thing they do not like it is not being used!
Completely agree! 1300 miles in 9 years means, that the automatic never really warmed up IMHO (0.4 miles per day on average is not a lot)! I would go ahead and change the ATF and filter and take the car on a long weekend drive. The car would really appreciate this. After all, it is still a GT....
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Old 04-18-2019, 03:18 PM
  #23  
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Fred, when I purchased the car I removed the motor and did a refresh. At that time I also removed the trans pan and replaced the filter and all fluids (except draining the torque converter). The pan sat off for months as I was working on other items and it was on the lift so all of the fluid drained out of that area. I also replaced the O-ring where the filler tube is from the reservoir to the pan itself to address any leaking issues if any...

I do agree what what you mentioned and this was my thought that it would help that but maybe there is something just gummed up in there... unsure. I drove it to rennsport this past year in Monterey and aside from that one shifting issue the car drove flawlessly. Do you think something could still be sticking or by me not changing the torque converter fluid that it could still be part of the problem? My thoughts were the small amount of fluid in the torque converter would mix with all of the new and not be necessary to change.

I could also remove the pan again once I address the vacuum line and ensure all of that looks good per Greg. Maybe one of the valve bodies is sticking but who knows... Thanks for the thought!
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Old 04-18-2019, 04:01 PM
  #24  
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Originally Posted by x98boardwell View Post
Fred, when I purchased the car I removed the motor and did a refresh. At that time I also removed the trans pan and replaced the filter and all fluids (except draining the torque converter). The pan sat off for months as I was working on other items and it was on the lift so all of the fluid drained out of that area. I also replaced the O-ring where the filler tube is from the reservoir to the pan itself to address any leaking issues if any...

I do agree what what you mentioned and this was my thought that it would help that but maybe there is something just gummed up in there... unsure. I drove it to rennsport this past year in Monterey and aside from that one shifting issue the car drove flawlessly. Do you think something could still be sticking or by me not changing the torque converter fluid that it could still be part of the problem? My thoughts were the small amount of fluid in the torque converter would mix with all of the new and not be necessary to change.

I could also remove the pan again once I address the vacuum line and ensure all of that looks good per Greg. Maybe one of the valve bodies is sticking but who knows... Thanks for the thought!
Draining the torque converter is standard practice for an ATF fluid change. Removing the sump pan and leaving it that way for months on end does not sit easy with me- it sounds to me like something one should simply not do - that is an instinctive reaction - not a informed opinion and it will be interesting to read what others might make of it. Keeping the valve body in sterile like conditions is the norm as I understand
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Old 04-18-2019, 04:35 PM
  #25  
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Fred, understood and should've drained but at the time I didn't realize I could actually. Very easy to drain everything and fill again if needed.

Regarding the garage, its a clean controlled environment and due to that fluid nothing ever is dry, it's just dripping constantly until I wiped and replaced pan. Its about as sterile as you can get and in a private garage so no issues there. The symptoms were happening prior to as this was the first time the car was driven in years... pic for reference of environment.


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Old 04-21-2019, 01:23 PM
  #26  
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Update:

Replaced vacuum line from splitter to trans. Vacuum at the trans at idle is 17.5-18 PSI. When removing the bowden cable it is doing the same thing. Everything is fine except 2nd gear. It starts in 1st and then skips 2nd. When I manually engage 2nd after it shifts from 1-3 by selecting 2-3-2 it slips in 2nd when applying throttle (very clearly happening but it is in 2nd at least)

To note: When car is cold it seems to work okay and 2nd is fine but as soon as temp is up (maybe 1/2 mile) from ambient all the symptoms happen and I'm without 2nd.

Unsure why it's starting in first but my thought is 2nd isn't available so it chooses 1st from dead stop.

With Bowden cable detached it shifts (when in D on shifter) from 1st to 3rd then very quickly into 4th.

