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Master Cylinder Swap/Install (Tick MC)

This is a discussion on Master Cylinder Swap/Install (Tick MC) within the Manual Transmission forums, part of the Drivetrain category; Finally got around to swapping out my master, installed the Tick unit and love it. Same basic procedure to install ...

  1. #1
    Senior Member tatertot91's Avatar
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    2001 Camaro SS

    Master Cylinder Swap/Install (Tick MC)

    Finally got around to swapping out my master, installed the Tick unit and love it. Same basic procedure to install the factory master minus adjustment.
    These is just a guide, you're install may go in a slightly different order but it all goes together the same.

    Here's a comparison of the new Tick unit to my old stock one. Notice the stock mounting bracket can be removed, take that into consideration during the swap. Also notice that the rod can be unscrewed from the Tick unit, removing it helps a lot during installation.
    Click for full sizeClick for full sizeClick for full size

    For reference the Clutch Master Cylinder is located below the Brake Master Cylinder and Brake Booster

    I started off jacking up the drivers side of the car (always exercise safety and use jack stands and wheel chocks)
    This will allow you to get underneath and disconnect the master cylinder from the slave located on the side of the transmission which you can see here


    Push the plastic piece around the fitting and gently pull to disconnect it. Might get a bit of fluid so have a rag handy
    Here is it removed


    There is a heat shield which protects the line, this needs to be removed to allow you to pull the hose up and out of the car

    Once that is done the reservoir can be removed, simply remove the fastener located on the side of it. If you have something like a syringe to remove the fluid do so, i left mine capped and didn't have a problem.
    Here it is before and after i removed from its location after i fished it under the brake master cylinder



    Now go inside the car and remove the panels underneath the steering wheel. It's held on by 2 Philips screws and 2 7mm screws
    If your car is equipped with an electric hatch release unplug the harness going to the button
    The plastic cover beneath that can now be removed. It is held on by plastic push in fasteners
    Click for full sizeClick for full size

    Next get on your back and look underneath the console. The master cylinder rod attaches to the clutch pedal assembly over a pin and is held on by a small metal clip, simply remove the clip and slip the rod off. Tick recommends removing the spring in this picture with the installation of their unit, if you're installing another factory master leave it on



    Next remove the two nuts from the firewall which hold the master cylinder in place (2 - 13mm)


    Once those are removed you can tap the bracket through the firewall. Then from under the hood try your best to remove the master cylinder. It comes out along side the steering shaft. The harness running through the firewall runs very close to the master, i had to move it around a little in order to get the stock unit out.

    Once that's out simply transfer the fluid reservoir from the stock unit to the tick unit (if you want to bleed the new master while it's out now is the time to do so). The Tick master goes in the same way the old one came out, tighter fit but same basic process. Remember it helps to unscrew the rod from the Tick MC during install. Really helps to have a buddy inside the car to get it lined up and bolted while you hold it in place. The Tick MC is held in place using 2 13mm bolts. Here is it in the car


    Now the rod can be threaded back on the unit and the rod end can be slipped onto the pin on the clutch pedal. With the Tick MC the adjustment starts with the pedal barely off the floor so make sure when you install it the rod is at it's shortest setting. Remember to reinstall the small metal clip, otherwise it may come off down the road. Also face the grease fitting downward for future greasing. Here's it attached, notice the spring is now removed.


    Place the Fluid Reservoir back in place and attach the line from the new MC to the slave under the car. You can lower the car back to the ground now

    Hydraulics can now be bled, do your best to get all the air out of the system. You can do it the old fashion way and crawl under the car but the Tick speed bleeder line was installed during my clutch swap and it made bleeding it a breeze, highly recommend it. Just know it has to be installed with the transmission out of the car. Some people also like the MityVac method which was my last resort but the speed bleeder worked great for me.

    Instructions for adjusting the MC come in the package but basically the pedal starts just off the floor and you start the car in neutral and try and get into 1st gear without forcing it. If it has trouble going in go under and lengthen the rod on the master by 1-2 turns and try again. Once it goes in smoothly test drive the car and if necessary adjust it if needed for high RPM shifting. Just make sure not to over adjust the rod, or you will risk internal damage.

    From Tick's install sheet: "Correctly installed and bled, you will notice a pedal that is shorter and slightly more firm than the factory master cylinder."
    100% true from my experience. Shifts are much faster and even driving the car around town is much nicer now. 1-2 shift is quick!


    This is the second car I've installed this unit in if that says anything, I am extremely happy with it. If you can afford it, this is a definite upgrade you will notice!
    ragz06 likes this.

  2. #2
    Moderator 35th-ANV-SS's Avatar
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    02 35th LE Camaro SS

    How long did that take? Great write up Alex. Definitely will be using this come winter.

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    Senior Member tatertot91's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 35th-ANV-SS View Post
    How long did that take? Great write up Alex. Definitely will be using this come winter.
    Had a tting you were gonna ask that. Was tired up between this and another project my buddy was working on so I can't really say how long it took. start to finish I would put it at an hour and a half for the install depending on how the bleeding process takes. Also may take one or two rides to get it fully adjusted.

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    Senior Member tatertot91's Avatar
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    Sunset Orange Metalic
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    Just want to add something
    Might run into this if you install a tick mc as i did, with the pedal being lower to the ground the switch that makes contact to the pedal and sees whether or not the clutch pedal is up or not may no longer operate like it should. Basically the car may think you're disengaging the clutch, therefore disabling the cruise control. The switch has threads and will need to be adjusted to work properly. I will show pics of what i mean later on
    Just thought you all should know this

  5. #5
    Senior Member tatertot91's Avatar
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    Sunset Orange Metalic
    2001 Camaro SS

    Finally got around to uploading pics
    Here is the switch i had to adjust, as you can see in the pic the switch no longer makes contact with the clutch pedal.


    All i did was unplug the switch harness, here's a pic of the plug. Used a small flat head screw driver and got it off


    The switch has threads on it so once it was unplugged i simply spun it so that it made contact with the pedal assembly. Then i plugged switch back in and the job was done.

  6. #6
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    Great job writing this..ive been doing a master swap myself (01 SS) the problem im having is that the white plastic piece on the quick connect at the slave is cracked all over and wont release the steel braided line. Can i replace the plastic if it breaks off completly or will that require a new line?? My local auto parts house told me that the plastic part came with the slave but judging by the pics u put up it comes off.with the line itself! any advice for how to get it out of there?? Thanks

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