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Fabrice's 429CJ 71 project

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Thanks, nothing amazing here, its just elbow oil ;)




Probably the last nice weather weekend of the year.

And I've wasted Saturday afternoon on my wife #$% rear bumper!!!




As expected it took ages, lots needed be removed before be able to access the bumper fittings, and of course, just like many european cars, they use the most cheapo quality you can find for the less accessible places. It took me ages to get all loose.

As all was already painted in past weekends, welded 2 moldings that were torn apart, reconstructed the damaged aluminium support and restored the plastics around the bumper ( bad idea as now the other ones scream for same treatment, expecting a request any day... ).

End of the day the car was worth tenfold what it was the day before!


Tho, to get there, on reassembly, I've committed a sin.... the car is now using concours correct 71 j-nuts and bolts!!

I just could not suffer the sight of the plastic crap and cheapo screws anymore!

I guess OMS is happy about that kuz i'll need a new set now :)





Sunday was for real toyz! And went back to this never ending fender. Last weekend I saw this little break into the side line, most visible next to the hood, so as I do not plan be annoyed looking at a wrong line for years, went back to it. As its all about tiny bits of volume along the edge, re bondoed and took my time to sand and shape it to the best I could. Even with water it was very hard to see.

Fine water sanded the entire fender with 600, as there were 2 other tiny details that I wasn't happy about and sprayed a new primer layer. thin everywhere but near the fix.

This time, the entire fender was alright, my eyes were finally pleased. The funny part, I wasn't able to get a sharp line on the pict, the depth of field wouldn't allow it. At least its not real this time :)





In between spray and sanding, I was also busy on the 73, one of the top quarter that i've welded ages ago, is in need of a massage. I'll be focussing more on the 73 as it only need few details to be done like this one and it can go to my painter. And the 71 can enter the garage for more serious work...





Meanwhile, the primer had cured and the FINAL water sanding could begin!





The last hour before sun went down went into 800 wet sanding. Its now beyond lady butt smooth and the least I can say is that i'm not only very pleased of my edge, I'm totally happy about the entire thing and most of all: I'm finally done on this fender. Yesssss!

Painting it should be a breeze compared to what needed be done before that. It looks like new now.


All with all, I'll be suffering muscle pain for a couple of days, but glad the dang Mini stuff is off my agenda! :)


To be continued...

73 modified Grande 351C. (Finally back on the road woohoo!) 

71 429CJ. ( In progress )

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Actually I do that all the time!. Some count sheep. Go figure!!




Weather was as bad as it can be this past weekend. Hard wind and rain of the kind that soaks you in matter of seconds... non stop for almost 3 days. Impossible to do what I wanted, and as I need first to finish some work before start new..


As cold days are coming, one of the next big step I plan to start soon, is to rebuild the C6. Of course to do so, I need a solid table to work on. There is one that will do fine next to my workbench, but of course its loaded with stuff on it, under it, in it. Ended up cleaning and moving stufs around for most of the weekend but got the table ready for surgery :)





To remove the trans, place the engine and trans back etc... As no renting place around here got 2 tons lifts and considering the arm needs be extended, I wasn't planning set back the 429 alone with an engine hoist pushed to its limits. Especially with the headers that needs be mounted at same time.

The red monster arrived on wood palette last Thursday. The heavy package of 70+ kg was kindly delivered at my garage door. Perfect service.


The space it takes isn't that bad but It will store it in pieces in the attic once I don't need it for a while or sell it. As renting one cost about 1/3 of a new one per day, its worth it and I won't stress myself if something would not go as expected and require extra time to be fixed.

Took a while to assemble it, as the doc was very vague and the provided bolts with different properties but similar in length not labeled or sorted for easy assembly. With a bit of common sense and few bad words, ended up with a working hoist.

I have the plate for the engine already on intake and some extra chains under way.





While rain was pouring, also changed my wise, the previous one, British made, was too small, and finally broke on me after more than 30 years of hard service. This new baby wasn't the one I wanted first, but was sold for this 150 mm width and its large open capacity for its relative compact size and the fact that it can rotate 360 on its base, making it ideal for my tiny space.





And because I want to do at least one thing on the 71 per weekend, I did one tiny thing, a fender bracket :)

Missing the other one, I'm gonna fab it at some point if I haven't got my hands on a new one by then.


Not the mustang weekend as I love them, but it had to be done and thanks to this ugly weather, its now done.

