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can't launch/clutch problem

This is a discussion on can't launch/clutch problem within the Manual Transmission forums, part of the Drivetrain category; For the first time today I tried to launch from a stop and the car wouldn't launch. In first gear ...

  1. #1
    rice,its what's fo dinner LeadFarmer's Avatar
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    can't launch/clutch problem

    For the first time today I tried to launch from a stop and the car wouldn't launch. In first gear (from a 4k launch) the wheels spun really bad, which I don't understand because i'm on 180AA 285/40/17s. So after I spun through first for a few seconds I tried going into 2nd. When I dumped the clutch going into 2nd it didn't release all the way and the tires stopped spinning. So I pushed it back down and let completely off. Afterwards the smell of clutch was apparent but not excessive. I drove it home normal and the clutch felt fine and engaged/disengaged just like before I launched the car, but the smell of clutch was still pretty bad. There was no smoke. How much damage did I do to my clutch? Why wouldn't the clutch bite and allow me to launch? I've never had problems going into or out of gear with the car before, never have problems downshifting, I never powershift, everything has always felt fine. Am I doing something wrong or is it a problem with the clutch? The car has 120k miles, the master cylinder was replaced about 10k miles ago.
    Last edited by LeadFarmer; 09-30-2011 at 04:57 PM.
    M6, MS3 Cam, FAST 92/92, LS7 Clutch, Hurst Comp/Plus Shifter, Lid, K&N, OBX LT's, 3in ORX True Duals, KYB AGX shocks, BMR 3-Point SFCs, BMR springs, BMR Adj. PHR, LCA Relos, STB, 315 NT555Rs, DeepDish C5Z06s.

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    Senior Member INMY01TA's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LeadFarmer View Post
    Why wouldn't the clutch bite and allow me to launch?
    I'm confused by your post. You said the tires spun. How was the clutch not biting then?

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    Junior Member nfellman's Avatar
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    Are you on a stock clutch? I haven't launched my car a whole lot but if that is on a stock clutch that seems like that is quite a high launch. Correct me if I am wrong on that one.

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    Moderator Cutlass's Avatar
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    That's pretty typically. Spin the crap out of the tires in 1st and then you try to go into 2nd hard and aggressive and the clutch slips like crazy. Its basically the same problem as the "Sticky Clutch Pedal." Its either crappy hydraulics or the pressure plate is weak and not springing back to the engaged position against the high rpm centrifugal force. Start by flushing with fresh clean fluid. Then the drill mod. Then try a Tick Master Cylinder. Then try a new clutch. Or skip the chase and go straight to a new clutch and Tick Master.
    Unfortunately making the F-body hydraulic clutch act like an On/Off switch can be a spendy road to go down.

  5. #5
    rice,its what's fo dinner LeadFarmer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by INMY01TA View Post
    I'm confused by your post. You said the tires spun. How was the clutch not biting then?
    sorry about that, The clutch bit into 1st as far as I could tell(atleast mostly), but not 2nd at all.
    Quote Originally Posted by nfellman View Post
    Are you on a stock clutch? I haven't launched my car a whole lot but if that is on a stock clutch that seems like that is quite a high launch. Correct me if I am wrong on that one.
    I don't know if the clutch has ever been replaced by a previous owner. I'm fairly certain it's the stock clutch. This is my first manual car so I'm not sure if that's considered a high launch, my friend has an 01 cobra and he launches around the 4-5k mark all the time at the track without any problems on a stock tranny, so I assumed I shouldn't have any problems.
    Quote Originally Posted by Cutlass View Post
    That's pretty typically. Spin the crap out of the tires in 1st and then you try to go into 2nd hard and aggressive and the clutch slips like crazy. Its basically the same problem as the "Sticky Clutch Pedal." Its either crappy hydraulics or the pressure plate is weak and not springing back to the engaged position against the high rpm centrifugal force. Start by flushing with fresh clean fluid. Then the drill mod. Then try a Tick Master Cylinder. Then try a new clutch. Or skip the chase and go straight to a new clutch and Tick Master.
    Unfortunately making the F-body hydraulic clutch act like an On/Off switch can be a spendy road to go down.
    My first guess was the hydraulics were to blame(assuming I released the clutch properly going into 2nd) I def. plan on getting a Tick master cylinder soon, as well as a stage 2 monster clutch, but that's only if this clutch gives out on me. How can I tell if the fluid is burnt/bad? Will it have a certain smell/color?

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    Senior Member INMY01TA's Avatar
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    Get a Mcleod clutch. Mines kevlar and catches 4th gear.

  7. #7
    rice,its what's fo dinner LeadFarmer's Avatar
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    If I get a aftermarket clutch will I have to get a different/matching flywheel? Or can I use the stock one?

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    Senior Member INMY01TA's Avatar
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    Most of the good ones come with their own flywheel.

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