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Thread: t5 problem

  1. #1
    FEP Power Member 86darkside's Avatar
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    Default t5 problem

    my sons 86 mustang pop the clutch cable and we just finished installing a non adjustable one from autozone we have a firewall adjuster and a bbk quadrant car starts and grabs gears but wont move i tried to see starting it in gear but it didnt jump or move foward we have tried adjusting it several times but wont move all gears are grabbing fine ..??? any ideas

  2. #2
    FEP Member Mgino757's Avatar
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    What do you mean by "gears are grabbing fine"? Does the clutch engage or not?
    1985 Mustang GT conv. modified 4180C, Weiand Street Warrior intake, equal length headers, true dual exhaust, 3.55:1 8.8'' rear end, 2003 V6 T5, Ford Racing 10.5" clutch.

    1998 Mustang GT auto. PI swapped. Daily beater

  3. #3
    FEP Supporter Broncojunkie's Avatar
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    Did you remove the plastic bushing from the new cable? I'm talking about the bushing that would be inserted into the hole in the firewall, if you didn't use a firewall adjuster.
    79 Pace Car - 331, t5
    79 Cobra - working on 351w, t5
    86 coupe - rotbox roller
    86 coupe - working on 408w, c4
    88gt - 302 efi, t5

  4. #4
    FEP Power Member 86darkside's Avatar
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    i wouldnt be able to use my firewall adjuster if it was there��

  5. #5
    FEP Power Member 86darkside's Avatar
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    no its not grabbing hence the car is not moving.... im thinking cable is way short

  6. #6

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    There's been a lot of discussion over the years concerning clutch cables. The consensus has been that the only cables that work well are the OEM or Maximum Motorsports cables. However, with correct adjustment most cables seem to at least work, if not well. I would think, going solely on your written description of the problem, that the cable adjustments need to be looked at further, after you've had a day or 2 away from it of course.


    Good luck getting your car going again.

  7. #7

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    I agree with the above. Sounds like the cable is way too short.

    Honestly, I never had an issue with the stock clutch quadrant or parts store cables. If one broke I could see upgrading, but if it works...
    2 1986 cougars (both 4 eyed and 5.0)
    1 1987 cougar

  8. #8
    FEP Senior Member Tigger's Avatar
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    I assume if you put the car in gear with the engine and ebrake off the car will roll?
    67 Mustang Coupe
    96 Tangerine GT
    86 Saleen #179

  9. #9
    FEP Power Member 86darkside's Avatar
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    nope i can rev it in gear clutch pedal out and the sucker wont move a inch

  10. #10
    FEP Super Member mmb617's Avatar
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    From what I can understand the clutch is disengaged even with the clutch pedal the whole way out (at the top of it's travel). If the only thing you changed was the cable then that would seem to indicate a way too short cable. What I don't quite get is how if the cable is that short can you even depress the clutch pedal at all. You would think the cable would be too tight to allow the clutch pedal to be depressed. You are able to depress the clutch pedal, right?

    There must be something I'm not understanding here.
    408/T5/3.73's

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  11. #11
    FEP Supporter Broncojunkie's Avatar
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    Simple way to tell if the cable is too short. Unhook it at the clutch fork. Note how much further back the fork sits with cable off. Bump the starter with it in gear. If it tries to move, that's most likely the problem.
    79 Pace Car - 331, t5
    79 Cobra - working on 351w, t5
    86 coupe - rotbox roller
    86 coupe - working on 408w, c4
    88gt - 302 efi, t5

  12. #12
    FEP Power Member 86darkside's Avatar
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    well the cable broke half way crossing the goerge washinton bridge i had to -drive it in 4th all the way home slowly just enough thati didnt have to stop untill i got home luckly there was very little traffic so i know it was running without the cable cuase i had to start it in first just to get it in the garage

  13. #13

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    i've run the autozone cables with no issues. They won't break if you're routed right. Be sure it routes to left of the motor mount, on top of the steering rack and straight back to the fork. Also, look under the dash and be sure that the cable isn't rubbing on the firewall
    Jeremy
    -86 mustang SSP X CHP Unit # 3788-bone stock & staying that way
    -66 Mustang, bench seat car,8.8,t5 fuel injected 92 engine
    -72 Maverick 5.0 resto in process
    -12SS Camaro 6 speed. 600 FWHP, Kraftwerks Supercharger
    -03 z71 Avalanche 9" lift on 35s Daily Driven 20k a year. 290k miles at 11.8 mpg
    Entire 1986 electrical and vacuum troubleshooting manual download
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  14. #14
    FEP Power Member 86darkside's Avatar
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    thats how i have it routed by any chance do you have a stock or aftermarket quadrant and a firewall adjuster..?