Goal: What is cause of 2nd slipping? Could this be a sticky valve body and something which could be addressed with trans in the car? I am happy to do fluid exchange again (with torque converter this time) but would like to avoid if I will be removing pan anyways to address valve body or other things that I hear could be the issue..

Thank you for all the help on this!
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Old 04-21-2019, 06:05 PM
  #27  
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Originally Posted by x98boardwell View Post
Update:

Replaced vacuum line from splitter to trans. Vacuum at the trans at idle is 17.5-18 PSI. When removing the bowden cable it is doing the same thing. Everything is fine except 2nd gear. It starts in 1st and then skips 2nd. When I manually engage 2nd after it shifts from 1-3 by selecting 2-3-2 it slips in 2nd when applying throttle (very clearly happening but it is in 2nd at least)

To note: When car is cold it seems to work okay and 2nd is fine but as soon as temp is up (maybe 1/2 mile) from ambient all the symptoms happen and I'm without 2nd.

Unsure why it's starting in first but my thought is 2nd isn't available so it chooses 1st from dead stop.

With Bowden cable detached it shifts (when in D on shifter) from 1st to 3rd then very quickly into 4th.

Goal: What is cause of 2nd slipping? Could this be a sticky valve body and something which could be addressed with trans in the car? I am happy to do fluid exchange again (with torque converter this time) but would like to avoid if I will be removing pan anyways to address valve body or other things that I hear could be the issue..

Thank you for all the help on this!
Did you ever change the B2 valve springs? You'll need to drain the pan and remove it to get to the springs & valve. It's cheap. Roger has them in a kit. Very easy job, just leave one of the screws in but loose enough to move the plate. The reason is obvious once you feel the pressure from the springs on the plate. If you only did a partial drain and didn't drain the torque converter now is a good time.
I was lucky John Curry, gave me a heads up about changing the B2 valve kit, when I changed out my transmission in my 89.
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Old 04-21-2019, 06:20 PM
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polecat, did you experience the same thing? If the slipping is just a "not engaging 2nd all the way" symptom then I would be happy to change. Thank you for the insight. I will see what others say and then will address! Hoping it's that simple and a removal of trans isn't necessary. Bryan
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Old 04-21-2019, 08:00 PM
  #29  
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Originally Posted by x98boardwell View Post
polecat, did you experience the same thing? If the slipping is just a "not engaging 2nd all the way" symptom then I would be happy to change. Thank you for the insight. I will see what others say and then will address! Hoping it's that simple and a removal of trans isn't necessary. Bryan
Bryan, a few years ago a week after we returned from 3rd coast, my 928 dropped the trans in front of our house backing out of the driveway, it would not move or go into gear, any gear. The 89 model is year specific, so finding one was a challenge. I located a used trans, with 69K on it, and swapped it with the broken one. After installing the replacement that was guaranteed by Los Angeles Auto Parts, I changed the gear lube, and ATF, plus cleaned the pan, new filter, B2 Kit per John's recommendation. I had to do a swap, so it was a WYIT change out. I know from past threads on this forum, it's a common recommendation. The Kit is around $20.00 or less, been a few years. You'll get new springs, plastic plunger with all new O rings. I would do this just to be safe, it's cheap, and you need to change out you're ATF, anyway, plus the pan gasket. Like me you have a lift, it's an easy job for us. I'd change the gear lube also. Also my car sat a lot as I worked out of state or the country for months at a time.

Now that I'm semi retired, it's being driven and worked on to get it ready for 3rd coast this October. Like mentioned earlier, these cars hate to sit, being temperamental is their way of getting even for not being driven. Things go south on these cars, for no other reason than sitting. Never seen anything like it. My other cars sit like the shark, and fire right up, no problems. Joe
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Old 04-21-2019, 09:13 PM
  #30  
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Thanks again Joe for the insight. I will definitely do all of that.

Hoping to see if anyone can pinpoint what would be the cause of this. I know the B2 kit does help with I think 2-3 shifts but unsure if I select 2nd from downshifting why the slipping... I will order kit and plan on doing all of that.
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