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Old 07-11-2010, 02:33 AM   #1
Unsullied_Spy
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Default TR3650 3rd gear issues

I've read around on some other threads and this seems to be a common issue for the TR-3650 transmission. Under normal driving conditions I treat my transmission like it's made of glass--I granny shift on upshifts and always double-clutch for downshifts but when I've got the lead out I am far more aggressive and I've got the typical 2-3 shift problem where the transmission simply refuses to go into 3rd shifting quickly. Being an '02 with 100k on the clock there's no way Ford will fix it under their recall, what kind of $ am I looking at to have it rebuilt and will that be worth the money or should I just deal with it?

EDIT: Should also mention I've had it pop out of 1st a few times. I sit in Neutral with my foot off the clutch at red lights to save my throwout bearing but then put it into gear as it gets close to time to go and I've had it pop itself out of 1st 3 times in the last 2 days. I just filled it with new fluid not even 100 miles ago, I was recommended to use non-synthetic ATF and I've got a little over 3 quarts in it.
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Last edited by Unsullied_Spy; 07-11-2010 at 03:23 AM.
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Old 07-11-2010, 05:12 AM   #2
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sounds identical to my problems. you may want to check some of the threads ive started under my profile. first of all, to stop some of your problems, especially the popping out of 1st, i would suggest getting a short throw shifter. i am biased to MGW, as thats what i have, but i understand steeda and pro 5.0 work pretty well also. as far as tranny fluid, i would suggest mobil 1 atf, synthetic, as that is what tremec now suggests for our particular tranny (at 3.2 quarts). these steps should help your 2-3 shift problems significantly, but will not fix them...

if you want the rebuild kit, it will cost quite a bit to purchase and install. probably around $700 total, maybe more.
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Old 07-11-2010, 09:08 AM   #3
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A couple of comments;

There was no "recall" for this problem, it was a TSB (Technical Service Bulletin), TSB 04-15-6 to be specific. TSBs apply only if the owner complains of the problem (or supposedly if the dealer identifies the problem while performing other service), and while the car is still under the original factory warranty.

Also, and this may seem like a minor point but it really isn't, it is Ford's recommendation that 3.0L (3.2qt) be used, not Tremec's. Tremec was no doubt consulted when the problems that led to the TSB were discovered, however it's Ford's baby.

---------------------------------
As somewhat of an aside I would like to add that the very first thing one should do before buying any used car is lookup the TSBs (and recalls). Then examine them, and decide if you still wish to buy the car. I once did this with an '88 Corvette I was interested in, with 110k miles on it, and walked away.

I did it with my '03 GT and found the 2-3 shift issue TSB, but since the car had only 30k miles I took the chance.

The first thing to do after buying a used car is change ALL of the fluids. I don't care if the seller swears on a pile of Bibles stacked on his mother's grave that "It has just been serviced."--do it anyway.

"Just been serviced." means they changed the engine oil. A new car dealer probably used some name brand oil at least (you can bet it was not the top grade) and a new filter. A used car dealer will use the cheapest house brand crap they can find, and wipe off the filter can so it looks like new.

BTW--I used 3.2qts to refill my tranny, the day after I picked up the car...
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Old 07-11-2010, 01:15 PM   #4
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one of the ford dealerships by me uses the same weight motorcraft synthetic blend oil in all the vehicles they service.. i wouldn't trust that to be the correct weight, or most optimal, personally.
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Old 07-13-2010, 03:32 AM   #5
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I've got a Steeda Tri-Ax short throw (love it!). MGWs seem popular but mine came with the Steeda and I'm sure it's good enough. I bought a used car, stuff happens. I'm not hugely concerned with it as it drives perfectly under normal conditions and I only have the 2-3 problem when I'm really driving it hard. If I can get the service done for $700 I think it'd be worth it, if not I'll just slow down my shifts and maybe put in some good synthetic oil. I know the car was well cared for, I chose this car because I knew the previous owner took very good care of it and I have receipts for all of the service that was done to it, including transmission fluid changes.

