Not bad certainly no worse than the first Big Ben alarm clock I took apart. But while inspecting the clutch disk I see something that looks like excessive heat or is the old Airdale in me Just getting too "Nit picky"
I must also say this car has been almost impossible to adjust for "Free neutral" and I found 2 large disk and 2 small disk together in the pack.
Oh my G. R. You are really asking for it. There is no free neutral or free lunch. Only the myth.
Seriously, you should have no trouble and following the manual close to neutral can be had.
G.R. I put a Turbo 400 clutch pack in my car when I rebuilt the transmission. I have a good neutral. I can push the car in the garage with only moderate effort. I can hand crank the engine when it is cold and the car does not try to run me over. The wheel chock is on the shelf in the garage.
Whether you put the steel disks back in or use disks with friction material, like the Turbo 400, it is important not to slip the clutch. The burn marks on the steel disks are caused by someone in the past allowing the clutch to slip. Old time Model T drivers would not let up on the throttle when going from low band to high. This is a bad practice, especially with friction material on the clutch disks as it will wear out the disks in very sort order.
There are racing disks for the turbo 400 that are made for drag racing and dropping the clutch. they are a little more expensive than standard unless you are purchasing worn out disks from a tranny shop. I used them but believe I still slipped them too much because many of my steel disks broke. The wear and heat was transferred to the steel. lesson learned.
Having two large and two small discs together in the pack won't cause any issues adjusting for a free neutral. More than likely it was caused by a combination of dirty plates gummed up old oil and other wear issues. The discoloration in the plates will not make any difference. As long as they're flat and not cracked they're fine to be used again.
I forgot to mention, if a small disc was installed first in your brake drum it could have been lodged between the brake drum and clutch disc drum causing excessive drag.
Not too bad - I've seen a lot worse. Wire brush them, lube with fresh oil upon assembly - all's good !
I have stock steel clutch discs in all 5 T's and I can push them by myself on the flat.
The Turbo-400 kit from Langs is the best setup. It comes with a new clutch hub that takes advantage of all the inner tabs of the 400-discs. This clutch when setup right and not allowed to slip will give you the best neutral for your T and will last many thousands of miles. I would never recommend that anyone working on the transmission to use the original steel discs setup. The original steel disc setup will always drag no matter what you do. Every transmission I have ever taken apart the disc came out stuck together as a lump. I had to pry them apart with a blade.
For the sake of proving my point from those that will disagree with me try this. Take 2 sheets of flat steel and brush oil on them and stick them together. Put something heavy on top to make sure the 2 sheets are compressed good to each other. Now without lifting the sheet try to slid them apart easily. Ainít gonna happen.
I believe that the grooves those steel plates make in the clutch disc drum are one of the main issues of free neutral problems.
G.R.I had trepidations about rebuilding my transmission mostly about not having the correct tools, but once I took it apart I realized it is no big deal. Its all nuts and bolts as we say in the trade.
Good point Jason
When I took my first T transmission apart years and years ago I didn't realize the triple gears had to be timed. I then bought the Ford service manual fron JC Whitney and all was good getting the transmission back together. I was in my twenties and several of my older neighbors said it was to diffulcult to do.
Not knowing any better I then put the transmission back on the engine on the concrete floor of my garage any didn't align anything up or shim anything. I got it together and all seemed well. My 24 Coupe ran OK. Looking back It was just plain luck it worked. For some reason I didn't read the manual I had just bought.
your ability to push your cars with a stock clutch is apparently all in your head. On the other hand, I can inexplicably push mine, too. Go figure. We both must be suffering from the same collective hallucination.
I did buy the Model T ford transmission book and read it twice before starting because everyone had said how difficult it was. I am still contemplating the turbo clutch.
Your car with the stock clutch would be easier to push if you take the spark plugs out first. If you remove the plugs you won't be pushing against the compression of the engine.
The turbo 400 clutches work fine and are trouble free as long as they're properly adjusted and you don't slip 'em. However, the stock Ford clutch works just as well and has a good free neutral IF everything is in good shape and it's adjusted right. The Ford clutch engages smoother and is pretty much bulletproof. There is no reason to use anything else. I can easily push our cars around without help and both have stock clutches. I have crank started my coupe easily on the mag with temperatures below freezing in the garage many times with a stock roller timer to boot. Use whatever you want, but I will only use ford clutches.
