Topic: Automatic Trans Question - to shift or not to shift

So we ran our 78  Cordoba last weekend in Pittsburg. It has has a Chrysler 727 torqueflite.  Started fine but At the end of the first day  the trans would really slip when going into 3rd  gear . The trans temp went up to 250 degrees. It was cooked.  I Changed the burnt fluid with fresh and ran the next day in second gear and the temps never went above 185. ( and I was beating on it  ) . I have a big tranny cooler on it and the trans was pretty new with only one other race on it it.

The car does not have a manual valve body, however I was manually shifting from 3rd to 2nd gear to slow down and then back into 3rd under a hard pull on the long straights.

My three question to the Lemons World are

1) Does shifting a non manual valve body transmission this way put a great deal of additional stress ( heat)  on the stock trans than just leaving it in drive?  The results of day one would leave me to belive it does, but I could not find anything on the internet that was conclusive. My other drivers didnt shift it manually but I did because it does help slow that big girl down

2) Running in second gear on day two was fine - maybe not as quick ( I use that term loosely when talking about a Cordoba) . Would keeping it in 2nd all day actually help extend the life and keep the temps down?

3) Should I go full manual valve body? would that be significantly better?

Thanks!

Cordoba

Re: Automatic Trans Question - to shift or not to shift

Firstly I want to thank you again....I was in the Javelin when a certain yellow Mercury thought that passing both of us on a three wide into the down hill was a good Idea.
The driver of your car drove off and saved both our cars as I was the one stuck in the middle, So again, Thank you!!!!
I made sure to tell HQ about your heroic move!
On to the Torqueflight.....
As 3rd gear is a band shift to my recollection, It should be adjustable,
Any slip creates heat! Bands come on the same for manual or auto shifts in a Mopar.
GM not the same....
An adjustment may be the ticket!

I just found the procedure I remember from years ago......

This is one of the most misunderstood procedures there is when it comes to Chrysler transmissions. Most people will shy away from this method simply because it does not involve torqueing the band adjustment screw to "X" in. lbs. and then back it off "Y" turns. However, in my opinion and from my experience, using this method will give you results far superior to the factory specified method. What people seem to forget about the factory method is that the technicians at the dealership weren't concerned with performance shifts. They were more concerned about having a transmission shift smoothly to suit the customers.

To do this, all you'll need are wrenches for the lock nuts and a socket for the adjuster screws. You can also use this if you just want to adjust one band. First, assuming you'll be doing both bands, loosen both lock nuts and snug the adjusters. You should now notice that you can no longer turn the drive shaft in either direction. Loosen either of the adjusters until you can barely turn the drive shaft by hand. Once this happens, loosen the adjuster another ½ turn and tighten the lock nut. Now, do the same with the other adjuster, only this time you should be trying to turn the drive shaft in the opposite direction. Once you can barely turn it by hand, loosen the adjuster another ½ turn and tighten the lock nut.

Not only is this procedure just as easy as the factory one, it's also more accurate. I've always been of the opinion that the factory specs made the bands too loose - especially the front one since that's the only shifting band that makes a difference in shift timing. If you're still skeptical about how well this procedure works, try the factory procedure and notice how the shifts are. Then try this one and I would be willing to bet that your shifts will be firmer. This method not only works on Chryslers, but on any transmission that has a band adjustment.


Hope this helps
Manny

Re: Automatic Trans Question - to shift or not to shift

Hey Manny.... I'm glad we avoided sheet metal drama on that turn as well. However, I assure you that any perceived heroics on my part was strictly cowardice-based self-preservation!

Thanks for the good advice and procedure on adjusting the bands. I should have done that after the first race. I did think about it, but I did something that I thought was more important. (like glue 100 magnets on my trophies and stick them on the car for my theme)  Band adjustment should be part of my prerace maintenance. 

Last night I did find some info on the internet suggesting that downshifting in order to slowdown is pretty hard on the transmission. And if you think about it …while I might be saving the brakes, I am just transferring a lot of the heat and abuse to the transmission. Brakes and rotors are alot cheaper than trannys.  Well, I guess I will continue to learn the hard way like I always do. I guess Ill just leave it in “D”.

I hope to see the Oscar Mobile in NJ in June!

Cordoba

Re: Automatic Trans Question - to shift or not to shift

Jimmy wrote:

So we ran our 78  Cordoba last weekend in Pittsburg. It has has a Chrysler 727 torqueflite.  Started fine but At the end of the first day  the trans would really slip when going into 3rd  gear . The trans temp went up to 250 degrees. It was cooked.  I Changed the burnt fluid with fresh and ran the next day in second gear and the temps never went above 185. ( and I was beating on it  ) . I have a big tranny cooler on it and the trans was pretty new with only one other race on it it.

The car does not have a manual valve body, however I was manually shifting from 3rd to 2nd gear to slow down and then back into 3rd under a hard pull on the long straights.

My three question to the Lemons World are

1) Does shifting a non manual valve body transmission this way put a great deal of additional stress ( heat)  on the stock trans than just leaving it in drive?  The results of day one would leave me to belive it does, but I could not find anything on the internet that was conclusive. My other drivers didnt shift it manually but I did because it does help slow that big girl down

2) Running in second gear on day two was fine - maybe not as quick ( I use that term loosely when talking about a Cordoba) . Would keeping it in 2nd all day actually help extend the life and keep the temps down?

3) Should I go full manual valve body? would that be significantly better?

Thanks!

I'm a lifetime Mopar guy, BUT we race a Trans Am. Our 1st car had an auto, 7004r. We went with a shift improver package and manually shifted the car and almost never used 4th. (OD). We used our AC condenser as the trans cooler, we never had any issues however the car never seemed to be in the right gear. If you don't manually shift it it will downshift when you don't want it to or not soon enough, it also will shift before you want it to. Your 727 uses a single piece "kick-down". You might get better results with a late 60's 3 piece unit. It has much more adjustment. The 727 is a good trans, but you have got to keep it cool. I'd think for the most part you'd be in 2nd and 3rd for the most part. What gears are you running? What rpms? It isn't good to downshift to slow up, not with an auto or manual. Brakes are cheaper to replace than transmissions. have you lightened the car up? I'd take as much metal out as you can. Gut everything, hood, decklid, doors. Getting weight off the car will help your brakes and your trans. If I were to use an auto I'd use a manual vale body with a ratchet action shifter, just easier to go up and down the gears.

"get up and get your grandma outta here"

Re: Automatic Trans Question - to shift or not to shift

Jimmy wrote:

Hey Manny.... I'm glad we avoided sheet metal drama on that turn as well. However, I assure you that any perceived heroics on my part was strictly cowardice-based self-preservation!

Thanks for the good advice and procedure on adjusting the bands. I should have done that after the first race. I did think about it, but I did something that I thought was more important. (like glue 100 magnets on my trophies and stick them on the car for my theme)  Band adjustment should be part of my prerace maintenance. 

Last night I did find some info on the internet suggesting that downshifting in order to slowdown is pretty hard on the transmission. And if you think about it …while I might be saving the brakes, I am just transferring a lot of the heat and abuse to the transmission. Brakes and rotors are alot cheaper than trannys.  Well, I guess I will continue to learn the hard way like I always do. I guess Ill just leave it in “D”.

I hope to see the Oscar Mobile in NJ in June!

Hey hope to see you at NJMP. (hope to have the new car ready) I didn't read this before my post. and yes adjust the bands....1st you can get from the outside 2-3 you have to drop the pan.

"get up and get your grandma outta here"

Re: Automatic Trans Question - to shift or not to shift

See you in Jersey
Manny

Re: Automatic Trans Question - to shift or not to shift

Jimmy wrote:

Hey Manny.... I'm glad we avoided sheet metal drama on that turn as well. However, I assure you that any perceived heroics on my part was strictly cowardice-based self-preservation!

Thanks for the good advice and procedure on adjusting the bands. I should have done that after the first race. I did think about it, but I did something that I thought was more important. (like glue 100 magnets on my trophies and stick them on the car for my theme)  Band adjustment should be part of my prerace maintenance. 

Last night I did find some info on the internet suggesting that downshifting in order to slowdown is pretty hard on the transmission. And if you think about it …while I might be saving the brakes, I am just transferring a lot of the heat and abuse to the transmission. Brakes and rotors are alot cheaper than trannys.  Well, I guess I will continue to learn the hard way like I always do. I guess Ill just leave it in “D”.

I hope to see the Oscar Mobile in NJ in June!

Manny will be in NJ but Oscar will not be in attendance. Mechanical problems, thankfully not the engine/trans this time, will prevent Oscar from making an appearance. The turn around is too tight for us to get it resolved properly so no Javelin but the Saturn Wagon will be there.

1992 Saturn SL2 (retired) - Elmo's Revenge -  Class B winner, Heroic Fix winner x2
1969 Rover P6B 3500S(sold) - Super G-Rover - I.O.E Winner, Class C Winner
1996 Saturn SW2 - Elmo's Revenge (reborn!), Saturn SL1  Dazzleshipm Class C winner
1974 AMC Javelin - Oscar's Trash heap - IOE,”Organizer's Choice" and "I got Screwed" award winner

Re: Automatic Trans Question - to shift or not to shift

Any shift the transmission makes introduces more heat into the fluid, especially if there's a lot of overlap for smooth shifts from the factory settings. 

The Lokar 727 kickdown linkage is simple, about a 20 minute install, and at least 127% better than the stock sludge.  It's less than 100 bucks, but a very Lemony substitute could be easily rigged up just from looking at the instructions using substitute parts that could easily save you at least 2 or 3 bucks over just using the Lokar kit.  S/F....Ken M