2003 Jeep TJ - Doesn't want to go into 1st gear, clutch issues? - JeepForum.com
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 7 Old 10-21-2019, 03:15 AM Thread Starter
Jprocs24
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2019
Posts: 4
2003 Jeep TJ - Doesn't want to go into 1st gear, clutch issues?

Hey everyone,

I've silently searched the forums for years and usually find my answers hidden amongst the knowledge in various threads from the years but I've finally met my match with a bizarre issue I'm having on my 2003 Jeep TJ and need to ask for help on the forum. I'll try and write it out so it's easy and clear to understand, tl;dr at the bottom. I'd appreciate any input if anyone else has had this issue or might have any ideas on what it could be, whether its the clutch, slave/master, or both.

Vehicle:
2003 Jeep TJ with Rubicon 44's and a Rubicon 241 swapped in, 5 speed manual (NV3550) with 100K miles (161K kilometers), running on 33x10.5's and it's not beat to hell and back.

Issue:
Recently when I go to put my Jeep into gear it's like hitting a brick wall, a lot of the times it will not want to go into first gear and to get it in I have to put it in 2nd, 3rd, or most commonly reverse to get it to slip in without hitting the "wall". I bought the Jeep stock and built it up at home, no maintenance records when purchased but it wasn't beat up and was a city Jeep. This has lead me to believe the clutch is not fully disengaging.

Current driving & sounds it has:
- The clutch does not slip, it drives excellent besides a crappy 1st to 2nd synchro (I think?) and shifts without issues once moving.
- No grinding or weird noises going into reverse or under normal driving conditions.
- It's always had a loud transmission when decelerating but never gave me issues.
- When my foot is not on the clutch it makes a bag of marbles sound, when it is on the clutch fully it goes silent.
- When I push the clutch in it sounds creaky as hell, and almost has a click to it, I notice it when the Jeep is off but can assume it's anytime (just masked by motor noise when running)

Possible Causes:
After scouring the web I'm lead to believe it's most likely problems with something inside the clutch (pilot bearing, throw-out bearing, bad pressure plate/clutch fork, or perhaps a bad master/slave?). I have checked the master and slave, fluid level looks good and clean, no leaks underneath or near the clutch pedal inside, slave looks good and has the plastic piece on the end still well when pulled from the tranny to check. The only thing I could think of is it has an internal bypass allowing it to bypass and not give full throw to release the clutch fully?

Main things to note/ tl;dr:
- Does not want to go into 1st gear unless switched from 2nd or reverse into 1st
- At times I've turned the Jeep off and put it into first (no issues when off), then fired it up to get going if it won't go in from 2nd or reverse into 1st
- The clutch is currently like an on/off switch
- It has normal pedal feel and drives absolutely amazing once moving, but releases like it was dropped and will chirp the tires at times.
- I believe it is not fully releasing which is why it's hard to get into first gear but I'm just wanting to gather some opinions to see if anyone else has had this issue before I start replacing parts.





Part's list I've started looking at ordering... Please feel free to comment if I'm missing anything that I'd need, I would appreciate it immensely.
- Luk 05-065 clutch kit (comes with cover assembly, clutch disk, release bearing, pilot bearing, accessory pack (whatever that includes...))
- Clutch return spring
- National throw-out bearing since I've heard bad things about the Luk one having a plastic sleeve part.
- Pre-bled Master/Slave combo, not sure of which brand would appreciate recommendations if you've swapped one.

Jprocs24 is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 7 Old 10-21-2019, 08:31 AM
bobjp
Registered User
1997 TJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 2,212
If you pump the clutch pedal, is it easier to get into first?

Does it always go into any gear with ease except 1st while stopped?

97 TJ sport.
bobjp is offline  
post #3 of 7 Old 10-21-2019, 09:31 AM
JFM626
Registered User
 
JFM626's Avatar
2004 TJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Tyee Capital of Canada
Posts: 2,262
Have you considered changing the transmission oil?

How can you trust an atom, they make up everything
JFM626 is offline  
 
post #4 of 7 Old 10-21-2019, 11:10 AM Thread Starter
Jprocs24
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2019
Posts: 4
Quote:
Originally Posted by bobjp View Post
If you pump the clutch pedal, is it easier to get into first? Does it always go into any gear with ease except 1st while stopped?
I've tried that and unfortunately it makes no difference for getting it into first. When the Jeep's cold it goes in without issues now that I think about it, whenever I give it the first few shifts after it's sat for a while.

Sometimes it'll give me issues with other gears such as second/third /reverse but for the most part it's usually just first, it'll slide in easy if it's even just sightly rolling.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JFM626 View Post
Have you considered changing the transmission oil?
Tranny fluid was changed at 136K to Royal Purple and the old fluid looked good, I changed it again 1000km ago with Redline MTL to check for chunks (synchro problems) but the fluid looked like new when coming out, no chunks, shimmers, or burnt smell. The fluid change did not affect the way it shifts at all, exactly the same afterwards.
Jprocs24 is offline  
post #5 of 7 Old 10-21-2019, 11:41 AM
bobjp
Registered User
1997 TJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 2,212
It sounds like a hydraulic issue if you are having issues in all gears and if rolling helps get it in gear. I would start with the slave, but buying a bled system isn't a bad idea.

97 TJ sport.
bobjp is offline  
post #6 of 7 Old 10-21-2019, 11:53 AM Thread Starter
Jprocs24
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2019
Posts: 4
Quote:
Originally Posted by bobjp View Post
It sounds like a hydraulic issue if you are having issues in all gears and if rolling helps get it in gear. I would start with the slave, but buying a bled system isn't a bad idea.
I looked into bleeding it to discover the TJ has a sealed system, I'll be researching what brand of replacement to get for the master/slave today. I wonder if that's why the issue isn't right from when it's fired up and more prelevant when it's hot after driving and shifting a few times.
Jprocs24 is offline  
post #7 of 7 Old 10-22-2019, 02:04 AM Thread Starter
Jprocs24
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2019
Posts: 4
Ordered a new Sachs master/slave unit, will update once that arrives and I get a chance to install it. Fingers crossed that's the issue, if not the tranny will have to come out.
Jprocs24 is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the JeepForum.com forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid e-mail address for yourself.



Email Address:
OR

Log-in











Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome