Author Topic: 1955 Cadillac Transmission Additive  (Read 2875 times)

Offline Kevin Kenneally

  • Posts: 97
1955 Cadillac Transmission Additive
« on: September 10, 2009, 10:04:09 AM »
I have been fixing minor things on my 1955 Cadillac, thanks to the folks on this forum..  I talked to Craig at McVey's yesterday about rebuilding the windshield washer pump and he mentioned I might want to add "Trans-X" or "TransMedic" to the transmission..  The car just rolled 20,000 original miles and he said it would clean the transmission up..  It shifts really smooth but the 2nd shift is HARD..  After that it is all smooth again..  I have read that is normal for these transmissions so I don't want to go looking for trouble by putting an additive in but I want to keep it in A1 condition..  Not sure what to do, any advice?  I did just replace the rear transmission seal and not sure if the additive will help lubricate the bands and seals??  I am learning as I go, thanks for any advice..  Kevin

Offline Otto Skorzeny

  • Posts: 3853
  • 1956 Coupe de Ville aka Bismarck
Re: 1955 Cadillac Transmission Additive
« Reply #1 on: September 10, 2009, 10:09:14 AM »
I'm with you Kevin.

If it's working fine now, don't do anything to it other than maybe drain and refill the transmission fluid and change the filter. What does thefluid look and smell like? Is it clean or dirty and stinky?

The 2-3 shift is harsher than the others and that is normal for these transmissions. As long as it's working, I'd leave it alone.
fward

Ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for YOURSELF

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Offline Doug Houston

  • Posts: 815
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      CLC Member #2257
Re: 1955 Cadillac Transmission Additive
« Reply #2 on: September 10, 2009, 10:58:35 AM »
Kevin;

In this transmission, the 2-3 shift is very tricky, and as Otto has already said, it (could be) harsh. It really should not be.

Since the car is a low mileage one, my advice is to take off the side cover pan, and remove the control valve body. Best to have a shop do it, as it's messy, especially since this transmission is rotated a few degrees. You will almost surely find that the little valve plugs in the valve body are hanging up on a varnish that has formed in their bores, over the years. They should slide along their bores totally by gravity, and not hang up anywhere.

In those transmissions, the 2-3 upshift involves whatever clutches are off, to engage, and whatever bands were applied, release, etc. In other words, EVERYTHING in the transmission changes in one instant. That was one of the trickiest parts of the transmission's design, but they perfected it.
38-6019S
38-9039
39-9057B
41-6227D
41-6019SF
41-6229D
41-6267D
56-6267
70-DeV Conv
41-Chev 41-1167
41 Olds 41-3929

Misfit

  • Guest
Re: 1955 Cadillac Transmission Additive
« Reply #3 on: September 10, 2009, 12:35:33 PM »
If it were me, I would leave it alone, save a fluid and filter change. The only additive I would ever use in a trans is this. It's called LubeGard

http://www.lubegard.com/automotive/index.html

Then if you need a filter and pan gasket, contact this gentleman.

 http://www.autotran.us/index.html

MisFit

Offline Cadillac1955

  • Posts: 340
Re: 1955 Cadillac Transmission Additive
« Reply #4 on: September 10, 2009, 01:00:07 PM »
I have a Cad 55 too... That is normal for these transmissions.. From 1st to 2nd level shift the Hydramatic hard...  Not smooth at all...    
Do not forget that these hydramatics were also used on the Sherman tank, through/during WW2.
Andrč Aga

Cadillac Coupe de Ville 1955
Cadillac Coupe de Ville 1964 "The Apollo"
Cadillac Conv. 1965

Offline Kevin Kenneally

  • Posts: 97
Re: 1955 Cadillac Transmission Additive
« Reply #5 on: September 10, 2009, 01:03:09 PM »
Thanks for the replies on this..  The fluid did not look the best and did smell..  With only 20,000 original miles, I am sure it is varnished and gummed up from sitting so I really have an issue..  I was told to run SeaFoam Trans True and it is safe and will remove some of the varnish and gum??  I know I have to flush the old fluid out, should I run this through it first??  You only run it for 5 miles then flush it out..  Is there a filter or screen??  Thanks again for the help!  I just don't want to do the wrong thing but a I plan on driving the car so I want to make sure it is in A1 condition..   Kevin

Misfit

  • Guest
Re: 1955 Cadillac Transmission Additive
« Reply #6 on: September 10, 2009, 02:08:10 PM »
When I was a kid.....eons ago....well it seems anyway, my friend's father had a 59 Fleetwood. He would love to take us boys for a ride in it. Whenever we would cruise, he would accelerate, then lift his foot slightly until the trans changed from 2nd to 3rd.

