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Username Post: 5 speed vs 4 speed        (Topic#349065)
jeff198901 
Forum Newbie
Posts: 23

Reg: 09-16-17
01-08-18 06:05 AM - Post#2720417    

I have a 66 biscayne, 427 4 speed. Whoever built the car has the wrong bellhousing in it, clutch linkage is incorrect and it could use a clutch.

Do you think it is worth while trying to figure this out? Or should I ditch the 4 speed and do a fresh TKO 5 speed?

The current trans is a 78 super t10



Edited by jeff198901 on 01-08-18 06:05 AM. Reason for edit: No reason given.

 
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Tri5man 
Valued Contributor
Posts: 3600
Tri5man
Loc: Possums Crotch, KY
Reg: 06-26-07
01-08-18 08:17 AM - Post#2720425    
    In response to jeff198901

A Tremec five speed is the way to go. My 63 Belair with a Tremec five speed at 75 MPH and going onto fifth gear the RPM's drop to 1900. The first gear is still low enough to light up the tires.



 
66cayne 
Valued Contributor
Posts: 2734

Reg: 08-06-08
01-08-18 09:07 AM - Post#2720430    
    In response to jeff198901

Well it really depends on two things. How often do you drive the car on the freeway and how much do you want to spend? With the low 1st gear ratio the 5 speed will give you good 'off the line' acceleration and an overdrive gear for cruising. However it will cost you a couple thousand for the trans and hydraulic throwout bearing setup. The 70's ST10 have a good low gear for acceleration and is a good trans as long as you don't beat it to death behind that big block. So how does your existing trans and linkage work? I also have a 66 Biscayne, 496BBC, M22 . It was converted from a 6 cylinder/ Saginaw 3-on-the-tree. I used the stock linkage and fork from the 3 speed ( rebuilt the bellcrank and replaced the return springs). It is the same setup as a 4 speed. Replaced the bellhousing with a '621' stock style aluminum housing but eventually put in a Lakewood blow shield. The conversion was about $500, except for the transmission and clutch/flywheel/pressure plate. Of course you already have those items.



 
japete92 
"4th Year" Silver Supporting Member
Posts: 965
japete92
Loc: No. Virginia
Reg: 01-18-13
01-08-18 10:31 AM - Post#2720433    
    In response to jeff198901

  • jeff198901 Said:
I have a 66 biscayne, 427 4 speed. Whoever built the car has the wrong bellhousing in it, clutch linkage is incorrect and it could use a clutch.

Do you think it is worth while trying to figure this out? Or should I ditch the 4 speed and do a fresh TKO 5 speed?

The current trans is a 78 super t10



As others have said there are advantages to the 5 speed but they don't come cheap.

I personally would stay with the 4 speed because the risk of unforeseen mods and cost is less. Also, the basic 'known' cost is less. Your t10 is a fine transmission.

Check what interior changes (if any) are required to accommodate the 5 speed.

The question is what do you really want? If you've got the $ and really want the 5 speed, go for it. If you want to put the car on the street with less investment, fix what you've got. Only you know that answer.

Pete



 
jeff198901 
Forum Newbie
Posts: 23

Reg: 09-16-17
01-08-18 01:59 PM - Post#2720457    
    In response to 66cayne

The linkage works, but the zed bar is sitting at a strange angle and the pivot point is on the bell housing. I think the pivot point is supposed to be on the motor?

I had a temporary bracket made to move the pivot point to a better location. The throw out bearing starts to squeal at certain points when pushing on the clutch pedal. I am getting a shop to price out the 5 speed and I will go from there.

Part of me likes the idea of having a cool old 4 speed



 
japete92 
"4th Year" Silver Supporting Member
Posts: 965
japete92
Loc: No. Virginia
Reg: 01-18-13
01-08-18 02:54 PM - Post#2720465    
    In response to jeff198901

Up in the 'sticky' section of this forum is a reference material topic. You can download (or simply view) the 66 assembly manual. You should find all the info you need to put your car back to the way GM built it from that manual.

