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Hard shifting 5 speed, especially 1st to 2nd

Discussion in '1st Gen. Tacomas (1995-2004)' started by Iowa TRD, Mar 13, 2018.

  1. Mar 13, 2018 at 9:46 AM
    #1
    Iowa TRD

    Iowa TRD [OP] Member

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    I am trying to figure out my hard shifting issues on my 2001 5 speed. I changed all of the drive line fluids (Redline in the tranny) last summer to try to help with the hard shifting problem but it still seems to be the same. 1st to 2nd is the worst and is very hard/ notchy when its cold. Once the transmission gets up to temp things tend to smooth out on most gears but again 1st to 2nd isn't great. The truck is approaching 170K so I know things wont be like new without a total rebuild but any tips to try to smooth things out more? I plan on draining the transmission again soon to see how dirty it is. I got the truck at 155K and I don't think the fluid had been changed in awhile by the previous owner. Hoping another flush might help.
     
    stecow and Johnnymoto like this.
  2. Mar 13, 2018 at 10:22 AM
    #2
    mwrohde

    mwrohde Well-Known Member

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    Mine does exactly the same thing. If I shift a little slower from first to second (not a quick shift) it's better. And, I think, if I pressure the shifter to the driver's side it's better. Sometimes.
     
  3. Mar 13, 2018 at 10:26 AM
    #3
    eon_blue

    eon_blue got boost?

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  4. Mar 13, 2018 at 10:27 AM
    #4
    10tacosr5

    10tacosr5 Well-Known Member

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    was the clutch ever replaced?
     
  5. Mar 13, 2018 at 10:27 AM
    #5
    gearcruncher

    gearcruncher Well-Known Member

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    Great white North 51.0333° N, 93.8333° W
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    Some gus say a new shifter bushing really helps in situations like this . For 15 bucks , its worth a try .
     
  6. Mar 13, 2018 at 10:47 AM
    #6
    eon_blue

    eon_blue got boost?

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    It's highly unlikely that a manual transmission in a Tacoma should ever need a full breakdown/rebuild under 200k miles...they are very stout and reliable at high mileage compared to automatics. Unless it was heavily abused and run dry, I wouldn't consider a rebuild of the transmission without first looking at simpler fixes like replacing the shifter seat bushing, greasing/lubricating the clutch pedal assembly, changing out the gear oil and clutch fluid, possibly changing out the clutch (if you're still on the stock clutch at 170k miles it is probably on it's last legs or close to it).
     
  7. Mar 13, 2018 at 10:51 AM
    #7
    eon_blue

    eon_blue got boost?

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    Also, manuals in Tacomas are notoriously notchy in my experience. It took me some time to get used to, especially coming from a manual trans FWD car previously that shifted like a hot knife through butter. An older truck with a stick shift just won't feel as smooth as that. But some high mileage maintenance like I posted above should really help. Lucas also makes an additive for manual transmissions that gets added with the gear oil to help smooth out shifting.
     
  8. Mar 13, 2018 at 11:10 AM
    #8
    Hillbillytnt

    Hillbillytnt Member

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    I have 340 k on an 01 5speed. Replaced the little cup and donut in the shifter about 220 k. Got so bad when it went I had to ask passenger to move their legs to get it in reverse. It had 80 k miles when I got it and I have never changed clutch and it’s still going strong
     
  9. Mar 13, 2018 at 11:12 AM
    #9
    Iowa TRD

    Iowa TRD [OP] Member

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    I'll give the shifter bushing/seat a shot. Is it just the white seat or is there a bushing for the shifter as well?

    I'm not sure if the clutch has ever been replaced by the previous owner. There was a stack of maintenance receipts for mostly major projects (shocks, plugs, fuel filter...) in the glove box when I got the truck and there isn't anything for a new clutch so I would guess it is still original. It doesn't slip at all under load but there is a chatter/ grabbing when I take off in first gear. I would say the clutch is worn for sure. A new clutch is on the list but other projects are cutting into that budget at the moment.

    Clutch fluid was replaced when Toyota replaced the frame in 2016 so I should be good there.
     
  10. Mar 13, 2018 at 11:13 AM
    #10
    eon_blue

    eon_blue got boost?

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    You want the white bushing/seat for the transmission shifter, the 4x4 t-case shift lever is the blue one I think. But the white one is definitely for the transmission shifter, I just got one recently. You can double check using their chart on that link
     
  11. Mar 13, 2018 at 11:20 AM
    #11
    Iowa TRD

    Iowa TRD [OP] Member

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  12. Mar 13, 2018 at 11:25 AM
    #12
    taco57

    taco57 Well-Known Member

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    I have an '03, 226K miles, does the same thing. Fluid changed twice using GL4 fluid as is recommended with brass components. I also replaced the cup some time back. The cup is still fine, just think it is bit of a characteristic of my transmission.
     
