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Thread: Clutch adjustment

  1. #1
    Firebird1999 is offline Rookie
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    Default Clutch adjustment

    I recently had a new clutch installed in my truck (2002 Freightliner Classic XL).

    I picked the truck up late at night at no one was around. I have since driven it over 1,000 miles. The clutch feels crazy. I am pretty sure that it is way out of adjustment. There is almost 4 inches of free pedal travel and only maybe 2 inches of actual clutch. The clutch takes hold if you even think about letting any pressure off of it from the floor.

    I looked around here for the adjustment procedure but found one that I don't think pertains to my truck.

    Looking through the inspection hole I see the trans brake and the fork, then the shaft with a spring around it, no threads, then the pressure plate.

    I am sure that the clutch is adjustable. I have been a helper when it was done before.(Bump it over, O.K. hold the clutch in.) but never been on the bottom end to actually do the adjustement.

    Where is the adjuster?

    Thanks,

    Dave

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  3. #2
    9200IH is offline Member
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    On the firewall there should be your clutch linkage. Take the clevise pin out and adjust it tell you have 1/2" free play. Probably will be about 5-6 turns on the clevice.

    The real mechanics on here might want to add something about this.

    I helped a mechanic put a trans and clutch in my truck, When we got everything installed the free play was a little off and he adjusted it on the firewall linkage.

  4. #3
    pdm
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    There should be a half inch between the release brg & the clutch brake, if not it needs an internal adjustmant. The adjuster is on the pressure plate( clutch housing that bolts to the flywheel). Roll the engine over tll its at the bottom, a 15/16 on the alternator pulley works well, there's a couple different styles of locks. Some you depress & turn, others you remove a lock. Hold the clutch pedal down to turn the ring, turning it clockwise increases free play so by the sounds of it you should turn it counter clockwise...........

    Freeplay is adjusted internally & clutch brake is adjusted on the linkage externally. Hope this helps
    You can't fix stupid......

  5. #4
    Firebird1999 is offline Rookie
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    after measuring the distance between the release bearing and the brake, it is less than 1/4 inch so it looks like the guy just adjusted it too tight.

    I guess I just am not familiar enough with the adjuster to know what I am looking for. I understand that it is supposed to be on the pressure plate, but I just can't find it.

    Anybody have a pic or diagram?

    Thanks,

    Dave

  6. #5
    pdm
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    If you bar the engine over 1/4 turn at a time & watch for it you'll find it............it should be quite noticeable..........
    You can't fix stupid......

  7. #6
    Pound4Pound is offline Rookie
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    You need to have a 1/2 clearance between the throwout bearing and the clutch brake and 1/8 of an inch between the release fork and the throwout bearing. There are a couple of different types of clutches out there. The solo which is one is a self adj clutch which the only thing that you can adj with them is the clutch brake. Then there's the spicer which is normaly adj with a 5/8 wrench. Push the bolt in and turn clockwise to adj. After making the adj make sure the button on the adj pops out or the clutch will turn in all the way. You could try goig to the spicer web site and look in there for pictures...John

  8. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by 9200IH
    On the firewall there should be your clutch linkage. Take the clevise pin out and adjust it tell you have 1/2" free play. Probably will be about 5-6 turns on the clevice.
    Never, Never, Never adjust the free travel on a double disc pull type clutch by messing with the external linkage!

    Adjust only at the adjuster on the pressure plate.
    If you can't shift it smoothly, you shouldn't be driving it.

  9. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Splitshifter
    Quote Originally Posted by 9200IH
    On the firewall there should be your clutch linkage. Take the clevise pin out and adjust it tell you have 1/2" free play. Probably will be about 5-6 turns on the clevice.
    Never, Never, Never adjust the free travel on a double disc pull type clutch by messing with the external linkage!

    Adjust only at the adjuster on the pressure plate.
    Yes, what Slipshifter said!
    1999 FL Classic, N14+ 525 hp, RTLO16-9-13A
    1997 Van's Aircraft RV-6, IO-360

  10. #9
    Firebird1999 is offline Rookie
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    O.k. I guess I will have to ask. Why don't you mess with the linkage?

    No I don't plan on doing it, but now you have gotten me curious as to why.

    I checked out my clutch some more. There is a metal piece with a bolt in it. removing the metal piece doesn't expose a screw or anything like that. The metal piece fits between two metal pieces on the pressure plate. I don't see any actual adjuster.

    Thanks for all the replies,

    Dave

  11. #10
    pdm
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    Take the bolt out, it locks the adjuster ring, Hold the clutch pedal to the floor with a bar/helper etc. Using a prybar turn the ring counterclockwise ( opposite engine rotation). Move it 5 or 6 notches & check the adjustment, freeplay should be decreasing & the release bg shouild move away from the transmission. Turn the ring until you have a 1/2 inch between the brg & transmission.

    You only adjust the linkage if the clutch brake needs adjusting due to linkage wear, cab mounts etc, not for freeplay.
    You can't fix stupid......

