2016 Archives - Transmission Digest
As industry evolves, invest in yourself

We have come to the end of another year, and it is time to reflect on how our industry is changing and how we must change and adapt to survive. There are many trends that have very direct effect on our bottom line and our future. The auto manufacturers control a tremendous amount of what affects our industry. They are building excellent cars that if properly serviced will give owners good service for a very long time. Fuel mileage and emissions levels have improved greatly, with the advent of hybrid and electric vehicles. Due to better design and manufacturing standards, cars do not break down as often as past models if the customer does the required maintenance. Longer warranty periods, self-diagnosis and service reminders are now built into many current vehicles.

Rats! Foiled Again!

We had a 1998 Ford Contour come into the shop with a transmission wiring harness that had been completely chewed up by mice. I mean every wire in this harness had exposed copper running the length of the harness for at least two feet in one spot, and I can recall at least 10 wires shorting out against each other, causing multiple codes and drivability issues. I asked myself why this mouse (or these mice) would choose to feast on this poor, unsuspecting wiring harness?

Qualities of a Successful Manager

A winning manager always keeps in mind that the business exists to make a profit and it can only do that consistently if he or she truly cares that the best possible product is being produced by happy well trained employees.

Trusting your customers part 2

The reason why the people of Good Eggs did such a good job at earning my loyalty is because of how they made me feel (and to my referrals: seriously, go to Good Eggs any time you’re near Door County, Wisconsin)

December 2016 Issue

In This Issue
VW Jetta transmission repair option
Toyota Camry Self-Inflicted Wound
Dodge Truck Dilemma – Made Worse

Location and Function of New #8 Checkball for 6L80/90

The 6L80/90 transmission is showing up in shops much more frequently than in the past, as vehicles equipped with this unit get older. Believe it or not, the 6L80 is already 10 years old! As time flies by and we get familiar with rebuilding a specific transmission, we store in our memory more and more details of the disassembly and reassembly of specific items — such as the pump, input drum and valve body — to the point where it becomes second nature. This particular transmission is a pretty easy build. After their third overhaul, most builders would tear down the internal components and dump everything into a basket, run it all through the parts washer and start rebuilding and reassembling after the parts are cleaned.

Computer Reprogramming

There was a time, long ago, when the owner of a vehicle would experience a transmission problem and roll into a repair facility to have it addressed. The issue would be diagnosed, the offending components would be repaired or replaced, and once done final adjustments would be made either before or after a thorough road test. Fine tuning was limited to the adjustment of a throttle rod or cable, turning a screw a couple of times on a modulator, or changing a spring on a governor. So much for the good old days!

Makeover of a Plug-In

There have been no redesigns of any plug-in cars except the Chevy Volt. The Nissan Leaf did get a larger capacity battery pack and the motor/inverter underwent changes, but the body and chassis stayed the same. Tesla has new models but not a new makeover. So why did General Motors change everything? Let’s revisit the decade at GM.

Hot Potato

After vehicle tossed from one shop to another, TCM replaced and vehicle returned to owner.

Sonnax: Innovative Synergy

Within the past few months, Sonnax has been busy expanding its corporate campus, acquiring a third building that has been renovated to house the company’s product managers, product support team and development engineers. The pairing of engineers and product line managers wasn’t accidental but rather a strategic reflection of a reorganization of company structure a couple of years back. Sonnax Senior Vice President of Product Development.

First, Do No Harm – Things you should know about performance servos

We see fewer servos in later-model transmissions, but we still deal with them when rebuilding older units. For the most part it is business as usual, except for a few performance applications where a deeper understanding of servo operation can make all the difference when trying to make a transmission stand up to higher power.

November 2016 Issue

In This Issue
Cadillac CTS engine eruption
Manual Transmission Clutch Service – DDCT Style
Audi Dual Clutch Transmission