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Post Info TOPIC: Considering Tremec 600, M20 oil leak


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Considering Tremec 600, M20 oil leak
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Back in the day, I don't recall it bothered me to run around with 4.10 gears on 26" tall tires.  Maybe I just did not know better, lol.  These days with a little less RPM running 3.73 gears and 28" tall tires I find myself reaching for another gear as I pull onto the freeway.  Another driving factor is my M20 still seems to be leaking gear oil out of the input shaft, even after a rebuild and discovering the oil slinger was missing.  I am truly perplexed about that.  In the next month I will be pulling the trans again and probably taking to someone with more expertise than me to try to figure out what is causing it.  Alternatively I could spring for the Tremec, that would solve the oil problem and make the car more "cruise" friendly.  And likely, due to better gear ratios it would probably be a bit quicker.  That would make it less true to "the way they were," but from outward appearances, who would know?  I could keep a 4 speed shifter ball or put a T-handle on it and it would look the same.   On the other hand, in the two years I have owned the car I have barely put 3000 miles on it, so at that rate, would I really get much of a return on a fairly significant investment?  It appears I will have to spend some money one way or another, the oil problem must be solved before my clutch is ruined, if it isn't already.

So I am just rambling at this point, would be interested to hear other's thoughts.  If we were sitting around having a couple beers in the shop I am sure we could come up with a good solution. Let's pretend!  First round is on me.

Pat



-- Edited by Pat Dilling on Wednesday 19th of April 2017 05:25:22 PM

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I am glad we had the opportunity to shake hands!!! I have researched manual transmissions a lot!!! And a lot to me is A LOT to most people I have spread sheet calculating rpm, tire size, rear gear ratio, each trans gear ratio, rpm drop between gears, rpm at 50, 60, 70, 100 MPH, max speed of the car at 6000 rpm, I love mechanical data/analysis (I am an Indusrial Maintenance/Facilities/Tool and Die Manager) My information is theoretical until spring 2018 when my post car hits the road. I have had three Muncies built and ready (are you starting to understand my manual transmission obsession? All three of my trans are 10 spline input, 27 spline output so I can swap as I wish The transmission I am confident will be the most fun on the street is my M22Z (3) it is build heavy duty with very good components. This Trans has a 2.98 first gear and is designed for 3.08, or 3.31 rear gears. (I have 3.42) I can share all the details if you wish? Ryan

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quite possibly leaking from the cluster gear countershaft Pat

i think? the Tremac would require floor surgery....

i find the same thing driving my 3.73 Belair, looking to grab the next gear when i'm in 4th. i think cause my daily driver Sierra is overdriven, you get so used to that.

 



-- Edited by 2drpost on Wednesday 19th of April 2017 06:09:46 PM

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dave

'69 belair 2dr 454 M20



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Pat,

In My Opinion, 3.55 and 3.73 are the best street gears.....you only putting less than 3000 miles on her.....I would easily live with your current set up....fix the leaks and enjoy her

Dan

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I will have a crazy set of drag gears someday but so far my Chevelle had 3.31's and my Cutlass has 3.42's are you racing it or only street miles? If street a set of gears would be a reasonable change. 3.31's would be my vote. (Theoretical opinion) Ryan

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Pat IMO.
With the limited mileage you put on the car , I would just fix your 4 speed and I definitely agree with Dan on the gear choices. Especially because you are not drag racing the car and trying to extract every ounce of performance out of it.Once the trans is fixed and your still not happy with the rpm of the 3.73 switch to the 3.55. It's a big block make that torque work for you! I think it would be more economical in the long run doing that vs the trans swap.

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Fix it and save a sh--load of money that will buy a lot of gas!

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Pat, just my 2 cents,but i loved my tremec on the highway.Overdrive was awesome. There was some tunnel work that had to be done on my chevelle to get a "decent" pinion angle, but it was the very top of the tunnel that needed room. I say go for it. Nothing wrong with a modern overdrive in a 49 year old car! Much more enjoyable on the road. After reading your post of 3000 miles since you got your biscayne,I had to go look and see how many miles I put on my belair since I finished it,"2 years ago" ..... 680 miles.I need to drive it more lol." Hey grab me another beer would ya?"



-- Edited by 68bel on Wednesday 19th of April 2017 11:44:07 PM

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Thanks for hanging around my virtual shop and sharing a beer or two. The comments and suggestions are a big help in my decision process and give me things to think about.

