Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Iowa, near Missery (Missouri)
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I'd like to also add that a smooth engaging clutch can make a big difference in trans breakage. Chattery, sharp engagement hammers the gears, not good. I was for a while planning to use a ZF in my '69 mustang. Since the trans tunnel was cut out of it anyway, it woulda fit. However, it is very tall (as has been mentioned) and that causes it to hang too low. I think they shift fast enough when warm, but the downshifts need double clutched to be smooth. In the end, I figured it not worth it as I'd have to raise the engine to get the bottom of the trans high enough for ground clearance while keeping the driveline angle good. For me the cost is the major factor. I'm going with a 3 speed toploader out of a mid '70s truck that had a 302. This is an all iron toploader that shifts ultra slick with a floor shifter. It's got the wide ratio low 1st gear, a 2nd gear between the 2nd and 3rd ratio of a 4 speed toploader, and 1:1 3rd gear. Should be just splendid with the big block torque where I don't need 4 gears. With 2.75 rear gears, it should be all matched nicely. Best of all, these 3 speed toploaders are cheap and decently stout internally (unlike the mustang 3 speed toploaders behind the straight sixes).
I'll also mention that I was going to use the E4OD in my stang but found it has a deep trans pan that hangs low too. This isn't a simple fix of putting on a shallower pan because the valve body of that trans requires the deep trans pan. This along with high cost of torque converter and other E4 parts made it not so feasible. The 4r70w with adapter bellhousing seems to be a better option. I think the E4 can be built to be ultimately stronger, but for the cost and effort to make it work in a car application, I don't think it makes much sense.
If they can get you asking the wrong questions, they don't have to worry about answers.
Last edited by ScottJackson; 12-07-2009 at 12:22 PM.