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Stuck in gear


Kiajon

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My spitfire has sat for many years (over 10) because of an ignition problem. Now I have time to sort it (as the country is shut down!) I have a new problem. It’s stuck in gear, seized master cylinder and therefore won’t roll. I’ve removed the master cylinder seized solid. Will try and renovate but it might be easier to buy a new one) and I thought the slave would be in a similar condition so I’ve tried to get the transmission tunnel off but can’t remove the gear shift/stick so can see the slave cylinder but can’t reach it! 
So my questions are many, hopefully your answers will be gentle (I’m a mechanical novice) and we can get the girl running before the country Re-opens! 
How do I take the tunnel off? I’ve undone all the fastenings but can’t get it over the gear stick. Although the cylinders are seized should I also be worrying about the clutch and flywheel sticking together? If so, how do I release them. And  what else should I be looking at sorting as part of this recommission?

 

Please be gentle! I’m a novice!

All the best 

Jonathan

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You should be able to get the tunnel off by releasing the handbrake and the putting the car into 4th/2nd gear and just fiddle with the gear lever whilst pulling the tunnel off. If the clutch plate is seized to the flywheel I have in the past warmed the engine and then started in gear then drive with the clutch in pressing and releasing the throttle of course that requires space. You can also run it on axle stands and do a similar thing though make sure it's secure. If all else fails it's gearbox out and clutch off.

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Thanks for that Dan. Unfortunately it’s stuck in gear! And worse than that it’s stuck in 1st or third so I don’t have the room to remove the tunnel. This is starting to sound like gearbox out! Oh hell! Now that’ll be a baptism of fire! 

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Dan,

If it's currently stuck in 1st then "putting the car into 4th/2nd gear" isn't entirely practical advice.

Since the engine doesn't currently run, "warm the engine and then..." isn't entirely practical advice.

"If all else fails" is pretty much where Jonathan is, hence his query about how to get the gearbox cover off.

If it were me, I think I'd address the stuck in gear first. How severely jammed is the gearstick? Does it feel rusted solid or just wedged by the tension from the drive line? If the latter then rocking the car back and forth while a helper (family member resident in the same household!) tries to pull the stick into neutral... might do the trick.

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It doesn’t feel totally fused to something, more wedged by something (I’m sure there are more technical ways of explaining it but, as I said, I’m a novice!). I’ll try the rocking option tomorrow if I can convince the wife to sit in the car and grab my gear stick.............

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Johnathon,

I think I'm with @NonMember as the best approach to take.

Some idle mussings, as Pete would say:-

On the single rail box fitted to 1500, isn't the gear lever only held in by the retaining ring ???  ; on the three rail box you would need to remove the small bolt and nylock nut that holds the gear lever to the rear remote control shaft aswell - not easy unless the opening in the tunnel allows access for 1/4" t- bar or you're a contourtionist and can access it by raising the tunnel enough!

With the gear lever out, you could at least get the tunnel off and then replace the gear lever. Doesn't get it unstuck but at least you'd have better access.

David

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there are tunnel screws into the baulkhead as well as the floor , are these out,  the heater can obstruct removal normally by lifting the rear end but you cant as the stick is in the way, as its a 1500 it it likely a single rail box, (yuk)  if you can lift to get at the cup that the spherical lives under its held on by two pins and the cup is removed like an old light bulb  ,,press down and twist  you should be able to do this through the gaitor hole 

once the cup is off  just pull the lever upwards , there is a sprung plunger in it  catch this  dont drop it in the grass ,,

Pete

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Result! Thanks for the advice. It appears I was being too polite with the gear stick. A good, firm tug upwards and out it came. Still has the spring mounted widget within so no ferreting around the garage to find the flying bit. Tunnel now out! Next job release and refurb/replace slave cylinder.

I presume the gear shift will go back in with similar persuasion? 
Thanks again and watch out for yet more questions! I am not only a novice but also a mechanical numpty! 

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we have Tee Shirts for novice and numpty,  also clever basket   and many more  have no fears ask away 

many answers will drift into something peculiar but dont worry we are here to help   even the worst numpty

well there are resevations  Ha !

but you are getting somewhere . thatsa good start  ....always have a go 

Pete

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With the help and advice of forum contributors, I have tackled jobs that I would never have dreamed of undertaking. There are still jobs that I would leave to others, but, in the light of my rear suspension problems last year (self sorted thanks to everyone here), I would certainly have a go rather than trust the 'professionals', so this forum is a gold mine of GOOD advice and information on all topics from cars to cooking ... and there's always Doug's 'other' website to consider!!

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Well. We have progress. And a fair amount of tidying up to do!

I now have the master and slave cylinder on the bench. The photo was taken before I removed the slave and I only did that once I realised it had a notch in it for the bolt! 🤦🏼‍♂️.  I know I can refurb the master cylinder (need to blow some air down it to release the plunger - I’ve already taken the clip off and it won’t come out!) but do I just replace the slave?

Question 2 (of this email) I removed the slave and there is a ‘push rod’ - if that’s the right word- that goes into the gear box. Should I be able to push this in? I can’t, is that a problem?

Thanks for you patience! 