G.R. - Do yourself a favor and reinstall the Ford clutch discs. Then adjust your car for a free neutral per the Ford Service Manual and be satisfied that you did the job the right way.
Also, do not forget to check each pedal and straighten as required to get them back into the original geometry. The importance of this to obtaining the correct adjustments can not be overstated.
The original steel disc setup will always drag no matter what you do. A true free neutral is impossible with an all steel clutch.
by Stephen: "There is no reason to use anything else"
Tell that to all the modern auto manufacturers.
G.R. - Do yourself a favor and install the Turbo-400 kit. You will be glad you did.
Modern cars are not model T's.
Modern automatic transmissions work in the same way as the model T.
So what? Model T wheels also work like the wheels on modern cars, but modern car manufacturers don't use wood for spokes anymore. You can't compare apples with oranges. They are not the same. The point is the Ford clutch works flawlessly and does not need improvement.
Stephen that is a ridiculous comparison. The disc in the transmission of a modern car work exactly like that of the "T".The Ford clutch is far from flawless and should be replaced by anyone who wants to enjoy his car. I would never recommend that anyone working on the transmission to use the original steel discs setup.
Ridiculous how? I only use ford clutches and have not had one problem with them. I drive my t and enjoy it very much. Every model t made came with exactly the same clutch aside from minor differences to accommodate differences in the brake drum. Fifteen million cars with the same clutch being driven daily under conditions far more severe than the vast majority of us will ever subject our cars to is proof enough to me. Just because lined plates are used in modern cars does not mean they are needed in a model t.
And here I have 4 t's with stock clutches and enjoy them immensely. I must be the exception to the rule.
Jason, I have always been entertained by your hatred of the OE Ford clutch and you are entitled to your opinion but to state unequivocally that "The Ford clutch is far from flawless and should be replaced by anyone who wants to enjoy his car" is ridiculous. Promoting falsehoods about OE parts doesn't help propagate the hobby.
Like many other folks I have the OE setup in both of my cars and have no issues. I can put either car in neutral and roll it around easily. Just because you have had bad experiences and can't get the OE clutch to work properly doesn't mean it has to apply to everyone.
I put the original clutch pack in the same category as cast iron pistons and 2 piece valves, sure a T will run fine with them BUT one day they can give you a whole lot of grief!
Stephen, The lined disc are not needed but are a great improvement over original disc that drag badly.
Scott, Trying to convince people that the drag of an all steel clutch can be adjusted out to have a real neutral is misleading and only hurts the hobby.
Tim, I'm not Promoting falsehoods about OE parts. I just don't want someone falsely convinced to reinstall the old clutch only to be disappointed.
They do not drag badly if you know how to adjust them and you only use good parts. Like I said I can crank my cars at temperatures below freezing with little effort and at 5' 9" and 145lbs I am by no means a physically stout person. It's obvious I'm not going to change your opinion and you're certainly not going to change mine, so let's just use what we want in our own cars.
The bulk of the myth of the OE clutch is due to lack of knowledge and worn out brake drums.
Its not a myth. A perfect condition all new original transmission has a lot of drag. Worn parts will only make it worse. Lack of knowledge is how people are convinced to reinstall the original clutch disc.
When did I say that an all steel clutch will give a "real neutral"?
You have stated that steel discs coated with oil can't be turned. I've stated that I can hand crank my cars to well below freezing.
You've stated that Turbo 400 is the BEST clutch. 15,000,000 steel clutches later, I find original clutches to be adequate to their task.
You've stated that the original clutch should be replaced by anyone who wishes to enjoy their car. I have not, and I enjoy all of my cars.
When new folks read these pages to learn, they have to decipher what advice is good, what is marginal, and what is bad. For a new person, I think that this is often a bigger task than actually executing the work they were contemplating. However, when they come across advice that tells them that the original equipment is JUNK (not my emphasis) and that the only intelligent solution is one of several aftermarket products, else, they'll hate their car, then deciphering good advice from bad, gets easier.
Turbo 400 has it's advantages and disadvantages. If you want to give advice, tell folks what those advantages and disadvantages are, but do not try to pass "best", as advice based on fact when it is simply an opinion.
Jason I'm a slow typer, I suppose...I can't keep up with Your cut/paste from your last Turbo 400 debate.
I am intrigued by the fact that you attribute my and others' success with original clutches to a lack of knowledge. That is a novel concept, indeed.
