Author Topic: Manual Transmission Options  (Read 1529 times)

Offline SlyGuy

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Manual Transmission Options
« on: November 13, 2018 - 09:05:08 am »
Hello all,
I found a 360 magnum for my 72 Challenger. I "believe" it is out of an old Dodge truck. At least that's what the junk yard told me. I also want to swap from auto to manual transmission. Is there any reason why I couldn't use an nv3500 manual out of an old truck as well? All the threads I can find here talk about conversion kits from places like Brewers, and that's a little (maybe a lot) out of my price range. Or is this simply not something that can be done on a modest budget?
Thanks!   




Offline 70chall440

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Re: Manual Transmission Options
« Reply #1 on: November 13, 2018 - 12:22:58 pm »
Let me be the first to say that anything is possible if you are willing to do the work. That said, I believe you would find that the NV3500 to be very hard to put into an E body due to its physical size. I believe that you would have to severely modify the firewall and trans tunnel at a minimum. Then there is the issue of modifying the T bar support cross member which would where the trans mount itself would need to attach. I think in the end you would not like the end result, the shifter would be pretty high I think.

Converting to a manual (4, 5. or 6 speed) isnt going to be a real inexpensive effort no matter which way you go, but this depends on what you feel is expensive and what you have available to you right now. If you have nothing, then you need to look at some of the kits on the market that provide pretty much everything you need. Sure you can do it the "Johnny Cash" way and get the stuff "one piece at a time" and perhaps get it together cheaper. I'd start looking for a A833, look at Craigslist you might be able to score one for a decent price. Keep in mind there are many versions of this trans and the most available is the Aluminum case with OD. Its available bc not many want them. You also need a trans that has the rear E body shifter mount.

Once you have the trans, you can then source the other stuff like the bell housing, flywheel (you will need an externally balanced version for a 360), pressure plate, clutch, throw out bearing, shifter and linkage, some method of clutch linkage (hydraulic or mechanical), 4 speed hump, you might need a new trans mount and drive shaft.

You live in a good time in that there are options, you could maybe find a Tremec out of something else and make it work but whatever you end up with will require some engineering and modification to make work.
Current Mopar
70 Challenger RT 440-6, 73 Cuda (under const)
05 Durango, 99 Dakota, 01 Ram 4x4, 14 2500 4X4, 10 PCP Challenger RT, 01 Viper GTS ACR, 52 B3B w/330 Desoto Hemi, 70 Hemi RR, 61 Jeep FC170
Past Mopars
9 x Challengers. AAR Cuda, 4 RR, 2 GTX, 4 Chargers, etc... (too many to list)

Offline SlyGuy

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Re: Manual Transmission Options
« Reply #2 on: November 22, 2018 - 02:11:04 pm »
You mention that "the most available version of the A833 is the aluminum case with OD, because not many want them"? Can you tell me why that is? I actually want OD. Are there other reasons to stay away from that version? I really appreciate your input! 

Offline Beekeeper

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Re: Manual Transmission Options
« Reply #3 on: November 22, 2018 - 04:11:46 pm »
The overdrive version was made during the 70s as a way of saving gas. They are not as strong as the non overdrive versions so high performance enthusiasts tend to avoid them. I wouldnt shy away from one though.

Offline SlyGuy

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Re: Manual Transmission Options
« Reply #4 on: November 23, 2018 - 08:14:52 am »
Well now I am intrigued, as this sounds like what I am looking for. With my limited research to this point (and very limited experience), I was under the impression that the A833 was a 4 speed "non" overdrive trany in it's original form. I'm sure you guys are probably tired of explaining this stuff, but could you maybe tell me a little more about it?

How does the OD work in the aluminum version? Is it actually a 5 speed trany? Will it have the rear E body shift mount? I am building a driver with a 360 magnum, and a target of 400 to 450 HP maybe. I wonder if this might be the trany for me? 

Offline Beekeeper

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Re: Manual Transmission Options
« Reply #5 on: November 23, 2018 - 09:04:14 am »
It was designed as a non overdrive 4 speed and was rugged and performance oriented. As horsepower disappeared in the 70s and people became concerned with fuel economy, they simply modified gear ratios which dramatically lowered rpms on the highway. They did Not add a fifth gear.

Before you jump on it, look at the gear ratios:

1st: 2.66 in 1970 version to 1.39 in OD version
2nd: 1.91 in 1970 version to 1.67 in OD version
3rd: 1.39 in 1970 version to 1.0 in OD version
4th: 1.0 in 1970 version to .73 in OD version

The change in ratios helped lower rpms and fuel costs but it did it at the expense of performance. To make matters worse, having a final drive of .73 in fourth put a lot of extra strain on the transmission which wasnt designed for it. Making it aluminum could not have helped.