Let's hope next weekend will be better and that I can get the trans out with my new red monster toy and start its inspection so I can order what is necessary...

73 modified Grande 351C. (Finally back on the road woohoo!) 

71 429CJ. ( In progress )

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2 weeks of miserable weather.

but somehow the V8 gods were in good mood today and offered a cold but DRY day.


Ordered 1 meter strong chains and fasteners a week ago to remove my trans safely.

The fasteners arrived, not the chains :(

F___ it, weather is too good today to wait another week for the chains. I must have some climb rope, some hauling cable somewhere...


I'm removing the trans TODAY!





With one jack supporting the car, went under, added another jack to support the rear of the trans, freed the trans support,

and used my good old skateboard to support the trans with the front already on the hoist.

That sentence alone took me a while to be done.





Once the trans was free, all was easy, the hoist having zero problem to lift it, once high enough, rolled the hoist back, the skateboard followed the movement and was able to make a first stop to change the gravity center and lifted it out.

First step done: the transmission was out of the car.





Cleaned up the place, jacks etc and moved on to step 2: go thru garden. With the 73 in garage, no way to go in straight line on flat even floor.

No, it was offroad, with the wheels on wet earth.., so had to let it roll on wood. At this point, I wondered how I would get it onto the table later on, as both legs are too wide to enter the garage enough, and there are 2 steps in between too...


Oh well sorrows for later, this baby needed a bath right now! Not planning to work on it with at least 30 years of grease and deposits. May be 45. Who knows!?





Step 3: After a thinner cleaning, a washing soda shower followed by soapy wool, most of the crap and most oxidation was gone,

I've discovered what a C6 looks like. Gave it a good rince and dried it with air.





As the sun went down, it was time to do the last step: getting it into the garage and on the table. While the picts look logical, it went in 3 times.

Because the legs are too wide to enter, first needed to get to the floor and set back the gravity at the front, in order to have it the most possible inside. Once a bit lifted, my skateboard went back into action, and was able to get the trans on it. Rolled it inside, then removed the legs of the hoist, and reinstalled inside, then lifted it again with the gravity center moved to the middle. Pffff finally got it on the operation table! :D





Cleaned the hoist and the mess outside, took one last pict of the clean lady and called it a day.


In a big garage, aside the cleaning, this should take 1/2 hour max. Took me the afternoon... oh well, it's done!

The good news is that there will be no off road for the way back as the car should be inside by then.


Now time to study some C6 videos and read some doc... may be chill too :)

73 modified Grande 351C. (Finally back on the road woohoo!) 

71 429CJ. ( In progress )

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Well done and lucky you kept your skateboard!

Can understand with your C6 it would be difficult to move around

I have a C4 and can lift it myself when necessary

Hopefully you have the Badshoe productions videos, if not here's a link -


Certainly worth it being very informative

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Well done and lucky you kept your skateboard! Can understand with your C6 it would be difficult to move around

I have a C4 and can lift it myself when necessary. Hopefully you have the Badshoe productions videos

While I've skated quite a lot looong time ago, sold my beloved woodden doubleD's boards. A friend of mine brought me this one back from Canada, but never used it for other things that move things around... Very handy as it can take a big load and you can steer with one foot and balance at same time. And I can now say its perfect for C6 removal via engine bay! :)


I've been in contact with Ken for a while now. Got his videos in their nice 1990's video quality, but content is indeed great. I'll be watching them again (3x 1 hour vids for the C6) in coming days. I could order a few things already, but I want test/inspect all before so I do not end up pay twice shipping and import costs over that for 1 or 2 details I may need.


Little tip there Fabrice...By eating a few Dr. Oetker Pizzas you should be able to lift that C6 with your bare hands!  ;)

I've actually tried to lift it and as its weight distribution is not exactly handy for my posture, as I've invested into a jumbo sized hoist, I've found that letting physics work for me instead of my back a much better idea! I'll have a Dr Oetkers anyway :)



As @Vinnie texted me in late afternoon from Amsterdam, turns out it was a good call to remove the trans yesterday.

Nasty wet weather in south and over here temp dropped fast and we're expecting the first icy negative temps for the night... brrrr


I got the trans on surgery table, but realised I wasn't ready for it. Not wanting to have parts all over the place (and look for them when the time comes),

I want to buy some containers to separate parts by groups, to be cleaned/replaced etc... and have the good ones pristine bathing in trans oil while waiting on the new parts/rebuild kit.





