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Thread: overdrive challenge- 1955 President 3 speed with OD.

  1. #1
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    overdrive challenge- 1955 President 3 speed with OD.

    Here is the problem:
    1) Unit won't return to standard drive even though I hear the telltale click around 20MPh
    2) If engine is running, overdrive won't unlock; engine off= lever pulls out easy.
    3) Pushing kick down lever creates pause- nothing happens, let up on the gas a little and it accelerates in OD
    3) Workin schmoes fix: Push in lever when going down the hi way. In town, just use 2nd and 1st. Not the greatest for minimizing lug on th e engine.
    4) Looking for ideas. Governor shorting out? Thanks any and all for ideas.

  2. #2
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    Could be the governor sticking/shorting.

    Maybe sticking enough so the solenoid can't pull it out. When was the last time the gear lube was changed?

    Check the cable adjustment. Push under-dash lever all the way in. Loosen clamp, push the lever on the overdrive housing all the way down, tighten clamp.

    "Pause"? Does the engine die when the kickdown switch is depressed? Could be a problem with the wiring, switch or relay. Check the fuse.

    jack vines
    PackardV8

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    Jack
    Thanks for the quick response.
    Which gear lube are you referring to- the 90W mineral oil inside the tranny? That was just changed a couple of weeks ago while the car was in the shop.
    I'm not sure if the engine actually dies, I don't think so but it may be dying and restarting. Sorry I can't be more definitive here.I can certainly check the adjustment you're suggesting. I looked underneath and didn't see anything very questionable or noteworthy. The wire going into the governor looked okay, but I'll have to remove the cap to double check it where the connection is. It really does sound like a wiring problem at this point.

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    When od is engaged in high gear at around 35 give it some throttle and turn ignition off and on quickly, it should kick down( disengage od) until you back off throttle.

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    First question: has it ever worked correctly since you have owned it? If the car is new to you, or newly-returned to the road, there may be a wiring error that keeps the solenoid engaged at all times. Since you hear a click at about 20 mph when slowing down, that suggests to me that the governor is working, and triggering the OD relay, which is the source of the click. If the relay contacts were welded together, which would keep the solenoid engaged at all times, you probably wouldn't hear a click, since the relay armature would also be stuck down.

    I am thinking either wiring fault that causes uninterrupted power to the solenoid, or else a mechanical issue with the pawl that prevents the solenoid spring from drawing it back when the solenoid is unpowered.

    Question two: did this all start since the car was in the shop?
    Last edited by gordr; 06-14-2018 at 05:33 PM. Reason: additional thought
    Gord Richmond, within Weasel range of the Alberta Badlands

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    President Member TWChamp's Avatar
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    All good answers above. I'd start with a quick easy test.
    What happens if you drive with the overdrive relay fuse pulled?

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    Quote Originally Posted by gordr View Post
    First question: has it ever worked correctly since you have owned it? If the car is new to you, or newly-returned to the road, there may be a wiring error that keeps the solenoid engaged at all times. Since you hear a click at about 20 mph when slowing down, that suggests to me that the governor is working, and triggering the OD relay, which is the source of the click. If the relay contacts were welded together, which would keep the solenoid engaged at all times, you probably wouldn't hear a click, since the relay armature would also be stuck down.

    I am thinking either wiring fault that causes uninterrupted power to the solenoid, or else a mechanical issue with the pawl that prevents the solenoid spring from drawing it back when the solenoid is unpowered.

    Question two: did this all start since the car was in the shop?
    gordr-
    when I first got the car 3yrs ago, I replaced the relay. Otherwise it has always worked.
    Yes, the problem first appeared,after the shop and upper end repair, which did involve removing engine. I think your assessment of the solenoid working is correct, that’s what makes it puzzling.
    Thanks for the input. I’ll be tracing some of the wires here, unless I stumble across something else in the meantime. Thanks for the input.
    Last edited by cwsimpson; 06-14-2018 at 09:15 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gordr View Post
    First question: has it ever worked correctly since you have owned it? If the car is new to you, or newly-returned to the road, there may be a wiring error that keeps the solenoid engaged at all times. Since you hear a click at about 20 mph when slowing down, that suggests to me that the governor is working, and triggering the OD relay, which is the source of the click. If the relay contacts were welded together, which would keep the solenoid engaged at all times, you probably wouldn't hear a click, since the relay armature would also be stuck down.