  15. #15
    Moderator wraithracing's Avatar
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    As others have mentioned, it sounds like either an install issue with the new parts or possibly the new parts don't match up well. Here is a link to the Maximum Motorsports firewall adjuster install. There are a few details in the instructions that will make a huge difference in how everything works. Might be worth reading if you haven't already. https://www.maximummotorsports.com/a...h/MMCL-3r2.pdf

    I personally have not had good luck over the years with the aftermarket clutch cables, so I only use the Maximum Motorsports cable, especially since I always run their quadrant and firewall adjuster. Not a cheap option, but better than breaking on a bridge I guess. https://www.maximummotorsports.com/M...2-04-P897.aspx Good Luck!
    ​Trey

    "I Don't build it hoping for your approval! I built it because it meets mine!"

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    1986 GT Wrecked by PO, but still want to save!

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  16. #16

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    +1 on Maximum Motorsports cable. Those and actual Ford cables are the only ones I'll ever buy.


    It initially sounds to me like the new cable likely has too much tension. Take some tension off at the firewall adjuster or under the car and see.


    Might be worth a deeper discussion about the clutch overall.


    Honestly, I've also had a clutch disc give up the ghost before. The center of the disc breaks out and you can try whatever you want -- the car won't move.

    How to test for a broken clutch disc:

    Mark where your fan belt is positioned right now. Take the clutch cable off entirely. Put the car in a gear like 2nd or 3rd. Try to push the car with the e-brake released and nobody holding the brakes while it is not running.

    If you move the car, does the position of the fan belt change vs where it was before. If it doesn't then you may very-well have a faulty clutch disc where the middle has let go.

    The other thing that can happen is the release fork can bind up on the bearing retainer. With a bound up throwout bearing on the bearing retainer the clutch will stick in the released state. You might be able to work with it through the inspection cover and get it to come free, but its usually because the factory Aluminum bearing retainer is gouged up by the steel throwout bearing so forcing it free is often at best a temporary fix. You might have luck with some liquid wrench or WD to help free it up and get the perished grease out of the way. White lithium spray might hold up for a little while if you are nice to it.

    Your long-term if either bad bearing retainer or burned up grease is the situation ...... pull it apart. CORRECTLY install a new steel one piece bearing retainer like the one from Astro making sure to shim it properly. Get a new throwout bearing.

    Good time to install a new clutch, pressureplate, and flywheel. A lot of guys like the lighter 10.5" 22 lb flywheel AutoZone carries for 86+ cars paired with a nice clutch kit from Valeo or Zoom, etc.

    Take a good hard look at the throwout bearing that comes in most of those kits. Most are JUNK -- do exactly what the name says and throw it out. I only run throwout bearings from National or Timken or similar well known highly reputable suppliers. The rest of these parts aren't worth the gamble of needing to tear it back down.

    I've reused bearings from reputable suppliers before and have had luck with them holding up. I've never had a crappy throwout bearing from a 3rd class supplier hold up for the entire life of a clutch.

    when you re-assemble don't go crazy on lube on the throwout bearing. Many come with some inside and that's all that is needed.

    Some don't. I've had good luck with high temp wheel bearing grease in the past. I've had better luck with high temp wheel bearing grease for boat trailers equipped with bearing buddies and trailer brakes.

    Normal gun grease is about the worst thing you can do.... I've had throwout bearing stick like glue in the crap before.

  17. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by erratic50 View Post
    +1 on Maximum Motorsports cable. Those and actual Ford cables are the only ones I'll ever buy.


    It initially sounds to me like the new cable likely has too much tension. Take some tension off at the firewall adjuster or under the car and see.


