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Torque converter

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  • Torque converter

    I couldn't figure out how to paste the picture in properly, but here is a link. As you can see, the teeth are chewed up on my ring gear which is welded onto my FOM torque converter. Is this a job for a home welder or a machine shop [?] Or should I look for a used converter?

    [img]<a href="" target="_blank"><img src="" border="0" alt="Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting"></a>[/img]

    57 Golden hawk
    Golden, CO
    57 Golden Hawk
    Golden, CO

  • #2
    Hey Gallivan, I'm working through some transmission issues myself right now, so I think I'm qualified to speak

    If your transmission is out for rebuilding, have the torque converter rebuilt as well. It's pretty likely to be chewed up inside, and you sure don't want to put all the effort into freshening the gearbox innards and then have the TQ self-destruct 500 miles later!

    Your transmission shop likely has a rebuilder to do TQs; they will cut the converter open and rebuild the interior to make sure it works right. At the same time, you can procure a new ring gear (SI and other Stude vendors have them) and have it welded on. This is not a shadetree welding job; you have to have a certified welder do this one (because of the centrifugal forces generated while the car is in motion).

    From the looks of those gear teeth, your starter probably has some issues as well and should be rebuilt or replaced.


    Clark in San Diego
    '63 F2/Lark Standard

    Clark in San Diego | '63 Standard (F2) "Barney" |


    • #3
      Actually that's just normal wear on these things. Since the starter gear engages from the front of the car, the front of the ring gear teeth get worn over time (from being slammed by a spinning bendix gear) to the point where they start to slip. You CAN have a shop remove that gear and flip it over for another 20 years of use OR get a new gear and have it installed. If the TC was functioning properly, there's no real need to summarily rebuild it - just flip the gear!
      BTW, it's even easier to do this on stick shift cars. The ring gear's not welded in place so you just heat it with a torch until it'll lift off and them quickly flip it over and tap it back onto the flywheel. WALA! Good for another 100K miles![:0]

      Miscreant adrift in
      the BerStuda Triangle

      1957 Transtar 1/2ton
      1960 Larkvertible V8
      1958 Provincial wagon
      1953 Commander coupe

      No deceptive flags to prove I'm patriotic - no biblical BS to impress - just ME and Studebakers - as it should be.


      • #4
        Mr. Biggs' is right on the money since this TC is currently out of the car.

        To expand, there is a neat fix when you have a TC with the ring teeth stripped so that the starter just chews and won't spin the engine, but you don't want to drop the trans/pull the engine. This works because V8 engines tend to stop with the ring gear in one of 4 positions. For straight 6's its one of three positions. Usually the chewed spots are in these positions.

        After removing the sheet metal access cover on the bottom of the bell housing, you can separate the TC from the flex plate, rotate the TC so that the starter will begin its contact in one of the "good" spots, and re attach the flex plate. You'd also want to inspect the starter to find out why the chewing occurred. Sometimes its because the starter (usually newly rebuilt) will not have the bendix shimmed out far enough for good deep contact with the ring gear. Other times the bendix gear has gotten excessively chewed or worn; sometimes the nose shaft bushing is bad.

        Its not elegant, but it will get you home and then some.