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Shifting 1205
#1
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glentre
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Newbie here with a 1205 and curious about shifting. I cannot shift from first to second without double clutching or it will grind gears. No double clutching required from second to third or downshifting from third to second. Also, from second to first gear after stopping requires about ten seconds or so before it will go into first without grinding. Do I have a bad transmission or is this normal for the 1205?

Glen

Posted on: 5/22 16:36
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Re: Shifting 1205
#2
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Owen_Dyneto
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What you are experiencing in your first -to-second shift is NOT normal, your synchronizers are failing to function as designed. The reasons could include insufficient or improper viscosity gear oil, worn or improperly adjusted synchronizers, or a combination of both. What type and viscosity gear oil are you using?

The second-to-first gear change after a stop is not synchronized and your issue can be relieved to some extent by use of a heavier gear oil, though in part it is a nature of the design. Just shift to second for an instant to stop the gear spin, or just learn to wait the few seconds.

The synchronizers are adjustable for engagement via shims, how to measure synchronizer engagement and make the adjustments is covered in the 11th Series Service Letters which are available on this site. IIRC the second-to-third synchronizers can be adjusted with the trans in the car by adjusting shims at the rear bearing, I believe the other set requires removal of the trans. Based on my own experience with that gearbox, the first-to-second synchros seem to require adjustment sooner than the second-to-third set. I had mine adjusted at about 86,000 miles.

The 1932-1939 3-speed senior car transmission is an outstanding unit, sophisticated and very rugged, an absolute delight.

Posted on: 5/22 17:36
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Re: Shifting 1205
#3
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glentre
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Thanks so much for your quick reply. I thought it might be a synchronizer problem as I have read the senior cars all had synchronized gears. I have only had the car for a week and only out twice for short drives. The car had not been driven for almost four years before I bought it so let's hope it's a gear lube problem. I will check the lube level before driving it again but do not know what viscosity is in it now. What would you recommend for both the transmission and rear end?
Also, would there be any problem driving the car having to double clutch first to second? I would like to use it for our local summer show season and attack the possible transmission synchronizer issue as a winter project if that will not damage the transmission

Glen

Posted on: 5/23 8:30
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Re: Shifting 1205
#4
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Owen_Dyneto
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If you're comfortable with double-clutching the 1st-to-2nd shift and are doing it well, it's an entirely acceptable practice, does no harm and no reason not to continue with that for as long as you wish.

For gearbox lube, I suggest following your owner's manual recommendation, SAE 140 or 160 for the summer, and if you use the car much in the winter, SAE 90 for the winter. Use a GL-1 gear oil which is essentially just a simple mineral gear oil plus a defoamer. It's also suitable for the steering gear box, preferably the heavier viscosity.

For the rear axle you must use a gear oil rated for hypoid gearing, often called a high pressure gear oil, GL-5 is a proper and popular choice. Though Packard recommended changing viscosity winter and summer, I've used a multi grade GL-5 SAE 85-140 for many decades in my '34 Eight with no issues.

Depending on what you know about your car's past history prior to the 4-year layup, you should consider a very thorough review of all the lubrication needs before accumulating any more miles on it. Draining and refilling the transmission and differential would be a good idea, and perhaps dropping the oil pan for a good cleaning. For your Bijur chassis lubricator, use SAE-50 motor oil. Only a handful of grease fittings, 2 on the king pins, 2 on the tie rod, 2 on the drag link, the driveshaft spline and perhaps the universal joints if they are modern replacements. And there may be one on the pulley that supports the cable from the power brake booster. Wheel bearings and brake cables should be on the list as well, also the shock absorbers (hydraulic fluid). Again, all dependent on what you know about the care the car received in it's recent past.

Posted on: 5/23 10:45
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Re: Shifting 1205
#5
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glentre
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Owen,
Wanting to address you properly and confused by your user name, I clicked on your profile and hopefully assume your name is Owen. Surprised you're from NJ as I grew up there (West Orange) but have been in Virginia for the last 45 years.

Yes, I am quite comfortable double clutching and am relieved that I can continue to do that on the first to second gear change on my 1205 without damaging anything.

Your suggestions regarding lubricants is very helpful and I will take your advice to drain and replace the lube in the transmission and differential using the proper viscosity. I have detailed receipts and invoices for the parts and labor for a top and bottom engine rebuild done in 2013 and know the engine oil was replaced just before I bought the car so I'll hold off on dropping the pan for now. I'll also look at the other items you mentioned.

While I have owned several vintage cars, the Packard is all new to me and I will likely be posting more questions in the weeks to come. The quality of this car is impressive.

I appreciate your taking the time to help. Thanks

Glen

Posted on: 5/23 12:36
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Re: Shifting 1205
#6
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Tim Cole
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More likely culprit is a sticky pilot bearing. If you rev the motor in neutral and then can't get into gear there is drag in the clutch unit. That is called a clutch spin down test. Sometimes rust on the splines will do the same thing. If you unbolt the driveshaft there should be no drag in neutral with the clutch depressed. With the motor running you should have no problem holding the output shaft steady in neutral.

Minor cases can be handled by bumping second gear before going into first which slows the gears down.

Adjusting the second speed synchro can be done in the car without tearing into anything. You just need someone who knows what to do. You can do it yourself by making your own shims with stock and a pair of scissors.

I mention all this testing because using the synchros to mask the problem is a bad idea for obvious reasons.

Posted on: 5/23 19:10
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Re: Shifting 1205
#7
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glentre
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Tim,
A sticking pilot bearing sounds like a good explanation for having to wait a few seconds before shifting into first gear. It's been raining here for the last two days so I'll do some testing on that issue the next day or two.

I don't understand what you mean that using the synchros to mask the problem is a bad idea. Could you explain further?

Glen

Posted on: 5/25 11:38
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