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Hey everybody, this is my first post. I've been reading all kinds of posts for the last six months and have found tons of great info. Now I did something really stupid.. and I need help.

I bought a 66 C4 from a guy on craigs list. He said it had shifted through all the gears fine. I checked the fluid in the torque converter.. but didn't take off the pan and I'm thinking it got water in it in the time he had out.

It worked fine for about a week of mostly in town driving. The third time I took it on the freeway it started spitting a lot of fluid near the torque converter, and stopped working. Basically felt like I was in neutral. The fluid it spit out looked pink and frothy.

Now I have the transmission out of the car and the pan pulled. Since that fluid has now circulated through the entire tranny I'm trying to figure out if I need to flush/replace the fluid somehow, rebuild it or just start fresh with another transmission.

Any advice would be very appreciated guys. I really dig the forum, wish I could have started off sounding cooler... oh well!
 

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Welcome to the forum!

There are indeed a lot of knowledgeable people here, and I'm sure we can help you with your transmission problems.

When you say the trans was spitting fluid, do you mean it was leaking around the TC? It sounds like you developed a bad leak, and the trans "pumped" all of the fluid out of the pan until the pickup started to run dry, which is why the fluid was nice and frothy pink (think of drinking that last bit of soda from a paper cup with a straw and you hear a gurgling sound). The reason the transmission felt like it was in neutral is because without the fluid the transmission cannot work, as it is the fluid doing the 'work' in an automatic.

I think had you filled the case with fluid, the transmission would have worked until it pumped all the fluid out again. I have had transmission leaks in the past that did just this; car feels like it is in neutral until fluid is added. I also had a front pump leak that was so bad the transmission had to be pulled.

Since you have the transmission out of the car, the rebuild part is up to you. I think you need to find the source of the leak first. If the transmission ran great, fix the leak and be done. However, since you have it out..............you might as well go through it. 40+ years of wear and tear and who-knows-what being done to it would certainly justify it.

I have heard that the original bands in these old C4s can't be beat, so if you do rebuild be sure you reuse the original band, if it's still serviceable.

I hope this helps.

Keep us posted!

Michael
 

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If water entered and circulated, the water will have an effect on the adhesives used on the fiber portions of the clutch discs and bands. A rebuild is going to be necessary. The pump on the C4 is sealed to the housing with a large O-ring. After long periods of time and use the O-ring can loose its elasticity and it can start leaking. If the leak isn't from the front seal, it's probably the O-ring sealing the pump.

Is the fluid a milky pink after all of the air has had time to settle out of the fluid? If it is then it's water. This could have come from a bad trans fluid cooler in the radiator. Since the trans is out of the car, I'd rebuild it for peace of mind. There are too many unknowns.

Welcome to the forum and don't worry about how you present yourself. We're just a bunch of folks from all walks of life that share a common interest. Our Mustangs.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks guys,

Michael, I thought the same thing.. I added another quart on the side of the freeway, and it poured straight out of the front seal as well. My tranny ended up being overfilled.. It really confused me. I thought since it wasn't transferring energy to the rear end and it uses fluid pressure to transfer energy.... low fluid! Nope. On a side note, I did mess up the front seal, but I feel like the leak was caused by something else that had to do with the water in there.

The fluid did stay milky after sitting out for a while. So I guess it is water mixed in with it. I have a brand new radiator so I doubt it's a bad cooler, but that has been considered. I'm going to test it before I install the tranny again though.

As far as a rebuild.. Any advice on kits, books, etc..?
 

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Welcome. If you are a mechanical person and have some tools you can rebuild it yourself without any trouble, the C-4 is one of the most simple auto transmissions out there. A great book is the Haynes Ford Automatic Transmission manual. I found mine on eBay. I got a rebuild kit and a new TC from Transtar that had everything in it I needed and it was very reasonable at $215 for both. I am not sure if they are out in CA though.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Awesome, I just bought the Haynes manual on Amazon. I'll be buying the rebuild kit this weekend (after payday!). Anything I should look/watch out for?

Wow, $215 for a rebuild kit and tc sounds really reasonable. Never heard of the store. Maybe They're available online.. I'll check on it later tonight... I'm off to paint my block and hopefully get my head gasket installed.

Again, thanks for all the advice guys!
 

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pink, frothy fluid can be from air being introduced into the fluid by being over-full. Think of the transmission like a big egg beater - the faster you turn it the more likely it is to churn air into the system - especially if it is over-full.
As long as you have it out I would suggest rebuilding it. Follow the Haynes manual and then install a TransGo reprogramming kit in the valve body. The kit comes with complete step-by-step instructions.
 
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