  13. Mar 13, 2018 at 11:25 AM
    #13
    Mod

    Mod Well-Known Member

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    Straight conventional 90Wt will cause this same thing also. It's too heavy when cold. Found out the hard way. Switched back to OEM weight recommendations and the problem is gone. You might try a oil switch. It's the easiest thing to check first before buying parts.
     
  14. Mar 13, 2018 at 11:34 AM
    #14
    Xbeaus

    Xbeaus Well-Known Member

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    Toytec coilovers. Height adjustable Bilstein's. 265/75/16 MT. TRD wheels. Rebuilt r150f. Marlin clutch kit. All kinds of new parts...
    I had a bolt sheer off in my R150F. I have a Marlin Crawler Clutch, new flywheel, new slave cylinder, new input shaft and all new bearings and synchros in my 5 speed. Also have the Marlin Crawler shift bushing. Guess what? It still shifts like a pickup :) I think these things are just kind of noisy and notchy. Someone beat the snot out of my pickup in a mud-hole so I assume that's what happened to mine because you NEVER hear of them going out. Except mine! now you know ;) They are breakable!
     
  15. Mar 13, 2018 at 12:15 PM
    #15
    License2Ill

    License2Ill Shitiful

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    It's a dry heat thou, AZ
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    I have the same issue. Hard 1-2 with grinding when cold. It's a common gripe with these gear boxes.
    65k on tranny, 15k on clutch all new hydraulics. Marlin shifter seats. Been this way since 40k...

    Been running Redline MT90. But I'm going to try Amsoil MTF in the future. Alot of people swear by it. I don't usually have shifting issues ehen the overnight temps are above 65°, so I'm kinda suspecting the gear oil is causing it.
     
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2018
  16. Mar 13, 2018 at 1:09 PM
    #16
    Glamisman

    Glamisman Well-Known Member

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    had a similar issue with a Mazda 5 speed transmission. You could feel it "bind" upshift/downshift. Took it out and disassembeled and could find anything obviously wrong, synchro teeth looked good, ridges inside the sycnhro were sharp, dogs and slider looked just fine but as an assembly it was just worn out. I thought that maybe, just maybe take some end play slop out of the shafts with shims but that didnt work. The second time back in I put a new 1-2 complete slider assembly, that fixed the issue. My transmission buddy said he would have done the same thing.
     
  17. Mar 13, 2018 at 1:43 PM
    #17
    RysiuM

    RysiuM Well-Known Member

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    Complains about Tacoma 5-speed shifting? I used to have Fiat 127 (hatch-back). That P.O.S. had to be babysit on every shift otherwise it wold growl at me :alien:. I still can't believe what a piece of s***t that car was.

    My 95 Tacoma shifts the same as you guys described since I got it at 70k miles (now I'm at 319k miles). Shifter bushing was replaced at 100k or so, clutch at 265k. It just shifts like a pickup truck.

    I had 2012 Maza 5 (6-speed), which changed gears like a flipping the switch. But that is much lighter transmission made 17 years after my Tacoma was built. I don't know how long it could lasts as I sold it after 4 years with 55k miles on it (it was to agile - to dangerous for me as it made me driving like a maniac).

    So back to Tacoma, I learned like others wrote, to not "flip it" from first to 2nd, but smoothly "slide it in". If I try to flip it, it will growl at me. And by the way, unless I am in very unusual situation, I shift from 1st to 2nd between 2 and 3k rpm (not revving it up on the 1st).
     
  18. Mar 13, 2018 at 2:43 PM
    #18
    Xbeaus

    Xbeaus Well-Known Member

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    Toytec coilovers. Height adjustable Bilstein's. 265/75/16 MT. TRD wheels. Rebuilt r150f. Marlin clutch kit. All kinds of new parts...
    It's hard going from my car that I can shift into 1st gear as I roll into a stop sign. My TAcoma - sometimes will go in nicely. It's like I almost have to be at a complete stop to get it into first. Just the way it is I suppose.
     
  19. Mar 13, 2018 at 3:10 PM
    #19
    Blue92

    Blue92 Well-Known Member

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    I think its a Toyota Truck thing. My 92 was like this, I put a marlin crawler seat and bushing in with no difference. My 04 does it too. But when both trucks get warm, the problem usually goes away. My dads 08 shifts hard in lower gears until it warms up too.
     

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