Next up on my to-do list was to replace the clutch fork pivot ball stud. The old stud is worn and had to be replaced. Yes, they make a tool to remove it. But here is my custom "tool": a block of wood, vice grip pliers, and a large pry bar.
One side note:
In addition to all the bearings, synchro cones and several gears, I also decided to replace the 3rd/4th gear shift fork because the old one showed signs of overheating damage.
What's interesting is that the new shift fork came as a rough, unfinished casting! Yes, it looked like it was fresh out of the mold with no machining on the half moon fork part nor any polishing done. It wouldn't even fit over the synchro slider ring. And the inside part of the fork ring was as rough as 100 grit sandpaper!
So I spent almost an entire hour rough sanding it down, grinding, filing, and then finally polishing with valve lapping compound. I unfortunately didn't take a picture of the finished product, but it was smooth as glass!
The new 3rd/4th shift fork is the left-most fork in this pic:
With the mainshaft rebuilt, it's time to assemble the transmission. One BIG gotcha is that the heavy mainshaft (shown here dangling), the heavy countershaft, and the reverse idler gear (which must have been forged in Hades), must ALL be installed into the rear housing at the SAME time.
There is an "official" tool to aid in aligning all the gears so they can be inserted into the rear housing, which is basically a fixture upon which you set all the components vertically, and then drop down over that set the rear housing. I have no such fixture, so I used the front bell housing as a fixture of sorts
What's not shown in this picture is the next step, which involved my letting the engine hoist start a very slow descent while I quickly grab the countershaft, add the input shaft while hoping the 4th gear synchro doesn't fall off (it did many times), align the input shaft synchro keys, and align all components as they slowly descend into the housing.
As mentioned in the previous post, setting the main shaft and countershaft gears into the front housing was done solely done to hold all gears "in place", including a reverse idler gear not shown, so the rear housing can be installed on the entire assembly. Then the whole assembly will be flipped 180 degrees, the front bellhousing removed, and then some final tasks done before installing both halves together.
FYI, this does NOT work, lol. The gear shown here being held in place with twist ties is the reverse idler gear. It cannot be added afterward. It MUST be suspended in precisely the proper location in order to install the rear housing. There is no "wiggle" room.
My second attempt at rigging the reverse idler in place involved the use of threadlocker on the gears. My brilliant plan was to basically glue the reverse idler gear in place and then break it free later Yes, you read that correctly. After 15 minutes of the threadlocker not drying, I got tired of holding it. I'm convinced it would have worked, though.
I eventually found another method to temporarily hold it in place: E.T. 's creepy long fingers! I bribed him with Reese's Pieces.
After installing only two bolts finger-tight to hold the housings together, I flipped the temporarily assembled tranny 180 degrees and then placed it into a 5-gallon bucket.
I used a piece of wood clamped on both sides of the bucket's opening to support the housing. Because the mainshaft sticks out past the rear end of the rear housing, it can't just be set tail down into the bucket.
I then removed the bell housing, leaving the rear housing (into which the gears stayed) face up.
The reverse idler gear is lower right of the pic. By far it is the most frustrating thing to deal with in the entire job so far.
The final tasks before buttoning it up were to:
1. Bolt the reverse idler shaft to the housing.
Thread sealant and thread locker are both needed on this and almost all other bolts that go into the housings.
For reference, here are the brands I used. I have a much larger tube of the thread sealant, but it's the same type.
2. Install the output shaft bearing retainer.
This goes much easier with the rear housing facing up as shown in the previous post.
There is no traditional paper gasket to go between the transmission housing halves, so I used using Permatex High Tack Gasket Sealant that brushes on. Hasn't let me down in the past and hopefully won't for this project because I really don't want to take this back apart anytime soon. Apply to both housing halves.
The halves are bolted together - lots of thread sealant and thread locker was used. The bell housing went on quite easily with only minor wiggling to align the shift rail and countershaft.
FYI, it was much easier to put the front countershaft bearing into the bell housing rather than to put it onto the countershaft itself. In the latter, it was just too difficult to try and blindly align. The green assembly goo held it in the bellhousing, which gets turned upside down to place over the rear housing.
The tranny rebuild kit that I bought (BK235GWS) came with a variety of new oil seals, including one for the input shaft bearing retainer. So the old one had to come out. This is the method I used to extract it:
1. With the retainer upside down and secured in a vice, I used a metal chisel and hammer to bend down one edge of the seal. The oil drain slot was a good location.
2. Using locking pliers, I grabbed onto that edge and simply pivoted the pliers back and downward, using the lip on the retainer as a fulcrum point. Lots of mechanical advantage, and it pulled out very easily.
Well, I had the transmission completely finished except for adding the fluid, but then I decided to pull the front bearing retainer back off so I can use the recommended "anaerobic" gasket maker, instead of the high tack gasket sealant stuff.
I hear ya! I think the fixture will help tremendously. (I figured someone would have made fun of my failed attempts of using baggie twist ties and thread locker on the reverse idler by now, lol.)
If all of my portable drill batteries weren't bad, I would have made a fixture out of wood! But, I am more than financially broke at the moment and also rebuilding the engine at the same time, so I am having to "improvise" a lot!