If you have a lower performance motor and want to save gas, this might be a good choice. I used to want one of these units but looking at those ratios again has changed my mind.

Offline Beekeeper

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Re: Manual Transmission Options
« Reply #6 on: November 23, 2018 - 09:08:01 am »
It was designed as a non overdrive 4 speed and was rugged and performance oriented. As horsepower disappeared in the 70s and people became concerned with fuel economy, they simply modified gear ratios which dramatically lowered rpms on the highway. They did Not add a fifth gear.

Before you jump on it, look at the gear ratios:

1st: 2.66 in 1970 version to 1.39 in OD version
2nd: 1.91 in 1970 version to 1.67 in OD version
3rd: 1.39 in 1970 version to 1.0 in OD version
4th: 1.0 in 1970 version to .73 in OD version

The change in ratios helped lower rpms and fuel costs but it did it at the expense of performance. To make matters worse, having a final drive of .73 in fourth put a lot of extra strain on the transmission which wasnt designed for it. Making it aluminum could not have helped.

If you have a lower performance motor and want to save gas, this might be a good choice. I used to want one of these units but looking at those ratios again has changed my mind.

Typo...first gear went from 2.66 to 3.09

Offline SlyGuy

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Re: Manual Transmission Options
« Reply #7 on: November 23, 2018 - 09:39:13 am »
Appreciate the details. Thanks!!

Offline SlyGuy

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Re: Manual Transmission Options
« Reply #8 on: March 12, 2019 - 06:35:57 pm »
Well, four months later and I'm still banging my head against the wall trying to decide which way to go on a transmission for my '72 Challenger. I reeeaaaally want a manual with overdrive. I just never realized how limited my options are.....until now. I might be about to slip down the rabbit hole, and purchase one of the TKO conversion kits. I don't see any recent threads, but wondering if anyone has an opinion on American Power Train vs. Silver Sport Trans? 

Offline 70chall440

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Re: Manual Transmission Options
« Reply #9 on: March 13, 2019 - 12:51:35 am »
Unfortunately I do not have any direct experience with either, however like you I did a lot of research at one time and IMO the American Power Train seemed like a better deal. Of course many will say you should get a Passion 5 speed but they are very expensive.
Current Mopar
70 Challenger RT 440-6, 73 Cuda (under const)
05 Durango, 99 Dakota, 01 Ram 4x4, 14 2500 4X4, 10 PCP Challenger RT, 01 Viper GTS ACR, 52 B3B w/330 Desoto Hemi, 70 Hemi RR, 61 Jeep FC170
Past Mopars
9 x Challengers. AAR Cuda, 4 RR, 2 GTX, 4 Chargers, etc... (too many to list)

Offline GoodysGotaCuda

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Re: Manual Transmission Options
« Reply #10 on: March 14, 2019 - 05:36:34 pm »
Ive been happy with SST. I used them for my T56 magnum conversion.


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Build Page: Goody's 'Cuda Build Page
1976 Dodge Warlock
1972 Barracuda - 5.7 Hemi + T56 Magnum

Wheel & Tire Specs:Link

Offline SlyGuy

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Re: Manual Transmission Options
« Reply #11 on: March 16, 2019 - 08:45:47 am »
Appreciate the feedback guys!

GoodysGotaCuda - Do you mind telling me a little more about your t56 conversion from SST. Have you been running it for a while? Any major sticking points with the installation, customer service, or SST in general?

We put the SST and AP quotes side by side, and they are almost identical price wise. The BIG difference that I see is their warranty's, which has me leaning toward SST as well. Thanks again!   

Offline GoodysGotaCuda

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Re: Manual Transmission Options
« Reply #12 on: March 16, 2019 - 04:24:45 pm »
Appreciate the feedback guys!

GoodysGotaCuda - Do you mind telling me a little more about your t56 conversion from SST. Have you been running it for a while? Any major sticking points with the installation, customer service, or SST in general?

We put the SST and AP quotes side by side, and they are almost identical price wise. The BIG difference that I see is their warranty's, which has me leaning toward SST as well. Thanks again!

My only sticking point was they had a stock shifter location t56 magnum in the works and they didnt really give me a heads up. I dont want to allude to the fact that they had to inform me, but it sure would have been helpful. I built my floor and crossmember around the t56 location and about the time I shipped the car to paint, they released the new version.

I cant say thats a major fault of theirs, but a let down as a whole. Otherwise they have been great to work with, I had a leaking new slip yoke and they sent one out right away.


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Build Page: Goody's 'Cuda Build Page
1976 Dodge Warlock
1972 Barracuda - 5.7 Hemi + T56 Magnum

Wheel & Tire Specs:Link