Did not need to look long to find an alternative to occupy my aternoon. My next victim: the trans bracket/support. Showing its load of dirt and rust. As I have zero tolerance for this brown substance, I've degreased it, gave it a nice acid bath, prepped it and shooted few electrons at it. As its shape is complex, with many hard to plate corners , I had to move it in many different positions to have it all under a nice protective layer of zinc.

When I compare the before and after picts, I'm once more amazed at what a bit of vinegar and 3.5 volts can do!

Just like many parts I did during last year, it will receive paint as soon as I have more to paint and the weather dry/warm enough. Till then it will wait as is: rust free & bling bling.





As the trans stayed open and the pump shafts exposed to the dutch air for 20 years. Even if I don't open the trans today, its obvious I won't let it get back on the car like this.

So prepped and massaged the corroded part, the rest was still protected by ancient oil residues. And once restored, wooled it and applied the same punition to the entire part in a second pass. Clean and in ATF oil, I've reinserted it partially till I have proper containers to store "done" parts. Once I have the pump removed I'll handle the other one and the pump casing.





In between activities, I've also prepped and de-rusted the hardware which I'll plate next weekend. It was too cold and late to continue.

The insulating part of the bracket/support is now also looking brand new. The black on the part is rubber, the nice thing is that the phosphoric acid doesn't affect rubbers and same is true for zinc plating. End of the day it joined my already growing to be painted box.





All with all, it was another harworking weekend and I thought it was time for a treat! Got myself a nice Mach1 cap :)


To be continued...

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73 modified Grande 351C. (Finally back on the road woohoo!) 

71 429CJ. ( In progress )

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Dog weather whole week and today was not different

No prob as I need be inside most of the time...





Started late, but before open the trans, I wanted to finish to plate the support/bracket hardware.

Both are now done. waiting for a paint job and trans to support!





Then started the tedious work of removing, documenting, cleaning the trans guts...

Keep in mind the trans stayed 25 years with its pan removed, front pump removed, semi engaged and no converter,

just because the last #$%^ mechanic thought back then that it would be very handy to have the engine in parts and in mixed buckets, and the trans open with zero reason to do so.

He did not put anything back together, which in a way, makes me happy as the few things he actually did on the car made my eyes bleed!


But here I am now: what is already in normal conditions a nice puzzle, is now a cleaning challenge and will ask some serious over hours from my cleaning baths :D

The plan is to get this baby as new and if possible perfectly functional.


Note for the nature lovers: Know that spiders do not care at all to make webs in an oil filthy environment.



so basically, while de-rusting/plating the external hardware. Today's been about:


- Take picture before removal

- Each bolts and their patern photographed (and later edited) kus they do not share same length for same bolt heads.

- Light cleaning/degreasing/inspection

- Label / bag

- Say a few bad words for a bolt that resists till I get it loose.

- Make an after removal picture




Bit tedious but necessary to make sure nothing gets back the wrong way and be able to provide doc if I need help or need explain what I need (not knowing all the trans jargon yet)





repeat the above, repeat, repeat...


Eventually becoming cleaner as I went, I've been able to discover more of the inside and it was a big relief to see no corrosion damage on the inside.

The ancient deposits and oils did protect the metal well and even thin parts are in good state. Dirty as hell yes, but not altered at all.


So I guess, I'll know more tomorrow about how the trans health was the last time it ran, as I will remove the drums and clutches...

Having most out and inspected would be great as I could then order what I need next week.





Some hardware is taking a bath for the nite and already had collected enough "wannabe-bling-bling-again" to occupy my Sunday...

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73 modified Grande 351C. (Finally back on the road woohoo!) 

71 429CJ. ( In progress )

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Looks like you are making some good progress. Amazing what you can come up with to move things around when you need to. Love the skate board. May want to consider putting in a shift kit while you are rebuilding the trans. I put one in my C6 and has made a big performance difference.




"The only dumb question is the one not asked"

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A bit of drama "a la 2001 space odyssey", because its been an odyssey to get to this clean and empty C6 casing! :)


Before I got there it was more like...





Rings and bearings and rings inside rings and drums and more round things.. :)

Seems like it never ends. Amazing the amount of parts found inside an auto trans!


What is already a respectable puzzle, becomes even more fun when after 25 years being left dry and open, all the o-rings decided that they were fine where they were...





