Saginaw 4 speed stuck in gear - Team Camaro Tech
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Old Jul 18th, 18, 02:31 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Saginaw 4 speed stuck in gear

I have been on a few forums now while trying to fix a reverse issue with my Saginaw 4 speed, currently in a '78 RS. It will eventually break behind the 350 I built for it, but it's all I got to work with for now.

About 1/3 times I put the car in reverse, it gets stuck "between" gears. Really don't know how else to put it. If you let out the clutch, the car doesn't lurch in any direction, it just stalls. It's like the trans is locked up, or possibly in two gears at once(?)
I have adjusted the Hurst shifter on it like 4 times.
I wouldn't mind crawling undereath to put all the shift rods back into the neutral position, except the car is too dang low to reach anything.
I have had a friend try to duplicate the problem while watching from under the car, but we can't get it stuck in gear
without the engine running.
Whenever it's stuck, prying the reverse rod back into nuetral has always fixed it. If you SMACK the shifter out of reverse, it goes into nuetral and works fine. But when I forget to smack it out of reverse, I end up stuck in places like:
My driveway
Various parking lots
Drive ins
The 1/4 mile burnout box

All of which require borrowing a jack to lift the car because I'm too stubborn to get one to keep in the car, and then waiting a half hour for the exhaust to cool off so I dont scald myself on it.

Anyway, what are some possible solutions?
The bushings are shimmed with washers, and have the slightest amount of play.
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Old Jul 18th, 18, 05:36 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Saginaw 4 speed stuck in gear

You are right it is stuck in two gear, reverse and... It is a problem with the shifter adjustment(I know you said you adjusted it) noob guess.
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Old Jan 31st, 19, 10:40 AM   #3 (permalink)
RAK
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Re: Saginaw 4 speed stuck in gear

It's a shifter adjustment. Change the length of the reverse rod. It's not moving far enough to disengage reverse.

Remove the shifter rod from the transmission reverse arm. Move the trans reverse arm so its as far as it can go out of reverse. Spin/Change the length of the reverse arm so it will push the trans arm positively into the released position.. Replace any worn bushings.
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Old Jan 31st, 19, 10:53 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Saginaw 4 speed stuck in gear

I disagree. In this case, it's the shifter itself. Read THIS regarding the symptoms and how to rebuild it. Unfortunately, most of the pictures in the links I posted back then are no longer there, but it's not that difficult to rebuild. Just take pictures of the "before" and use them to put it back together again. Also, the Inline web page is now laid out differently, so the original link is broke, but HERE'S the current one for the INL10199 kit. And even after 8 years, they're still only $22 bucks plus shipping!!

But, to get you started, here are two pictures of the shifter I just rebuilt a few months ago for my 57 Chevy (the new plates/shims are at the bottom in the second picture. The plate that causes this the most is the one that has the bends in it (the far left). After so many years, it has a tendency to flatten out, causing a lot of slop in the shifter, and therefore causing the levers to jam and get stuck when changing gears.

Ed
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Last edited by bertfam; Jan 31st, 19 at 11:17 AM.
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Old Jan 31st, 19, 11:43 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Re: Saginaw 4 speed stuck in gear

This not a Saginaw issue, but a worn out shift mechanism. Had this happen on 2 cars. It can either lock in Reverse and a forward gear, or get stuck in second. Shifter rebuild and careful adjustment is required.
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