Just trying to be helpful. If you want a 4 speed, fix what you have. Reliable data is available. Why spend a lot of money on your second choice?

Pete



 
Tri5man 
Valued Contributor
Posts: 3600
Tri5man
Loc: Possums Crotch, KY
Reg: 06-26-07
01-08-18 04:32 PM - Post#2720476    
    In response to japete92

The only real difference modifications that are necessary between a 4 speed and a 5 speed is a slight enlargement of the transmission tunnel and driveshaft length. I've got a Muncie M21 in my 63 Impala and the Tremec 5 speed in my 63 Belair. The Tremec wins hands down. It shifts far better then the Muncie.

Gary



 
aghaga 
"4th Year" Silver Supporting Member
Posts: 2139
aghaga
Age: 63
Loc: Altavista, Va.
Reg: 07-05-08
01-08-18 05:36 PM - Post#2720486    
    In response to Tri5man

I'm running a Keisler (Silver Sport Transmissions)TKO 500 Perfect Fit 5-speed in my 66 Impala. No modifications were needed to the floor pan which was a factory 4-speed and the shifter fit well in the factory 4-speed console. I did need to shorted the drive shaft and move the crossmember rearwards about 3".



 
66cayne 
Valued Contributor
Posts: 2734

Reg: 08-06-08
01-08-18 06:28 PM - Post#2720492    
    In response to jeff198901

'The linkage works, but the zed bar is sitting at a strange angle and the pivot point is on the bell housing. I think the pivot point is supposed to be on the motor'?

No wonder you are having trouble. The Z bar (bellcrank) is suppose to go to a ballstud on the bellhousing and the other end sits in a bracket located on the frame. It should NOT be at an angle. Does your bellhousing have a threaded insert for the bellhousing studball? It sounds like you may have a bunch of parts for a Chevelle not an Impala.



Edited by 66cayne on 01-08-18 06:32 PM. Reason for edit: No reason given.

 
jktucker92 
Silver Supporting Member
Posts: 185
jktucker92
Reg: 02-05-17
01-09-18 08:39 AM - Post#2720545    
    In response to 66cayne

Yes, the bellcrank (Z-Bar) should not be at an angle. On my '65 truck the bellcrank connected to a ball that was mounted to the engine, but on page 124 of the assembly manual (in the archives here) it shows the bellcrank attached to a ball on the bellhousing, and the other side to a bracket on the frame. The ball should mount very close to the motor as shown in the picture. The bracket location is shown on page 128 of the assembly manual. Not knowing the entire history of the car, the bellhousing could be incorrect and have the wrong location, or the bracket may have been installed in the wrong location if it was converted to a manual transmission. Check the diagrams in the assembly manual to make sure yours match.



 
HAL_396 
Member
Posts: 3044
HAL_396
Loc: Austin, TX
Reg: 11-16-06
01-09-18 08:57 AM - Post#2720550    
    In response to jktucker92

Is there a 5 speed that is a direct bolt in for a bench seat car?


1955 Chevy Custom
1966 Biscayne
1966 Caprice Drag Car Inwork
1966 Caprice parts car


 
raycow 
Honored Member
Posts: 27475
raycow
Loc: San Francisco, CA
Reg: 11-26-02
01-09-18 01:11 PM - Post#2720577    
    In response to HAL_396

  • HAL_396 Said:
Is there a 5 speed that is a direct bolt in for a bench seat car?


That's a very good question, but it did not include enough info to give you a good answer.
!. How much engine will be in front of the trans?
2. How do you plan to use the car (daily driver, cruise, race, etc.)?
3. What kind of trans does the car have now?
4. What do you mean by "direct bolt in"? All of the practical 5 speeds I can think of will bolt to a stock 3 or 4 speed bellhousing. However, some will require mods to the rear mount and/or driveshaft and/or may require replacement of the clutch disc (but not the pressure plate). Does the shifter have to come through the same hole in the floor as the stock 4 speed, or does it just have to clear the bench seat?

Others here may think of some questions I neglected to ask.

