View Full Version : Transmission: 1941 transmission

Sam Ensley
10-01-2012, 04:11 PM
When I try to put the transmission in my 1941 Champion into reverse, it jumps out of gear, with the engine running or stopped, When I try to hold it in reverse with the enging running, it makes the typical growling sound. I am not much of a mechanic. Anyone have any ideas?

10-01-2012, 06:22 PM
Don't know about the growl, but if it will not go/stay into reverse with the engine off, my first thought is linkage.
You need to make sure the shift rods down to the trans are not hitting one another, and that the linkage box at the bottom of the steering column is correctly adjusted. I think the procedure for this adjustment is in the shop manual. You do not need their special tool, just a way to hold the linkage in position while you adjust.
Both of these are a lot easier than getting inside the trans.
My '41 Commander had an issue with the rods rubbing because one was bent.

10-01-2012, 06:23 PM
Sam, check your engine and trans mounts.

Sam Ensley
10-18-2012, 08:23 PM
I finally got the car on my brother-in-law's lift tonight. The engine and transmission mounts are O.K. The bushing on the connection from the shifting lever to the transmission shifting lever was worn. We didn't have another bushing, but turned the old one around when re-installing the connection. My brother-in-law thought the forks inside the transmission might be bent, but taking the transmission out of the car seems to be a mammoth job.

When I started to back out of his shop, I did an "uh-oh" because there is an uphill grade from his shop to the main driveway. Desperately, I put the car in reverse and held it, and it backed out of the shop. That's the only time it did it.

I checked the number on the side of the transmission, and it is a T96. When I got home, I checked a transmission that came out of a 1949 pickup, and it is a T88. I checked my shop manuals and chassis parts catalog for these numbers and can't find anything. I was thinking of replacing the T96 with the T88 because the T88 was working perfectly when I took it out of the truck to install a V8 with automatic transmission.

What would be the correct transmission number for a 1941 Champion with overdrive?

10-18-2012, 10:32 PM
What would be the correct transmission number for a 1941 Champion with overdrive?

Another T96 with overdrive. They were used in Studebaker Champions until the end. The T-88 will not fit, so even though it is tempting, forgetaboutit.

Does your transmission currently have an overdrive?

Time for some more troubleshooting. You said it jumped out of reverse even when the engine is NOT running? That is very strange.

Sam Ensley
10-18-2012, 11:57 PM
Yes, it has overdrive, but, obviously, the frame was cut to install the overdrive. I don't think it had it originally.

10-19-2012, 08:21 AM
I am really confused now. I am not sure how the frame would be in the way of an overdrive. That was a factory option on these cars and everything from the rear transmission mount forward is exactly the same on the overdrive and non-overdrive cars. Only the length of the transmission, driveshaft, and speedo cable changes. Can you post some pictures? If someone has been cutting on your car then whatever modification they were trying to achieve could have changed the geometry of your shift linkage.

The good news is taking the transmission out is a 30 minute job. Maybe an hour the first time. The only tricky part is rigging a support for the engine. I put a jack under the bell housing, take everything loose, then lower the engine a couple inches onto a milk crate padded with old blankets. 4 bolts and the tranny slides straight back.

If you have access to a lift I would put the car on the lift with someone inside. Run the car, put it in reverse, and watch the linkage as it pops out. If the pop is due to anything moving you have a soft or lose motor mount or the linkage is just out of adjustment. If it pops out without the the engine/transmission moving it might still be the linkage but might also be an internal transmission problem.

If it helps I have pictures of my non-overdrive setup here:
I thought I had more picures of the transmission removal process but I guess I never put them on the web site. Let me know if they would help and I will dig them up.