    Might be worth a deeper discussion about the clutch overall.


    Honestly, I've also had a clutch disc give up the ghost before. The center of the disc breaks out and you can try whatever you want -- the car won't move.

    How to test for a broken clutch disc:

    Mark where your fan belt is positioned right now. Take the clutch cable off entirely. Put the car in a gear like 2nd or 3rd. Try to push the car with the e-brake released and nobody holding the brakes while it is not running.

    If you move the car, does the position of the fan belt change vs where it was before. If it doesn't then you may very-well have a faulty clutch disc where the middle has let go.

    The other thing that can happen is the release fork can bind up on the bearing retainer. With a bound up throwout bearing on the bearing retainer the clutch will stick in the released state. You might be able to work with it through the inspection cover and get it to come free, but its usually because the factory Aluminum bearing retainer is gouged up by the steel throwout bearing so forcing it free is often at best a temporary fix. You might have luck with some liquid wrench or WD to help free it up and get the perished grease out of the way. White lithium spray might hold up for a little while if you are nice to it.

    Your long-term if either bad bearing retainer or burned up grease is the situation ...... pull it apart. CORRECTLY install a new steel one piece bearing retainer like the one from Astro making sure to shim it properly. Get a new throwout bearing.

    Good time to install a new clutch, pressureplate, and flywheel. A lot of guys like the lighter 10.5" 22 lb flywheel AutoZone carries for 86+ cars paired with a nice clutch kit from Valeo or Zoom, etc.

    Take a good hard look at the throwout bearing that comes in most of those kits. Most are JUNK -- do exactly what the name says and throw it out. I only run throwout bearings from National or Timken or similar well known highly reputable suppliers. The rest of these parts aren't worth the gamble of needing to tear it back down.

    I've reused bearings from reputable suppliers before and have had luck with them holding up. I've never had a crappy throwout bearing from a 3rd class supplier hold up for the entire life of a clutch.

    when you re-assemble don't go crazy on lube on the throwout bearing. Many come with some inside and that's all that is needed.

    Some don't. I've had good luck with high temp wheel bearing grease in the past. I've had better luck with high temp wheel bearing grease for boat trailers equipped with bearing buddies and trailer brakes.

    Normal gun grease is about the worst thing you can do.... I've had throwout bearing stick like glue in the crap before.

    Actually don't lube the t/o bearing at all. They're prelubed. A touch of white lithium on the retainer is ok. Lube/grease will just sling onto the clutch and ruin it
    Jeremy
    -86 mustang SSP X CHP Unit # 3788-bone stock & staying that way
    -66 Mustang, bench seat car,8.8,t5 fuel injected 92 engine
    -72 Maverick 5.0 resto in process
    -12SS Camaro 6 speed. 600 FWHP, Kraftwerks Supercharger
    -03 z71 Avalanche 9" lift on 35s Daily Driven 20k a year. 290k miles at 11.8 mpg
    Entire 1986 electrical and vacuum troubleshooting manual download
    http://slantnosefox.com/picturehosti...g%20manual.zip

  18. #18
    FEP Power Member 86darkside's Avatar
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    update : got a new adjustable cable but before installing it we found out this .... with the car in any gear it can be moved by hand foward or reverse by hand(the car) freely so something inside the transmission let go any ideas??

  19. #19
    FEP Super Member mmb617's Avatar
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    I'm betting it's not the transmission it's the clutch. Something is jammed up holding the clutch in the released position. I've thought that was the problem all along.

    At any rate you need to drop the transmission. The problem should be apparent then.
    408/T5/3.73's

    We're not fast racers, we're more what's known as half fast racers.

  20. #20
    FEP Senior Member Tigger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 86darkside View Post
    update : got a new adjustable cable but before installing it we found out this .... with the car in any gear it can be moved by hand foward or reverse by hand(the car) freely so something inside the transmission let go any ideas??
    Was the previous clutch cable disconnected? If not, I would disconnect it from one end and try moving it by hand(the car) and see if it still rolls freely. if it still rolls then I would say something is wrong with your pressure plate. If it does not roll then it was the old cable or how it was installed.
    67 Mustang Coupe
    96 Tangerine GT
    86 Saleen #179

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