Ray


Those who choose an automatic transmission want transportation. Those who choose a manual transmission want to drive.


 
jeff198901 
Forum Newbie
Posts: 23

Reg: 09-16-17
01-09-18 08:09 PM - Post#2720622    
    In response to 66cayne

I will have to look into it. This car is not an original 4 speed. I have a transmission guy who is very familiar with older chevys. He will look into it in the spring. I have only had the car since the end of September so I didn’t get to work out all of the bugs yet.....this year for sure!



 
Johnny468 
"10th Year" Silver Supporting Member
Posts: 788
Johnny468
Loc: Richmond, Va.
Reg: 10-24-08
01-10-18 06:48 AM - Post#2720665    
    In response to jeff198901

I'm just glad to hear you want to keep the stick, regardless of which trans you finally decide to go with. There are many knowledgeable folks here that can help you get your clutch linkage and other variables straightened out once you've decided how you want to move forward.

Johnny

1965 Impala SS
505/4-speed/3.90


 
jeff198901 
Forum Newbie
Posts: 23

Reg: 09-16-17
01-10-18 09:42 AM - Post#2720681    
    In response to Johnny468

The stick is what makes the car cool..... I would never go auto !



 
japete92 
"4th Year" Silver Supporting Member
Posts: 965
japete92
Loc: No. Virginia
Reg: 01-18-13
01-10-18 10:51 AM - Post#2720688    
    In response to jeff198901

  • jeff198901 Said:
The stick is what makes the car cool..... I would never go auto !





Because you seem to be in the correcting previous owners' screw ups' mode, I would not assume ANYTHING is right.

Just some random thoughts:

When you get into 'it', I would make sure the flywheel is correct and in good condition (replace as necessary), the bell housing matches the flywheel, the clutch matches flywheel, the throw out bearing matches the clutch, the transmission input/output spines match components. I'd replace the pilot bearing because they are cheap and easy to do at that point. I'd also replace all the u joints for the same reason. Check the drive shaft yoke for excessive play.

Make sure you have the right clutch fork, pivot stud, and all the correct parts between the pedal and the fork (push rods, cross brace, etc). The assembly manual should show you how it all is supposed to be (you already know the frame bracket for the cross brace is incorrect). Zbar, bell crank, cross brace are synonymous.


The starter needs to be compatible with the flywheel and the bell housing.



I bought parts for my '63 from:

http://www.4speedconversions.com

Certainly not the only vendor. Shop around.

The back up light switch and the speedo cable are also details to examine.

Finally, I strongly recommend YOU get as smart as possible on how your car should be (or how you want it to be). It isn't rocket science. Relying on a 'guy' who says he knows old Chevy transmissions is risky. It's not uncommon for folks to over state their abilities. NOT saying your 'guy' isn't competent, the 'trust but verify' approach is a good one.

Just trying to be helpful.

Pete






Edited by japete92 on 01-10-18 10:54 AM. Reason for edit: No reason given.

 
jeff198901 
Forum Newbie
Posts: 23

Reg: 09-16-17
01-10-18 08:19 PM - Post#2720729    
    In response to japete92

It is reliable, he has been building transmissions for 40+ years. He is not just a backyard mechanic, but a well respected shop. Also does restoration work and is very familiar with 1960s full size chevys. He fixed the linkage on my shifter already because it would lock into reverse.

I think the 5 speed will cost around 10,000 by the time I get it up here to Canada



 
66SS632 
Silver Supporting Member
Posts: 371

Loc: Langley BC
Reg: 02-09-13
01-10-18 10:33 PM - Post#2720749    
    In response to jeff198901

  • jeff198901 Said:
It is reliable, he has been building transmissions for 40+ years. He is not just a backyard mechanic, but a well respected shop. Also does restoration work and is very familiar with 1960s full size chevys. He fixed the linkage on my shifter already because it would lock into reverse.

