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Old 05-03-2015, 02:25 PM   #1
Recycled Saturn
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Default Hard to get into gear while engine running

Car is a 1998 SL2. Clutch replaced ~30000 miles ago. I replaced the clutch hydraulic system today thinking that was my problem but that made no change.

Last Thursday my car started becoming hard to get into gear, and now it takes a large amount of force to get it into gear regardless of whether I am moving or stopped. If I am at idle and it wont shift, I can simply turn the engine off and it will go into gear no problem. It is also hard to get out of gear occasionally. Shift cables and bushing look good, tranny fluid is full. No visible leaks of anything

What do the experts think? What is causing this?

...
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Old 05-03-2015, 02:42 PM   #2
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1998 SC2
Default Re: Hard to get into gear while engine running

THE CLUTCH. Run this stroke test to verify teh hydraulics are working properly.
Clutch Wire Test
http://www.saturnfans.com/forums/sho...ight=wire+test
How it works
http://www.saturnfans.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=183128

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Old 05-03-2015, 02:46 PM   #3
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Default Re: Hard to get into gear while engine running

Another note. If I rev the engine to ~2500 it shifts into gear easily

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Old 05-03-2015, 02:52 PM   #4
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1998 SC2
Default Re: Hard to get into gear while engine running

Sounds like the clutch is not releasing, run wire test.

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Old 05-03-2015, 02:54 PM   #5
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Default Re: Hard to get into gear while engine running

Quote:
Originally Posted by OldNuc View Post
THE CLUTCH. Run this stroke test to verify teh hydraulics are working properly.
Clutch Wire Test
http://www.saturnfans.com/forums/sho...ight=wire+test
How it works
http://www.saturnfans.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=183128
The clutch would fail that rapidly? We are talking in 4 days it went from shifting smoothly to taking a lot of force. Clutch passed the test where you slowly let it out and see if it dies or not and clutch disengages close to the floor

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Old 05-03-2015, 03:02 PM   #6
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Default Re: Hard to get into gear while engine running

Quote:
Originally Posted by OldNuc View Post
Sounds like the clutch is not releasing, run wire test.

Will do!

...
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Old 05-03-2015, 07:03 PM   #7
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Default Re: Hard to get into gear while engine running

I get about .5" with the engine off. Do I need to test it with the engine running?

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Old 05-03-2015, 07:31 PM   #8
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1998 SC2
Default Re: Hard to get into gear while engine running

Is that .5 and a bit more or a bit less. The 0.5 is more than adequate to disengage the clutch.

As was suggested in another thread check the crank end float. Do this with the engine off. You push in and pull out on the crank pulley, it should not be sliding back and forth. It has to be real worn to keep the clutch from releasing so the push-pull test will be fine.

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Old 05-03-2015, 08:02 PM   #9
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Default Re: Hard to get into gear while engine running

Quote:
Originally Posted by OldNuc View Post
Is that .5 and a bit more or a bit less. The 0.5 is more than adequate to disengage the clutch.

As was suggested in another thread check the crank end float. Do this with the engine off. You push in and pull out on the crank pulley, it should not be sliding back and forth. It has to be real worn to keep the clutch from releasing so the push-pull test will be fine.
Slightly more than 0.5". I will try that crank test, otherwise it looks like this weekend I will pull the motor and tranny. This will be the 7th time we've done an engine removal, I should be able to do it in my sleep soon

...
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Old 05-03-2015, 08:13 PM   #10
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Default Re: Hard to get into gear while engine running

The crank pulley checks out just fine. I'm looking at ordering the luk clutch and pressure plate. Do you recommend I change the flywheel? If so what brand?

...
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Old 05-03-2015, 09:01 PM   #11
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1998 SC2
Default Re: Hard to get into gear while engine running

There are several options but all of them are OK. This is what I installed and it has held up well, http://www.ebay.com/itm/FX-STAGE-2-C...item5d4adb1e9b Usually sells for 175-180 on best offer. The thing to look for when you open it up is a dull red colored gook inside the bell housing. Black is OK but red is a leaking input shaft seal assembly and that leak will ruin the clutch. A genuine 04-115 LUK and flywheel will cost about the same so it is just a matter if you want a stronger clutch.

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Old 05-09-2015, 06:14 PM   #12
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Default Re: Hard to get into gear while engine running

Everything back together now clutch pedal won't push. It is stuck in the up position. Thoughts?

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Old 05-09-2015, 09:46 PM   #13
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1998 SC2
Default Re: Hard to get into gear while engine running

Best guess you missed the divot in the arm and the slave is fully extended, do not stomp on it as it will just produce more parts to pick out of the bell housing.

Remove slave cylinder and investigate.

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Old 05-09-2015, 11:42 PM   #14
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Default Re: Hard to get into gear while engine running

Quote:
Originally Posted by OldNuc View Post
Best guess you missed the divot in the arm and the slave is fully extended, do not stomp on it as it will just produce more parts to pick out of the bell housing.

Remove slave cylinder and investigate.
I think you were right. I went to pull out the slave rod hooked on something and fell into the transmission. We pulled it back out and could not find anything wrong. It shifts fine now 95% of the time, the other 5% it seems slightly hard but it my be me accidentally not pushing the clutch in far enough. This new clutch basically engages barely above the floor

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Old 05-10-2015, 12:18 AM   #15
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1998 SC2
Default Re: Hard to get into gear while engine running

Low pedal is normal until broken in, which may take some time.

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Old 05-13-2015, 09:50 AM   #16
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Default Re: Hard to get into gear while engine running

Just so everyone knows what the problem was:
The clutch was fine but the teeth on the end of the pressure plate were extremely worn and worn unevenly

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Old 05-13-2015, 11:41 AM   #17
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1998 SC2
Default Re: Hard to get into gear while engine running

You can not recycle pressure plates either.

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Old 06-19-2015, 06:40 AM   #18
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2001 SC1
Default Re: Hard to get into gear while engine running

I'm having this same issue that started today. I'll be running these tests I suppose. It's annoying because I installed a brand new LUK clutch only 1000 miles ago...

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Old 06-19-2015, 07:48 AM   #19
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1998 SC2
Default Re: Hard to get into gear while engine running

Check the fluid level in the clutch master cylinder.

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Old 06-20-2015, 03:52 PM   #20
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Default Re: Hard to get into gear while engine running

Quote:
Originally Posted by OldNuc View Post
Check the fluid level in the clutch master cylinder.
I check my fluid, it's full. I tried pumping the clutch a few times then shift, no change. I tried holding the clutch in while in 1st gear, car creeps forward immediately. I did the wire test, I have 0.5" of movement, so all 3 tests show my problem is not the hydraulics.

I noticed yesterday that for a few miles of driving, everything shifted normally, then it started acting up again.

This is a new LUK clutch I installed 1000 miles ago. I don't hear about these going bad that soon. I've installed a few clutches in my time with s-series. I used an alignment tool and torqued the pressure plate to flywheel at 19ft lbs with a bit of red loctite on the ends. TO bearing, fork, and retainer are always easy to install. Can't really put that in backwards. Any ideas?

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