  12. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by pdm
    Take the bolt out, it locks the adjuster ring, Hold the clutch pedal to the floor with a bar/helper etc. Using a prybar turn the ring counterclockwise ( opposite engine rotation). Move it 5 or 6 notches & check the adjustment, freeplay should be decreasing & the release bg shouild move away from the transmission. Turn the ring until you have a 1/2 inch between the brg & transmission.

    You only adjust the linkage if the clutch brake needs adjusting due to linkage wear, cab mounts etc, not for freeplay.
    Actually the free play at the pedal will be increasing when you turn the adjusting ring clockwise.

    Those old type adjustment rings with the "lockstrap" also had a nasty habit of getting jammed so the ring wouldn't turn. I've had to use a hammer & drift to break that type free occasionally. Hopefully the one in firebird's truck will still turn.
    If you can't shift it smoothly, you shouldn't be driving it.

  13. #12
    Firebird1999 is offline Rookie
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    Thanks to all for the replies.

    I finally got everything straightened out.

    When you guys kept saying "Adjuster Ring" I was thinking along the lines of something maybe the size of a bolt head. I didn't realize that the ring is actually almost the size of the pressure plate. Interesting...

    I did have to use a hammer & drift, but after just a few taps it started to move fairly easily. The clutch feels great now and the freeplay is right. It even slides right into gear without grinding from idle.

    Now we have to get that turbo replaced and my truck will be ready to go.

    Thanks,

    Dave

  14. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Splitshifter
    Quote Originally Posted by 9200IH
    On the firewall there should be your clutch linkage. Take the clevise pin out and adjust it tell you have 1/2" free play. Probably will be about 5-6 turns on the clevice.
    Never, Never, Never adjust the free travel on a double disc pull type clutch by messing with the external linkage!

    Adjust only at the adjuster on the pressure plate.

    ...unless you're replacing the clutch altogether, but even then the internal adjustment (at the clutch cover) is still done first

    .... or, if it's a solo
    Bob H

  15. #14
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    While we are on the subject of clutches, I have a question. My clutch adjustment is fine. I do my own adjustments and have for years on all the trucks I have driven. I have replaced clutches and trannys. No problems there, but my question is, what might be the noise coming from the clutch? It happens when I get on the fuel a little bit. It's sort of a chatter. Not to bad, but it drives me nuts. No slipage or anything. The noise will travel up threw the pedal from leaning on the bracket on the firewall. If I press in the pedal a little of the noise goes away, but I can still hear it and feel it a bit. It almost feels like at an idle in neutral the clutch is engaged a little. Good clutch with worn pilot bearing? I will replace clutch soon just because the noise is making me crazy. I don't want to though if there is a cure.

  16. #15
    Firebird1999 is offline Rookie
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    Funny you should mention this. The exact same thing was happening to me. This was before they replaced the clutch and all that. But when I first got the truck the rattle from the clutch was driving me nuts. If I just pushed the clutch in enough to take up some of the slack, the noise went away.

    I replaced the clutch return spring with a slightly stiffer spring and it fixed the problem. Just a suggestion.

    Dave

  17. #16
    bob h's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sidman82
    While we are on the subject of clutches, I have a question. My clutch adjustment is fine. I do my own adjustments and have for years on all the trucks I have driven. I have replaced clutches and trannys. No problems there, but my question is, what might be the noise coming from the clutch? It happens when I get on the fuel a little bit. It's sort of a chatter. Not to bad, but it drives me nuts. No slipage or anything. The noise will travel up threw the pedal from leaning on the bracket on the firewall. If I press in the pedal a little of the noise goes away, but I can still hear it and feel it a bit. It almost feels like at an idle in neutral the clutch is engaged a little. Good clutch with worn pilot bearing? I will replace clutch soon just because the noise is making me crazy. I don't want to though if there is a cure.

    The pilot bearing is not turning when clutch is fully engaged.

    Check inside on the bottom of the bell housing for pieces of broken springs.
    Bob H

  18. #17
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    As for chunks, I was in there for my last adjustment, and everything was clean. It's been doing it for about 7 months. Never gets worse, never gets better. If it is my pilot bearing, I will just change clutch while I'm in there. Tranny has to come out anyway.

    Thanks for the suggestion on the spring.

  19. #18
    klleetrucking is offline Member
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    Default Clutch Adj.

    sidman82, I have the same "noise" problem you have. Adj. is good, no slippage, but a "rattleing" noise that comes up through the clutch pedal, push the pedal down a tad and the noise quits. Does it mostly when the truck is not pulling or decelerating (neutral load). '03 Pete 600k.
    What'd you figure out?
    When you're good,your work will brag for you

  20. #19
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    I'm inclined to agree with Bob on this one. Loose or broken springs causing some "beating" in the clutch center hubs. Or possibly just some loose/worn linkage.
    1999 FL Classic, N14+ 525 hp, RTLO16-9-13A
    1997 Van's Aircraft RV-6, IO-360

  21. #20
    klleetrucking is offline Member
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    Default Clutch Adj.

    Talked to some knowledgeable friends and as soon as I get back home I'm going in for a clutch. Maybe overkill, but in my past experience, noise is an indicator of problems. I'll update later.
    When you're good,your work will brag for you

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