I think the 5 speed will cost around 10,000 by the time I get it up here to Canada



The late super t-10 aluminum case 4 speeds with 3.42 first gear (or something like that) were notoriously weak. They were put behind engines that barely made over 200 hp. I had one in a 80's malibu (from a 70's Camaro) with a healthy 350 and I grenaded that POS. The earlier cast iron units were stronger,"Apparently", and you can build them up....Blah Blah Blah.... whatever LOL! It's still (only) a 4 speed! If your 427 has any kind of grunt it wont be long until you HAVE to pull it out because it's scattered!!

Pull that trans and sell it to someone who thinks it's great and put the cash towards a TKO 5 speed. You will never regret spending the money because it makes the car SOOOO much nicer to drive.You didn't say what rear end ratio your car has but you can go up to a 3.73 and still maintain a decent engine rpm at highway speeds.

While the trans is out turf all that worn out z bar junk and install a hydraulic throw out bearing and relieve the head ache of all that mechanical linkage.Also makes future header clearance (if you don't have them already ) much easier

A TKO 5 speed won't cost $10k Cnd!! I just bought a t56 landed for $4600.00 Cnd! (Whoops ! )

The whole conversion shouldn't be more than $5k if you can do some yourself?? Depends on your circumstance....

Where in Canada are you?



Still a 17 year old delinquent Hot Rodder


 
jeff198901 
Forum Newbie
Posts: 23

Reg: 09-16-17
01-11-18 10:42 AM - Post#2720777    
    In response to 66SS632

For a full swap I was quoted 6500 for all the parts!

So plus shipping, duty, exchange and instal I’d say 10ish, which seems over the top



 
jeff198901 
Forum Newbie
Posts: 23

Reg: 09-16-17
01-11-18 04:36 PM - Post#2720800    
    In response to jeff198901

are there kits out to beef up a super t10?



 
4dr 57 
Valued Contributor
Posts: 4523
4dr 57
Loc: Texas Hill Country
Reg: 11-10-04
01-12-18 09:33 AM - Post#2720854    
    In response to jeff198901

  • jeff198901 Said:
For a full swap I was quoted 6500 for all the parts!

So plus shipping, duty, exchange and instal I’d say 10ish, which seems over the top





The improved Tranzilla TREMEC TKO 5 Speed is currently advertised in HOT ROD magazine fro 2995.00 with free ground freight (to the border? haha)
the Ad can probably be seen on the net somewhere. All the good stuff - blueprinted,carbon fiber syncros, custom shift lug, all suppose to make 8k shifts no problem (hmm...)

Just go with the hydraulic clutch/throw out bearing set up.

Huge 2k savings if you can use your present clutch pressure plate, et'all. If not, then it's already up to a 5k swap w/o the freight or "The Man's" Labor, or the transmission handle, + ?

My friend in KS recently had a guy change his trans to a 200-R4. The man had a good rep, etc. but there was a $1500 problem that my friend had to pay for when the high HP of his car was supposedly matched up with the HD parts, but was not! Seems the "The Man" doesn't actually work on the repairs or even order Parts anymore despite him saying he did at the beginning...buncha BS so do your homework thoroughly!



 
chronamyd 
Infrequent Contributer
Posts: 36

Loc: Nanoose Bay BC Canada
Reg: 05-02-12
01-12-18 09:46 PM - Post#2720902    
    In response to jeff198901

Check with Brent at Gears To Go in Abbotsford BC . Tol free# 1877 4327786 They are on the internet. I paid about 3300.00 CDN plus install kit for about 600.00. He is very knowledgeable. Mine was the TKO 600 I installed behind my 409 in my 64 Impala. Dwight



 
66SS632 
Silver Supporting Member
Posts: 371

Loc: Langley BC
Reg: 02-09-13
01-13-18 12:12 AM - Post#2720915    
    In response to chronamyd

  • chronamyd Said:
Check with Brent at Gears To Go in Abbotsford BC . Tol free# 1877 4327786 They are on the internet. I paid about 3300.00 CDN plus install kit for about 600.00. He is very knowledgeable. Mine was the TKO 600 I installed behind my 409 in my 64 Impala. Dwight



I recommended Brent also in a PM. Good guy to deal with. I'm sure he can line up all the stuff needed for a decent price.
------------------------- -------------
jeff198901 Said:

For a full swap I was quoted 6500 for all the parts!

