08-01-2005, 06:34 AM
Join Date: Jul 2005
2nd gear shift grind
I found this on another board............
I am the woodwork and I work for American Honda.
I am writing this to hopefully help S2000 owner/drivers understand the importance of shifting properly to minimize the damage to 2nd gear synchronizer rings. I'm not the Warranty Police but will from time to time quote warranty policy when I read things like "Shifting without the clutch".
My overall objective being in the woodwork is to keep S2000 owners from hurting themselves and hurting their cars. Everytime a transmission or engine gets replaced in an S2000 I get the part. I've seen a lot of damaged transmissions.
Before flaming me please read this and keep an open mind.
You have an engine that revs to 9000 RPM. That means that the transmission mainshaft and clutch disk are also revving to 9000 RPM. When you disengage the clutch (push in the pedal) to shift from first to second the engine and the transmission are disconnected. The engine will slow down from compression when you lift off the throttle. The mainshaft of the transmission is not connected to the engine any more so it is freewheeling in the transmission. Given enough time the mainshaft will slow down but not as fast as the engine. The countershaft is connected to the rear wheels and the speed stays constant during the shift.
When you shift into 2nd gear the synchronizer of the 2nd gear must SLOW DOWN the transmission mainshaft to match the speed that the engine WILL be going when the shift is completed and the clutch is engaged.
The transmission mainshaft and the clutch disk together weigh 19.75 lbs. (not including the pressure plate and flywheel that are connected to the engine) When you shift from 1st to 2nd at 9000 RPM the engine speed drops to 5900. That means that the little brass synchronizer rings have to push on the 2nd gear to slow the mainshaft from 9000RPM to 5900 RPM. It not only has to slow down the mainshaft it has to do it in the time that it takes you to shift. So if you have a tendency to shift fast you may be making the sleeve blow past the synchro rings before it has a chance to do it's job and it will smash into the 2nd gear.
The early '00 cars needed a little change to the sleeve to make the synchros work a little harder. That is what the new parts in the service bulletin are for. Cars after VIN YT006255 already have the new parts. Grinding in a car produced later than 6255 is possible if the synchros have been damaged and now are not able to slow down the mainshaft properly.
Shifting without the clutch, or, shift too quickly and not letting the synchros do their job may permanently damage the gear, sleeve and synchros and make the 2nd gear grind more often.
It makes sense that if shifting at 6000 makes the engine speed drop to 4300 RPM, (1700) into 2nd gear then you should give the 2nd gear synchro twice the time to do the shift from 9000 RPM.
If your car does grind once in a while you may not want the transmission removed, disassembled and a new 2nd gear put in. If it does it quite often, show it to the dealer and have it replaced.
If you hesitate for another 1/2 second while putting constant pressure on the shifter while the 2nd gear synchro does it's job, I'll bet many of your cars would not grind any more. Try it. You might like it.
I have seen many 6th gear sleeves that have been damaged.
The typical story is this: Stop light, 1st gear, engage the clutch, rev to 9,000 RPM, shift quickly to 2nd, rev to 9,000 RPM, same into 3rd, look down and find the car going 80 MPH on a city street and the engine noise is screaming, recognize that any cop is going to write a ticket. Shift to 6th quickly to lower engine noise.
Dragging the mainshaft speed down from 9,000 RPM to 4,000 when going from 3rd to 6th takes time. 6th gear has only a single synchro ring and it doesn't like it. It will grind if you are shifting hard and fast. By shifting hard the synchro ring does not have time to slow down the main-shaft and the sleeve will slip over the synchro and grind the gear. If the sleeve is ground enough in 6th then it will not slide the other way to engage 5th.
So if it is hard to get your car into 5th or 6th it may be because the sleeve is being damaged by skipping gears. Hope this makes sense.
"I'm from the factory and I?m here to help"