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The transmission is REALLY stiff shifting into any of the back three gears (2nd, 4th and 6th). Almost to the point of being unusable. This happened to me once before and I brought it into the dealer under warranty and they fixed it. Does anyone know what would cause this? I fear I am out of warranty now - is this something I can fix? I'm praying this is something that can be adjusted without opening up the gear box.
 

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The transmission is REALLY stiff shifting into any of the back three gears (2nd, 4th and 6th). Almost to the point of being unusable. This happened to me once before and I brought it into the dealer under warranty and they fixed it. Does anyone know what would cause this? I fear I am out of warranty now - is this something I can fix? I'm praying this is something that can be adjusted without opening up the gear box.
Fact that is the down-shifts only suggests trouble. Meaning, taking the gearbox down. Suggest a quick trip (on a flatbed) to the dealer, I'm afraid. You could check if the fluid level is OK, but again, if the trouble is one-sided, this is unlikely to be the issue.
 

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I would think that the shifter went out of adjustment.
There are a bunch of adjustments that have to me made to set this up. I would suggest having it looked at by someone who has a shop manual.
From what I read, there is a special tool to lock the shift lever in position while the adjustments are made.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Hi Fred,

I was hoping to hear something like that. Just to clarify, the car is very drivable; in fact I still drive it to work every day. I drove it for a while the last time this happened too. I just mostly skip 2nd and 4th.


Since this has happened to me twice in the past year, I'd like to learn how to realign it myself. I don't mind working on the car and I prefer not to have it in the shop for a week at a time.

Does anyone happen to have more information about how to align the shifter, or about the specific tool? Has anyone successfully done this before?
 

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If you can perform the adjustment yourself, that's great! I hope this will help you.

Instruction is applicable on cars that featue the gearbox controls p/n 198245 (Spyder GT) and p/n 198242 (Coupe GT) (From assembly number 10256) onwards.

- Hold firmly the gearshift lever in neutral by mean of tool p/n 900026260

- Check that the axis-to-axis dimension between the ball joints of lever corresponds to 76+/-0.5mm



Adjusting the gearshift wire

- Disconnect the cable from bracket (A) and from the ball joint of rocker (B)

- Connect the head of the cable to the bracket

- Open the linking block (C) and connect the plastic (D) end to the ball joint of the rocker

- Let the internal spring compensatee the freeplay of the cable then close the linking block



Adjusting the gears selection

- Disconnect the cable from backet (A) and from the ball join of rocker (B)

- Connect the head of the cable to the bracket

- Open the linking block and connect (C) the plastic end (D) to the ball joint of the rocker

- Hang a weight heavy 3.5-4.0 Kg about to the ball joint of the rocker and let it droop from the spacer bar (A) of the exhause, with a wire so that the freeplay of the system will be compensated. Then close the linking block



 

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Had the same problem 4 or 5 months back. My dealer replaced my entire shift linkage. May have been excessive for them to do so, but it was under warranty. Since then, it's been great, with the exception of one quick adjustment after about 3 months.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Well, my shifter issues are back with a SERIOUS vengeance!

I didn't get around to aligning the linkage like dchao said (btw, Thank You dchao for the information and pictures!). Instead, I managed to solve the problem by finding the spot where it was tight and wiggling the stick shift side to side to 'open up' the area (see crude diagram attached). I'm guessing that I managed to force some adjustment in the shift linkage enough to get things back to normal. That worked really well for about 15k miles, but now I have a bit more serious problem...

Yesterday I decided to lay into a 0-85 from a near stop (it is a sports car after all). The tranny was warm already so 1st to 2nd shift was smooth and fast, but going into 3rd it just revved through the roof. Since then, 1st 3rd and 5th no longer engage. When I shifted into 3rd I felt the normal amount of resistance that you would feel as you shift into any gear. The only thing that was different was the shifter never 'clicked through'. I definitely shifted with authority, but it wasn't unreasonable. I didn't nick any gears or let up on the clutch too early either.

There is a post from SQUID on 12/14 saying "You MUST take your time on a 2-3 upshift or you will beat the synchros". Perhaps this is what happened? Seems like a waste to have a 395hp car and have to 'take your time' shifting.

So now I can only use 2nd 4th and 6th. How ironic that my joke screen name has become a reality! I'm hoping that all I did was push the shift mechanism out of alignment. I'm going to take a look at it this weekend and see how things go. In the meantime, any help or advice is certainly appreciated.
 

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How many miles and has the clutch been changed out yet?

Am curious; these do shift hard as others have reported, 1 to 2, 5-6, I worry I am beating this thing and yet I have driven a stick since I was 16, NOW 49! So while I feel like I can drive a stick I too worry about the clutch in this exotic car; folks warn of the cost of the F1 pumps and all in the CC and this sounds like it could be trouble too; normally I can drive a clutch north of 75-90K miles on the original clutch! (The japanese cars) I don't think that will happen with this baby,lol dogdoc
 

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I didn't have the specific problem you describe but this might be helpful since you observed that working it side to side had some benefit. My shifter became very stiff in the side to side motion, causing great clunkiness. I found that the side to side cable goes to the rocker shown in the lower left of the photo dchao posted. Note that this pivots on a stud and is held by a nut and washer. I noticed some corosion on that washer so replaced that washer with a stainless one and put some moly grease on the pivot. I found that tightening the nut securely caused some binding that was alleviated if the nut tightened just enough to remove any play. There was enough stud sticking through the back of the nut to put on a locknut to keep everything secure with the looser arrangement. Much improvement!

Before you go pulling the gearbox, make sure the shifter mechanism is moving freely and check the adjustment.

As I think about it, your problem is likely on the other rocker: the one in the photo that has the dimension label right over the nut. That corresponds to the fore and aft stick motion. It is long with a weight on each end. This may well be binding in one direction that corresponds to rear part of the shifter gate. Check it out and lube the pivot. See how it feels with the nut loosened a bit.

Also worth noting is that replacement of the stick shift/cable unit requires removal of the torque tube, which requires unbolting the transaxle. Because it comes out from under the car, the shifter looks to be a big job.
 
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