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Old 07-22-2005, 12:10 PM   #1
bass0r
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New clutch problem, could use some input.

About 3 weeks ago I needed a new clutch. I took my car to the local transmission shop. I had my own parts. A ramline clutch, pressure plate and t/o bearing from summit racing. A few hours go by and I get a call saying that my flywheels teeth are chewed up and I will have to leave it a few days until they can get a new stock plate from the dealership. I called summit and they had a fidanza flywheel (aluminum with steel wear insert) that would fit my car. I dropped off the flywheel at the transmission shop. They finished up that afternoon and I picked up my car.

I noticed first that the pedal felt TOTALLY different. It felt like a new cars clutch at this point. I was really happy about this. As I drove it I was very careful with this new combo. As the miles piled up I noticed the pedal ever so slowly start to feel different. the engage/disengage point was definately moving.

Today 511.6 miles later (mind you I have babied this new install for the whole time) I took it in to the same shop. They are telling me that my clutch is half gone and thats why my pedal point has been moving. They are also telling me that they "THINK" it is a material interaction between the clutch and the flywheel that caused the clutch to grind away so fast.

I need some advice. Am I being told the truth on this? Can this really happen? Summit racing says no. I told the shop this but they are still adament about their position.

The car is a 95 Eagle Talon TSI
The Clutch set is a RAMLINE
The Flywheel is a FIDANZA Aluminum with a steel friction surface
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Old 07-22-2005, 02:55 PM   #2
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Re: New clutch problem, could use some input.

Personally, I wouldn't take to heart what the shop is telling you. I actually just installed a SB 3500 and Fidanza in my 95 TSi AWD. I, too, noticed that my engagement/disengagement points were changing, and the clutch seemed to be slipping. This will happen on a 2g if the pedal freeplay is maladjusted and there is no/not enough freeplay at the top, it will pump up and be like you're riding the clutch all the time, causing it to slip.

Now, I'm assuming that when you took it back, the shop drove the car, felt it slipping, and told you it was toast versus actually taking the 8 or so hours to remove and replace the transmission to actually inspect the clutch itself. Ask them if the clutch disc is just worn away on the flywheel side, they would know this if they had actually dropped the trans to check. If all they did was drive it, find out how much they adjusted the freeplay of your pedal when they did the clutch job. Chances are, they either didn't adjust it (people think that hydraulic systems don't need adjustment) or did and did not adjust it within spec. If this is the case, I would have some words with the shop if I were you, seeing as how this information can be easily be found on the internet, in any Chilton's or Haynes manual, and possibly even your owner's manual, if the shop manual was not readily available to them. I replaced my clutch lines just last night, actually, and had to readjust the clutch pedal freeplay after doing that. The steel braided lines, gave a more consistent pedal feel, but I am still having some issues with mine, I think my fork is messed up from my old subpar setup. In my case, the pedal pumps itself up, but feels normal when it does, instead of slipping. When I first drive the car, it feels like there is WAY too much freeplay, it's tricky to get into gear, then after a bit of driving it feels fine. Who knows, you could be having the same issues that I am.

Either way, they should have driven the car around after doing the clutch install (not just around in the parking lot) and if they had done this, they would have noticed it acting funny and remedied the problem. Mine only takes a mile or so to begin to pump up.

If it would make you feel better, you could call Fidanza, tell them your setup, and ask if there would be any issues using that combo. You don't need to get into what the shop said. Call Ramline and do the same. Find out what the friction material of the ramline clutch disk is, and if there would be any "material interaction" when used with a Fidanza flywheel. Don't just get people's advice or theory on your situation, get actual specs and information that you can arm yourself with your newfound plethora of knowledge when you go back to the shop to get your problem corrected.

Good Luck,
Nikki
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Old 07-22-2005, 04:04 PM   #3
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Re: New clutch problem, could use some input.

I called Ramline they told me there would be no material or chemical reaction between their clutches and the fidanza flywheel. They also offered up that their flywheels are manufactured with almost exactly the same material specs as the fidanza.

I called Summit Racing and they said almost to the letter the same thing as ramline.

I tried fidanza but havent gotten a hold of anyone there as of yet.

Both ramline and summit also told me about the initial adjustment issue that you have mentioned. I believe this to be the case and have called the shop and NICELY told them this. I am dropping the car off to them monday. I cannot however find an addition 800 dollars to redo this job again. He said he would work with me the best he can. I dunno, I should've just tried the job myself first. I would have felt so much better if I would have tried and failed. I am sure I would have failed tho as I have never done a clutch, Pressure plate, TOB and flywheel before. but, at least I would have had only myself to blame.