When the last piston finally accepted to let go under plenty air pressure, ended up with a really dirty but empty casing. The pict shown here is actually after a first cleaning round. Black deposits and rests of whatever everywhere.


The good news is that beneath the dirt that protected it, the trans was actually in perfect condition. Not a scratch was detected during the inspection of each part. Only found a tad of aluminium deposit on the side servo casing, caused by the spring on the outter side of the guide. And the modulator casing that was no longer straight.


Bad news is that it's not the original trans but a 72. My first clue was when I first saw the linkage that had been welded.

Then during dismantling, found out that the planets expected to have 4 rollers had 3. Few days later my good friend @secluff decoded my tag and confirmed it's a 72 Ford C6 used for 400 and 429 engines, probably with a column shift.

Likely replaced for economical reasons vs repair, as it was tough (and pricey) to find parts back in the late 70's of early 80's in France for such trans (and car in general). From what I saw it's probably never been revised and went from one car to this one as is.





Time to clean that dirty thing. Happy me, I have this industrial washing machine of type 2H10F (2 hands and 10 fingers)! And after using quite a bit of elbow oil with it, eventually got the metal to loose that black/brownish tint for a much nicer grey finish. Always nice to play with water when its cold... :)


After a good rinse and air drying, continued inside with thinner to removed a bit more. I need spend a few more moments on it for the smaller passages, but I'm almost there.





Meanwhile, in between rings and seals removals, corrected the best I could the ugly welds on the modified linkage and cooked and plated all the external pieces prepped last weekend.


With tons more to clean and detail, I should have another dirty Sunday!




Indeed, perfect time to install one! Its currently in the air together with the rebuild kit...

73 modified Grande 351C. (Finally back on the road woohoo!) 

71 429CJ. ( In progress )

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Excellent build thread. I'd be intimidated disassemling an auto trans, thankfully ours is manual and already built. I may tackle the power steering pump and would have to refer to your posts as they are very well detailed in information and pictures.


I haven't read every page, but most. So excuse me for asking but have you detailed your parts and hardware cleaning methods? As in a how to. I'm interested in the electolysis bath, I believe you use vinegar and 3.5 volts (DC I assume). Also the phosphoric acid bath for bolts and nuts.


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I'd be intimidated disassemling an auto trans,

That makes 2 of us! :)

The hard part is to actually decide to do it. Then somehow, your brain starts makes sense of all these thingies. Plus, you can cheat like I do: prep yourself well by watching loads of videos on the subject that basically make no sense until you open it anyway, and pick a place to buy your parts that offers an unbeatable service and even great tutorials videos: badshoeproductions.


[would have to refer to your posts as they are very well detailed in information and pictures]

It's not complex at all. there are only 3 things to know:

- you must have the pulley extractor tool. Don't even try if you do not have one.

- do not touch/open the spring loaded part inside. Unless someone poured sand in there, no way this thing would be damaged. Just clean it well.

- take notes (pict) of the orientation, as the design is poor and you could set it back up side down. I've detailed that part in my post.

oh and there's a 4th: don't forget, like me, that there is an extra secret glass of oil trapped in there! ;)


[i haven't read every page]

Wut? Why? You don't like my english???


[but most]

Oh its ok then :D


[have you detailed your parts and hardware cleaning methods? I'm interested in the electolysis bath, Also the phosphoric acid bath for bolts and nuts.]

Yes I did, that's one of the pages/posts that you've missed! :D


By electrolysis bath, you mean I presume the electrolyte that I use to plate aka acetate. If you mean that, yes, it is vinegar. not cleaning vinegar, not red vinegar; just plain white vinegar you can cook with. A tad of (epsom) salt to boost conductivity, but can be regular table salt. say a tea spoon per quart. (some salts could produce chlorine, but its in such tiny quantity and only for the first minutes, any table salt would do just fine)

That's it!

Then you need zinc (if you want to zinc of course). Here I would say, contact a metal company. You can then buy highly pure zinc in great quantity for pinuts compaired to what you'll find under "plating" on ebay or similar for much more expensive in small quantity or wrong shape. We're plating mustang parts, not coins here! :D


A few containers (kuz, somehow the one you use atm, doesn't fit the next part. Happends each and every time!!) and a cheap aquarium air pump to move the liquid around for you so you are able to do something else of your time than only look at bubbles.