Scott, I'm sure that Henry Ford himself would have used the lined disc if they were available and at the same cost as steel.
"Turbo 400 has it's advantages and disadvantages"
Please explain what the "disadvantages" would be???
Frank, The only disadvantage I can think of is it would spoil all the fun and joy of jacking up the rear wheel to get the car started. Or the extra workout you would get by hand cranking against the clutch drag.
If the Ford clutch is as bad as you say, how do you explain the vast number of people who don't encounter the problems you claim they should be encountering?
I think you had a bad experience, probably due to lack of knowledge or poor mechanical aptitude and found a way around it, resulting in what is akin to a religious transformation. Now you feel the need to spread the good word even to those who don't want to hear it.
GIVE IT A REST!
Those discs seem to show high spots and low spots. If they are not flat, they can still rub on each other, even when in neutral, causing drag and creeping. I like the Ford clutch, but I might consider finding some other discs. Maybe Jason could send you some for free.
A common practice years ago in cold countries was reported to be doubling the disks by putting two of each together and then there were fewer ones to slip by each other.
I have done at least 8 transmissions over the years that had 8 of the Turbo 400 disks installed that were still like new, but the disk pack was not quite thick enough for those 3 pegs to stick through the back plate far enough for the clutch fingers to squeeze them together enough for a good high speed clutch to be engaged.
The original thickness of those disks seemed to have been .050 and 25 of them would equal 1.25 inches.
That is a best guess on how thick the stack should be, but those pegs should stick through the back plate about half their length for a good high speed clutch.
If they do, the Turbo 400 disks never seem to wear much at all and they work fine for many years.
I once installed all brand new steel plates and while they did not drag, I found it difficult to get the clutch to engage smoothly. If I rev matched the engine and drive shaft perfectly the shift was nice and smooth. If not, the car would jolt hard forward. I backed the adjusting screws out as far as they would go and still had issues with hard shifting. Surprisingly though the clutch still held with no slipping even when pulling a steep hill. I believe the new plates may a tad too rough to work as smoothly as the original Ford ones. I put original plates back in the car and it's been working perfectly ever since. As long as the Ford plates are not cracked and are flat when checked on a piece of glass or a surface plate they are fine for use.
There must be something desperately wrong with my 1915 runabout. It has Ford clutch disks, but I'm able to push it and it starts easily. Is there enough drag to make it creep if I don't set the brakes? Yes. But not enough to spoil the party.
If anyone has had trouble with a slipping modern clutch pack, it could be because they may have over looked the fact you must fit a new clutch spring as well, they are 10 or more lbs stronger than a original Ford one.
I just finished rebuilding my transmission but haven't installed it in a car yet, so I have "no dog in this fight".
However, Ford used steel discs because they worked and were about the only thing available when the car was designed. Nothing wrong with them either unless they get gummed up, maladusted or badly overheated. Properly maintained, they'll last darn near forever.
Time does march on though, and better materials were developed for friction uses such as clutches and brakes. I installed a Jack Rabbit clutch with new steel discs in mine and I look forward to long, dependable service without some of the drawbacks of the original materials.
It's what you want for YOUR car. Go for it, enjoy it and the heck with anyone else's opinion.
Hal, "Give it a rest" No way! Just because the 5% purist jump on every chance to run down a great upgrade and belittle the other 95%? People are afraid to speak up on the forum in fear of being run down by the 5% that run the forum. The Pm's I have received off forum just prove my point. Heck you all even agree about the drag and no real neutral of the stock clutch.
If you don't like my slightly dragging clutch then go tell someone who cares.
You wouldn't have gotten my belittlement if you hadn't kept on belittling the original system. You want a turbo 400? I don't give a rodent's rear end. That's fine with me. You wanna run down the Model T and lie to newbies about the Ford clutch? Then yeah. You're gonna hear from me. Don't wanna be belittled? Knock off your own belittlement, as you've been spewing far more than your share.
The only lie told to newbies is by those that speak highly of the original clutch.
