Clutch does not engage - do I need to bleed? - Defender Source
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  #1  
Old December 9th, 2012, 03:15 PM
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Clutch does not engage - do I need to bleed?

Yesterday I lent the defender to a friend and, randomly, the clutch just stopped engaging. I think he might have gone over a speed bump when it happened - but I'm not sure.

Depressing the clutch does not seem to engage it, meaning you can't put the vehicle in gear. When the vehicle is off (or when I time the RPMs right) I can shift fine. Also, when the clutch is depressed it will "stick" to the bottom for about a minute before popping back up.

Googling around it sounds like I need to bleed the clutch. Is that right? Is there a good tutorial on how to do that? This is all that I've found: http://www.defendersource.com/faq/Tr...tch.html#Bleed


FYI: A month ago I recently had the master cylinder replaced (by a mechanic that I trust). Might be related...not sure.
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  #2  
Old December 9th, 2012, 03:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sro View Post
Yesterday I lent the defender to a friend and, randomly, the clutch just stopped engaging. I think he might have gone over a speed bump when it happened - but I'm not sure.

Depressing the clutch does not seem to engage it, meaning you can't put the vehicle in gear. When the vehicle is off (or when I time the RPMs right) I can shift fine. Also, when the clutch is depressed it will "stick" to the bottom for about a minute before popping back up.

Googling around it sounds like I need to bleed the clutch. Is that right? Is there a good tutorial on how to do that? This is all that I've found: http://www.defendersource.com/faq/Tr...tch.html#Bleed


FYI: A month ago I recently had the master cylinder replaced (by a mechanic that I trust). Might be related...not sure.
You ran out of clutch fluid, check the resioviour for fluid, check all lines for a leak, and check the bleeder on the slave incase its not fully tightened.
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  #3  
Old December 9th, 2012, 03:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sro View Post
Depressing the clutch does not seem to engage it, meaning you can't put the vehicle in gear. When the vehicle is off (or when I time the RPMs right) I can shift fine. Also, when the clutch is depressed it will "stick" to the bottom for about a minute before popping back up.

Googling around it sounds like I need to bleed the clutch. Is that right?

FYI: A month ago I recently had the master cylinder replaced (by a mechanic that I trust). Might be related...not sure.
Need to bleed, check to see that you aren't leaking from the master and dropped enough fluid to loose pressure.

Sticking at the bottom means the pedal spring has more force than the pressure build in the clutch system.
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  #4  
Old December 9th, 2012, 03:48 PM
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Ok, thanks. I checked the fluid in the master reservoir immediately after it happend and it looked full, which is strange. I'll check again today.

Any how-tos on bleeding?

If I don't bleed it myself I'll have to drive it back to the mechanic (5 hrs away) without a clutch.
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  #5  
Old December 9th, 2012, 03:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sro View Post
Ok, thanks. I checked the fluid in the master reservoir immediately after it happend and it looked full, which is strange. I'll check again today.

Any how-tos on bleeding?

If I don't bleed it myself I'll have to drive it back to the mechanic (5 hrs away) without a clutch.
Im sure you could find a shop that knows how to bleed a clutch much closer than 5 hours, it shows you live in San Fran, bound to be a decent mechanic there.
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Old December 10th, 2012, 12:15 AM
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John - I was actually off-roading 5 hrs from home SF. I ended up driving home 5 hrs without a clutch. Shifting was surprisingly smooth when the RPMs where timed right. The key was not stoping. When I did I'd usually 1) Start in gear: low first, 2) get the car rolling about 3-4 MPH, 3) pull it out of gear, 4) switch the transfer case from low to high, 5) put it back into 1st. 6) Accelerate and shift when needed, timing the shifts so that the engine RPMs matched the vehicle speed.

Jeff - I may give you a call sometime over the next couple days for help. Where can I find your phone number?
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Old December 10th, 2012, 12:25 AM
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Huff had a similar issue as described, ended up being his throw out bearing was toasted (literally). Obviously bleed first (I do mine with the Motive European power bleeder) but if that doesn't work I'm sure you'll be back!
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  #8  
Old December 10th, 2012, 12:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sro View Post
John - I was actually off-roading 5 hrs from home SF. I ended up driving home 5 hrs without a clutch. Shifting was surprisingly smooth when the RPMs where timed right. The key was not stoping. When I did I'd usually 1) Start in gear: low first, 2) get the car rolling about 3-4 MPH, 3) pull it out of gear, 4) switch the transfer case from low to high, 5) put it back into 1st. 6) Accelerate and shift when needed, timing the shifts so that the engine RPMs matched the vehicle speed.

