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    Forum Moderator digitaloutsider's Avatar
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    4T65E Do-It-Yourself Shift Kit: Instructions and Install Guide

    WARNING: Most transaxle fluids marketed as "Dex/Merc" compatible have changed their formulation and do not conform to previous Dexron specifications. I suggest using ONLY GM approved Dexron VI fluids. You can pick up SuperTech's GM approved Dex VI fluid at Wal-Mart for a little over $3.50 a quart.

    Credits: This do-it-yourself method was originally pioneered by members of OKGPC, so they get full credit for coming up with it. I'm simply giving you my twist on it, along with pictures and a more detailed write-up. This is the exact same kit you get from vendors like W-body Store for less than half of the price.

    Synopsis: Install a shift kit utilizing shims in the transaxle shift pressure accumulator.

    Difficulty: 3/5. Requires dropping the bottom transaxle pan, removing the shift pressure accumulator, changing the transaxle filter, and refilling the transaxle with fluid.

    Parts required:



    The parts you need are determined by whether you want to do the medium (light street/strip) or hard (heavy street/strip) shift kit. There's also an optional spring used to firm up the 1-2 shift (usable with either medium or hard). The shims used are available from McMaster-Carr online.

    Medium Shift Kit

    (2) 92415A865 :: Zinc-Plated Steel Unthreaded Round Spacer 1/2" OD, 1/2" Length, 1/4" Screw Size
    (2) 92415A867 :: Zinc-Plated Steel Unthreaded Round Spacer 1/2" OD, 3/4" Length, 1/4" Screw Size

    Hard Shift Kit

    (2) 92415A867 :: Zinc-Plated Steel Unthreaded Round Spacer 1/2" OD, 3/4" Length, 1/4" Screw Size
    (2) 92415A869 :: Zinc-Plated Steel Unthreaded Round Spacer 1/2" OD, 1" Length, 1/4" Screw Size

    Required for both kits

    8-10 quarts of Dexron VI transmission fluid
    Transmission filter

    Optional for either kit

    2-3 shift accumulator spring (used to replace the stock 1-2 shift spring). GM part number 24203977.

    Directions:

    1. Raise the front of the car and begin loosening the 10mm bolts on the transmission pan. Loosen the ones toward the back of the car more than the front so the fluid drips toward the long end of the pan. Allow it to nearly fully drain to avoid a huge mess (which is going to happen anyway, it's just saving you at least a little bit of a headache). Remove the pan and clean it off along with the magnet and gasket.

    2. With the pan removed we can now access the filter. Pull it straight down firmly, twisting it side to side to break it loose. Change the filter neck gasket if required.

    3. Now that the filter is removed, we can now take out the accumulator itself. It's seen below in color, along with the bolts that need to be removed numbered for easy reference. Once these bolts are removed, the accumulator will want to drop down and spill transmission fluid everywhere. Use one hand to hold up the accumulator and another to remove the bolts by hand once they're broken loose. Pull the hard metal lines out of the accumulator using care as not to bend them. Note the location of each metal line.



    4. Once the accumulator is removed, place it face-up and remove the remaining bolts. Remove the cover. Inside you'll find two cylinders, both with visible springs. Do one side at a time. Pull up on a spring and remove it. Try to take out only the small spring and the metal plate it sits on, leaving behind the rod and large spring. Put one of the longer shims at the bottom of the rod. If you're using the optional 2-3 spring, and you're working on the 1-2 accumulator, remove the small spring from it's base, and press the new spring onto it. Reinstall the small spring and base onto the rod. Add a short shim in the middle of the spring. Repeat for the other side.




    5. Reinstall the cover to the accumulator. Bolt it back into the transmission, using extreme care to reinstall and reseat the hard metal lines. Make absolute certain the lines are reseated properly. If they're not, you'll be left with a slipping transaxle that burns up clutches.. In case you forgot where the lines go, here's a picture:



    6. Reinstall the transaxle filter. Put the pan cover back on, and fill the transaxle with approximately 8-10 quarts of ATF, depending on how much fluid you lost. Once you're sure you have the proper fluid level, take the car for a spin and make sure that it's not slipping. If it's all good to go, enjoy your new shift kit! Your wallet will thank you for it!

    I personally installed the medium shift kit nearly a year ago. It was a nice improvement, but I got tired of it and I wanted something harder, so I took the pictures and wrote this how-to when I did the hard shift kit. It feels amazing, especially with DHP. I'm extremely happy with the results. Here's to another 221,500 miles, Mr. 4T65E-HD
    Last edited by digitaloutsider; 09-15-2010 at 12:23 AM.
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    Re: 4T65E Do-It-Yourself Shift Kit: Instructions and Install Guide

    Nice writeup!

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    Re: 4T65E Do-It-Yourself Shift Kit: Instructions and Install Guide

    that is a good write up!! I did this shift kit, though it is from ZZP but its the same thing. It would have been really helpful if they included a picture like that to show which 4 bolts hold up the accumulator. i had to remove them all to get it down!

    I would not recommend the hard shift kit for daily drivers. the medium is quite good enough, trust me!!

    00 GTP - mine | 05 Mariner - hers | 95 F150 - ours?

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    Re: 4T65E Do-It-Yourself Shift Kit: Instructions and Install Guide

    Will this work for the 440t4 trans or the 4t60? Good work. Should make this a sticky or something.

    Jarek
    Founder of the Radical Revs Racing Team- Radical Revs Race Mods
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    Re: 4T65E Do-It-Yourself Shift Kit: Instructions and Install Guide

    Quote Originally Posted by Mach 5
    Will this work for the 440t4 trans or the 4t60? Good work. Should make this a sticky or something.