You need more things like a good DC power unit, the lower the voltage & precision the better the results. Mine is a lab unit 0-12v, 2 amps max, was like 50 buxx. High amperage are fine to have too, but more suitable for very big parts or to do electrolysis (to clean up parts). I do indeed get best results at 3.5 volts for zinc. This of course is true only once your bath has reached a certain saturation. Before that it varries greatly depending of the parts that you try to plate.


I indeed use phosphoric acid to de-rust. I use same bath over and over. Tried all kinds of things, from citric acid to vinegar via expensive brands. This is my winner so far.


Feel free to contact me via pm, like some other members did to get started.






As I want this trans not only to be in perfect running condition, I want it also to be looking good. So today, finished all the external parts.

One of them was the servo cap and its hardware.

In same pitty state as the rest with that sticky black brownish deposit. Did not spend time on the other parts like the piston, as I have a new one coming. Its fine and would do the work, but found the supposed to be rubber a bit too hard (like most o-rings inside and on that servo cap too). So this one will land together with a few other things in a C6 spare parts box. In case of.

Then massaged the dull metal of the cap to an acceptable shine before plate it and few hours later, ended up with a clean and bling bling assembly.





So far only the big casing got my attention, so the next patient was the tail shaft housing. Same patina inside. so used my industrial cleaning machine once more and got it pristine.





A few drups of elbow oil later, the weekend ended with the sight of a clean ready to be painted housing. As I don't plan to spray over it all. I've looked at what needs be masked, and its at this point more easy to paint it now rather than later, as all the detailed hardware would be on. Most part getting back in, will be placed back clean with great care no matter if painted or not. Leaning on the front or back. No big risk for paint damage.

So now it's waiting for a not too cold and dry day before my parts arrive.


To be continued...

73 modified Grande 351C. (Finally back on the road woohoo!) 

71 429CJ. ( In progress )

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@Not A T5

thx man!



Another C6 afternoon...




The high gloss from yesterday was already gone and left place to the promised silky semigloss, hard to shoot inside, colour wise its not even close to what I see as its in contrast with the lights on my ceiling, but you get the idea for the highlights. It's also much smoother to the touch than the details this pict suggests, thanks to the magic combo of metallic and transparency...





No time to be blinded by sliky looks, the next patient was the front pump.

For 25+ years, this pump, 1/2 engaged, was the only protection on the front to prevent humidity to enter the main body. Just like the inner shaft that I've plated 2 weeks ago, the stator shaft was in need of the same treatment. Once open I could see all was fine, and the only corrosion I could find were the rust residues in oil of my brushing efforts before I've dismantle it. Just like the rest of the trans, aside being very dirty, not a scratch to be seen, bushings, gears, pump surface, stator plate, all looking very good (which was confirmed after a very good cleanup later on).


For now, the idea was to prep only the part of the shaft that was corroded, to match the shaft already done. Because I did not want to expose anything inside with the acidic solution, I've cleaned up and degrease the top lip very well, and applied a plastic tape to isolate. Once in the solution, the liquid pressure would also help keep it in place. I've injected oil on the other side in case of, but turned out it worked as expected and was unnecessary. So once more, made some bubbles and shoot 3.5 volts at it for 1/2 an hour.

Once whooled, PH balanced and rinsed, removed the protective patch and cleaned the stator as new.





Meanwhile, the casing cleaned up and corrosion free, received a new black semigloss jasket. Most would probably consider doing this is useless. You don't see it they'd say. Right.

But thing is, I do see it and the Netherlands ain't Nevada, I don't want to know some rust could (and would) show up again behind the soon to land new converter that will also receive a nice coat if I'd do nothing.

So as temp dropped big time during the night bellow what's is minimum for paint, spent some time helping the paint with heat gun in between layers to keep the cast iron warm enough.

Moments later I couldn't resist to make a blank assemblage to see both shafts restored with this new front cover. My eyes were happy with what they saw! :)





Not having an industrial washer as pro's have, rest of the day, went thru a bunch of parts in need of a good clean. All showing the same dried up deposit as everywhere in the trans.

Some tedious to clean, some easy. Basically high of thinner most of the time as it was too cold to keep the door open all the time :)


Even managed to put back a couple of parts back in the trans. Which means I'm 1/2 way done! Yeah!

Let's now hope my kit will be here by next weekend.


To be continued...

73 modified Grande 351C. (Finally back on the road woohoo!) 

71 429CJ. ( In progress )

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Dog weather again..

Who cares? !'ve received my trans goodies good for many hours inside!





