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Old 12-16-2001, 03:02 AM   #1
mikemocha

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Post TH-400 First Gear Whine


Hello. I'm new to this board, seems like it has a lot of great information on Oldsmobiles.

I own a 73 Delta 88 in pretty cherry condition with 101,000 original miles. When I get a chance I'll submit a picture for the members cars page.

Now to my question.. I recently started hearing a whining noise in first gear and I'm wondering what to do to correct it. I also used to own a 76 Buick Electra 225 (also had a TH-400) and it had did the same thing at one time. The fix was simply to get the transmission serviced, fluid and filter change. Do you think the same thing is necessary to fix the whine in my Olds, or should I be looking for something else? I haven't serviced the tranny for 30,000 miles. What causes the 1st gear whine? And why did a fluid/filter change fix it on my Buick? Is this a common problem with TH-400's when they need servicing? Thanks for any help.
 
Old 12-16-2001, 07:12 AM   #2
83Cutlass

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Post

Does it only whine when its cold, or when its warmed up as well? I'd first check your fluid's level and condition. Transmissions have bearings and I suspect that is the source of your whine. Maybe lack of lubracation from low fluid. Or maybe incorrect fluid.
 
Old 12-16-2001, 05:23 PM   #3
Bluecut70

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Post

My TH-350 whines when I wind out first gear too, sounds sort of like a blower or a gear drive.
 
Old 12-16-2001, 06:12 PM   #4
78oldscutlass

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Post

So does my TH350 and I rebuilt it. Hell my powerglide did it too.
 
Old 12-16-2001, 10:31 PM   #5
bowtie_rocket

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My Turbo-200 (don't laugh!) whines as well in first and second when I manually shift it. When I throw it in third, the whine stops. Maybe the whine is normal???
 
Old 12-17-2001, 12:49 AM   #6
mikemocha

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Post

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by 83Cutlass:
Does it only whine when its cold, or when its warmed up as well? I'd first check your fluid's level and condition. Transmissions have bearings and I suspect that is the source of your whine. Maybe lack of lubracation from low fluid. Or maybe incorrect fluid.</font>

That's a good point you made of which I forgot to post.. It only whines when it warms up. The fluid is full and I've always put in Dextron type. The fluid is a nice red/pink color, like it comes out of the bottle. No metallic smell or dark color like I've seen on poorly maintained trannys.
 
Old 12-17-2001, 12:51 AM   #7
mikemocha

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Post

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by bowtie_rocket:
My Turbo-200 (don't laugh!) whines as well in first and second when I manually shift it. When I throw it in third, the whine stops. Maybe the whine is normal???</font>

I don't know about the 200, but on the 400 it's not normal. It never did it before in the past 4 years I've owned it. Same goes for my Buick, it started doing it then I got the tranny serviced and it went away.
 
Old 12-17-2001, 08:41 AM   #8
Fox

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Post

My TH400 never makes any sound like the one described so I doubt it healthy.

------------------
Nobody likes a bastard.
(1970 LeMans with 403)
 
Old 12-17-2001, 08:43 AM   #9
granny_rocket

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Post

I have had similar situations with not only the stock POS 200, but a nice TH-350 and a recently rebuilt 200-4r. Only in first gear though! My guess is that since first is a really low gear (2.5x or numerically higher multiplied by the low gear ratio of the rear to equal an over all first gear ratio of 4.xx something) those suckers in first gear really wind up!

my .02

------------------
-Al Conforti

Home of the 1984 Olds "442 Sedan" (F.K.A. Granny Rocket) Cutlass Supreme Sedan w/ HO 307, 3.73's, and O/D!
 
Old 12-17-2001, 03:21 PM   #10
83 H/O

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Post

Pressure differences in a Turbo 400 will indeed cause it to whine in 1st gear. Adding a shift kit in a 400 in many cases makes them louder. There is a TSB on this somewhere.

In your case however, when the Turbo 400's start to age / filter begins to get clogged, they will begine to whine. Beleive it or not, a "thrashed on" 400 seems to remain quieter than the daily drivers in a lot of cases. Why , I don't know.

