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Old 07-07-2002, 22:49   #1 (permalink)
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Question XF 3spd shift points

Just wondering what everyone's experience is with shift points of a borg warner 3spd auto.

I've had mine fully rebuilt (about 5yrs ago now) and get it serviced every 20000km or so. I've recently had a new kickdown cable installed too.

I'm annoyed with the way it shifts - second gear seems to come in really early unless you push it hard (I'm talking 1 sec. of first gear from a standstill before 2 kicks in). Forget about a first gear kickdown unless you just about floor it.

I recently rode in a friend's XF (nothing special, not modded at all) and noticed first gear was revving out nicely before any sign of second, and a few times going around corners the car went down to first without putting the foot to the floor. It never seems rough in the changes either. Mine seems to feel "bothered" when kicking down, like it really doesn't want to but you're forcing it.

Any suggestions? I'd rather keep the box if I could, seeing it's been well looked after, plus I'm not real interested in a manual conversion.
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Old 07-08-2002, 06:06   #2 (permalink)
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Have not driven an XF Auto - mine is a manual. However my XA 250 Auto is exactly the way you describe your XF Auto. It only stays in first just long enough to take off the quickly changes to second. Unless you are traveling very slow below about 10MPH it will not kick down to first unless you floor it. I have driven XY and XC 250 Auto's and they all seem to be this way. I think most of the old auto's can be a little bit slugish, however I find if you take of smoothly and then as soon as the car is moving apply a reasonable amount of throttle it ususally holds first gear pretty well. Under light throttle though my XA can be in top gear in a car park at 10MPH.
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Old 07-08-2002, 08:05   #3 (permalink)
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Your XF is shifting normally - possibly your friend's box has been modded (you say it hasn't BUT are you sure of it's history?) or maybe the kickdown cable has been adjusted right up.
You can experiment with adjusting the kickdown cable on yours to get it shifting back to first sooner but you will suffer in fuel economy for very little gain in performance - remember with your long stroke motor you aren't going to gain much by revving it out so it's best to get up through the gears early and let the engine torque work for you.
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Old 07-08-2002, 09:25   #4 (permalink)
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Having experienced both Borg-Warner 40s and C4 automatics in the same car (The borg-warner is really weak, got a recon in it a while ago, and it died within a year). I think the Borg-Warner is controlled by a load-sensor of some type, either that or there is an adjustment on the gearbox which controls the shift points. On the C4, there is a vacuum line that attatches to the intake manifold, it makes cruising better. There is an external adjustment on the C4 for gear shifts, I dont know about the BW40 though.

Interesting note for C4 owners though, if you disconnect and plug the vacuum line going to the gearbox, it'll hold each gear for as long as it possibly can, until the shift point is met..
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Old 07-09-2002, 04:15   #5 (permalink)
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checked out my auto this morning on the way to work. took off normally it changed into second at just under 2 grand (bout 1700rpm) this is about 25/30 kph

with the foot on the floor it changed at just over 4 grand (bout 65 i think) (hard to tell as the XF Ghia digital is slow at keeping up with acceleration lol dont ya think?)

it is a borg warner m51 from an EA behind my 4.1 unleaded. the diff is from a 4 speed manual (not sure on the ratio tho)

i have found that this auto shifts heaps better than the BW40 (XF) and it was well worth the 100 bucks i paid for it !!!!!! lol

also when i cane it it shifts from second to third at 120 clicks! whereas the BW40 shifts at 100 (well it did in my ute n e ways)and ive had it off the clock a few times (in the red on my digital XF Ghia Tach)
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Old 07-09-2002, 15:02   #6 (permalink)
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I agree V8Uteman351, that Ghia dash is rather average. I can understand why they dropped it. The worst part is the low resolution on the gauges, you're either running ice cold or boiling or spot on, there's no in-between. I'd find it hard to get used to an analogue dash now that's for sure, especially the speedo.

Just for the record my temp gauge always runs on centre or one below (never ever above centre), my volts on centre or one above or below, my oil same as volts. Fuel is always down in the thin sticks cos I run gas, no point lugging 80 litres of petrol for nothing.

I've never been close to the red on my tach (4500rpm lol) the highest I've been is 3500, but 3000 would be met on most drives. It's a real tractor motor the old 4.1, you gotta love it.

Sounds like my auto is going like it should then. I've learnt to drive in "2" most of the time around the city, because it can handle city driving from 0 to about 65 without complaining. That way I get good response without thumping the tranny down a gear.
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Old 07-10-2002, 03:48   #7 (permalink)
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my ancillaries mostly stay bout half too ive never seen my temp up above half um my volts sometimes go pretty low but ive got the full elec's (from the ghia) and a big stereo and a stuffed alternator couldnt be bothered changing it till it actually dies i just turn off the stereo wen it goes down till theres a bit of charge!! lol (although it goes down a fair bit with the lights/wipers and heater fan which seems to be the norm in cold gloomy rainy winter!)

my oil is always at hte top as i dont have the correct sender in my motor (i just plugged the dash in w/o changing it) i guess its just a on/off switch as it only tripped a light in the falcon dash and i'd presume the ghia one is variable switch to trip the digi bit
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Old 07-10-2002, 04:57   #8 (permalink)
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I remember those old Ghia Dashes...:-)

My one used to flicker all the time...found it very hard to read in the daytime as well..especially when the sun used to shine onto it!. My oil/volts/temp used to be all on about 1/2 but when i used to stop, the border around the oil pressure gauge used to flash...dunno if that was normal or not....but eh...it had 303,000 and it was still going...barely! lol

PS..those damn power window switches shit me... :-P
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Old 07-10-2002, 20:30   #9 (permalink)
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yeah im not sure what kind of gearbox is in my 1988 EA fairmont Ghia but if you floor it first gear runs to about 50....2nd to about 80 the 3rd ive got to go to 180 but its not very happy at that point....not that i encourage this kind of driving, but, can you guys do burn outs off the line..cos i cant!..not that i want to but sometimes it would be nice..i mean the road has to be either very wet or bloody gravel!..yeah i was just wondering if this happens to anyone else?

lol...my dash is electric and when ever im indicating, it dims a little with every blink..i didn't even notice untill some told me!
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Old 07-10-2002, 21:33   #10 (permalink)
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I can never break traction in the dry with a 2.77 LSD, not that I try much. But in the wet taking off at the lights when you're on pole and there is a slight incline, you can keep both wheels spinning for ages, the car gets out sideways and eventually grips and straightens up.
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