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Ultramatic Rebuild for a '51
#1
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Larry51
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A couple of minor oil leaks from my Ultramatic have made me decide to do a partial re-build of a spare unit that I have, and swap it into my '51. Am hoping the Ultramatic experts here can provide some answers please.

Firstly, the workshop manuals don't specify just how much lining material should be on a 'useable' Low or Reverse Band. I only have a couple of used bands, and the layer of friction material on these is even but very thin - it's only approximately 1mm thick. So I can't be sure if they are suitable to re-use or not.

What would the thickness be on a new or 'OK' band?

Likewise, approximately how thick should material on the direct drive driven clutch plate linings be?

Next question relates to special tools. Manual reckons I need quite a few of them. What's the general feeling about needing special tools for a partial rebuild (- replace clutch plates, bands, seals and gaskets)? I'm not intending to fully disassemble the Ultramatic. (The Kent-Moore Tools List doesn't help me at all).

Any suggestions/ opinions about tools would be appreciated. Thanks!

Posted on: 2015/10/6 1:15
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Re: Ultramatic Rebuild for a '51
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Let the ride decide
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Others who have done Ultramatics can speak more to this than I can.

I don't know the answer on the thickness of the lining.

I did rebuild some Ultramatics with Bob Aller 15 or more years ago. He had the tools on a pegboard, but we did not use them. Bob used different sockets and put the bushing in that way. Just make note of where they are lined up before you take them out.

Not sure if this helps you or not.

Posted on: 2015/10/6 15:43
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Re: Ultramatic Rebuild for a '51
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Tim Cole
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If you want to replace the direct clutch seal you can take the clutch to a machine shop that has an arbor press.

Other than that there isn't a lot special about the transmission, although beating on sockets is not my favorite way to change bushing. Using sockets in a press is okay, but for regular usage I'd prefer machined drivers.

I knew someone who had the Ultramatic rebuilding stand. It had a table with compartments for all the pieces as they were removed from the trans.

The lining on the bands is not thick because they are holding members. Reverse simply holds the annulus.

Posted on: 2015/10/6 16:20
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Re: Ultramatic Rebuild for a '51
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Larry51
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OK . . . . Thanks for that helpful information. I need to get my rebuild kit from the States so I'll do the pull-down first to check what's needed.

What I need to avoid is the cost of sending worn bands etc over to the USA for reconditioning / exchange, if I don't need to. The shipping is expensive! I don't think there is any place here in Australia that sells Ultramatic parts as far as I know.

Posted on: 2015/10/6 17:47
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Re: Ultramatic Rebuild for a '51
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John
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Is this going in your blog?? I'd like to see what you get into on these.
John

Posted on: 2015/10/6 18:00
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Re: Ultramatic Rebuild for a '51
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Troy Taylor
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Larry,

When I am back in the shop this weekend, I will get you measurements, I have both new bands and clutches to measure.

I typically replace regardless on my rebuilds because I give a one year warranty.

Typically if you still have the wear lines in the bands, you will be good, if the lines have been worn smooth, replace.

I follow the same on the clutches.

you can get by without all the special tools. You will need a piston spring compressor to replace the Piston seal in the clutch pack.

You will need the torque converter backlash tool to insure the proper washer thickness

Most important with this series Ultramatic you will need a special Micrometer PU-308 to properly measure the front pump gap. It is almost impossible to do correctly without one.

There is one available on E-bay for $250, they make the job a snap.

IM me when your ready, I can get you hooked up on bands without having to worry about exchange.

Happy Rebuilding

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Posted on: 2015/10/6 18:34
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Re: Ultramatic Rebuild for a '51
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Ross
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Except as a fascinating exercise I would not rebuild an extra trans when you could take care of the leaks on your existing trans with about $50 of seals and o-rings...

The direct drive clutches generally do not show any appreciable wear. They do however become hard as rocks and thus do not grip well. You should be able to sink your fingernail a bit into the surface. The bands are very hard and do not show much wear except where there has been a sticking servo. If you can bring them into standard adjustment without running out of threads on the adjusters they should be fine. Replace the high clutch disks as a matter of course as they are quite cheap, and actually are included in the rebuild kit. No need to replace the steels unless they have been burned.

Be certain that there is no more than .004 inch clearance between any bush and shaft. Factory clearance was .003". Be certain to replace the 3 lip seals in each servo as a lot of pressure can be lost there. The high clutch has a piston ring, not a lip seal in 49-mid 54 trans. Still nice to get in there to clean out debris.

I abandoned the use of the adjusting micrometer long ago and use the technique described for the end play in 55-56 Ultras instead. Much easier. Save some hassle and check it before you tear the trans down.

Of course, I would be delighted out of my skull to sell you my micrometer for only $200.........

Posted on: 2015/10/6 19:11
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Re: Ultramatic Rebuild for a '51
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Troy Taylor
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Ross- I still must make that trip out east and spend some time under your tutelage on these alternative methods.

Posted on: 2015/10/6 19:28
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Re: Ultramatic Rebuild for a '51
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Larry51
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Thanks to all for the very useful hints etc..
I spent a few hours today looking through Service Counsellors to get an idea of what I'm facing. It doesn't look too daunting and I won't be in a hurry so can do a careful job on it. I have a press and a friend can turn some bush-pushers to the right diameter.
Noted was the dial gauge method of measuring reactor shaft end play as suggested by Ross. I think I can rig up a means of checking - and I think you were suggesting that I check existing play before I dismantle the converter?
John - I will add progress updates to my blog when I get started on Ultra work.
Troy - yes - I would appreciate measurements please, and I'll PM you for a price when I need bands. The ones I have don't show any grooves so must be well worn.
Yes, Ross: thanks for the wisdom regarding not 'fixing that which ain't broke'! However I want to rebuild my spare Ultra because getting an Ultra out and back into the car isn't too easy to do without a hoist. The experts will get my dollars for that difficult job. Once was enough. So I want to make sure whatever I put into the coupe is 100% ok and will last years. Plus fixing the one in the car will mean having it off the road for quite a long while as I get parts sent over.
The Ultra I'm driving with was sitting around on garage floors since mid-1970's so I don't know how much I can trust it. Surely friction materials would have hardened over that long period?? It's now done over 1000 miles without problems other than holding in DD until crawling speed - plus the leaks - so I feel good about that. Will be interesting to see what the insides look like when dismantle that 'worker'!

Thanks Ross for hints about tolerances. There is a lot said in the documentation about losing pressure through worn bushings etc. Current Ultra seems to do almost everything very well so I think it must have had an easy life.

Posted on: 2015/10/7 6:28
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Re: Ultramatic Rebuild for a '51
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Larry51
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Troy, I have sent you a PM regarding Bands.

Posted on: 2015/10/8 18:45
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