M5OD noise with side/side stick movement
I have a 2005 Ranger 4.0 4x4 with M5OD, about 120,000 miles. The tranny has a really strange noise that has me stumped. It makes this noise whenever the tranny is turning (ie clutch engaged). If I push the clutch in I can hear the noise fade for 2-3 seconds as the tranny "spins down". The noise sounds like dry metal on metal rub with just a little rattle mixed in. It doesn't seem to change with RPM. Here is the weird part:
When I am in neutral/3/4 gears, the noise is there but not very loud, just a bit louder than normal gear noise that I have heard in any other ranger. However when I push the stick over to the drivers side (ie to shift into 1/2 gear) the noise gets much louder and sounds pretty unhealthy. It doesnt matter if I shift into gear or not, it is the side/side motion of the stick that changes the volume of the noise. If I push the stick to the passenger side or shift into 5th gear, the noise disappears completely.
Noise has been there since I bought the truck, persisted through a fill of Mercon and a fill of Royal Purple. So it is not fluid type/fluid level related. Anyone have any ideas besides turn the radio up? Thanks.