When I asked why he did this, he would reply, 'It's easier on the shift, these automatics are still a new invention'. Loving cars since I knew what they were, I would study the way anybody drove them. From 3 on the tree, to 4 on the floor, to the automatics. Everyone had a style I would question.

Keep the fluid full and clean, with a new filter in there and drive it. But remember, the TV rod holds the secret to a good operating Hydra-Matic.

MisFit

Offline Cadillac1955

  • Posts: 340
Re: 1955 Cadillac Transmission Additive
« Reply #7 on: September 10, 2009, 02:23:29 PM »
 :)
Andrč Aga

Cadillac Coupe de Ville 1955
Cadillac Coupe de Ville 1964 "The Apollo"
Cadillac Conv. 1965

Offline Otto Skorzeny

  • Posts: 3853
  • 1956 Coupe de Ville aka Bismarck
Re: 1955 Cadillac Transmission Additive
« Reply #8 on: September 10, 2009, 02:29:23 PM »
Cool. The GI's are all using Thompson M-14s with the early drum magazine instead of the stick mag.
fward

Ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for YOURSELF

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Offline Kevin Kenneally

  • Posts: 97
Re: 1955 Cadillac Transmission Additive
« Reply #9 on: September 10, 2009, 03:08:17 PM »
Doesn't look like anyone thinks the Seafoam Trans True or any additive is any good..  So does this have a filter I need to replace, too?

Offline Cadillac1955

  • Posts: 340
Re: 1955 Cadillac Transmission Additive
« Reply #10 on: September 10, 2009, 03:15:43 PM »
Doesn't look like anyone thinks the Seafoam Trans True or any additive is any good..  So does this have a filter I need to replace, too?

The Hydramatic filter : The only elements this filter does stop... are three tiles ...  ::)
It could have been made better...
« Last Edit: September 10, 2009, 03:19:58 PM by Cadillac1955 »
Andrč Aga

Cadillac Coupe de Ville 1955
Cadillac Coupe de Ville 1964 "The Apollo"
Cadillac Conv. 1965

Offline Otto Skorzeny

  • Posts: 3853
  • 1956 Coupe de Ville aka Bismarck
Re: 1955 Cadillac Transmission Additive
« Reply #11 on: September 10, 2009, 03:24:58 PM »
Not to say they aren't good but I'd start off with the flush and filter and see what happens. The more you drive it, the better it will work.

You can always add that stuff later if need be.

Misfit was correct about the adjustment of the TV rod - it is the key.
fward

Ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for YOURSELF

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Offline J. Gomez

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  • Name: J. Gomez
Re: 1955 Cadillac Transmission Additive
« Reply #12 on: September 10, 2009, 03:36:40 PM »
Doesn't look like anyone thinks the Seafoam Trans True or any additive is any good..  So does this have a filter I need to replace, too?

The filter is a metallic mesh similar to a regular household strainer (brass wire if I recall). It can be clean and put back, make sure the mesh is intact else it would need to be replace/repair.
J. Gomez
CLC #23082

Time is irrelevant when you work on your classic car, eventually you will enjoy it..!

Misfit

  • Guest
Re: 1955 Cadillac Transmission Additive
« Reply #13 on: September 10, 2009, 04:16:17 PM »
OK. I'm unaware of the filter material. I have a '61 unit in my '59. It is also a paper element filter, in which I read wasn't the best in the world. But what are the choices??

Put in a modern day filter and hope for the best.

