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Author Topic: Torque converter for manual  (Read 1723 times)
JohnEd
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« on: July 23, 2006, 09:58:14 AM »

In the fifties Chrysler marketed a car with a TC and a clutch in their stick shifts.  Recently I read a post that had a statement that suggested that the poster had a torque converter installed in his bus "and" he had a manual 4 speed.  Is that possible?  What are the implications?

Thank you

John
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Barn Owl
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« Reply #1 on: July 23, 2006, 10:46:40 AM »

I would bet it would be cheaper and easier just to put an auto-trans in. What advantage would it be to have that type of hybrid? It would seem that you would still have to shift manually and get the lower fuel mileage of an auto.

What say ye all?
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« Reply #2 on: July 23, 2006, 11:28:34 AM »

You might be too young to remember those days...Chrysler used the "Fluid Drive" in their vehicles in the '40's and they were the precursor of todays' automatics.  The advantage was that you not only had a clutch but a torque convertor as well and in the application to our buss with stick shifts, it would allow the operator to sit at a light, with the transmission in gear and the clutch out.  When it came time to move out the operator would simply step on the fuel pedal and move out...then shift normally. Cheesy

In a word, don't knock if you haven't tried it.   Is it practical in today's world?  I haven't the foggiest....but having a bus with a 4 speed Spicer...just the scenario above would make my life a lot easier as well as stop and go traffic.  How would it affect fuel milage?
Again, I couldn't answer unless there was a way to 'lock up' the convertor at highway speeds.  Is it an affordable change? Huh

That's something one of you young pioneers is going to have to experiment with and answer.  I'm the Historian...not the Pioneer! Grin

That's my .02!

Bob
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JohnEd
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« Reply #3 on: July 24, 2006, 04:54:26 PM »

Guys,

The advantage of this was that you can start out on a steep grade by putting her in first and then letting the clutch out fully and then gassing up to shift point.  No fried clutch.

Fluid drive was what they called it back in the day....yeah.

Nobody else?  Did I dream this up?  It must have come from another board and been a hoax if you guys are stumped.  It made sense to me and I think it would work but then they have gotten away without such a device for a long time if it isn't around.

Thanks for considering this.

John
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« Reply #4 on: July 24, 2006, 05:41:48 PM »

John, I remember it well. I think it came out right after the war. 47 or 48 maybe. And you are correct. You used the clutch to put it in first gear then let out the clutch. Nothing happened till you gave her the gas. Get up some speed and release the accelerator and shift into second without using the clutch and then on into high. A lot of the ladies really liked it as it was so easy to learn to drive.
Remember that at that time new autos had not been available for several years, gasoline was severely rationed and many people had not learned to drive during the war.
Richard

PS You could also take off in second gear but it really did not have much guts doing that.


Guys,

The advantage of this was that you can start out on a steep grade by putting her in first and then letting the clutch out fully and then gassing up to shift point.  No fried clutch.

Fluid drive was what they called it back in the day....yeah.

Nobody else?  Did I dream this up?  It must have come from another board and been a hoax if you guys are stumped.  It made sense to me and I think it would work but then they have gotten away without such a device for a long time if it isn't around.

Thanks for considering this.

John
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NJT5047
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« Reply #5 on: July 24, 2006, 06:04:27 PM »

I remember Chrylser "Fluid Drive.  Women liked those things...wouldn't use 1st after the car moved.  If stopping, they would shift into second and that was the "drive away" gear.....sort of a two speed semi auto.   It would pull away without issues in 2nd gear...from a dead stop.   It would pull away in 3rd gear without issues.  Just slowly at first.
It was right slick when introduced...but if I remember correctly, Caddie came out with the fully auto Hydramatic in about '49 and that was the end of the "Fluid Drive" concept.    Powerglide was also introduced shortly thereafter for the Chevys....poor man's Caddie!
Wonder where someone found a large enough fluid drive for a bus?  Generator or industrial application?   What do off road equipment applications use for a clutch? 
Seems as though a fluid drive in a bus would allow too much slippage to be worthy of consideration.  Have all the pitfalls of both manual and auto (heat buildup, complexity of shift linkage), other than the smoking clutch...wouldn't have that. 
A "lockup" auto (HT704 for us T drive owners) gives similar fuel milage, at highway speeds, as a manual.  Dinking around in town may favor a manual...but, got to factor in the cost of a clutch at regular intervals!
JR
 
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« Reply #6 on: July 24, 2006, 06:25:01 PM »

Such a system is still in use today, John Deere uses it in their 310 or 410 series back hoes. It works great when using the end loader. You never stall the engine, spin the tires or burn the clutch.

