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ZF S5-42 Rebuild Questions

Moderator: Mod Squad

88F15088
Registered User
Posts: 182
Joined: Mon Sep 11, 2017 12:24 pm

ZF S5-42 Rebuild Questions

Post #1 by 88F15088 » Mon Dec 31, 2018 12:55 am

I have a ZF S5-42 mated behind my 300, and think it may be nearing time for a rebuild. There is whirring through all gears that increases with engine RPM (bearings), and some of the synchros feel a little rough. Another issue I am experiencing is play in the gears. It's difficult to describe, but if I am rolling in 1st or 2nd and lightly get on the throttle, then let off, there is a slight jerk and clunk when you let off, almost like there is play in the u-joints or driveshaft. The jerking is felt through all gears, but is less severe in the higher gears. When parked and in 1st, you can twist the driveshaft a little each way and can hear a clunking coming from inside the transmission. Any ideas as to what this could be?

When I am swapping in my rebuilt engine, the transmission will be out anyway so that would be a great time to have the work done to it. Of course my next question is if I should try to tackle the rebuild myself or have a shop do it. A rebuild kit is around $250 with synchros and bearings, and a local shop wants $400-500 labor if I bring him the trans and rebuild kit. The pros of having the shop do it is they could likely tell if something else was worn or out of place when they took it apart. I also wouldn't have to worry about losing pieces or not being able to get it back together. The cons are something not being done correctly or the jerking issue not being fixed and I am out the labor cost.

If I did it myself I could learn a lot in the process and save a few hundred dollars on labor. I have been reading the rebuild manual, and while tedious, I think it is something I can tackle. http://www.vaglinks.com/Docs/Catalogues ... anual_.pdf

Another thing that needs to be done is replacing the speedo gear with one that will account for my 33" tires so the speedometer is correct. I can't find a source for different speedo gears. If this issue isn't correctable it is no big deal, but it would be nice to tackle while the trans is apart.

Any insight is much appreciated!

sdiesel
Registered User
Posts: 698
Joined: Fri Jan 06, 2012 12:33 am
Location: NW Oregon,Buxton currently

Re: ZF S5-42 Rebuild Questions

Post #2 by sdiesel » Thu Jan 10, 2019 9:50 pm

my insight is, ...get a competant shop to cover you.
I say this because setting the preload is a bugger and requires a ton of patience, and if u don't have a holder for the gear set to install and remove several times, it's also going to require a good deal of luck, fortitude, and experience to get it right.
syncros a must, good bearing kits are more than 250 or were. I buy zf kits. called ZF2 or squared using the mathematical symbol.
the rear case half tends to split at the ears on 4x2 and at the top ribbing on 4x4.
THERE ARE NO REPLACEMENTS,being made for rear case hslves.
I highly recommend transmission exchange in portland oregon. on MLK STREET. those guys rock.

Midwest trans too is a good source I've heard about.
core urs out and set your feet close to the woodstove, while u wait for UPS to return ur new transmission.
mI'd west has a short throw shifter kit, I've been itching to try out.
no more rapping my knuckles on the arm rest box in 4th gear.
a long love affair with the 300 six.
my lastest and final fling is a fresh 300 in an 88 ford f350 dually 4X flatbed

88F15088
Registered User
Posts: 182
Joined: Mon Sep 11, 2017 12:24 pm

Re: ZF S5-42 Rebuild Questions

Post #3 by 88F15088 » Thu Jan 31, 2019 2:25 pm

Midwest is a few hundred dollars cheaper, and they offer cryogenic parts treatment, so that is my first choice. I can get a reman unit for around $1,300 with a $1k core.

I saw the short throw shifter they offer a while back and it is tempting, but I kinda like the feel of the long throw, since it is a truck after all :)

sdiesel
Registered User
Posts: 698
Joined: Fri Jan 06, 2012 12:33 am
Location: NW Oregon,Buxton currently

Re: ZF S5-42 Rebuild Questions

Post #4 by sdiesel » Tue Mar 26, 2019 11:57 pm

mid west has a good rep.
and they have the short throw shifter too.

I'd try if they are close enough that warranty is no hassle
a long love affair with the 300 six.
my lastest and final fling is a fresh 300 in an 88 ford f350 dually 4X flatbed

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