J20 Race shift kit and TCI converter installation

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rocklaurence
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J20 Race shift kit and TCI converter installation

Post by rocklaurence » Thu Jun 25, 2020 4:46 am

I should have posted sooner but I was more concerned with making the videos. So, heres the plan. First, I installed a TF1 TransGo kit in the Ugly Truck years ago. It provided more shift control and eliminated the Leak-down issue [where the first engagement after start up is delayed because the fluid empties from the valve body]. However, it didnt provide much in regard to snappier shifts. That's why I decided to go with a TF2 race shift kit. It is quite involved and has a lot o steps. Second, I wanted to add a higher converter Stall to the transmission. Whenever I tow, I manually shift the trans' to keep it over 2000 rpm. I performs so much better that way. Adding a TCI Saturday Night Special will raise the stall to 1800/2000 rpm. With the gears and tire combo'--stall [2000] will be at 45 mph. Ive always run a large Trans-fluid cooler. So, Im not concerned about heat.
That's the plan. Ill add some quick posts to get caught up. Presently, the TF2 is done and Im waiting on TCI to provide the converter--its on back order.
Last edited by rocklaurence on Sun Jun 28, 2020 4:56 am, edited 1 time in total.


Topic author
rocklaurence
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Re: J20 Race shift kit and TCI converter installation

Post by rocklaurence » Thu Jun 25, 2020 8:44 am

I started with the truck on the lift and removed the Valve Body to start the TF2 shift kit. First, it all comes apart easily and Dodge used 3 sizes of fasteners making it almost impossible to put the wrong fastener in the wrong place. Second, the instructions that come with the kit are detailed but dont flow well when reading them. I found it very important to read the process, identify it on the valve body and read it again before performing the step. Also, there are Notes in the steps that pertain to future steps. I found it best to add my own notes to the future steps to prevent confusion at those steps. Third, once your certain that a step has been completed correctly, add a check/star to that step to keep track of your progress. Fortunately for me I have a spare transmission to take apart to get to some of the parts needed [the kit instructions don't cover trans' disassembly]. A good example of this is removing the LR piston. It's assumed that you know how to remove it. I had to look it up on Google and its much better to practice on a spare trans. Fourthly, you will have to remove the transmission from the vehicle. It says that it can all be done with it installed but believe me its easier to remove and work on the LR piston on a bench. Lastly, perform all the steps correctly, mark them off on the instructions and then review the instructions to make sure you didn't miss any steps. Check it, check again because you dont want to put it all back together in the vehicle and find out you didn't do something.
Last edited by rocklaurence on Wed Jul 01, 2020 4:17 am, edited 1 time in total.


Topic author
rocklaurence
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Re: J20 Race shift kit and TCI converter installation

Post by rocklaurence » Sat Jun 27, 2020 7:57 am

Another item that I addressed with the transmission was the cooler hard lines. A couple years ago I installed a Slap Stick shifter and the bracket never cleared the hard lines. This prevented me from being able to get it to shift exactly as it should. I had to notch and lower the bracket to make it somewhat work. So, during this project, I install a set of 1/8 npt x 3/8" hose fittings. I bored and tapered the fittings for better flow and will use braided transmission lines. Also, I wanted a deeper transmission pan and a temperature sensor. I purchase a 2 extra quart steel pan [I wasnt going to pay $200 for aluminum] and welded in a 1/8 npt bung into the pan for the temp' sensor. The gauge is going in place of the ash tray on the '87 dash.
Im still waiting on the TCI converter which is Back Ordered to July 17--maybe. I may install everything without the TCI converter because it may get pushed back even further.


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rocklaurence
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Re: J20 Race shift kit and TCI converter installation

Post by rocklaurence » Sun Jun 28, 2020 5:13 am

I started a Detour yesterday. My old Craftsman tool boxes [two of then] POS wheels an casters prevent them from rolling and I wanted a mobile tool box to take to the work. I really like the larger boxes offered by Milwaukee/Harbor Freight but didn't need another box. So, I purchased 4 Heavy Duty casters [1 for each corner] and 2 HD rollers for the center. I built a platform to hold the two Craftsman tool boxes and added the Casters/ Rollers to the platform. Having the two center set of rollers 1" taller than the casters places the majority of the weight on the center making it REALLY Easy to rotate and steer the tools box! Now Im building a top that will span both tool boxes out of 3/4" wood with 1/8" sheet metal. The top will also have an angle iron tray on one side, handle-for steering, series of small holes for Impact gun fittings/tools. Plus, the steel top will be a good platform for the transmission jack etc. Im excited :D


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rocklaurence
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Re: J20 Race shift kit and TCI converter installation

Post by rocklaurence » Tue Jun 30, 2020 4:27 am

OK, I expect to start the installation of the transmission this week. Im not going to wait on the TCI--I dont know when it will arrive and I miss driving my FSJ. Ill comment as the project moves forward. My luck dictates that as soon as I get the transmission installed that the TCI will arrive. Maybe thats what I need to do to ensure the arrival of the TCI :D


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rocklaurence
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Re: J20 Race shift kit and TCI converter installation

Post by rocklaurence » Mon Jul 06, 2020 5:41 am

I made good progress last week. I had to wrestle the trans into position and got it mounted but then found out that the TC mounting holes weren't going to line up [theyre not symmetrical]. So, I had to move the trans back 1/4" from the engine to provide enough clearance to rotate the TC mount pads around until the holes lined up correct--time consuming PITA. However, after that, I installed the new deep pan and the kick-down linkages, dust covers, trans mount, Shifter cable. Next on the list, is to install the new cooler lines, vent tube, transfer case. Its getting close to Start UP!


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rocklaurence
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Re: J20 Race shift kit and TCI converter installation

Post by rocklaurence » Tue Jul 07, 2020 4:57 am

I was able to fabricate the two cooler lines yesterday. I purchased tubing on Amazon that has steel re-enforcement with braided sheeth on the outside. I applied shrink wrap at the ends to prevent fraying and added nylon loom to the rest to prevent chaffing. I decided to run the lines down the drivers side of the frame instead of crossing over the exhaust. One step closer


Topic author
rocklaurence
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Re: J20 Race shift kit and TCI converter installation

Post by rocklaurence » Wed Jul 08, 2020 6:21 am

I knew it! Sure enough, my TCI has been filled/shipped. I said that if I install the transmission that the TCI converter would arrive. :D So, Ill sit on it for a week for the TC to arrive. At least I didn't get to the point to where it was on the ground and driving. :P

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