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Drivetrain Upgrade: Clutch and other goodies

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I have owned and driven my 94 gt for over 115k miles now, and never touched the clutch. I did replace the driveshaft with one that I put fresh U joints in some time ago when I rebuilt the rear. I also replaced the cable / quadrant and added a firewall adjuster (maximum motorsports kit). The t5 has a tri-ax shifter in it. from the engine to the tailshaft of the trans was never touched.

over the past few months, the clutch release bearing (throwout bearing) has been chirping... then chattering, now its even shaking the clutch pedal unless I adjust the firewall adjuster enought to keep pressure on the fork. I can do the same thing by resting my foot on the pedal. obviously not good signs. The other day, I couldnt get the car into gear so I adjusted the cable to make it a little more loose. that worked, but I can tell the days are numbered. the pedal grabs lower, and the release bearing is still making noise / rattling the pedal. That means that the fork is jumping around.

over the past few months, I have been buying parts to prepare for my 306 build. I was planning on doing the clutch along with the engine swap but it looks like the clutch is going to happen before then. Good thing I got some parts stockpiled!

Heres the list:

ford racing aluminum driveshaft

RAM HDX clutch and pressure plate

new ford racing dowl and pressure plate bolt kit

ARP flywheel bolts

freshly resurfaced stock flywheel

RAM 501 clutch release bearing

Ford Racing pilot bearing

Ford Racing steel bearing retainer for the T5 - I'm sure the stock one will be mangled with all the noise thats happening.

timken tailshaft seal for the T5

I also have a few clutch forks just in case. This is still a daily driver car and this setup should maintain drivability. It should be nice and smooth when its all done!

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i was thinking about that too. I've hear that with centerforce and other clutch kits, but no issues with the RAM stuff. we shall see. I did get the ford racing pilot bushing. and that steel bearing retainer is made for only 94/5 T5s.

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I had a chance to finally get this done. I had a wedding to go to this weekend, left on Friday night and came back on Sunday. I had Friday off so I tore the car apart on Friday. put it back together last night and its PERFECT. Let me get into the details.

First, the throwout bearing came out in 4 pieces. The pilot bearing needles also crumbled. The pressure plate, disk and flywheel looked pretty good, but they got replace anyway. I saved the flywheel, pressure plate and disk since it is already matched. The trans already had a steel bearing retainer on it, and that was pretty well worn due to the TO bearing failure The steel bearing retainer should be standard equipment on these t5s.

Here is what I learned:

1. to get out the pilot bearing, soap is probably not the best stuff to use. Play Doh is probably best, and you want to use the alignment tool to force it all in there and eventually pop out the bearing. i broke two alignment tools using the soap, and eventually wound up using a T5 broken input shaft that someone had laying around the shop - came out of a busted t5. solid steel worked better with soap than the hollow plastic alignment tools. there's plenty of vids on youtube about this using grease, so I wont get into details.

2. my engine is going to come out soon - there's another thread on the upgrade to the 306 - so I didnt bother doing the rear main when it probably needed it. I cleaned it up really good and smeared it with black RTV. when the motor comes out I'll let everyone know how well that worked.

3. The steel bearing retainer does not come with a race for the input shaft bearing. luckily my parts store had the bearing / race in stock (part number A5 from national bearing). I should have shimmed the back of it so that there was no end play. spec is 0 for end play. the trans was so sloppy that I'm just going to shop for a rebuilt one for when I do the engine swap. Use RTV on the back side of the bearing retainer and DONT spin the trans while the bearing retainer is off. it holds everything in place.

4. Test fit the throwout bearing on the steel bearing retainer. If its tight, use some sandpaper to get a good fit. make sure to lube the contact surfaces of the clutch fork after you clean that up really good.

5. I had a freshly surfaced flywheel going in. make sure you test fit the pressure plate / disk on the flywheel before putting it in the car. there was one of the three dowl pins that needed to be hammered straight before the pressure plate fit right on the dowls.

6. loctite the flywheel bolts. this does two things - prevents them from backing out and acts as a thread sealer. there's oil behind the crank!

7. having a plug for the trans will save you from having to drain it / refill it. OR use a stock yoke from an old driveshaft. I had one, should have used it, but figured I would replace the trans fluid anyway.

8. Doing this job with a friend makes it go exponentially faster. geting out from under the car every time to get a tool is a pain, but will double as an ab workout.

9. make sure you have a firewall adjuster and a good quadrant. The HDX I put in required the firewall adjuster to come almost all the way out. It would have helped to have the triple or even a double hook quadrant. I had the Maximum motorsports kit (cable, FW adjuster, quadrant) and that was only a single hook. Good thing that firewall adjuster had enough thread!

10. the clutch will be grabby to start with, and will eventually let the pedal raise up a bit once its broken in.

I'm really happy with the way it shifts now. and the aluminum driveshaft makes it feel like there's more power. I'll be commuting with this on thursday so I'll report back with how it feels on the highway.

- - - Updated - - -

one more thing. the RAM 501 bearing seemed OK. if it shows any signs of failure - i'll report back!

- - - Updated - - -

one more thing - the sn95 clutch forks are completely different than the foxbody forks.

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How do you like the hdx I've never had any issues with them . As for the bearings I won't even use ford racing ones I use the regular ford ones from the dealer .... Ford racing is all Chinese junk IMO even though 99 % of all these bearings are made at the same place lol .

Edited by Musturd
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so far so good for the HDX. pedal feel is good so far and it holds well even after just installing it. i have to say that the ride at speed is much smoother now with the upgrades. Clutch is a little low on the floor, but it will come up after some driving i'm sure.

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Its been a little while, so I thought it would be a good idea to update this thread!  The clutch feels great.  It isn't too aggressive, and the pedal feel is pretty good.  


I messed around with a few different clutch quadrants to get the pedal where I want it.  The original setup:  MM cable, quadrant and firewall adjuster.  the cable itself is not adjustable, and there is one hook on the quadrant.  the firewall adjuster has a ton of adjustment - it must move up to 3 inches or more!  


Next step was to use a double hook downs quadrant.  It helped, but the firewall adjuster needed to be moved way out.  on the hook further out, the adjuster was almost all the way in and the pedal grabbed quite low to the floor.  I didn't like it.  


The next one i used was a UPR quick release quadrant (my buddy had two of these on his shelf).  I borrowed one to see how it would work.  Again I had to move the firewall adjuster way out, but the clutch feel was WAY better.  It grabbed higher off the floor and the engagement was quick as promised.  I drove it like that for a week and then fine tuned it.  That quadrant is the one to have for this application!  


Since he still had one on his shelf, I gave him the downs double hook and the MM quadrants as a thank you.  


Always good to have a buddy that hoards parts!!!  Good times!

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