Kept at customs longer than it usually takes, my rebuild kit, shift-kit and compressor finally arrived end of the week. While most looks like easy peasy, it's when you open the seals, o-rings, gaskets plastic that it actually look more like a puzzle than a rebuild kit.

Words like "this goes here" or "this is the xx" are totally alien concepts. Instead you get a bunch of very similar looking rings and seals and it's up to you to find where they all go.

Of course its always different, like the original tail shaft seal with a nice boot. No such thing with aftermarket kits. I'll go look at some steering boots this week to see if i can find something that can act as one. Not because I want original, simply because a boot make sense there.


Started by install a few knowing right away where they'd go like this stubborn linkage seal. Somehow the old one really liked its place and as tiny as it was, it took serious effort to remove it.


Once the most obvious are in place, its when you realise its not like in the movies, where the hero repair guy, has removed all the seals/o-rings days ago and reassembles with his eyes closed.

The hero knows his sh...t, I don't! :D

So I was glad to see that going plan B was a good move (cleaning to allow good inspection, but let the old stuff that needs be replaced in place).

All it takes now is to remove the old one, clean the groove, and find the one that is same. The catch is that some are looking the same but have tiny diffs in thicknesses or totally different because the model you have is obsolete and no longer reproduced, like the tail shaft seal (or sold alone expensive out of kits).





Next patient, was the tail shaft and the, according to many videos/docs, very important governor. Seen some video where it was dirty, not even much and when you see the damage that causes to the trans...  Took my time to get it apart totally and clean everything very well. The governor on itself with its 2 valves is pretty simple, but its once you start to test the valves play that it becomes obvious why all needs to be pristine and why tiny bits of dirt can totally stop them to move freely and cause damage/improper function of the trans.

In that regard, I find very strange for such a hydraulic system with lots of friction material that contaminates the fluid as part of normal operation to be so poor on filtering.


Placing back the last ring of the shaft, I got unlucky as it broke while not much force was applied to it to put it back.

That's when I realised I went for the extended kit and got new ones in it. My luck was back and my shaft ended up lubed and oiled with 3 new rings!  :)





Another thing that you will not read on trans rebuild, is that the Goo paste that I bought, while really being a must have for this job, it actually gets harder with low temperature. Today wasn't that cold, but this past week, we had some nights bellow freeze point. So needed to heat it up several times to get something on my brush. It will stay home from now on.


Next was the reverse piston to be set back in. And right away, the goo really shines for its properties.

Younger versions of the C6 have a plate with all the 24 springs (or 1/2 that for late 80's models) locked on it. The older models like mine, have all the 24 springs loose.

So unless you'd drill a hole in your work table to access the back, there is no way to hold them in place while you try to compress on the side. Using the paste (or some petroleum jelly), you can.

So dipped them one by one onto the piston that was pushed/taped in place with the wood part of a hammer, and placed the race (without forgetting there is a specific oil hole that needs to face the casing oil hole channel). Once torqued to specs in place, the spring plate, filedl with Goo can be set and the game is now to get the snap ring to lock behind the race. To do this, you need a compressor.

I was planning to make one, as its a basic easy one, but Ken at BadShoe is such a nice guy, ordered one of his own made one instead as a way to thank him for his great support.

Worked as a charm and will do just fine for the few times I'll be needing it.


Once you have said bad words a couple of times and all looks ok, comes the time to play the "search the diff" game as seen on the last two bottom picts.

By Injecting air, you can test the installation and see if the piston indeed goes up and down smoothly. It did.


Installed the second gear servo with a new piston, the restored linkage is now in place but garage started feel really cold.


I'll be back on this baby tomorrow...

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73 modified Grande 351C. (Finally back on the road woohoo!) 

71 429CJ. ( In progress )

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Dang....you got it handled there! Going to be using this thread when i tear into my C6. Rebuilt 23 yrs ago but never installed. Need to take it down again and go thru everything again. This is quite inspirational!

Wisdom, knowledge and intelligence are three very different things.

1971 convertible, H-code, Ram Air

1971 Mach I, M-code, Ram Air

1972 Mexican GT-351

1988 Bronco II

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Great attention to detail on your C6 plus it looks great

I rebuilt my C4 and like yourself used Badshoe videos along with a book or two

Thinking that using a "quality" performance rebuild kit from Performance Automatics would be without fault I was wrong as upon a recent tear down it was discovered that the intermediate band and some of the clutch plates were feathered. Probably due to old stock parts and/or moisture.

