June 2016 Archives - Transmission Digest
Power to the Peon

The project he is working on is behind schedule. He believes that there is nothing he can do about his team running behind. Leadership in the organization won’t support him trying out some new things to get his project headed in the right direction, he believes. “I’m just a peon and can’t do anything to change how things are done,” he said.

‘Tween’: How to Identify ZF6HP Series Valve Body that Bridges 1st & 2nd Generation Designs

Take a ride on the memory train back to middle school. For many, this arouses feelings of a socially awkward time due to things like orthodontic braces and physical changes driven by hormones and runaway metabolism. Left behind were the childish days of elementary school, yet the yellow bus ride in the morning and afternoon signified that you hadn’t yet reached those glorious teenage years, high school and wheels of your own. By today’s popular definition, you were a “tween.”

June 2016 Issue

In This Issue
6L80 Front End Upgrades
Allison Cooler Line Fitting Fiasco
VW Jetta Wagon Alleged Engagement Problem

Choose Your Words Carefully

Whether doing business with strangers or longtime customers, the same rules of etiquette need to be applied. We never want to take liberties and feel that we can talk to customers the way we do our golf buddies. People can be easily offended, and it would be a shame to lose sales because our sense of humor doesn’t match our customers’ or because we don’t control the use of inappropriate language. Even if the customer is using off-color words or phrases, we cannot take that as a cue that it’s OK to join in.

Data-Driven Decisions

Sometimes, experience-based information systems can help diagnose a vehicle. I said sometimes because these systems can lead a technician down the wrong diagnostic path. As independent repair professionals, we have an array of information systems to choose from – OEM to aftermarket – but we need the most effective repair path.

Ford 6F50 – The Other Six-Speed Transmission

When Ford and GM got together to jointly develop the new FWD six-speed transmission family, they apparently agreed upon the basic architecture and operation allowing for the unique requirements of both companies. As they say, however, the devil is in the details. While many of the components of the 6F50 and 6T70 are the same, there are certainly differences due to design or the suppliers used. Although GM decided to designate some of the most noticeable changes to the 6T70 as GEN 1 or Gen 2, the Ford changes are mainly designated by the month and year that they occur. Before ordering replacement components for either transmission family, make sure to specify the precise application.

Diagnosing Electrical Signals

I’ve always had been fascinated by technology and electronics, and I can remember the first time I used a scope. It was in my high school auto-tech class, and we were being intro-duced to ignition waveforms using a Sun Engine Analyzer. I pulled my 1968 Barracuda up to this huge machine with all kinds of leads coming off of this big arm that hung over the engine bay, and everyone in the class was overwhelmed by what was going on. It was amaz-ing to me that my teacher could tell that my points (anyone remember points?) weren’t gapped properly and that I had a bad plug or wire on #3 cylinder simply by looking at the electrical signal on the scope.

Repeat Problems and Failures

Gauging the traffic and the topics of calls we receive on our tech line make it obvious that many problems result from missed diagnostics and failure to view the issue as part of a complete vehicle system that must interact correctly. The simple truth in our daily routine is that the vehicles we service grow more complicated and complex by the day. Be careful of the quick “rush to judgment” when approaching any customer concern, as the urge to remove and inspect components internally in many cases focuses your attention on the “effect” instead of the cause.