Torque Converter Shudder, 2009-2011 R.I.P.! - TCCoA Forums
 
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-11-2011, 07:36 PM Thread Starter
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Torque Converter Shudder, 2009-2011 R.I.P.!

The title of my post may be just wishful thinking, but I'll know tomorrow if it's more than that!

I am writing this on my laptop from a hotel room in Cincinnati, OH, 4 hours from where I live in Cleveland, OH. I dropped my car, a 1997 Thunderbird sport 4.6 liter V-8, off at DirtyDog Performance in Batavia, OH (12 miles from my hotel) earlier today. I am having Alan remove my transmission and torque converter from my car. He is then going to install a new Mark VIII style torque converter & flexplate in my car, along with a 2001-2003 style 4R70W transmission that was originally in a Mustang GT, after he changes/upgrades some internal components on the transmission. He said he will probably be finished with my car late tomorrow (Saturday) afternoon/early evening, and I can't wait!

I am having this work done not because there was anything specifically wrong with my transmission that was currently in my car, but because it started suffering (what I believe to be) terrible torque converter shudder, and it's only been getting gradually worse. I can NOT stand to drive the car in that condition, and I'm hoping that this cures the issue!

I am having the Mustang transmission installed because my T-Bird has 164,000 miles on it and I have no idea how long the current trans was in the car or if its ever been worked on. I know the Mustang trans is an improved design, plus Alan will be upgrading some internal components, and I had an opportunity to pick this trans up for $300, so I thought why not have a new, beefed-up trans put in that I won't have to worry about failing & that'll last for the entire time remaining that I have the car?!!

So, I am anxiously awaiting tomorrow afternoon/evening and the long drive back to Cleveland!

Dennis
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-11-2011, 07:39 PM
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-11-2011, 09:15 PM
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I'm headed out for an anniversary dinner with my wife and then I'll be pulling an all nighter (like I did last night which is why I was sleeping when you got here) Chris is pullign the transmission while the wife and I go out to celebrate 5 years of mutual tolerance. I see soem changes from our original plan but it'll all work out the same to get it where it needs to be. I was prepared for any such occurance and have everything. You got a really nice core, a little too complicated for your needs so I am changing things around a bit. I'll fill you in tomorrow.
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-12-2011, 01:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dirtyd0g View Post
I'm headed out for an anniversary dinner with my wife and then I'll be pulling an all nighter (like I did last night which is why I was sleeping when you got here) Chris is pullign the transmission while the wife and I go out to celebrate 5 years of mutual tolerance. I see soem changes from our original plan but it'll all work out the same to get it where it needs to be. I was prepared for any such occurance and have everything. You got a really nice core, a little too complicated for your needs so I am changing things around a bit. I'll fill you in tomorrow.
Alan
Congrats on the 5 years!!!!!

~Rick

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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-12-2011, 09:41 AM
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-12-2011, 10:12 AM
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Pfft, It is 72 degrees in here.
Alan

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Please do not send me messages on forums they are too hard to keep up with and I don't check in very often anymore call me at 513 898-1580 or email me alan at dirtydogperformance.com
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-13-2011, 10:20 AM Thread Starter
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Update:

Except for a delay engaging reverse, which Alan told me would be there and he could eliminate if I found it bothersome, my new trans and torque converter seem to be performing flawlessly!! We ran into a problem in that the Mustang trans I brought down to him to have installed in my T-Bird turned out NOT to be a 2001-2003 4R70W unit like I was told by the Lincoln-Mercury mechanic who sold it to me, but a 2004 4R70W!! Since my car is a daily-driver and completely stock, and since I didn't want my new trans to shift overly harsh, Alan said I would've been unhappy using the 2004 4R70W, so he used a good 1999 4R70W core he had and scavenged the best parts from that unit, the 2004 4R70W I brought with me and my original 1997 4R70W to build a transmission I'd be happy with - and, I am!! I didn't get a chance to test-drive it too much in stop-and-go traffic, since my nearly 250 mile ride back to Cleveland was virtually all on I-275/I-71, but I immediately noticed that, while the shifts are definitely firmer/quicker, they are not in the least bit too harsh at all! I also noticed NO evidence of torque converter shudder whatsoever!! In fact, Alan showed me the inside of my OE torque converter - the friction material was almost completely gone inside of it, so I know for sure now that was the reason for the shudder problem (I already had a pretty good idea that was the problem, since the shudder would always go away immediately when I lightly depressed the brake pedal)!

Now, I just need to see if I can tolerate that delay between when you shift into reverse and when the trans actually engages reverse (the trans that was in my car didn't have that delay at all), but I'm thinking I may need to have him eliminate that! I bought a brand-new 1994 Thunderbird LX back in October, 1994 with a 4.6 liter V-8/4R70W automatic, and I remember taking it back to the dealer because of that delay engaging reverse - I thought there was something wrong with it!

Overall, though, I'm QUITE happy - great work, Alan!!

Dennis
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-13-2011, 10:28 AM Thread Starter
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Oops - forgot to mention something unfortunate! Alan pointed-out to me, while working on my car, he noticed that my steering rack and high-pressure hose are leaking power-steering fluid pretty bad, as well as the gasket for my oil filter adapter! So, I guess that, in addition to replacing my defective catalytic converters and my exhaust system, it'll be a few hundred dollars more to replace my steering components! It's always something!

Maybe that's why my steering just hasn't felt right on the highway.

Oh, yeah, he also replaced my rear main oil seal on my motor when he had my trans out, as he noticed it was leaking pretty badly, so I'm definitely glad to have that problem taken care of!

Dennis
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-13-2011, 10:36 AM
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Good to hear Getting a bird back together

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