Ed.
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« Reply #7 on: July 24, 2006, 07:07:38 PM »

GM had something called a "Hydro Clutch" or something like that back in the '50s. It was a two speed clutch which gave 8 speeds forward but still had the standard 4 sp Spicer Trans.

I don't know if it had a TC but don't think it did. I think it was made like the 2 sp rear end in trucks, a sliding gear arrangement.
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« Reply #8 on: July 24, 2006, 08:37:29 PM »

Are you all talkin about hydrostatic drive - No tranny per se - just fluid pump?
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TomC
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« Reply #9 on: July 24, 2006, 09:06:51 PM »

Eaton's first attempt at an automatic transmission was called the CEEMAT (I think it stood for Converter Electronic Engine  Mechanical Automaic Transmission).  It was a 9 speed Roadranger transmission with a torque converter with lockup. The converter was a 2:1 stall ratio and the transmission was the A ratio .  It was popular with the concrete mixer group.  But because of the limited computer power as compared to todays on board computers, it was very problematic, so much so, that Eaton pulled it from production.  They then brought out first the 10spd AutoSelect transmission where you had to lift the accelerator pedal to shift and had a normal clutch in it.  Then it progress on to the AutoShift where you still had a normal clutch to start and stop, but it shifted automatically.  Now is the UltraShift 10 speed and 13+1 speed where the clutch is automatic (centrifugally engaged) and the transmission is too.  So presently Eaton has the 6 speed UltraShift up to 860lb/ft torque (for medium trucks and buses); 10 & 18spd autoshift; 10 & 13+1spd UltraShift.  They are all aimed at the trucking industry and some buses where the initial price and fuel economy out weighs the higher expense and fuel mileage drop typical with an Allison automatic.  But-I have always maintained that if you drove an Allison automatic (for instance, drive behind a manual transmission truck keeping pace with it) like how a manual would perform, the fuel mileage would be just about equal, if not indiscernable.  As far as I'm concerned, our bus conversions are best with the Allison transmissions-then anyone can drive them and they accelerate as fast as they are going to go.  Good Luck, TomC
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« Reply #10 on: July 25, 2006, 01:00:17 AM »

Mercedes currently offer what it calls 'manual automatic' transmissions in some of it's cars and vans, which is described as being a manual 'box with a torque converter. I don't know how they operate, or whether they are also available on Merc's trucks and buses

Jeremy
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« Reply #11 on: July 25, 2006, 04:52:08 AM »

 Almost. A fluid drive coupling between the engine and three speed tranny. No lock up of the fluid drive.

The first actual Hydramatic drive three speed automatic tranny that I ever saw was on a 1949 Oldsmobile, I think. It may have been available on earlier models but never made it to WV. I think there was a three speed automatic  in 1941 but I do not recall on what brand of car.

Are you all talkin about hydrostatic drive - No tranny per se - just fluid pump?
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« Reply #12 on: July 25, 2006, 05:28:35 AM »

Spicer had a hydrostatic drive transmission starting in the 30's with Yellow Coach. My 1948 TDH-3610 had one too.
It came as the model 90 and model 91.

Basically a hydraulic pump that moved the bus up to 14mph when the clutches would lock up and make it a 1:1 direct drive.

Interestingly enough, the first models used diesel fuel from the fuel tank for hydraulic fluid, until some bright engineer figured out that if the bus ran out of fuel it also ran out of transmission. That's not a happy thing to happen on a hill.

Later models incorporated a hydraulic oil tank that was separate from the fuel system. This worked much better, but still, when climbing a hill it was possible to actually boil the oil in the trans.
 
I know this because of a climb we made on a mountain going north toward Banner Elk, NC from I-40. The trans oil boiled so badly that even sitting on the side of the road without the engine running, the reserve oil tank was blowing oil like a geyser!

It was a great day when GM quit using those transmissions and went to Allisons.

Dallas
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