So plus shipping, duty, exchange and instal I’d say 10ish, which seems over the top




------------------------- ------------------
If your paying a guy to do the work then , yeah, $10K by the time your on the road.







Still a 17 year old delinquent Hot Rodder


 
Stinky 
Senior Member
Posts: 1600

Loc: Whitewater, CO
Reg: 05-25-01
01-13-18 07:16 AM - Post#2720931    
    In response to 66SS632

This was asked, and you skipped it.

What is your axle ratio?



 
jeff198901 
Forum Newbie
Posts: 23

Reg: 09-16-17
01-13-18 01:46 PM - Post#2720949    
    In response to Stinky

3.73 is the ratio. Sorry!



 
jeff198901 
Forum Newbie
Posts: 23

Reg: 09-16-17
01-13-18 01:46 PM - Post#2720950    
    In response to chronamyd

I have been talking to Brent!



 
Bel Air kiwi 
"3rd Year" Silver Supporting Member
Posts: 4222
Bel Air kiwi
Loc: New Zealand
Reg: 04-24-14
01-13-18 03:33 PM - Post#2720963    
    In response to jeff198901

Hi Jeff, Just something for you to think about with your 5 speed conversion, given I think, at the amount of beer vouchers you are going to spend, you want it right first time.

The part that is often missed out is the engine speed at critical uses you have. By that I mean what are your speed limits and normal cruising speeds when using the vehicle.

So when you are just driving around at say 30 Mph or 40 Mph speed limits you don't want to be lugging around at the bottom of a gear, or revving at 3000+ rpm because the next gear is too tall.

With a small V8 I want to be around the 2000-2200rpm when just driving and if you have more torque you can drop that to say 1800-2000rpm.

So if the speed limit is 60 MPH I want 2100rpm in 4th and that will give me an idea of the diff ratio.
Then I go back to what that gives me off the line, and then where it puts the shift points for normal driving.

By this I mean not what revs you shift up at as that is a matter of personal style and driving conditions. but what speeds in gears you get at normal road revs.

It's very easy to turn a 5 speed into a 4 speed by having too low a first gear, with a big gap to second and a 4.11:1 diff. That's a work truck combo with a crawler gear for commercial work.
Super low first and very big O/D ratios are more of a pickup combo.

It would be great if you have a shop lined up to ask if one of their customers would take you for a spin in a similar combo.

Cheers Kiwi



48 3100 RHD, 51 Deluxe 4DR RHD, 51 Bel Air parts car, 52 Bel Air P-Glide LHD. Others 23T, 32 Tudor, 58 Edsel pacer 4DR HDT, 79 F250 351C RHD. 69,70,82 Capri. No mobile, no TV, and no Jap cars.

And when it was laid to waste, they called it peace.


 
Red402 
"4th Year" Silver Supporting Member
Posts: 66
Red402
Loc: Crosby, Texas
Reg: 12-06-14
01-15-18 07:13 AM - Post#2721089    
    In response to Tri5man

Which Tremac did you install I'm looking at GM TKO 600, did you have to move shifter location or did it fit where it came from factory. Im running 355 at the rear.



Edited by Red402 on 01-15-18 07:25 AM. Reason for edit: No reason given.

 
chronamyd 
Infrequent Contributer
Posts: 36

Loc: Nanoose Bay BC Canada
Reg: 05-02-12
01-23-18 10:18 PM - Post#2721939    
    In response to Red402

I installed a tko600 in my 64 Impala SS behind a 425 hp 409. I bought the offset shifter and used the factory concil. The only trouble I had was the shifter was too high ,I could see the bolts that bolted the hurst shift handle to the shifter above the boot so I removed the
L bracket from the top of the shifter and flipped it (to point down) bolted the handle back on and installed the boot . Everything was hunky dory. The long and the short is you can order from Brent different shifters to change hole positions. Thanks Dwight



 
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