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Old 01-10-2011, 02:49 AM   #1
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Default Tranny saga comes to its climax.

So, as I've written in other threads... https://www.gmforum.com/1992-1999-91/tranny-swap-rebuild-options-293078/... my tranny has been slowly dying from the dreaded P0742 code, and the general consensus was that my solenoids are getting clogged with friction material as it flakes off the clutches and stuff. The fluid is very glittery at this point.

Well, it finally died... and quite suddenly, unfortunately. No movement in any gear if it cold out... if its warmed up a bit, the car moves about 200 feet before letting go.

Well, $$ is not on my side, and in order to get the car running again cheap, I'm going to have to swap any old cheap, matching tranny. Sooo... I have a few more questions for you pros:

1. Its not clear yet to me if the replacement is going to come with a torque converter... and I have considered a few MN3 trannies, since its my understanding they only differ with my M15 in the torque converter. If I was to reuse my torque converter, I'm assuming its not likely the cause of the tranny failure... the TCC was switching on and off... until the tranny got hot and bothered then it would light the MIL and go into limp-home mode. What should/can I check on the old torque converter as far as ballooning and/or the TCC is concerned? Also, what is the best way to clean the old glittery fluid out of the torque converter?

2. What is the best way to flush out the transmission cooler and lines?

3. Do the lower ball joints HAVE to be disconnected to get the axles out? I have always had problems reinstalling used ball joints... even ones not particularly worn out. It always seems like the joints will start spinning as I torque the castle nut on top. I acknowledge my ball joints are getting pretty worn, but since I'm trying to cut costs getting this tranny swapped, would I be better off removing the entire lower control arm?

4. Speaking of cutting costs... in this disaster, I have to replace the strut bearings, as they seem VERY worn... but while I was at it, I'd like to try to avoid getting the front end aligned... so I was hoping that I could remove the control arm, spindle, strut as an assembly and try to find a strut cartridge replacement. Does anyone sell a strut cartridge for a '99 Bonneville? If worse comes to worse, I may have to forgo replacing anything in the suspension until I have more $$ in a few months.

I think thats it for now. Any thoughts would be appreciated.

Oh, and if anyone in the NJ area has a 4t65e M15 they want to sell cheap or donate....

BKNJ
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Old 01-10-2011, 08:48 AM   #2
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The converter typically comes with a JY trans. I've yet to find one that didn't, unless specified up front.

Try to find a JY with warranty if possible. Localish to me is one that offers a 6mo unlimited mileage warranty for the same prices as other yards. Therefore it'* my first stop.

Balljoints...I've only had the spinning issue once and found some pressure on the bottom of the joint helped to seat it for torquing. This is to me the easiest way.

Struts..You can drop it all.. if you disconnect the tie rods (I've had the spinning issue with them almost every time) and hang the brake calipers from the body somehow.
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Old 01-10-2011, 12:54 PM   #3
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Where are you in NJ? It should be easy to find a trans in our area. Just need one from an H body. This includes park aves and bonnevilles. You can probally find a used trans for under 250. What means do you have in doing a swap: tools, stands, air?
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Old 01-10-2011, 01:02 PM   #4
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It'* not only an H body. It'* the right gear ratio with the webbing on the back...that'll work.

For example, I have in the past put a Regal GS trans into a Riviera (SC). Worked perfect because of the webbing. If you guys are wondering what I'm talking about ..holler and I'll dig up pics. I'm sure Dan has them posted in TI somewhere though.
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Old 01-10-2011, 04:18 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nighthwk12 View Post
Where are you in NJ? It should be easy to find a trans in our area. Just need one from an H body. This includes park aves and bonnevilles. You can probally find a used trans for under 250. What means do you have in doing a swap: tools, stands, air?
I'm down around Atlantic City. The JYs here blow. I could pull one from the Pick-a-Part for $95+core... but I'll have no idea its condition... and its a huge hassle. I'm short for time, as well as money.

To the best of my knowledge, I have a 2.92 M15 4t65e. If I wasn't so crunched for time/money, I'd try to find a 4t65e-hd... or even a slightly newer 4t65e. Most of the local junkyards don't want to sell me anything but an exact match... which severely limits me to '99s from H-bods. I know there are others that will work... but I'm not real confidant in finding one that will "work right". My criteria for "works right"... it moves the car and don't set off the CEL.

I have a line on a $200 transmission ('99 Buick H-bod M15), but it has 122K... Ugh. If anyone ever told me I would swap in a tranny with so much mileage I would have laughed. But that is the reality for my financial situation in 2010/11... No job, no fancy transmission upgrade.

I have all the needed jacks, tools and even air tools. Its sucks, as I have another car in my garage... so doing this out in the cold will be a bear. I need to do it fast, too... before the neighbors complain. But I've been there before.

Actually, whats biting me hardest is that without the car... I don't have a good way to pick up the transmission, thats not going to cost me an arm and a leg.

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Originally Posted by BillBoost37 View Post
It'* not only an H body. It'* the right gear ratio with the webbing on the back...that'll work.

For example, I have in the past put a Regal GS trans into a Riviera (SC). Worked perfect because of the webbing. If you guys are wondering what I'm talking about ..holler and I'll dig up pics. I'm sure Dan has them posted in TI somewhere though.
Yeah, I'm kinda puzzled by that. So, if I can use any 1997-2002 4t65e, as long as the gearing is correct, it gives me more options. Would torque converter size affect the computer? In these cars is a larger torque converter better? I know in full-on strip cars, they like the tiny torque converters for the different stall speed.

Whats REALLY frustrating is that there are a ton of cheap 4t65es on eBaymotors... '08 with 58K... for example, but I KNOW I can't use one past 2003... Why on earth would someone be selling them so cheap?

BKNJ
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Old 01-15-2011, 04:59 AM   #6
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So back to trying to clean out the torque converter and transmission cooler, I figured I'd disconnect my tranny lines and blow them out with some gunk cleaner... but I figured that would not completely blow out the cooler itself. I saw this... http://www.amazon.com/ATP-AT200-Tran.../dp/B000NW157M Are these any good at really cleaning out the transmission cooler in the radiator?

As for cleaning the fluid out of the torque converter, I can only think of using a turkey baster... but I imagine that will still leave some old tranny glitter behind.

How obsessive should I get cleaning these things out? Especially considering that the used tranny I'll likely get will be likely somewhat high mileage (90-120K)?

Thanks in advance.

BKNJ
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Old 01-15-2011, 08:21 AM   #7
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Do NOT use the old converter!!
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