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D21 won't go into gear

Printed From: Datsun Mini Truckin
Category: General
Forum Name: How To
Forum Discription: How to do this or that
Printed Date: 22 Sep 2019 at 3:20am

Topic: D21 won't go into gear
Posted By: Tim Keith
Subject: D21 won't go into gear
Date Posted: 23 Mar 2014 at 10:55pm
'94 D21 with KA24E five speed wouldn't go in gear from neutral.  Grinding.  After a minute of running in neutral it would shift quietly into 1st gear.    I assume the cause is a clutch master or slave cylinder. It could also be the throwout bearing.    

Posted By: EzCruiser
Date Posted: 23 Mar 2014 at 11:04pm
Seems like if it was master cylinder related you would experience the trouble all of the time as well as a bent fork...  Are you getting any noises besides the grinding?  Clutch worn out?


Posted By: Tim Keith
Date Posted: 23 Mar 2014 at 11:58pm
I can stop the motor, then shift into first gear, start the motor, and be on my way. Thereafter the five speed shifts okay until I stop again.  This behavior only began tonight.  I can hear the transmission rotating when the clutch pedal is fully depressed.   When I pump the clutch a few times the clutch *might* disengage so that the transmission becomes quiet.
I think it is probably the throwout bearing.  There is no sign of leaking clutch hydaulics, the fluid is dirty but the reservoir is topped off.    I got this '94 Hardbody a few weeks ago.  The truck had been used on a ranch and not driven on the public roads.  I noticed that there is a bolt missing on the bell housing as if somebody has been in there.

Posted By: EzCruiser
Date Posted: 24 Mar 2014 at 8:24am
I would give the system a good bleed.  I've seen brake lines with air in them act similar, as well as bent clutch forks.


Posted By: EzCruiser
Date Posted: 24 Mar 2014 at 8:26am
If there is a inspection point for the clutch fork without taking apart the transmission, check it out.  see if the fork is bent or you see a LOT of black dust, which would lead me to believe you would have a burnt "clutch smell"  ...


Posted By: Tim Keith
Date Posted: 24 Mar 2014 at 4:06pm
The clutch does not slip or smell burnt, but the transmission is noisy, especially during engine compression braking ( coasting on down grade ).   On other vehicles when I've had these types of issues the transmission was the root cause.   I would like to replace the input bearing if this is not difficult.   According to the FSM input bearing replacement appears to be relatively straight forward.
I understand that all Hardbodies use the same 'C' five speed.   I don't want to overhaul the entire transmission, only replace the input shaft bearing and seal.   I think I will need the front gasket and also the gasket between the front bellhousing and adapter place.   Any other parts that I might replace?   Is the countershaft bearing difficult to replace?  The gearbox shifts okay, its just noisy.  

Posted By: smooth620
Date Posted: 24 Mar 2014 at 4:22pm
If you hear a noise only when the clutch pedal is depressed then it most likely is the throwout bearing.
If it shifts only when the clutch pedal is close to the floor, your master or clutch isn't working properly.
If you were coasting downhill out of gear with the engine idling would the trans still make a noise? Quieter?

Better to learn from other peoples mistakes than to make them yourself.-Anonymous

Posted By: Tim Keith
Date Posted: 24 Mar 2014 at 7:09pm
The gearbox is noisy going down a grade in 2nd gear, not so noisy in higher gears unless I'm going 70 MPH, then its noisy when I'm coasting down a hill.   I've driven manual transmissions for almost forty years, most were quiet except for bad synchros that were difficult to shift.  The truck had been used on a ranch for years and was not well maintained.  This one shifts well when the clutch releases.  As a practice I follow double clutching as that extends the life of the synchos. The transmission does not make much noise in neutral unless the clutch won't disengage, then the noise is like a rattle(and then the gears grind when shifting).    I'm thinking of getting a transmission from Pick N Pull and then rebuilding this one when I have more time.   I assume that any D21 five speed will work on the 1994 Hardbody with KA24E.  

Posted By: smooth620
Date Posted: 24 Mar 2014 at 8:01pm
Aha! When you said "rattle" that reminded me of someone on here that had the same issue. If I remember correctly, it turned out that 1 of the springs had come loose from the clutch disc and would rattle and bounce all inside the bellhousing. Also caused shifting problems.

I can't find the thread right now, maybe EZ or someone else will.

Better to learn from other peoples mistakes than to make them yourself.-Anonymous

Posted By: Tim Keith
Date Posted: 25 Mar 2014 at 7:03pm
The clutch pedal height adjustment is already at the limit, the nut is almost off the threaded rod.   Clutch wear must have been in issue with the previous owner.  I got this truck for $1,000.  I expected some problems like this.
I can get transmission rebuild kits for $100.   Are there any recommended suppliers or are most kits about the same quality?  At 190,000 miles it won't hurt to bebuild the transmission even if the immediate problem is the clutch.  I have the Haynes manual. I also have Datsun 620 manual, which I figure is similar as per the transmission.  Is there an online transmission manual for the D21 five speed?

Posted By: MOCMAN
Date Posted: 26 Mar 2014 at 12:31am
Yes there is.

Manual transmission manual

Here is the whole Nissan factory manual. I download the ones I need as pdf's and keep them on my computer.

John 3:16
"There's a fine line between "Hobby" and "Mental Illness"
1985 Nissan 720 KingCab 2wd 5spd.
1995 Nissan Hardbody 2wd Reg. Cab
2014 VW passat SEL VR6
1966 VW Beetle
2005 Ford Explorer XLT 4X4

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