Jeff - I may give you a call sometime over the next couple days for help. Where can I find your phone number?
haha, I ran out of clutch fluid on long island once, one of the worst places to not have a clutch, blew a red light or 2, and through a gas station to avoid stopping, didn't want to burn the starter out (20 mile ride to my friends house). I started in normal 1st, on the series its easy to shift without the clutch anyway so it was pretty normal to drive. Thank God it was at night.
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Old December 16th, 2012, 01:03 PM
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Jeff - went to pismo, which is about a 5 hour drive home in a defender w/ no clutch. Starter motor seems fine, though I did have to use it about a dozen times (ugh) at various red lights. After about 6 I figured out a way to start in low but the first 6 were in high.
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  #10  
Old December 20th, 2012, 10:28 PM
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Well, took it back to the mechanic that installed the master and it sounds like it's not a bleed. It's either the slave (less likely) or the clutch itself (more likely). He wants $300 to replace slave or $2200 to replace the clutch.

I'm a bit tight on cash so I'm thinking about doing it myself. Thoughts? Seems like it's not a one-man job. I should probably get back to him by tomorrow morning.
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Old December 20th, 2012, 10:39 PM
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a clutch is pretty easy to do, i did my clutch, but i also had a lift to use. but it is time consuming if do it by yourself, and on jack stands. and a slave cylinder is one two three. just need a additional person to push the pedal down, while you bleed the slave. hope this helps a little. 2200$ is quite a bit.
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Old December 20th, 2012, 10:51 PM
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Yah, I have a garage but I live in the city so it's pretty small. Also have a driveway. Don't have a lift.

JSBriggs - Absolutely have a comfortable couch.
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  #13  
Old December 22nd, 2012, 09:55 AM
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It's not uncommon to have weak hydraulics, replace one and the other g oes in short order being unable to keep up with the new part.
Barring some reason not to I replace the mc, sc and hose at the same time.
Release berings have always given me audible warning of impending failure.
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Old December 22nd, 2012, 11:44 AM
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Do the slave first (~$75 buy genuine land rover or lucas or girling or lucas/girling brand, none of that non-OEM crap). I can't imagine a clutch failing on or at least I have never seen one happen like that. They usually start slipping or fail catastrophicly. BTW, the parts for the clutch kit are $300-400 and to R and R the trans is ~5 hours so you are getting ripped off at $2k on a clutch, it should be more like half that.
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Old December 22nd, 2012, 11:51 AM
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Once the clutch wears out yes it slips but also you run out if travel on the clutch pedal. The latter being a warning sign if impending failure.
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A friend of mine runs a land rover / range rover specialty repair shop. Based on his experience, they are capable of stopping anywhere, anytime, at any cost.

I don't know about the brakes, only their unreliability.
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Old December 22nd, 2012, 02:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nathanwind View Post
Huff had a similar issue as described, ended up being his throw out bearing was toasted (literally). Obviously bleed first (I do mine with the Motive European power bleeder) but if that doesn't work I'm sure you'll be back!
Same thing with me, bled the clutch numerous times on the 1985 110 and it was a bad throwout bearing after aound 2,000 miles.
My SWB 2A Wagon bearing is also growling after about 2,000 miles.
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Old December 22nd, 2012, 10:04 PM
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Ok I'm having the mechanic do the slave for $200. I'd do it myself but I trust him and I'm currently out of town visiting family. It would be strange for a clutch to go like this. I've had clutches go in the past and they've always started slipping first.

evilefij - I could probably get it cheaper elsewhere, but here in SF everything is expensive...

Ken - how hard is it to replace the throw-out bearing? Is there a walkthrough somewhere online?
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Old December 23rd, 2012, 08:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sro View Post
Ok I'm having the mechanic do the slave for $200. I'd do it myself but I trust him and I'm currently out of town visiting family. It would be strange for a clutch to go like this. I've had clutches go in the past and they've always started slipping first.

evilefij - I could probably get it cheaper elsewhere, but here in SF everything is expensive...

Ken - how hard is it to replace the throw-out bearing? Is there a walkthrough somewhere online?
As just mentioned the gearbox needs to come out. We used a lift and gearbox stand so it was not difficult. Took around 4/5 hours.
Has run fine since then, not a full daily driver but close too it.
In the 110 the gears became more difficult to select and the clutch engaged right off the floor.
In the 2A SWB Wagon it just froze on the shaft while it was idling.
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Old January 2nd, 2013, 11:28 PM
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Well the slave didn't do it, meaning I'll have to take out the clutch.

There's some crunch when shifting gears. What do you guys think? Should I rebuild the transmission at the same time?
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