    Jarek
    it should, but im not sure what size shims you would use. shift kits work pretty good on non-e trannies, too.
    2006 Grand Prix GT Mystic Green
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    Re: 4T65E Do-It-Yourself Shift Kit: Instructions and Install Guide

    There's a nice write-up on bonnevilleclub.com also on the shift kit procedure as well.

    Anyways, good job Shawn.
    Chris D.-
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    Forum Moderator digitaloutsider's Avatar
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    Re: 4T65E Do-It-Yourself Shift Kit: Instructions and Install Guide

    Quote Originally Posted by pwmin
    Quote Originally Posted by Mach 5
    Will this work for the 440t4 trans or the 4t60? Good work. Should make this a sticky or something.

    Jarek
    it should, but im not sure what size shims you would use. shift kits work pretty good on non-e trannies, too.
    As far as I know, 440T4's/4T60's/4T60-E's don't have the shift pressure accumulators that the 4T65E's do. Shift pressure is controlled through the vacuum modulator.
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    Flowmaster 50 SUV muffler, 180 t-stat, CAI, does sick burnouts.

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    Re: 4T65E Do-It-Yourself Shift Kit: Instructions and Install Guide

    Wow nice writeup!! too bad I don't have enough mechanical motivation to do this....heh
    -Matt
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    Re: 4T65E Do-It-Yourself Shift Kit: Instructions and Install Guide

    very nice write up and great pics
    rockfangd

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    Re: 4T65E Do-It-Yourself Shift Kit: Instructions and Install Guide

    the new vacuum modulators are adjustable, so that might give you enough extra.
    2006 Grand Prix GT Mystic Green
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  12. #11

    Re: 4T65E Do-It-Yourself Shift Kit: Instructions and Install Guide

    Quote Originally Posted by digitaloutsider
    As far as I know, 440T4's/4T60's/4T60-E's don't have the shift pressure accumulators that the 4T65E's do. Shift pressure is controlled through the vacuum modulator.
    The 4T60/440T4/etc.. do have shift accumulators. The accumulators have nothing to do with line pressure during shifts, they just absorb the initial pressure burst to make smoother shifts. I did shim them in my old Regal, with a slight difference.

    The accumulator housing in the 4T60 actually looks identical to the 4T65 trans. but the internals are different. The 4T60 accumulators only use 1 spring vs 2 on the 4T65.

    Anyway, the shift kit for the 4T60 just uses shims under the springs in the accumulators. Just find a washer that fits into the base of the accumulator w/o too much play. Just add more washers for more shift firmness. IIRC I used 3 washers (they were thin washers) and it was a small, but noticeable difference.
    -Sean
    Current: 2004 Audi A4 1.8T : 6-speed // 1971 Chevrolet C10 LM7 : 4L60E // 2005 Truimph Speed Triple
    Previous: 1999 Regal GS - L67 : 4T65E HD // 1993 Regal GS L27 : 4T60E // 1991 Cutlass International LQ1 : Getrag 284

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    Forum Moderator digitaloutsider's Avatar
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    Re: 4T65E Do-It-Yourself Shift Kit: Instructions and Install Guide

    Quote Originally Posted by 99RegalGS
    Quote Originally Posted by digitaloutsider
    As far as I know, 440T4's/4T60's/4T60-E's don't have the shift pressure accumulators that the 4T65E's do. Shift pressure is controlled through the vacuum modulator.
    The 4T60/440T4/etc.. do have shift accumulators. The accumulators have nothing to do with line pressure during shifts, they just absorb the initial pressure burst to make smoother shifts. I did shim them in my old Regal, with a slight difference.

    The accumulator housing in the 4T60 actually looks identical to the 4T65 trans. but the internals are different. The 4T60 accumulators only use 1 spring vs 2 on the 4T65.

    Anyway, the shift kit for the 4T60 just uses shims under the springs in the accumulators. Just find a washer that fits into the base of the accumulator w/o too much play. Just add more washers for more shift firmness. IIRC I used 3 washers (they were thin washers) and it was a small, but noticeable difference.
    Ah! Thanks for that, Sean!
    2006 Nissan Altima SE-R 3.5L 214ci VQ35DE DOHC 60 V6 | 6MT
    Raclingline HFPCs and Y-pipe, NWP VIAS delete, Goodridge SS brake lines, removed airbox snorkel, deburgered.

    1998 Jeep Grand Cherokee 5.9 Limited 5.9L 360ci Magnum Pushrod 90 V8 | 46RE | NV249
    Flowmaster 50 SUV muffler, 180 t-stat, CAI, does sick burnouts.

    1994 Ford Thunderbird SC Supercharged Intercooled 3.8L 231ci Pushrod 90 V6 | M5R2
    180 t-stat, intake, ASP UDPs, 10% S/C pulley.

  14. #13

    Re: 4T65E Do-It-Yourself Shift Kit: Instructions and Install Guide

    Yeah, I just wish I had taken pictures of when I did it so I could have done a writeup for the 4T60!!!
    -Sean
    Current: 2004 Audi A4 1.8T : 6-speed // 1971 Chevrolet C10 LM7 : 4L60E // 2005 Truimph Speed Triple
    Previous: 1999 Regal GS - L67 : 4T65E HD // 1993 Regal GS L27 : 4T60E // 1991 Cutlass International LQ1 : Getrag 284

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    Re: 4T65E Do-It-Yourself Shift Kit: Instructions and Install Guide

    Yea I was In Contact with Zoommer At ZZP email and was told that there shift kits would work with the 4t60 trans
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    Re: 4T65E Do-It-Yourself Shift Kit: Instructions and Install Guide

    ok....by looking at teh accum pic, how do you know the diff between the 1-2 and 2-3 accumulators?
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