For $700 I assume that I will have to pull the tranny myself? I was quoted $500 by a shop just to put the clutch in (after doing it in my garage I saw why).
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Old 07-13-2010, 07:32 AM   #6
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Mine does the same thing and it's a 04 ONLY when wanting to shift around 5500rpm at the track. Every other situation it is fine. It's only higher rpm track runs that I encounter this. I haven't gone enough to find the highest rpm that it will slide in nicely.

I have learned that I have to be more deliberate and not as quick with the 2-3 shift. My track runs are down to making sure I get the car into 3rd lol. reaction times and 60' are no concern for now lol
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Old 07-13-2010, 09:21 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Unsullied_Spy View Post
I've got a Steeda Tri-Ax short throw (love it!). MGWs seem popular but mine came with the Steeda and I'm sure it's good enough. I bought a used car, stuff happens. I'm not hugely concerned with it as it drives perfectly under normal conditions and I only have the 2-3 problem when I'm really driving it hard. If I can get the service done for $700 I think it'd be worth it, if not I'll just slow down my shifts and maybe put in some good synthetic oil. I know the car was well cared for, I chose this car because I knew the previous owner took very good care of it and I have receipts for all of the service that was done to it, including transmission fluid changes.

For $700 I assume that I will have to pull the tranny myself? I was quoted $500 by a shop just to put the clutch in (after doing it in my garage I saw why).
Have you changed the tranny juice? Did you refill it with 3.2 qts?

If the answer to either or both of these questions is no, then load it up with 3.2 qts of Mobil 1 ATF before more damage is done.
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Old 07-13-2010, 09:45 AM   #8
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Cliff, what could be other causes of it, I did a google search for "TR3650 problems" and specifically things dealing with the "3rd gear wall". Found on some other forum type sites people bringing up the stock clutch firewall adjuster possibly bending under high rpm shifts causing the clutch to not fully disengage.

I know for a fact when I'm shifting my foot is to the floor with the clutch and not coming back off the floor while trying to shift. Just thinking of possible problems OTHER than rebuilding the trans.
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Old 07-13-2010, 09:47 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smitty2919 View Post
Mine does the same thing and it's a 04 ONLY when wanting to shift around 5500rpm at the track. Every other situation it is fine. It's only higher rpm track runs that I encounter this. I haven't gone enough to find the highest rpm that it will slide in nicely.

I have learned that I have to be more deliberate and not as quick with the 2-3 shift. My track runs are down to making sure I get the car into 3rd lol. reaction times and 60' are no concern for now lol
The engine revs hanging, not dropping fast enough or even flaring, during the 2-3 shift can can cause problems at higher revs.

If you have a low-level tuning system look at the virtual dashpot settings. In particular the Dashpot Decay Rate, Dashpot Sensitivity Gain, and the Dashpot RPM vs lbs/min tables.

If you don't have a low-level tuner then the "IAC mod" (use search) has it's most profound effect at higher revs and can be effective...
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New ride (7/1/2013) 1998 Mercedes SL500-5.0L 32V VVT 326/347 HP/tq


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Old 07-13-2010, 09:50 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smitty2919 View Post
Cliff, what could be other causes of it, I did a google search for "TR3650 problems" and specifically things dealing with the "3rd gear wall". Found on some other forum type sites people bringing up the stock clutch firewall adjuster possibly bending under high rpm shifts causing the clutch to not fully disengage.

I know for a fact when I'm shifting my foot is to the floor with the clutch and not coming back off the floor while trying to shift. Just thinking of possible problems OTHER than rebuilding the trans.

How much of what fluid are you running in the tranny?
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SOLD! - 2003 GT, UPR X, FRPP 24lb/h, Magnaflow, PP 70mm TB & plenum,
Delta Force tuned, Steeda UDPs, Ralco flywheel,
RAM HDX clutch, 3.73s, 262 rwHP/305 lb-ft.

New ride (7/1/2013) 1998 Mercedes SL500-5.0L 32V VVT 326/347 HP/tq


Engineering is, at its base, making what you want from what you have.
At its extreme it is making what you want from what you can get.
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Old 07-13-2010, 09:50 AM
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3650, clutch, dashpot, dropping, gear, gt, mf, oil, problems, recommendation, sensitivity, tr3650, trans, treatment, tremec

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