3528197D-B8FB-4C42-B20B-2930C973684E.jpeg

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you can push the slave push rod but you need a LOT  of force  ie    not by hand 

i would suggest the M cyl will need replacing not resealing many options  about  you can geta landrover witha straight resv for just a few ££s   where as a supposed OE with an angled is £70    the correct bore is probaly  going to be either 0.7" or  0,625"  

a cheap repro at 0.75 wont affect too much , will raise pedal effort a little 

pete

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Land Rover? Ok, so my spitfire might look like a tractor but......

I’ll have a look. The famous online auction site has a genuine one of those for about £13 where as Rimmers (is there anywhere else to try?) has Gerling ones at £90, not Gerling ones at £70 and general ones at £35! So now I’m confused. 
How do I find the bore of mine? 

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I would personally avoid the so called "Upgrade" brake masters on offer.I fitted one and it was awful on my Herald,smaller reservoir and much more leg needed to get the same braking,either refurb or use OE.

If you can get the plunger in as far as it will go, i used some fine emery paper and silicone spray to clean the bore up, and sharp tapping on a flat surface(top of a vice for me) to persuade the piston out.This was on a Herald that had been in a garage for 30 years.

Steve

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48 minutes ago, Kiajon said:

How do I find the bore of mine? 

Your profile says you have a 1500? Canley Classics sell them for £66, Ouch! However they say they're all 0.625" I wouldn't mess around refurbishing, buy new ones, take no chances with brakes!

Doug

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make sure of what you have some later 1500 had dual line braking so the cyl is a double  thats a whole different ball game 

old trick to shift a stuck cyl is fit grease nipple to the pipe port and pump it out witha grease gun

dont do this on the dinning table 

Pete

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I thought we were talking about clutch, not brakes?

I've rebuilt a number of master cylinders over the years, using Girling refurb kits from the usual sources (usually Canley, I think) and had good results. I did have one refurbished unit suffer a seal failure after several years of service but that was a brake master - the clutch is much less stressed. You do need to carefully inspect the bore to make sure it's clean and smooth - any rust or unevenness needs a re-bore and sleeve, which isn't worth it.

However, for a "newbie" the new Land Rover part is a much easier and safer option.

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39 minutes ago, Steve P said:

If you can get the plunger in as far as it will go, i used some fine emery paper and silicone spray to clean the bore up, and sharp tapping on a flat surface(top of a vice for me) to persuade the piston out.This was on a Herald that had been in a garage for 30 years.

Steve

Last one I renovated was solid, nothing would budge it, so had to very gently and gradually push the piston back in with a 2-legged puller! However every new bit of cylinder that was uncovered was cleaned and lubricated until eventually it wouldn't go back any further. I then stood it in a vice with the puller removed, filled it with WD40, and left it overnight. When I came back in next day the piston was sitting out of the cylinder. Unfortunately that used my last NOS cylinder spring - are they available anywhere?

39013D53-3B59-4CC1-B115-7FB68C0874E7_1_105_c.jpg.92977db7675a5b56c2664c5bf0173b3b.jpg

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Once more, thanks for the advice. I’d got the plunger moving and with a bit of cleaning of the bore out it popped! I’m going to give it a refurb as I like the thought of having the original piece on the car.... obviously up to the point where it fails and I’m stuck at the side of some remote unclassified road where the instructions from the last village I’d been through was ‘Stay on the road and keep clear of the moors!’

So I’ll need to wait for that kit and a replacement slave cylinder. 
In the meantime, is there a knack to getting the gear stick back in?

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As with all good repair manuals the refitting is the same as that of taking it apart. :)

Basically it should slot back in, ensure the nylon bush on the side is squeezed in to the ball of the gear lever, and the spigot at the bottom of the level fits in the selector coupling.

Before 're fitting I would take out the nylon bush, the spring behind it and give them and the hole a clean to get rid of any muck. Refit with new grease.

If you plan on repairing the clutch cylinders then take pictures or make a drawing of the way round the seals are. It is amazing once the seals are off how quickly you forget and start questioning all known logic.

Have you got any repair manuals for the car, if not then these are a good source of information.

Graham

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1 minute ago, Graham C said:

As with all good repair manuals the refitting is the same as that of taking it apart. :)

Basically it should slot back in, ensure the nylon bush on the side is squeezed in to the ball of the gear lever, and the spigot at the bottom of the level fits in the selector coupling.

Before 're fitting I would take out the nylon bush, the spring behind it and give them and the hole a clean to get rid of any muck. Refit with new grease.

If you plan on repairing the clutch cylinders then take pictures or make a drawing of the way round the seals are. It is amazing once the seals are off how quickly you forget and start questioning all known logic.

Have you got any repair manuals for the car, if not then these are a good source of information.

Graham

Thanks for that Graham. I have the Haynes manual which has helped. The gear stick came out with a reasonable tug, but does not seem so keen to go back, I’ve tried to line everything up but I’m obviously failing at something. I was pleased that the nylon bush and spring didn’t fire off into the garden when the lever came out, I’ll give them and the hole a good clean as you suggest.

 

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Should fit easily, suggest you use some wet and dry to remove any crud/corrosion from the hole it fits in and the the gear level pivot ball.

Apply a bit of grease as well.

If the car has not run for sometime then you will come across this problem all the time. Spending  time cleaning part will become important as well as applying grease. It sol make life easier next time you need to take things apart.

I spray parts with WD 40 when cleaning thing, softens the age old crud, also washing in white spirit and paint brush also help.

Sometime it is better to replace parts rather than refurb.

Graham

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