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6 speed oil change, how do you fill it up?!

malc350

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Jul 6, 2002
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Essex, UK
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1996 LT-4 Z51 CE
I plan to change the oil in my 6-speed (1990 vette). Draining the oil sure looks easy but my question is, how the #!?*/-!!* do you fill the thing up afterwards? It looks like you've got to use a pump or something because the fill hole is way up in the tunnel.

Any tips to make this job easier would be appreciated.

Malc.
 

JonM

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Mar 12, 2002
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East Haven, CT- USA
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84 Coupe
You can go to Advanced or Auto Zone and pick up a 3 dollar hand pump that screws into the top of the bottle. They are usually in the gear oil section
 
Joined
Jun 20, 2002
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Tallahassee, FL
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none right now :(
the hand pump should be all that you need... you can also get a drill powered pump from NAPA, or a stand alone electric pump as well... the tranny only holds 2.5 quarts (i think) so the hand pump should suffice if that is all you plan on using the pump for. (hint hint, rear end has fluid too!)
 

WhalePirot

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SoCA
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1984 White Z-51/ZF6-40/Shinoda body
I found it easier to pump it in than dropping the tranny and pouring it in. :D

Ensure that you use a gear lube that meets spec. I went a bit above, using Red Line, as it is one of perhaps two oils that exceed spec GL-5. Almost all others meet GL-4. I prefer the insurance afforded by the 'better' oil, especially when I want to play.:Twist

My tranny rebuilder strongly recommended the higher spec. I justify using the best fluids with my savings from my sweat and my desire to keep my 'baby' the best it can be.

:w

Who needs a smart a--?
 

Rob

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Just an FYI, I received the following response to this thread by a GM Powertrain engineer with the following suggestion:

Rob,
I saw a e-mail about a person form the UK. His question was about filling his 6 spd manual trans. The response was to buy a pump to pump it in. I always used the bottle. I went to the hardware store (at the Tech Center) and picked up a long piece of clear 5/16 or 3/8 tubing. I think it was about 2 feet long. I super bonded it to a CLEAN rear axle fluid tip after it was cut for max flow. Then screwed it onto the bottle and put the end in the trans/rear end. Turned the bottle upside down and squeeze it until it's full. It sounds harder than the pump and some even heat the fluid in hot water. I ALWAYS tried to NOT use the fancy ways to see if it can be done without all that stuff. Most of the dealerships never get such luxuries.

Hope this can help,
 

twiget

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The engineers sugestion above is exactly how I did the fluid change in my GS last time. The biggest PITA is getting her up on jack stands. You've got to have the car level in order to drain all the fluid. If I remember correctly, it's a 17mm allen wrench needed for the drain and fill plugs. The 3/8 inch hose fits right in the fill hole. Fill it untill a little bit of tranny fluid pours over the side.

According to Bill Boudreau at ZR51 Performance the best fluid to use is the BMW M5 motor oil (avalible only from your local BMW dealer). # 2 is the Red Line manual tranny oil. #3 is the same good old Mobil 1 engine oil we use in our cars.

I put the BMW motor oil in my GS's tranny (60w I believe) and noticed an imedate diffrence in the smootheness of the shifts.

Jason
 
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Missoura Ozarks
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Jason . . .

twiget said:

I put the BMW motor oil in my GS's tranny (60w I believe) and noticed an immediate difference in the smoothness of the shifts.

Jason

When (how many miles) did you change you tranny oil?
 

twiget

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I believe it's every 10k or so. Just to be on the safe side, I change it at the begining of every summer, right before I take her out of winter storage.

Jason
 
S

sothpaw

Guest
how often to change?

I read the owner's manual and it says just to add,
that this oil doesn't need changing.

Bunk?

How often should I be changing the tranny oil?
(and for that matter, what about hydraulic
clutch fluid?)

A
 
M

Muddy

Guest
I am just about to change my tranny oil in 1992 vette and was wondering what was the best oil to use. I am right in saying you should use a transmission lubricate to the SAE 5W30 viscosity or is it OK to use a high quality motor oil :confused. I was advised by a local parts place to use SYNERGYN 3W-30. It conforms to API Classifications: CH-4, CG-4, CF/SJ, SH, SG (Just read it off the bottle). Has anyone used this oil before?

The pump idea to get the oil in the gearbox sounds like a good idea.

Having trouble getting a 17mm allen wrench, where would I get one?

Muddy
 

69MyWay

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Jul 3, 2001
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Auburndale, Florida
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1969 Killer Shark
Muddy said:
I am just about to change my tranny oil in 1992 vette and was wondering what was the best oil to use. I am right in saying you should use a transmission lubricate to the SAE 5W30 viscosity or is it OK to use a high quality motor oil :confused. I was advised by a local parts place to use SYNERGYN 3W-30. It conforms to API Classifications: CH-4, CG-4, CF/SJ, SH, SG (Just read it off the bottle). Has anyone used this oil before?

The pump idea to get the oil in the gearbox sounds like a good idea.

Having trouble getting a 17mm allen wrench, where would I get one?

Muddy

Hey Guys, we have had two C4s with the ZF trans. Both of them have given me heck trying to remove the drain plug. So, hang on to your hat when you get there. One of several things happen. The trans either has at one time or another been banged off a speed bump, etc. damaging the alan head opening. Or it has simply been frozen in place due to the difference in metals (the plug is steel and the trans is aluminum.

On the 89, I ended up having to drill and tap out the drain plug! On the 90, I have settled for sucking the fluid out from the drain hole the first time with a rear axle pump. The second time, I had the engine and trans out of the car, so I turned the trans on its side and drained it out the fill hole. The alan head drain plug on our 90 took a significant whack at one time and I can't get the alan wrench to go in. So, unless I want to drill and tap it, that drain plug is a permanent part of the trans.

I picked up my wrench at Napa. It is basically a large alan head wrench about 12" long shapped like an L with the short portion about 3". They also make them in socket sets (very expensive for an entire set). I think I paid about $10 for the wrench. The good news is that it works on the drain as well as the fill plug (at least on the ZF models).

On fluid, I always go straight to the G.M. parts counter and get the specific 5W 30 trans fluid. I realize it is more or less motor oil, but it does have some other additives. Therefore I have never tried the BMW, or synthetic motor oil blends. I did run a synthetic blend in the five speed of my V8 Fiero project. I could not tell any difference.

As far as filling it, I have two methods. One is exactly as that G.M. engineer mentioned. However, I never took the time to glue the hose on, so I end up with a leaky hose while I am squeezing.

My favorite method I just discovered about a year ago (I use it on other cars including my 69, etc). I get a long (4' or so) 3/8" hose. Hook it to the bottle of fluid. I get under the car. I have my wife in the engine bay with the hose running down the back of the block down the firewall to the trans. I just have her tilt the bottle up and give a little squeeze. It pours out nice and easy, and gets the job done.

I have also done this by myself. Knowing the exact fluid capacity, run the hose into the trans, go topside, put the oil/fluid bottle in place, flip it updsidedown, then punch a hole in the bottom of the bottle. It drains in all by itself, while I go catch a cold drink and relax!
 
M

Muddy

Guest
Thanks 69MyWay for the info.

I tried my local NAPA store for the 17mm hex wrench and they were unable to help me. The person behind the counter said it must be for a Honda or some foreign import. He was surprised to find out it was for a Corvette.

I looked on the Sears web page and craftsman make a 17mm hex wrench, so I will be able to get it there.

Muddy
 

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