MisFit

Offline Carfreak

  • Posts: 409
  • Name: CLC #5125
Re: 1955 Cadillac Transmission Additive
« Reply #14 on: September 10, 2009, 04:29:52 PM »
   
Do not forget that these hydramatics were also used on the Sherman tank, through/during WW2.


Slight correction: 

During the war, the Hydramatic was used in a variety of military vehicles, including the M5 Stuart tank (where 2 of them were mated to twin Cadillac V8 engines) and the M24 Chaffee light tank. The extensive wartime service greatly improved the postwar engineering of the transmission, later advertised as "battle-tested."
http://www.modifiedcadillac.org/documents/1940s/1944/1944%20Light%20Tanks%20Service/

Don't believe that the Hydramatic was used in the Shermans.  They were equipped with Ford, Chrysler, Continental and some diesel engines - unlikely mated with the Hydramatic.  I could be wrong though.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/M4_Sherman



Offline Otto Skorzeny

  • Posts: 3853
  • 1956 Coupe de Ville aka Bismarck
Re: 1955 Cadillac Transmission Additive
« Reply #15 on: September 10, 2009, 04:50:15 PM »
You're right about the Sherman but another tank, I think the Mark5 OR SOMETHING HAD TWO cADILLAC ENGINES AND TWO hYDRAmatics installed. Each mated pair drove one set of tracks.


Yes. It was the M5 Stuart tank that had the twin Caddy engines and transmissions.

http://www.robertsarmory.com/m5.htm


The advertisements above correctly show the Stuart tank.
« Last Edit: September 10, 2009, 05:01:06 PM by Otto Skorzeny »
fward

Ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for YOURSELF

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Offline Carfreak

  • Posts: 409
  • Name: CLC #5125
Re: 1955 Cadillac Transmission Additive
« Reply #16 on: September 10, 2009, 04:56:40 PM »
You're right about the Sherman but another tank, I think the MarkIII OR SOMETHING HAD TWO cADILLAC ENGINES AND TWO hYDRAmatics installed. Each mated pair drove one set of tracks.

Forrest, did you read all of what I posted?


During the war, the Hydramatic was used in a variety of military vehicles, including the M5 Stuart tank (where 2 of them were mated to twin Cadillac V8 engines) and the M24 Chaffee light tank.


Misfit

  • Guest
Re: 1955 Cadillac Transmission Additive
« Reply #17 on: September 10, 2009, 04:59:43 PM »
Relax CF. He's a skim reader.I was wondering the same thing.   ::)

MisFit

Offline J. Gomez

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  • Name: J. Gomez
Re: 1955 Cadillac Transmission Additive
« Reply #18 on: September 10, 2009, 06:21:19 PM »
Doesn't look like anyone thinks the Seafoam Trans True or any additive is any good..  So does this have a filter I need to replace, too?

On your previous post you mention “The fluid did not look the best and did smell.. “. Since you have an original 20K, when was the tranny fluid last changed? The fluid in there could be the original as well. Service interval for tranny should be 25K.

The best bet would be to stick with the conventional method, drained the old fluid wash the filter and refilled the tranny. Adding any type of additive may not react well with the original bands. If you have no luck in finding type "A", modern Dexron III would do the trick.

PS Beside the TV rod adjustment for the 1955 there is also the band adjustment via two access holes inside the cabin, check your Shop Manual for details.

Good luck..! 
« Last Edit: September 10, 2009, 06:58:29 PM by Jose Gomez CLC #23082 »
J. Gomez
CLC #23082

Time is irrelevant when you work on your classic car, eventually you will enjoy it..!

Offline Kevin Kenneally

  • Posts: 97
Re: 1955 Cadillac Transmission Additive
« Reply #19 on: September 10, 2009, 07:10:36 PM »
Thanks to everyone for their insight!  I will go with a regular drain and re-fill and forget about additives/cleaners..  I will also make sure the screen is cleaned, too..  I bet it is original because I spoke to the 2nd owner who bought it in '61 when his neighbor (farmer in Western PA) died and he kept it til 1985 and sold it with 9500 miles!  I'm the 4th owner..  I just replaced tires the 2nd owner said he put on in 1971!!  Lucky to find one like this with a glove box full of history!

 



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