Adjusting bands on auto tranny -- wonderful! - Ranger-Forums - The Ultimate Ford Ranger Resource


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Old 12-27-2006
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Adjusting bands on auto tranny -- wonderful!

Okay, I did this per this write up on ExplorerForum:

http://www.explorerforum.com/forums/...d.php?t=158160

Pretty simple really. Hardest thing is getting the shift linkage out of the way. I simply pressed in the retainers and slid the collar towards the front of the truck and pulled it out of the bracket, leaving it attached to the arm on the tranny that actually moves to change gears.

IF YOU DO IT THAT WAY: CHOCK YOUR WHEELS SO YOU PANTS DON'T FILL UP!!!

DOH! -- When I was under there I pushed the linkage back and the tranny went in neutral and the truck rolled about 6 inches -- scaring the crap out of me, ha ha!

Anyway, a 3/8" 12 point socket fits the square adjuster end perfectly. I used a 240 inch/pound 3/8" torque wrench set at 120 inch/pounds (10 foot/pounds)

I had to back the locknut off quite a bit to be able to adjust it -- indicating wear or stretch in the bands or anchors most likely. You tighten the adjusters to 10 foot/pounds then back them off two full turns and lock them down.

The result? Man, this thing shifts like a new truck. Little to no 2-3 "flare" compared to where it was. It's very, very different -- firm but not bumpy.

I did not use new locknuts like the how-to I linked. I'm taking the tranny out to fit it with a 4x4 tailshaft and rebuild the frictions and EPO solenoid in the spring and I'll put new ones on then. I just cleaned well around the area and tightened the original ones back down.

I highly recommend this if your tranny, like mine, has like 75,000 miles of hard use on it. Might be of benefit even with less mileage, I'm not sure.

Last edited by n3elz; 12-27-2006 at 09:13 PM.
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Old 12-27-2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by n3elz

IF YOU DO IT THAT WAY: CHOCK YOUR WHEELS SO YOU PANTS DON'T FILL UP!!!
that would be no good for anyone... funny to some, maybe, but no good for anyone, lol.

i take it this is for manual only?
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Old 12-27-2006
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that something i should look into when nights begin at work. thanks jon
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Old 12-27-2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Strider0O0
i take it this is for manual only?
its for autos
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Old 12-27-2006
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Correct. Auto's have planetary gears which change ratios by, in most cases, immobilizing the outer ring gear by clutching or "braking" it with a friction band driven by hydraulic servo pistons.

The adjustment puts the band in the correct tension so that less motion of the piston is required for actuation, resulting in quicker shifts and positive retention of the ring gear.
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Old 12-27-2006
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want to do mine next? lol

sounds sweet, maybe someday ill get enough guts to take a look at it.
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Old 12-27-2006
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It's simple really, but if you don't remove the DTR switch (digital transmission range switch) then the one locknut on the rear band is a pain to get the right angle on and they are quite tight. Other than that, having that low-range torque wrench is the biggest hurdle. I borrowed it from James (Rangerless), my son-in-law.
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Old 12-28-2006
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I'm with Zach, when can you come over and do mine? haha...

Sounds interesting, next time I have some free time I'll have to look into this! Thanks John!
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Old 12-28-2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by n3elz
Correct. Auto's have planetary gears which change ratios by, in most cases, immobilizing the outer ring gear by clutching or "braking" it with a friction band driven by hydraulic servo pistons.

The adjustment puts the band in the correct tension so that less motion of the piston is required for actuation, resulting in quicker shifts and positive retention of the ring gear.

dude you talk like a robot or a human text book
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Old 12-28-2006
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Dang John I might check this out tommorow when I am replacing all my balljoints and installing a camber kit.
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Old 12-28-2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by j18willis
dude you talk like a robot or a human text book
Or - someone with intelligence who knows what they are talking about and learns from experience
nice job John - I can tell you are very satisfied
have fun in Wharton today - stay safe and above water
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Old 12-28-2006
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Ha ha! Thanks, Neil!
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Old 12-28-2006
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If anyone plans on doing this, be very carful tightning them.. they can break!
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Old 12-28-2006
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AHHHH! sounds like something i need to HAVE done! i dont trust myself with the tranny.....they only think i will do to the tranny is change the fluid and filter...
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Old 12-28-2006
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very good write-up john! one of the mods should sticky this!
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Old 12-28-2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by offroad_ranger
If anyone plans on doing this, be very carful tightning them.. they can break!
Forgive me Chris -- but, well...DUH!

That's why you use the low range torque wrench, lol.

But it does stand noting, even if I do give you a hard time about it!
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Old 12-29-2006
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John what "symptoms" did your truck have? Mine if I give it full throttle sometimes it will feel like a have a manual tranny and I am pulling it out of gear and slamming it back into gear. I just think my tranny is on the end of its life.
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Old 12-29-2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by n3elz
Forgive me Chris -- but, well...DUH!

That's why you use the low range torque wrench, lol.
some people would have known that...

at my school, they told me never to do this 'mod'
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Old 12-30-2006
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Never to adjust the bands? Why, that's standard procedure for wear on them?
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Old 12-30-2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by n3elz
Never to adjust the bands? Why, that's standard procedure for wear on them?

Ill ask him tuesday but im pretty sure its more or less 'for the field'. Too much liability would be my guess
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Old 12-30-2006
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If the bands were worn down to the metal, it could cause them to snap, that I know. But usually you'll have noises that indicated a problem, in which case it probably doesn't make much difference as they're going to go soon anyway, lol.
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Old 12-30-2006
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I probably need to do this to mine. I can hardly feel the 1-2 shift, and 3rd almost always kicks in with a thud.
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Old 12-30-2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roach2004
John what "symptoms" did your truck have? Mine if I give it full throttle sometimes it will feel like a have a manual tranny and I am pulling it out of gear and slamming it back into gear. I just think my tranny is on the end of its life.
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  #24  
Old 12-31-2006
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The 2-3 shift "flare" where RPM's suddenly jump before 3rd gear cuts in is common. This seems to help that a lot, at least in my case. Also, back 40,000 miles or so ago I went to Amsoil synthetic which also helped.

There are a couple of problems which are common to our automatics though. The EPC solenoid is a pressure regulation valve that works on the same principle as the IAC valve -- pulse width control. It adjusts the line pressure to control shift quality.

If the EPC gets virtually ANY dirt in it, it starts to "hang up" and you get poor shifting. It is double-filtered, but still sometimes gets crap in it. Also, it is very tight tolerance and tends to wear quickly as it is thrashed all over the place with every throttle position change. Many who work on this transmiission recommend replacement of the EPC when you do any work on the tranny, as a preventive maintenance item -- but it's not a cheap item.

Servo's can also develop internal leaks which keep them from putting proper pressure on bands or doing it fast enough.

There are other "frictions" in the transmission called clutches and they are just that. They allow whole sets of gears to come into play or not. They can also wear.

My symptoms were more 2-3 shift flare, and just general "sloppiness" between the gears like they were taking too long to change. All those symptoms are gone now and the transmission shifts like it used to.

However, one should remember that the frictions are wearing and the harder the service the faster the wear. They will eventually need to be replaced and that's what an automatic rebuild is usually all about, as well as any remdial work on the valve body and servo's.

Also, if you look at the ExplorerForum site where I linked the article on this, there are other articles/posts on the 5R44E/5R55E transmission that talk about a bad valve body gasket issue that is a TSB from Ford I believe. Worth doing some reading over there through the stickys in the transmission and transfer case forum to research any problem you might be having.
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Old 01-02-2007
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They should put this in the how to section - seriously!
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