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      02-01-2011, 03:33 PM   #1
2swift
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Another First-Second Gear Problem

I searched but couldn't find anything similar to two problems I've been having with my 6mt. Maybe some of you have experienced this and can shed some light on what's happening:

1) I am getting a grinding noise on the very first shift of the day from 1st-2nd. This happens only when the engine is cold and the problem disappears for the rest of the time until possibly the next cold-start. You can actually hear the grinding or something spinning, and feel some kind of resistance when trying to put the gear into 2nd.

Most of the time, I try to avoid this grinding by driving about .2 miles slowly in 1st gear before going into 2nd, and hoping the car's a bit warmed/adjusted so I can make a smooth shift without any issues.

2) It is difficult getting the gear into 1st when slowly rolling. I have to stop completely before the lever will go into 1st. For example, if I'm in 2nd and approaching a stop sign, I sometimes crawl and don't stop completely. I try putting the lever into 1st but it'll just snap back into neutral so I have to continue moving from a crawl in 2nd gear.

Is this normal for you guys? I don't seem to have any of these problems with other MT cars.

Any help is greatly appreciated
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      02-01-2011, 03:43 PM   #2
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The M3 has a very clunky gearbox... With that said it is a little hard to change gears when cold...

Sometimes it is a little tough to go into first but never does it not go in... Try once and if you have to force it remove the shifter and let go of the clutch and try again... Usually works for me
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      02-01-2011, 04:17 PM   #3
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My First to Second was not that smooth either, until I did my 1200 Break-In service, which included the MT service. Now it is pretty smooth with just an occasional notchy feel from First to Second.
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      02-01-2011, 04:20 PM   #4
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Can't believe BMW still haven't fixed this issue after, what, 5 model years?
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      02-01-2011, 04:24 PM   #5
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I got my 1200 mile service and the notchy feeling from 1st to 2nd, and even sometimes from 2nd to 3rd is still there. However, the problems I described above are different. I understand the gearbox is clunky/notchy when cold but it's the 1st-2nd grinding I'm experiencing once a day, after cold starts, and at low rpms.
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      02-01-2011, 04:26 PM   #6
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1) The grinding noise/something spinning sounds like the experience some have reported with the RE SSK. The SSK with the more direct link has less dampening of the feel along the shift link. Maybe the cold is somehow minimizing the "dampening" when it's cold? Just a guess. In any case, the M3 gearbox is known to be clunky when cold. I wouldn't sweat it.

2) Typical of many manual transmissions; at least all of the ones on cars I've owned. Simple solution: either stop completely or use second.


Cheers.
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      02-01-2011, 05:36 PM   #7
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The 2nd to 1st downshift problem might be resolved by double declutching the downshift.
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      02-01-2011, 05:36 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ersin View Post

2) Typical of many manual transmissions; at least all of the ones on cars I've owned. Simple solution: either stop completely or use second.


Cheers.
A third solution is a double clutched rev-matched downshift. I've been doing that for years in other cars and it pops right into gear with no effort.
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      02-01-2011, 05:37 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SenorFunkyPants View Post
The 2nd to 1st downshift problem might be resolved by double declutching the downshift.
Damn beat me by seconds.
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      02-01-2011, 06:16 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SenorFunkyPants View Post
The 2nd to 1st downshift problem might be resolved by double declutching the downshift.
Quote:
Originally Posted by goldminer View Post
A third solution is a double clutched rev-matched downshift. I've been doing that for years in other cars and it pops right into gear with no effort.
Could be a solution. But, in my experience for 2nd to 1st it only helps a little. But from 5th to 4th to 3rd to 2nd, properly done, it's an orgiastic experience.


Cheers.
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      02-01-2011, 09:11 PM   #11
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Awesome thanks everyone! I'll try double clutching when I leave work soon. As for the first problem, I guess I'll continue driving in first gear for .2 miles before shifting to second =(
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      02-01-2011, 09:42 PM   #12
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Quote:
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Awesome thanks everyone! I'll try double clutching when I leave work soon. As for the first problem, I guess I'll continue driving in first gear for .2 miles before shifting to second =(
Nah. Just go to second. You don't really need first unless you come to a stop. Of course, there's nothing wrong with listening to the growl of the S65 at high rpm either, so ...


