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Gear Shifting Issue...please Help!

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#1 Alec_Clubman


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Posted 11 October 2018 - 08:52 PM

Hi, reaching out to try and solve my long lasting mini issue! Hopefully someone can shine some light on the problem...



Mini: 1973 Leyland Mini Clubman 1100cc from Australia


Issue: At a stand still the mini is very difficult to get into 1st gear. Can just about get into 2nd gear. Once i get going third and fourth gear are no problem. 


What I have done already:

- Previous owner changed the master cylinder and slave cylinder for the clutch. 

- I have taken the gearbox apart and rebuilt it with a rebuild kit. Very little to almost no wear seen.

- Installed new shifting rods.

- Installed a new clutch and pressure plate. 

- Installed gearbox stability mounts.

- Installed short shift.


What seems to help:

- I have gone through the clutch throw out adjustment sequence multiple times and it makes very little difference. 

- I purchased a pressure bleed kit and bled the clutch. This made a big improvement. 


My conclusion / brainstorming:

- Maybe there is a slow leak or not a tight seal in the line. This means that the clutch is not fully actuating. BUT, why does third and fourth work fine whilst the mini is going? Its only when the mini is at a stand still that it won't go into gear. 

- (1) Is it a clutch problem? (I think it is)

- (2) Is it a gearbox problem? (I don't think so, its fully rebuilt and went together nicely. Little to no wear noted)

- (3) Is it a combination of the two?

- Is there a sequence of things I can do to find out what the problem is?


Any help or ideas would be very much appreciated!







#2 nicklouse


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Posted 11 October 2018 - 10:26 PM

what type of box is it? remote or road type?

how much movement are you getting at the push rod (presuming non verto) ?

does it select all the gears ok with the engine off and no clutch used?

#3 Ethel


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Posted 12 October 2018 - 12:54 AM

Does sound like clutch. The throw out stop's function is to limit how far the clutch pushes after it's disengaged. Just back it off so it doesn't touch the clutch cover at all to be sure it's not the problem. If it's pre-verto adjusting the return stop is more likely to help, you want the minimum gap between the bolt head and the clutch arm when you pull the arm just far enough to take up the slack and put the release bearing in contact with the pressure plate. You'll hear the bearing spin if the engine's running.

#4 imack


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Posted 12 October 2018 - 04:21 AM

Check every moving part for wear. A little bit of wear at each point causes a loss of movement at the clutch due to leverage ratio. Check for wear at the pedal clevis pin and clevis pin hole in the pedal, also wear in the pedal pivot shaft, clevis pin wear at the clutch release arm in the wok and wear on the ball on the bottom of the clutch release arm.
Having replaced everything on my 72 I still had some difficulty selecting 1st gear when stating, turned out to be worn clevis pin hole in the clutch pedal, welded up hole and re drilled it so there was no excess free play and gear selection is now perfect.

#5 Moke Spider

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Posted 12 October 2018 - 05:13 AM

The check I do to see if the Clutch (or if the Primary Gear is Dragging) is when stationary and with the engine running, select 2nd, then Reverse.


By Selecting 2nd, if the gears are spinning, that will stop them, then as Reverse is a complete 'crash' type selection, if there's any motion building again, it will grind in rather than go straight in almost silently.


Another check for the Clutch (if pre-verto which yours should be), with the engine stationary, open the Timing inspection cover (on the Clutch housing), put the car in 4th Gear and push it forward or back until one of the bolts for the Diaphragm is showing in the inspection cover, then with an assistance to push the clutch, measure how far that bolt head moves, it needs a minimum of 1 mm and when everything is in perfect order will move almost 1.5 mm.


If less than 1 mm, it could be hydraulics, or the Arm, Plunger and / or pins.



what type of box is it? remote or road type?


Good question - it would have originally been a Remote Shift, but what's in it now?

#6 toppers3933


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Posted 12 October 2018 - 12:49 PM

Sounds similar to an issue I had a few years ago and t turned out to be the ball on the end of the clutch arm was partially snapped through. When you took the arm out and took a quick look at it the crack wasn't visible but under pressure the ball just flexed and the clutch didn't release. It was a brand new arm.

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