Mon, 23rd of June.

So, I had a bit of free time and a family friend had a car they where getting rid of. There was something wrong with the clutch as it wasn’t disengaging. I thought it would be a good learning experience so I decided to grab it.

I went with dad and we had a look at the car while we waited for them to arrive. The clutch felt good but we had a look under the car to check that the slave was pushing the fork.

Everything seemed in order so there must be something wrong inside the gearbox. Instead of towing it to my folks place or hiring a trailer, we decided to drive it there without a clutch.
After jump starting the car, I stationed myself at the highway and the car was started in first gear on an incline. Once on the highway you could get the revs right and slip it into the next gear.

Wed, 25th of June.

I started working on the car on Wednesday after my walk in the Gardens of Stone. The first thing I did was get the car up on stands. I found this diagram showing some of the appropriate mount points to use.

Once the car was up I spent quite a lot of time working out how I was going to get the gearbox out to fix the clutch. I had never done something like this before so I thought the best bet would be to get a workshop manual. Even though I didn’t get one for the exact model of my car, I found one for the petrol version. Apparently it should be similar for just about every car.

Here’s some of the places I found helpful for finding Toyota manuals:

The first thing to do is disconnect the battery. The manual said that you only need to disconnect the negative terminal, but some people I talked to said that disconnecting both is better and doesn’t really take long anyway.

The next thing on the list was to remove the “starter [motor] upper mounting nut”. I think at the time I didn’t even know what it was saying, and even now I don’t see why the nut from the starter motor should be removed.
Instead I went for step three of removing the shift leaver (aka gear stick) which seemed fairly straight forward. (still not sure what the “transmission” and “transfer” shift levers are – my guess was that one was the second stick on a 4wd).

I didn’t remove the actual lever, as I didn’t want to get any dirt inside the gearbox. When I did remove the gearstick, I didn’t have to remove the four bolts; the stick is held in by two lugs somewhat like a bayonet light bulb fitting. To remove it all you need to do is push it down (there is a spring holding it up) and turn it around so it can be released.

The next thing I thought I would do is remove the rear and from propeller shafts ie. the drive shaft. As suggested I had a read of PR-4:

I started with the rear connection. Since the shaft is balanced when fitted I marked the flanges so that I would know which way to put it back in later. It was then quite simple to remove the four bolts holding it together.

There was a small lip you had to pass and then it came off without a worry. I put plastic bags over both ends and held them in place with elastic bands to stop any dust getting in.

Next, I proceeded to the center support, which was a piece of cake.

With the back disconnected and the center support removed, the drive shaft can be slid out of the gearbox.

Some transmission oil started coming out of the box, but it didn’t seem too much.

The next thing I moved to was removing the exhaust. Looking back it probably wasn’t necessary, but it likely made getting the box out a lot easier.

Whilst talking to my dad, he suggested to spray some RP7/WD40 (aka: parrot’s piss) on the bolts that hold the exhaust to the manifold. Apparently the heat can make them quite tight and they can sometimes snap. I gave them a good soaking and then started by removing the exhaust brackets:

I then loosened the bolts that connect to the muffler section before returning back to the ones in the manifold.

I then removed the exhaust bracket, ending the exhaust saga.

It was getting quite late at this point so I decided to call it quits. Since I didn’t insert a plug into the transmission there was a little more oil leaking out than I would have liked. So, before I went inside I took out the drainage plug.

Overall I was pretty pleased with my progress.

Thur, 26th of June.

The next day I was back into it…. but I was a little unsure what to do, so I began by watching some videos of people taking the gearbox out:
Toyota Pickup Clutch Replacement Part 1 of 3
Toyota Pickup Clutch Replacement Part 2 of 3
Toyota Pickup Clutch Replacement Part 3 of 3
Replacing The Clutch In a Toyota 1 of 2
Replacing The Clutch In a Toyota 2 of 2

After some videos including Top Gear’s ‘Killing a Toyota’ episodes I decided to start with the slave cylinder, which was quite easy to remove. With the slave out of the way I loosened the two bolts holding the starter motor on. As I was moving the starter to the side I was surprised to find several ball bearings falling out into my hand and some onto the concrete (I later found these where likely from my non-existent).

I then removed the clamp holding the slave cylinder pipe, the spedo cable, as well as the reversing light switch.