I really want to stay with my 3.73 gears, they are a good compromise for the street. My tall tires do help. (That is also what the axle tube stampings say were original to my 12 bolt. If I was going racing seriously 4.56 or even 4.88 might be the ticket).

I do not believe the counter shaft is the source of my leak as that is behind/outside the belhousing and oil from there would not get inside.

I am not quite the manual transmission nerd that Ryan appears to be, but I do have a perma-grin on my face when I am rowing through the gears. Even if it is just around the block!

Tommy it is clear that you need to get your Bel Air out more! The world wants to see it!

Pat



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FWIW...here is my .02.

Years ago I installed a couple of Tremec TKO 500's, one in my '70 SS Nova (original M21 & 3.31's) and the second in my 68 Z28 (original M21 & 3.73's). Back in the day, the Nova was my 'highway car' and with the .68 o/drive I was left with a final drive of 2.25:1. Obviously, it had long legs and would cruise along @ 70mph at around 1750 rpm. Passing often required a down shift with at least 1 gear and at times 2. The low first gear ratio was perfect for city stop/start driving.

I loved the way the Tremec shifted and along with reduced noise/wear and tear & increased gas mileage it all made sense. I liked it so much I did the exact swap a year later into my 68 Z28. This was a little different because of the number matching aspect of my Camaro and I had just re-freshed both the 302 and the M21 and elected to put them away indefinitely in storage, where they remain to this day. With the 3.73's in the Camaro the rpm decreased from 3K @ 60 mph to 2100.

The transmissions were easy to install and the tunnel(s) only required minimal modification, as did the cross members. New drive shafts were needed and I modified the Muncie shifter handles to fit the Tremec 'stubs'. As a matter of interest, my 'significant other' likes to drive my cars and to make them 'user friendly' I also installed Center Force clutch components. The light pedal feel for her was important...and I guess for me too in the long run.

I have since sold the Nova along with it's M21. Reinstalling the M21 transmission was an easy days job, having kept the original driveshaft, shifter etc. I recently sold that Tremec & a BBC to a friend building a 66 Nova Pro Touring car.

Having done the Tremec swaps and knowing what I do now, the question is would I do it again? Definitely, especially if driving the car long distances and to save wear and tear on numbers matching components. I hope this helps....

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My advice is to wait until the driving season is over (but areen't you in CA? if so then till winter :)) and then pull the trans, unless of course you are spewing oil at too fast a rate, then of course you need to address it right now.
Other considerations that I'm not familar with, is things like does the driveshaft/or yoke need to change, speedometer cable/routing, mount, crossmember, hydraulic clutch conversion? That stuff needs consideration too in addition to the tunnel.

Other then that I'll keep staring at the Beautiful 68 Chevy here in the garage...guzzle....burp.....Pat, I'm gonna grab another beer, need one?

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1964 Buick Special Deluxe SOLD

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Very good insights, Zapper. Anyone up for a Black and Tan? (Guinness slowly poured using a spoon into your favourite lager). They are delicious.

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Brad Clarke

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Thanks Clarkie.

I've been Guinnless for a while now...a trip to the beer store is now on my 'to do' list. I have been told that Guinness has medicinal qualities....just saying...

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It used to be doctor-prescribed! True story.

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Brad Clarke

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Well, I might have found a very simple and easy solution to my M20 oil leak. I consulted with Paul at 5speeds.com aka M22Power.com. He is the guy who wrote the very good book on building Muncie transmissions and also supplied the rebuild kit I used. I described the problem I was having and at some point in the conversation I revealed that my transmission had a vent installed in the top of the tail housing at some point in its life. He told me to plug that vent, Muncies should not be vented. If they are vented and air comes in, it will force oil out somewhere, most likely at the front. He used the finger over the end of a straw comparison. My vent is a plastic tube fastened to the case, so I put a tight cap over the top of it. I also cleaned up all the oil residue and we will see now if that solves the problem. Fingers crossed!

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awesome Pat I'm keeping my fingers crossed for you. Can't stand leaks! Especially after all that careful labor.

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Paul has great YouTube videos!!! Seems straight up!! Ryan

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Yeah, too bad he is a continent away from me!  Heading to a local Friday night cruise in a few minutes. 16 mile round trip should give me a clue.



-- Edited by Pat Dilling on Friday 21st of April 2017 07:40:51 PM

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Hope for the best !! The vent is a very likely cause!!! Ryan CA to FLA probably as far away as I am.

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Well, the good news this morning is, after the drive last night there are no oil drops on my drip pan nor hanging from the bell housing! I am not declaring victory yet, but am cautiously optimistic.

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