I don't run the forum (thank Heaven), I don't intend to belittle anybody, and a close examination of my T's would show that I'm certainly no "purist", whatever that is. I just prefer to keep a lot of components Model T. Does the stock Ford clutch have no real neutral and sometimes drag a little? Sure. So what? As I mentioned before, I can push my car. I've never had to jack up a wheel to get it started, and the drag is insignificant when starting. To state that "The Ford clutch is far from flawless and should be replaced by anyone who wants to enjoy his car" is a bit of exaggeration to say the least. So far the insignificant drag from the standard clutch has been a minor curiosity for me (some might say it's part of the quirky Model T charm), and I enjoy my T's very much.
So G. R. This should be all you need to know.
Again, Seasons greetings and good will towards men (and the ladies too).
In the 1950's I remember a parade in El Cajon, California, where I grew up, where a man had a Model T that would come to him when he whistled. He would get out of the car with the motor running, walk several paces in front of the car, whistle, and the car would move towards him. At my now advanced age I think I figured out that the clutch was grabbing just enough to make allow the car to move. He may have set the emergency brake to allow this to happen or maybe had a tight low-speed band. At 12 years of age I thought that it was neat.
I LOVE THE ORIGINAL FORD CLUTCH,
I just did a 20 hour round trip to pick up a T I just bought, the owner took a 50% hit on his investment after buying a fully restored T from the USA some 8 years ago and after trying to start it back then, ran over him self, so the car sat in the shed ever since.
Frank, Are you going to keep that wonderful original ford clutch that adds so much charm to the "T" or replace it with a better clutch? Just think if that poor guy had Turbo-400 disc installed 8 years ago he would have had so much fun. And most likely would not have sold his car. Its sad that he didn't get to enjoy his car.
The Ford clutch is famous the world over.
Para. 1059 Ford Service: Slipping Clutch ...the trouble is probably due to wear on the transmission clutch disc and the clutch should be adjusted.
Someone in this thread asked about the disadvantages of the original or original style Ford clutch. Just look at the lugs on a well-used pre-shoes brake drum.
It was a good setup when everything was new and it still works fine with a shoed original or a new Nolting drum. But I always use the Watts clutch with an early drum, which all four of my Ts have. The thick fiber disks not only do not stick to the steel but will extend the life of a good drum; grooved, smooth, or NOS.
(Full disclosure: I make and supply the Watts style clutch after receiving approval from John Watts when he was no longer able to make them.)
WOW! I knew not to open the can of worms related to MMO and which oil to use but I would have never suspected the clutch to generate this much back and forth. Thanks to all for the abundance of information now I'll have many options to consider if I can keep my 1 track mind on trak.
R V, I had organised to pick up 2 Watts clutch packs on my first visit to the US in 1989, but I missed hooking up with John.
Besides the thick plates having an advantage of less wear on the drum lugs, there should be another advantage. With fewer plates making up the thickness of the clutch pack, the fewer gaps between plates when the clutch is disengaged are much wider and will be less likely to cause drag. This is already a lesser advantage in the turbo 400 pack, less plates, wider gaps.
The only problem I have ever had with a turbo 400 clutch followed a leaking head gasket. Water in the oil resulted in the bond of the linings on the plates breaking down and the linings were lost.
Allan from down under.
FWIW - think about it for a minute...there are fewer plates, thus fewer oil/friction points...but not greater gaps. This is the reason for less friction in neutral than stock. However, the throw of the clutch plate/throwout bearing remain essentially, as it must, the same.
I had mentioned that there were advantages and disadvantages to the Turbo 400 and Frank wanted to know what disadvantages there were. If lining failing in the presence of water is not a disadvantage, then it must be a feature.
A feature that (sadly?) I will not experience.
I have a Watts clutch in one of my cars and an original clutch in another. I don't remember which one is where and they are about the same.
I read an article years ago about re-dishing Ford clutch plates. I don't remember of it was in a Tinkering Tips column, one of Ted's books, in the Transmission manual or maybe Murray Fahnestock's book...
Neither is "wrong." Both work fine.
: ^ )
Scott, when I think about it, my thinking goes along these lines. Let's imagine when the clutch is released, say by 1/4". That gives the plate stack 1/4" more room. With a Ford plate stack that 1/4" divided up among the 25 or so plates means each gap is around 1/25 of that 1/4", around .010".
With just 5 Watts clutch plates making just 10 gaps in total in that 1/4", then each gap is around .025" That makes for a much freer clutch pack.
Or is my thinking way off?
Allan from down under.
you are right of course, and I goofed
Thanks Scott, It is reassuring to know my thinking is not yet too woolly!
Allan from down under.