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Drivetrain Tech General discussion of drivetrain for the Ford Ranger.

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Old 12-21-2007
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Need Serious HELP!!!!!!

Ok, first off I would like to say this. I am not by any means trying to be a bad guy by saying this, but I can only afford to get knowledgeable advise here. So please keep the comments on this thread to a minimum as I NEED to get this fixed quick. Thank you for understanding.

I was driving up the Freeway this morning when the O/D light started flashing, and then it was like i had no acceleration in 3rd gear. I could hold my speed, but couldn't go faster unless i dropped it to second. Anyways, I got back to the apartment and tried to back up into my parking spot and reverse didn't work. Come to find out, my neutral is also drive now and Park is more of a lurching forward drive (curb is holding truck in place).... really weird! So I need to know if this is something that I can fix, or if it is needing a complete overhaul.

I did the research today and found that these trannys have a known issues with the Valve Body Gasket, but the symptoms are no where near close to mine. Can someone please advise me as to the next action. I called a few shops around and they were saying the valve body needed to be replaced by the sound of it. BUT, my fluid color is that of like a medium tan, which means the clutch packs might be going bad. I just need a solid quick fix so that I can hold out 2 months and get the re manufactured tranny.

Oh, on a side note, I really want to get the 5R55E (5 Speed Auto) so I can get a bit better gas mileage on the highway but i am not sure it will work with the current computer in the 95. Anyone know if this will work?
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Old 12-21-2007
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Did you take a good look at the actuator cable. You can get similar problems from it.

One clue that it might have come out of the retainer is the whole Park thing. If the actuating cable and linkage is right, that's a mechanical locking pawl and shouldn't act like you said. There's no hydraulics or valving involved in that.

Take a good look and make sure it hasn't come out of the retaining bracket. If the sheath gets loose the inner wire/rod can't move the lever over it's entire range properly.

That's all I can think of that would explain your symptoms and is easily fixed.
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Old 12-21-2007
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can you give me some references like pictures of that by chance?
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Old 12-21-2007
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My tranny is a later model than yours, but I'll describe it because they're quite similar.

Underneath the truck on the drivers side, right under the drivers floor general area is the side of the tranny. There is a lever on it, pointing up at some angle, made of flat steel. Attached to it is a steel cable/rod thing going towards the front of the truck.

That rod/cable enters a cable sheath at a big fitting clipped into a metal bracket sticking out of the transmission. That cable and sheath works the same as the brake and shifting cables on a 10 speed bike. As you move your shift lever, the cable moves in and out of the sheath and moves the lever back and forth that sticks out of the transmission.

That big area where the rod/cable goes into the sheath has to be fastened securely into the metal bracket. It just clips in there. I haven't any pics but I'll see if I can get a flash pic under my truck to show you if you still need it.

Go take a look though.
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Old 12-21-2007
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Ok, I am going to go outside real quick and see if I can get a snapshot real quick.
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Old 12-21-2007
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sorry about the quality (camera phone), but this is what it looks like.

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Old 12-21-2007
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That's it. It looks okay under the truck, but it could still have a problem.

What you can do is unclip that big "ball" kind of thing where the rod and sheath come together by squeezing the plastic tangs and sliding it out. You should be able to slide it sideways through a slot in the bracket freeing the cable.

WARNING WARNING: HAVE THE TRUCK WHEELS CHOCKED AND THE ENGINE OFF WHEN YOU DO THIS.

Once it's free like that there will be enough play for you to manually move the lever back and forth. Putting the lever furthest back towards the rear of the truck is park. In that position you shouldn't be able to move the truck with the wheels unchocked.

If that works, then start the truck with your foot on the brakes and verify that it really is in park.

If it is, something else is wrong in the system, either a broken cable, sheath or something in the selector in the truck so you'll need to uncover the steering column to find it.

If it WON'T go into park, it's an internal mechanical problem with the selector mechanism most likely. That would be the bad news if so.
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Old 12-21-2007
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CRAP... Ok, that will have to be done tomorrow with sunlight. Thank you for your help, and I will tackle this tomorrow morning, so please check back tomorrow if you can so if I have any questions, you can help me with them. Thank you so much for the help so far.
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Old 12-21-2007
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You're welcome. Best I have to offer though -- not a tranny expert, just played some with mine.

I undid that thing and popped mine out of park and it started rolling with me under it! Don't do that -- it's scary. I jammed it back in park before it moved a foot, but it was an adrenaline moment I assure you.

Hope it's something simple. I'll check in tomorrow.
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Old 12-22-2007
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Russ, I'm about to leave to go to my daughter and son-in-laws place (they are RangerNovice and Rangerless respectively here on the board) for their birthdays. They were born on the same day wierdly enough. I won't be back until probably 4PM EST so I'll have to pick it up with you then if you need me.

You can email me [email protected] and it will go to my cell phone if you really need me to comment.
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Old 12-22-2007
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Ok, good deal. If I need you that bad, I will send you my cell number via email.
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Old 12-22-2007
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Ok, so the cable selector pictured above is in the right spots, and goes through every gear like it should. HOWEVER, every shift selector spot WHILE THE TRUCK IS RUNNING is drive. When the truck was off, we put it in neutral and the truck released it's "pressure lock" and rolled back. Park was Park, and the truck didn't move. Would this be the Shift Solenoid being bad?
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Old 12-22-2007
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sounds like you either have a broke shift select valve inside the valve body, or something is "stuck" or "hung up" in the valve body. what if you start the truck in neutral? does it still seem to be in "drive"?
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Old 12-22-2007
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Yeah, Nick's on target or something like it. Might not be a big deal though. Could be something easily remedied with the tranny left in the truck -- but I don't know enough to tell you how to do it yourself.

Take a look over on http://www.explorerforum.com and see. There's a lot of transmission articles over there and bunches of people who tear their stuff apart. I've learned a considerable amount searching on their forums.
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Old 12-26-2007
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Ok, so a new update. I went to get gas last night, and 3rd gear started to work! So.... I was wondering what the hell was going on (by the way, neutral and reverse are still messed up) so I figured what the hell, I will check fluid level, and go figure! The DAMN TRANSMISSION is OVER FILLED!!!! HOW THE HELL IS THIS POSSIBLE! I did everything I was supposed to when I did my filter kit swap. I put the exact fluid in. I even checked it pint after pint after he 2 initial quarts were put back in... WHILE THE TRUCK WAS IN PARK RUNNING! For 3 days after the transmission was at normal level. What happened?
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