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Datsun 210 trans question

bugedd

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I just took the car out for a drive after installing a 3/4 bore master from the 7/8, and what a difference! Who would have thought 1/8" would change things so dramatically. What prompted me to do this was the poor pedal feel and shifting performance with the rebuilt 210 trans I put in. Now that its done, the brakes feel better, the shifting performance is better, clutch feel is amazing. BUT, the first to second shift is notchy, a bit resistant. And the third to second is the same. All the other gears feel good. Is this something that will break in, or should I be concerned with the rebuild? I did do a fluid change, as I feel you should after running a rebuilt part for a short time to get the metal bits and contamination out. Things feel better, but not great in that gear. Thoughts?
And its the Rivergate conversion with their clutch slave/braided line.
 

Jim_Gruber

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Fluid in the Tranny? Not engine oil but Gear Oil. I think Gerard reported good things on Redline Gear Oil. 90w I forget the weight. Wrong fluid could account for shifting issues.
 
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bugedd

bugedd

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I used what Rivergate recommends, Valvoline gear oil.
 

Billm

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It could easily be the syncronizer in 2nd is not quite up to par, there were some "lesser" syncro-cones going around a few years ago.
BillM
 
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bugedd

bugedd

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And with that "lesser" syncro, I have to live with it unless I feel like doing a tear down?
 

smaceng

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I too installed a Datsun 5-speed in my BE. I also had the same problems you have, hard shifting sometimes into 2nd and 3rd. I tried all of the MT reline gear oils, and also even Mobil 1. Nothing worked. MTL Redline 70W80 was the best....but it was suggested that I substitute 12 oz. of Marvel Mystery Oil (MMO). So far it is much, much better. For how long, I don't know......Try at your own risk. Scott in CA
 

BlueMax

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Will at Rivergate recomends Valvoline synthetic gear oil in his install booklet, my booklet said the same too. BUT you will find that ATF will work best for smoother shifts. Also, remember ATF has broader Lubrication functions than gear lubications with its additional detergents and its greater anti-foaming agents.
 
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bugedd

bugedd

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Really, ATF? Will it protect the same?
 

bug_sixty

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I've used ATF also, the viscosity change isn't as extreme as gear oils.. That being said the guru's of transmissions still say 80-90 synthetic gear oil
 

BlueMax

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I plan to run D4 Redline ATF synthetic in my newly overhauled gearbox... I have no fear that it will work perfect. Remember automatics have planetary gears and bearings, so the fluid has to actually work harder, as well it also has a valve body and frictions disc that needs be cooled.
 

Billm

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The Chevy Citation and Fiero manual transmissions used ATF per the factory manual.
BillM
 

Bayless

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Some gearboxes are designed and built for ATF. Some are not. Autoboxes have to be since it is also used as their hydraulic fluid.
 

Gerard

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Some gearboxes are designed and built for ATF. Some are not. Autoboxes have to be since it is also used as their hydraulic fluid.

I am the one that gave Scott the tip on the MMO. I have a good friend and very experienced professional mechanic that restores award winning Datsun Roadsters. I consider him an expert when it come to a lot of Datsun information. He swears by the this little trick and Scott reported improved shifting to me since making this change.

It's true that there were some bad synchros being produced. At one time, Paul Asgeirsson built a number of gearboxes with them and they all needed to be rebuilt. I don't know the source of the bad ones, but I prefer to keep the originals. Of the half dozen or so I've opened up, I've never seen any that needed replacing. In fact, many were quite close to factory specs. The worst I've encountered in an as-is box is that 2nd gear was a little slow when cold.
 
Last edited:

pdxpete

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Paul got those synchros / baulk rings as parts in rebuild kits he purchased from a large, local (Portland OR) transmission parts wholesaler and installed them in good faith. Turns out that the "bevel" on the working side of those baulk rings was off by a degree or two. Once aware of the problem he found that he could firmly press the synchro against its mating gear and still turn it. This, of course, should not happen. And, it really p****d him off. He then started scavenging, saving and recycling used used baulk rings after checking to make sure that they met factory tolerances (which can be found in the Datusn 210 manual). The last time I was at that wholesaler's with him the guy behind the counter said they were putting together a large number of rebuild kits (with those suspect baulk rings) for one of Paul's competitors in the Datsun to Spridget transmission swap business. We were both able to keep straight faces ... until we got out of the building.
 

Gerard

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Paul got those synchros / baulk rings as parts in rebuild kits he purchased from a large, local (Portland OR) transmission parts wholesaler and installed them in good faith. Turns out that the "bevel" on the working side of those baulk rings was off by a degree or two. Once aware of the problem he found that he could firmly press the synchro against its mating gear and still turn it. This, of course, should not happen. And, it really p****d him off. He then started scavenging, saving and recycling used used baulk rings after checking to make sure that they met factory tolerances (which can be found in the Datusn 210 manual). The last time I was at that wholesaler's with him the guy behind the counter said they were putting together a large number of rebuild kits (with those suspect baulk rings) for one of Paul's competitors in the Datsun to Spridget transmission swap business. We were both able to keep straight faces ... until we got out of the building.

Hi Peter,

I didn't realize you were on this forum. How are you doing?

LOL... great story about Paul. He never told me about that part of the story... LOL

Thanks for shedding some light on the whole thing.
 

WMWeakley

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Sounds like your second gear synchro is worn, which is very likely. You can get used to shifting a little slower into second, or tear down the trans to replace one synchro. Rivergate offers a kit with almost every replaceable part for the transmission, but if everything else is good, I would just replace the three lower gear synchros and the input and output seals.
 

Jim_Gruber

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Another 210 Question. Are the Throwout Bearing Carriers still available. I now have a 210 Tranny in my garage but it came with shift fork, shifter, and Spring but no throwout bearing carrier? Can these still be sourced from Nissan?
 

Jim_Gruber

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Oh and the transmission filler plug, missing, any idea on bolt size to fit this one. Or what should go in there. I now see the difficultly of adding fluid to this transmiion when installed. Thinking some sort of tube, be it plastic or possibly metal that hangs down below tranny that is capped off. Use one of those pumps that are used for Boat Outdrives to pump up fluid when needed into the tranny. Or is the consensus, it it isn't leaking, based on the mileage these cars are driven, changing fluid is an every 5 year thing anyway at minimum.
 

Pythias

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the filler plug bolt is metric, with a 14 mm head. ... I don't know the actual thread count/spacing. Yes, fill it with a little bottle pump. When filling trannys Paul would ask if it was to used in very cold weather. If so then he recommended synthetic, but if the car wasn't going to be driven below freezing very often, then standard GL4 was what he used.

It was the 2nd to third shift balk ring that caused him all the grief. I test drove the first car with the reported problem for him, as he couldn't believe what the customer was telling him, and didn't quite have the time to get out to the hinterlands. He rebuilt the tranny and had the same problem a second time. That's when he took the calipers to every one balk ring he had. There were only about 60% in tolerance. He had to rebuild that tranny one more time. .. The customer still has the car.
 
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