The other thing to look for is your valve body to make sure every valve/piston is polished clean with no marks

I had my trans reassembled the second time around by a knowledgeable shop and they cleaned up the valve body as it was shifting 2 to 3 too early

This didn't work well as I lost 2nd gear altogether so even the experts get it wrong sometimes. They decided to replace the valve body with new shift kit and new modulator and all is good now.

Probably some scoring inside the valve body which would be difficult to see let alone repair

Look forward to your next post

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I wanted to post more last week, but got no time to do that.

Here's why..




So last weekend ended up with a clean and install reverse clutch. Where some tedious cleaning work was done. The springs carrier that you see on top right, is made of a very thin plate to hold each and every little rollers acting as bearings..

Installed it back around the already set back race, new steals and frictions and installed back..


and then got my first problem: Once the shaft is in, you need to secure it on the inner drum with a little snap-ring. The only problem, getting the ring out is easy. but for the reverse, none of my 2 snaprings pliers, with thin rounded were able to apply pressure without bending the ring. Drove me mad to be stopped for such basic detail and decided call it a day.


Another detail my torque wrench being on the most lower settings, I doughted it was accurate enough, as plenty needs be torqued at low pressure. Ordered a smaller one, supporting both foot pounds and newton metrics. Which is saving me conversion calcs too.





So indeed today, armed with my 4 new snap rings pliers (cheapo ones with tiny variations that I also needed modify for that particular ring shape to prevent it would bend). Got the reverse clutch secured on the shaft in place! Shaft turns smoothly and tolerance is right in the middle.

Way more sensible at low pressure, the new wrench did fine. Tho, travelled many kilometers to find a shop having a 1/4 female and another bigger connector to match my english sized sockets. Somehow looks like you can't find loose sockets connectors that easy unless you'd buy an expensive set (that you already have) having that thingy.





Now with the right tool, all bolts restested/retorqued. I've showed last week the parking pal gear, so as I've always wondered how that goes at it works even if car doesn't run (no oil pressure). Here's the secret:

The selector lever has 2 inches for its end, a wider shape acting as a cam, that lifts a spring loaded rocker. This rocker pushes the finger/hammer into the gear (or not, but would engage if car would roll a few for or backward). The finger being spring loaded in opposite direction, the moment the lever retracts for any other selected gear, the cam goes down and the spring pushes the hammer/finger back to a safe position.

Now I know the parking pal secret :)



The biggest problem encountered last week was that not only this trans was having only 3 frictions on the forward clutch, they were overcoooked. Using the new steals and frictions, putting it back together as it was ment to be, it was giving me 1.25 mm play. Too loose and because this trans was likely behind a 400 and later on a 429. Looking at the plates, thin and burned blue, it was obvious the clutch had a hard life in the past.

Something needed be done... like adding an extra set of friction/steal.





So this week been about finding a way to do this and restore the propper gap (0.53 to 1.1 mm)

Easy enough one would say. Very true... once you know how to proceed!

That's when you are happy to have Ken, bad shoe production, answering questions and providing very usefull tricks to do this.


No matter how nicely detailed the emails were, you're still on your own!


One of the tricks is to use a flipped bottom beveled pressure plate, because these have much thinner sides that locks under the snap ring. Impossible to try when you have only one. Found and ordered one here in the netherlands in case of...


The top pressure plate holding the sandwich was 8.75mm thick. After 2 late evenings trying multiple combinations, the hard part was to determine the necessary thickness for 4 frictions. Not planning to race the car, where 5 is more desirable but not possible in my drums anyway. Not having the bevelled plate in house, I thought it could be a better idea to shave the pressure plate rather than use the flipped plate. Not exactly knowing what would the final gap be using that beveled ring.


So with swet on my forehead and anxious to have made a faulty measurement. Went to my local fav machining shop and let the plate be turned down. Meanwhile the beveled plate arrived home once I was back from the shop. So went try the beveled plate trick right away to find out it would be just in range of tolerance but near loose. As Ken told me this clutch last and holds much better when in low tolerance.

All my hopes were on the machining...





So today, resumed activities and of course the forward clutch was my first patient. removed and replaced metal click rings and o-rings while my frictions were taking a bath to be soaked for reinstall. Doing this, I saw that the trans was really about to fail. Not just the plates were cooked, but all the rubbers were hard as stone and the middle piston o-ring was about to break, probably because of the heat. It did when I removed it.