    I am thinking either wiring fault that causes uninterrupted power to the solenoid, or else a mechanical issue with the pawl that prevents the solenoid spring from drawing it back when the solenoid is unpowered.

    Question two: did this all start since the car was in the shop?
    Can the pawl be installed in the “wrong” position?

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    I’ll try it! Also see what happens with the fuse pulled. I expect the od to be non functional with the fuse pulled, just like leaving the od lever out. But stranger things have happened!
    thanks for the suggestions.
    cws

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    Should have read “governor working”

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    Dawned on me while out cruising in OD in my '62: wonder if while being serviced the solenoid was for some reason removed. If not engaged in the pawl properly it will hold the pawl forever in and will not be able to withdraw it. Remove the two retaining bolts and pull straight out. If it comes out, it is not engaged in the pawl. Turn the solenoid 90 degrees and push in. Turn it to the normal position and pull straight out. It should not come.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ross View Post
    Dawned on me while out cruising in OD in my '62: wonder if while being serviced the solenoid was for some reason removed. If not engaged in the pawl properly it will hold the pawl forever in and will not be able to withdraw it. Remove the two retaining bolts and pull straight out. If it comes out, it is not engaged in the pawl. Turn the solenoid 90 degrees and push in. Turn it to the normal position and pull straight out. It should not come.
    Great advice. I'll give it a look asap. Thx
    cws

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    Quote Originally Posted by kxet View Post
    When od is engaged in high gear at around 35 give it some throttle and turn ignition off and on quickly, it should kick down( disengage od) until you back off throttle.
    kext- I tried this and nothing much happened. Didn't go out of OD- just sort of picked up where it was. I also tried with out relay fuse- free wheeled in standard ratios. So it works but doesn't want to kick down when all the electrical connections are ok. I say ok but I still have to crawl underneath and check everything out in a little more detail than I did before. When you shift to first gear, OD is gone until you get back above 28. But when you leave it in second gear and slow way down- refuses to go back to standard. If you kick it down, and I tried that several times, I'm convinced it shorts
    out and somehow shuts down the engine but as soon as the throttle is brought back, everything resumes- maybe there's something going on with the solenoid/governor/ kick down connection. Wondering if some wires got switched around when the engine was pulled or as Ross suggested maybe there is a problem with the pawl. Gotta get back under there. Stay tuned...

  14. #14
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    No fuse and no overdrive, so you know the solenoid is moving in and out OK.
    No overdrive until you get over 28, but then it won't kick out of overdrive. I'd connect a test light to the BAT terminal on the relay and to the governor wire that connects at the overdrive relay. The test light should come on when the governor reaches about 30 MPH and go out when you drop below that speed. This will let you know if the governor is working OK.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cwsimpson View Post
    ....... If you kick it down, and I tried that several times, I'm convinced it shorts
    out and somehow shuts down the engine but as soon as the throttle is brought back, everything resumes- maybe there's something going on with the solenoid/governor/ kick down connection. Wondering if some wires got switched around when the engine was pulled or as Ross suggested maybe there is a problem with the pawl. Gotta get back under there. Stay tuned...
    Your mention of incorrect wiring may be the problem. Two green wires on the kick down switch should be closest to the plunger. Two black wires on the other terminals.
    https://www.flickr.com/photos/126072612@N08/37495406414/in/dateposted-public/<img src=https://www.flickr.com/photos/126072612@N08/37495406414/in/dateposted-public/ border=0 alt= />

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    Quote Originally Posted by TWChamp View Post
    No fuse and no overdrive, so you know the solenoid is moving in and out OK.
    No overdrive until you get over 28, but then it won't kick out of overdrive. I'd connect a test light to the BAT terminal on the relay and to the governor wire that connects at the overdrive relay. The test light should come on when the governor reaches about 30 MPH and go out when you drop below that speed. This will let you know if the governor is working OK.
    Good idea. This should help logically narrow it down. The confusing part for me is that sometimes I hear the click when slowing down, but nothing happens. Just stays in overdrive.
    Thanks

  17. #17
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    This sure has a strange set of symptoms, and since it started to mess up right after the engine R&R, I'd look for poor cable position or wiring installed wrong.

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