Next I jacked the transmission up and removed the the rear gearbox mount. I also placed a piece of wood between the engine cross member so the motor wouldn’t tilt too much. To be safe, I also removed the radiator fan – apparently it will break and/or go through the radiator when the motor tilts.
(When I was putting the gearbox back in, I found that the piece of wood wasn’t really necessary when the fan was removed – making it much easier to reach the top bolts).

With everything detached, I recruited some minions, to help me man handle the gearbox out. We then removed the pressure plate, and took the clutch out…

The problem was blatantly obvious – one of the clutch springs had fallen out of the clutch (probably jamming it – hence why it wasn’t disengaging). Additionally the spigot bearing (aka thrust bearing) was a mangled piece of metal. The rotation of the flywheel probably flung them into the starter motor.

It was getting late so I called it quits for the day.

Fri, 27th of June.

My dad arrived during the night and he proved to be invaluable in removing the remnants of the spigot bearing. To get to the bearing I locked the flywheel with a tyre lever and just managed to undo the bolts with a breaker bar.
I then tried a puller without results. We also tried chiseling, but the metal had heated and was so hard it just blunted the chisels we tried. In the end we got it out using a 3m long tyre thingo that has a hook on the end. Even with that crazy leverage it was difficult and we needed to rotate the engine and slowly work it off.

With the remains of the bearing out I rang around to see where I could get spare parts. I was going to get a full clutch kit, but dad said it wasn’t really necessary, so all I ended up getting was a new clutch, spigot bearing and rear main engine seal (it was leaking oil). I was lucky enough to pick the parts up before the weekend:

I then cleaned the gearbox with degreaser, pressed the spigot, bearing in using an appropriate sized socket, greased the thrust bearing, greased the spigot bearing, and removed the rear main engine seal.

When I removed the engine seal, oil started running out. I needed to do an oil change anyway so I drained the sump. Once the sump had drained, I wiped away the excess oil and fitted the new seal.

I could then put the flywheel back on, followed by the clutch and pressure plate. Dad conveniently had a stepped shaft that seemed to be made for centralising the clutch plate.

With that done it was now time to put everything together. With some final help to get the gearbox back in I was on my own…

Sat, 28th of June.

The block of wood had slipped out and the motor was resting on the cross member – I was glad I took the radiator fan out.

Sun, 29th of June. 
I decided to take the starter motor out to make sure there weren’t any bearings stuck inside. It was fine, but I gave it a clean while it was out.

With the starter sorted, I installed the rear gearbox mount (I probably should have done right after putting the gearbox back in). As I was tightening the bolts onto the chassis, I snapped one. Luckily I could reach inside the U-channel and get at it from the other side.

The next thing I worked on was getting the slave cylinder back. This proved to be more difficult than I expected as I couldn’t push the rod in. I thought I was going to have to release some pressure and then bleed the brakes. But a phone call to dad saved me that effort. Instead, I took the boot and rod off and used a G-clamp to compress the cylinder. This freed it enough to put in place and get the bolts in.

I was soon very annoyed… I made the same mistake as earlier – a snapped bolt – except this time there was no way to get it out. My initial plan was the get the surface flat and weld a large washer with a small central hole onto the snapped bold. I could then weld a nut onto the washer.
I was discouraged from this method and instead drilled a hole into the bolt. I could only drill on an angle and destroyed some of the front threads as well as some further in where I drilled to far and went into the casing.
Once I had a hole I an EasyOut which is king of like a left hand version of a tap. Anyhows, in the end, after some cussing, I managed to get it out. The other bolt needed to be replaced as well as I stretched it – I found some replacements in a tin in the shed.

With that ordeal over and the lesson finally learnt: ‘thou shalt not use a breaker bar to tighten bolts’ I proceeded with putting the other bits and pieces together.
I started with the spedo cable, reverse light switch and then put the tail shaft in noting the markings I had created during dissembley.

I finished the night by putting the exhaust back in. I used Maniseal so I didn’t have to put new gaskets in.

Mon, 30th of June.  

I didn’t get much done on the Monday as I started a new job the following day. I did purchase a new oil filter.
I wish I had bought some engine and transmission oil to finish the job, but the dessision was made to di it the following night…

Tue, 1st of January. 

After my first day of work, I endured the 3hr trip back home and picked some oil up on the way. It was a short process to get the job finished and with the gearstick back in, I turned the car over and went on a triumphant test drive.

What a great learning experience.