Overdrive in my single lever is broken. A friend moved my car when I was away and did something to it. When I got in it, shifter was stuck in olace in reverse. Going into reverse requires a bit of patience. Ya don't just pull to you and move it up. A little touch on the clutch is required or easing clutch out just a bit to allow trans to go in gear.with the trans overdrive lever pushed all the way back I don't have reverse and the lever is past it normal position. I have overdrive gear but no reverse. the cable is disconnected so I go under and move the lever forward to non overdrive and I have reverse. I was told my friend is patient with machinery and it's obvious he rammed it into reverse and cause this problem. the lever wiggles freely. before it was defined in it's correct position. It seems to me that the pawl that moves back and forth has been pushed out of position or moved too far forward. Or something is broken. I'm reluctant to remove the Tail shaft as I've never been inside one and fear it's isn't something I should mess with. Don't think shop manual is detailed enough to help guide me through it. I need guidance, suggestions, play by play or HELP. Thank you in advance, Kim


  • Jon B
    Jon B Administrator

    You might say where you're located. It's a long shot, but maybe some good-hearted fellow forum member, who's well acquainted with overdrives and happens to live near you, might volunteer to come over and check it out! (Well....stranger things have happened!)

  • kamzack
    kamzack Senior Contributor

    Thanks for your response. I'm located about 40 miles of Nashville, Tennessee.

    Kim 931-981-5326

  • Geoff
    Geoff Senior Contributor

    Why is the cable disconnected? You need to have this connected to move in and out of o/d. Perhaps the splines on the shift lever have stripped. Check that the link on the bottom of the shift lever is moving when the lever is moved up and down. Also check that the grub screw in the shift lever boss is tight.

  • kamzack
    kamzack Senior Contributor

    Well, I gonna try this again. I know what the cable and that it should be connected. When whatever happened, happened the throw was more than the length of the cable. So now I'd like to find a shaft that connects to the in and out ark lever and the inside shaft that moves overdrive planetery in and out. I'm thinking and a bit of a guess one or both are broken. If anyone has those components or anything related that I would need, Please let me know.

    thank you in advance,


  • Glowplug
    Glowplug Expert Adviser
    edited March 13

    Send your request to Al Saffrahn in Arizona

    Al Saffrahn RUST FREE western sheet metal and tons of Hudson parts and cars, Engine, transmission, and overdrive rebuilding is his specialty. Phone 520-568-2911. (click name for Al's email)

  • kamzack
    kamzack Senior Contributor

    Talked to Al yesterday. He's gonna solve my problem. Thanks for the help.

  • Jon B
    Jon B Administrator

    It's a minor point, but what is the year of your car?

    Also, here's another thought: before checking anything else, make sure the lockout knob on the dashboard is properly adjusted. The knob's connected to the overdrive unit under the car, by a steel cable that moves within a flexible conduit (which is clamped in position). The end of the cable (under the car) is secured to an operating lever on the side of the overdrive case, which controls whether the overdrive is locked out (giving 3-speed operation), or is "enabled" (able to switch to 4th gear when you lift your foot off the accelerator).

    The end of the conduit itself, under the car, is clamped to a fixed bracket on the O.D., so that it (the conduit) will not move. Sometimes the conduit comes loose from this bracket in which case the knob is no longer controlling overdrive operation with precision. In that case, the clamp that holds the lower end of the conduit, must be tightened so that the conduit will not move when you either pull or push the overdrive control knob. (Only the cable moves in / out; never the conduit.)

    For proper control of the lockout / enable function, you must position the conduit clamp (on the side of the overdrive unit) so it holds the conduit in such a way that...

    1. The dashboard knob does NOT completely bottom out on the dash when pushed in all the way (i.e. OD enabled). There should be at least 1/8" of clearance between the knob and the dash when you've fully pushed it in.
    2. When you pull the dashboard knob out all the way (to lock out the OD function) -- there is a slight amount of play between the lever on the side of the OD, and the end of the conduit. The lever should not hit the conduit when you pull the knob out fully. If it does hit, then you can't be sure whether the lever has traveled to its full limit, or has been prevented from doing so by hitting the conduit.

    This adjustment in and of itself will not cure your problem, but you should make sure you have the proper clearances (described above) in the operating knob before you continue troubleshooting your reverse jamming problem.