Last edited by bass0r; 07-22-2005 at 04:12 PM.
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Old 07-26-2005, 11:46 AM   #4
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Re: New clutch problem, could use some input.

Sounds like the clutch was never fully disengaging. Probably because the clutch master was adjusted out too far. It's the same effect as riding the clutch constantly. Several other possibilities but that's the most likely.
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Old 07-27-2005, 02:41 PM   #5
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Re: New clutch problem, could use some input.

If you babied the car for 500 miles, your clutch probably isn't toast.
As far as the $800 goes, there's no reason you should pay anything more to this shop. The adjustment takes about 5 minutes, it's done down at the clutch pedal. They should DEFINATELY not charge you for that, seeing as how they should have properly adjusted it in the first place, as any competent mechanic would do on any clutch job. If for some reason, they fudged it up so badly that your clutch IS toast, they should gladly offer to you to replace it for free, seeing as how it was their negligence that caused it to fail. Don't believe me, speak to any legal representative and see what they say. You see, the shop maltreating you and your vehicle is a good way to lose a customer, or a few, depending on how influential your word-of-mouth is. A civil suit is a good way to lose alot more. I'm not saying that it needs to come to this, but my personal feeling is that if they overlooked something as simple and necessary as adjusting your clutch after a clutch job, imagine what else they have "overlooked" on other people's vehicles, and for those people's safety, and the safety of others driving around them on the road, I don't think a place like that should be in business. Granted, the clutch adjustment isn't really a safety concern, but the point is that any job should be done correctly and completely.

Good Luck
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95 Subaru Impreza L - "Suby Two"- 110hp and AWD!!!
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Old 07-27-2005, 04:52 PM   #6
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Re: New clutch problem, could use some input.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Super4x4Duty
Sounds like the clutch was never fully disengaging. Probably because the clutch master was adjusted out too far. It's the same effect as riding the clutch constantly. Several other possibilities but that's the most likely.
do you mean that the clutch was never fully ENgaging? if it wasnt fully disengaging, the clutch would need to go to the floor and it would grind gears.
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Old 07-27-2005, 05:39 PM   #7
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Re: New clutch problem, could use some input.

Either way, it was never working properly.

I had the exactl same problem with my new clutch (2 years ago) and they told me that hydraulic clutches don't need to be adjusted... bullshit!

Anyway, you can just do this yourself if the shop proceeds to be a pain in the ass.

Stick your head under where the pedal is.

Loosen the little plastic assembly that acts both as a stopper and clutch switch.

Take the little wiring harness off.

Now adjust the stopper so that the pedal will now travel up more when you're not pushing on it.

Tighten things back up. This will help stop the clutch from pumping up and slipping.

Plug the wiring harness back in.

To adjust where the pedal actually begins to disengage you get a 10 or 12mm open face wrench and loosen the lock nut on the master cylinder rod. This is the threaded rod going into the firewall attached to the clutch pedal assembly.

If you turn the rod so that it screws INTO the firewall your clutch will begin to disengage sooner. (lower, towards the floor).

Try doing 2-3 turns at a time until you get it where you're comfortable.

Keep in mind that it MAY self-adjust a bit after you manually adjust this.

Tighten the lock nut.

Away you go.

I believe the rod itself has a flat spot on it that you can get a 8mm wrench onto if you can't do it with your fingers.

Good luck,

chris.
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Old 08-02-2005, 11:46 AM   #8
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Re: New clutch problem, could use some input.

I got a great tip on clutch adjustment. If you press the clutch slightly with your hand as you are turning the rod, it will make the rod very easy to turn. Otherwise, its very hard to turn.
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Old 08-02-2005, 12:33 PM   #9
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Re: New clutch problem, could use some input.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 0lmytsi
I got a great tip on clutch adjustment. If you press the clutch slightly with your hand as you are turning the rod, it will make the rod very easy to turn. Otherwise, its very hard to turn.
Never thought of that, I just ended up greasing it up as I tried to find the sqeak in my clutch pedal assembly.

Good tip though!
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Old 08-02-2005, 03:46 PM   #10
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Re: New clutch problem, could use some input.

thanks for all the help...I did the adjustment and now it works great!

I don't think the shop had a clue. The clutch is better now than it ever was since I owned the car.


thanks again

ken
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Old 08-02-2005, 11:06 PM   #11
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Re: New clutch problem, could use some input.

ya, no chance a clutch that you can beat for 50k is dead at 500 miles, they're freaking retarded. I might also consider taking a look at those flywheel bolts in a few thousand miles. Also check RRE's clutch/flywheel page...they've got some great info about your and similar problems and how maintian your system.
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