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      02-01-2011, 11:53 PM   #13
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How about skipping second for the first shift of the day, and sliding into 3rd? I find I don't get the grind this way (assuming you get between 3-5k RPM).
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      02-02-2011, 12:41 AM   #14
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double clutching is completely unnecessary. Just hold the stick hard to the left when pulling back to 2nd. No grinding. Finesse does not work. Manhandle the goddamn thing.
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      02-02-2011, 03:23 AM   #15
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It sounds like the syncros struggling to engage first time around. How about selecting second before you fire up the engine?
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      02-02-2011, 03:36 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ersin View Post
Could be a solution. But, in my experience for 2nd to 1st it only helps a little. But from 5th to 4th to 3rd to 2nd, properly done, it's an orgiastic experience.


Cheers.
2 to 1 should help the most, as it's got the highest rotating speed difference.

You may just need to rev it higher before clutching in on 1st.

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      02-02-2011, 03:43 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MVF4Rrider View Post
double clutching is completely unnecessary. Just hold the stick hard to the left when pulling back to 2nd.
The double declutching is for the downshift into 1st not the upshift into 2nd

For the first few "cold" upshifts I would get the car rolling in first then short shift into second....I would try and shift at the road speed such that when 2nd gear is engaged the engine is about tickover revs, that way the scynco ring doesn't have to do much work and it shouldn't baulk. You can also try and play around with the speed you make the shift, at the correct speed the gear should slip easily in.

Last edited by SenorFunkyPants; 02-02-2011 at 04:28 AM.
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      02-02-2011, 10:49 AM   #18
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Quote:
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It sounds like the syncros struggling to engage first time around. How about selecting second before you fire up the engine?
That sounds right to me.

If there is grinding and/or an unwillingness for a car to go into a different gear, it is most likely an issue with the synchros.

If it goes away quickly, and while warmed up, great. But expect it to get worse as time goes on. You will probably start to see issues when you place a "high demand" on them, such as high rpm full throttle shifts, etc. You may get some grinding there and/or an unwillingness for the shifter to go to the gear you want smoothly....it will seemed "locked out" for a second or two. Been there, done that....but with a 15K GT3 tranny. lol

Being as it only does it "once" in the morning, it ain't exactly something the dealer will be able to replicate/want to repair.

I would monitor the situation and take it in once it becomes more prevalent.
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      02-02-2011, 11:09 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MVF4Rrider View Post
double clutching is completely unnecessary. Just hold the stick hard to the left when pulling back to 2nd. No grinding. Finesse does not work. Manhandle the goddamn thing.
No problems thus far but the 1-2 shift does take a hell of alot of practice to get right (not anywhere as silky as the rest of the shifts, up or down like everyone's seeming to agree with). I also agree with MVF4rider and it's how I've been driving mine. As for the downshift from 2-1....yes, difficult when cold so I basically stopped doing it and throw it into first when I'm stopped.
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      02-02-2011, 12:21 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by M5280RCR View Post
How about skipping second for the first shift of the day, and sliding into 3rd? I find I don't get the grind this way (assuming you get between 3-5k RPM).
I avoid going over 3.5k when the engine is cold but maybe I can try that out next time.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GT3 Tim View Post
That sounds right to me.

If there is grinding and/or an unwillingness for a car to go into a different gear, it is most likely an issue with the synchros.

If it goes away quickly, and while warmed up, great. But expect it to get worse as time goes on. You will probably start to see issues when you place a "high demand" on them, such as high rpm full throttle shifts, etc. You may get some grinding there and/or an unwillingness for the shifter to go to the gear you want smoothly....it will seemed "locked out" for a second or two. Been there, done that....but with a 15K GT3 tranny. lol

Being as it only does it "once" in the morning, it ain't exactly something the dealer will be able to replicate/want to repair.

I would monitor the situation and take it in once it becomes more prevalent.
Thanks...it definitely happens only once a day in the mornings. Same thing happened today but instead of forcing it into second and causing the grinding noise, it was just stuck for 1-2 seconds before I was able to put it into 2nd.

No one has this same problem in the mornings? What rpm is everyone shifting at for the very first shift of the day?
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      02-02-2011, 12:30 PM   #21
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maybe have it towed to the dealer and show them upon a cold start?
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