All pristine, with a mix of Goo and fresh oil, the moment supreme came in sight: will the modified plate fit allright and give me the gap???


YESSSSS. 0.55mm spot on!! Woohooo!

Look mom, I open a trans last week and already modified it !! :D





Totally releaved, finished the pump started last week. Installed the ring seal, front seal (surprinsily there was none installed previoulsy) gently taping it with wood and plastic hammer. Replaced the click rings, rechecked the already checked gears (notice the tiny shamfer, only on one side of the gears, this must face down into the pump casing). Then aligned the 3 holes of the stator to the casing and tightned them to 20N.m with my new wrench.

Pump: done!





Then came the direct clutch. In exact same state as the forward cluch (over cooked), now knowing how to proceed to define the ideal pressure (still crossing fingers tho :D ), defined that it must be lathed down to 5.2 mm to give me the ideal gap. I'll let it turned somewhere next week.

And then dismanteld it, under pressure and taking care that the hidden springs would not go take a walk on me.


More air full of thinner damps for me tomorrow... :)

73 modified Grande 351C. (Finally back on the road woohoo!) 

71 429CJ. ( In progress )

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Thx, tho, what I publish is more "HOW I DO IT's" vs claiming I know how to! :)




So today, while @Vinnie 200km away was doing fantastic metal shaping in his garage probably as cold as mine,

I went back to thinner air. Literraly!





The direct clutch open yesterday was on the menu. One of the surprisingly few damages caused to the trans that stayed 25+ years open exposed to the reknown dry air of the Netherlands, was to be seen on the outter direct drum. Few spots of corrosions. Nothing alarming, but as the tension band, is in direct contact with it, separated with a tiny film of oil. The picky old monkey that I am, would not let that potentially become a source of abrasion. So after a good cleaning, gave some polishing love to the surface and as the idea is to not be abrasive, removed and cleaned the polishing paste till I'd get no contamination on a clean cotton rag.

Few elbow oil drops later, got all my parts pristine and shiny where they needed to be.





Time to put it back together. Same as for the other clutches, as you really don't want to ruin the friction plates on the first rotations dry. Letted them soak all the oil they wanted till I would need them. Then once all was cleaned up, the piston and its free floating vent ball, needed get back in first. Now that the O-rings were new, it wasn't that easy, so Mr Wood helped to tap it gently into its deepest location.

Then applied the Goo trick, that was so handy for the reverse clutch, dipped each spring and placed them back in the expected patern. With the cover also filled with goo, it was then easy to set the compressor in place without any problems. Note here that if you do so, its a good idea to already have the snap-ring around the compressor axle, because it also shows you right away how to dispatch space onto the cover to allow the snap ring to fit. Once compressed and the ring groove exposed, the snap ring goes in it without any efforts.

Reassembled alternating steals and my desired 4 frictions plates.


I'll let the pressure plate machined this week and if the expected gap is as I plan it to be, next weekend, I should then mark the direct clutch done.





Next were the rear planets, where aside checking very well to detect any sidewards play into the gears bearings, it was all about cleaning. Same for the sun gear assembly where lots of time goes into removing all the ancient deposits from each and every tooth. There are quite a few teeth and of course that's where all the ancient deposits are! :D

Once all was degreased with love, it was time to make it greasy again! :)


At this point the entire transmission guts are now ready to go back in (once I'll have the pressure plate machined)





(sad music with violins playing while camera pans over the poor super dirty valve body )





After a good but superficial cleaning prepped the "work station" for next weekend where all will be about giving a second life to the valve body, and implement this SK6 reprogramming kit, aka shift kit.


I plan to study more on this during the week before do anything, as there are few instructions already in conflict with some videos that I've seen on the subject using this kit on this manual. I also can't get why they can't provide the few pages of this manual with specific targets (diesel, trucks, (race/towing) cars) vs pushing if and else and or's all over the place to save 1 or 2 piece of paper... Also got 2 gaskets with tiny diffs, but none marked as "Hi, I'm the one you need"...


There are also terms I can't make cheese of. Like to pick the springs combo for shiftings: "shorter and smooth, shorter and firm, firm but not for hotrods...".

No real data about what is really happening. How the old French monkey me is supposed to pick the right combo??? :D


Anyway, started be really cold and totally high from thinner air, called it a day.


To be continued...

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73 modified Grande 351C. (Finally back on the road woohoo!) 

71 429CJ. ( In progress )

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