I would remove the pan and replace the filter kit. Look for clutch material in the bottom of the pan (Which usually there is not a lot of) and your whine should quiet.



------------------
I'm not driving too fast, I'm flying too low.

83 H/O Stock - 38K
83 H/O - Soon to be Tubbed Warren Johnson Replica.
86 Buick GN - 11.04 @ 124.47mph
79 T/A 468 Olds W30 - 10.86 @ 127.2mph
..and let's not forget the wifeeee's "UltraFast" 99 Alero GLS 3.4 Grocery Runner.
 
Old 12-17-2001, 11:03 PM   #11
mikemocha

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Post

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by 83 H/O:
Pressure differences in a Turbo 400 will indeed cause it to whine in 1st gear. Adding a shift kit in a 400 in many cases makes them louder. There is a TSB on this somewhere.

In your case however, when the Turbo 400's start to age / filter begins to get clogged, they will begine to whine. Beleive it or not, a "thrashed on" 400 seems to remain quieter than the daily drivers in a lot of cases. Why , I don't know.

I would remove the pan and replace the filter kit. Look for clutch material in the bottom of the pan (Which usually there is not a lot of) and your whine should quiet.


</font>

83 H/O,

You speak the truth, this is the explanation I was looking for. When I had my Buick's 400 serviced the mech said there was no clutch material in the pan. Your comments regarding the filter being clogged is logical.

I'm going to call around for a kit to do this myself. Would all I need be the filter, fluid, and a new pan gasket? Anything else I should change while I'm in there? Thank you very much for your help.
 
Old 12-18-2001, 05:41 PM   #12
83Cutlass

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Post

Thats the basic tranny service. Fluid, Filter, and pan gasket. If your interested, the only other things you could do are a shift kit or replace the pan w/ a deep one or a chrome one or you could paint yours.
 
Old 12-18-2001, 06:11 PM   #13
83 H/O

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Post

The kit should be everything you need. Complete with Pan Gasket, Filter etc.

I've had more than my share of 400's and the more "work" you do to them , the louder 1st gear gets.

It's real common for someone to pull the pan because of the whine and decide to install a shift kit while "in there". Only to have a "different whine" when it's back together. I use 2 400's in my T/A. One is a "streetable" one with B&M shift kit and the other one is a reverse valvebody full manual. The 2nd is much louder in first. I've had people tell me that it sounds like a gear drive form the outside.

A new filter and you should be in good shape.

------------------
I'm not driving too fast, I'm flying too low.

83 H/O Stock - 38K
83 H/O - Soon to be Tubbed Warren Johnson Replica.
86 Buick GN - 11.04 @ 124.47mph
79 T/A 468 Olds W30 - 10.86 @ 127.2mph
..and let's not forget the wifeeee's "UltraFast" 99 Alero GLS 3.4 Grocery Runner.

[This message has been edited by 83 H/O (edited 12-18-2001).]
 
Old 12-19-2001, 12:21 AM   #14
mikemocha

Posts: n/a
Post

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by 83 H/O:
The kit should be everything you need. Complete with Pan Gasket, Filter etc.

I've had more than my share of 400's and the more "work" you do to them , the louder 1st gear gets.

It's real common for someone to pull the pan because of the whine and decide to install a shift kit while "in there". Only to have a "different whine" when it's back together. I use 2 400's in my T/A. One is a "streetable" one with B&M shift kit and the other one is a reverse valvebody full manual. The 2nd is much louder in first. I've had people tell me that it sounds like a gear drive form the outside.

A new filter and you should be in good shape.
</font>
Thanks to everyone for the advice. I'm going to do the servicing when I get a chance and will post back here with the results. I probably won't put in a shift kit, I like the smooth ride as it is.
 
Old 12-20-2001, 08:07 PM   #15
rocket403

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Post

My Brother's TH-400 was whinning after it was rebuilt, the tranny shop said that one of the valve body passages was blocked.
It could happen to you.

------------------
i like smokin tires
 
 


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