Difficulty changing down from 2nd - Alfa Romeo Forum
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Difficulty changing down from 2nd

I'm having trouble shifting down from 2nd to 1st at anything other than a crawling speed.

It will shift - but it crunches. Tried double declutching and it doesn't seem to make any difference (but I wouldn't expect to need to anyway).

Is this a "characteristic" or a fault?
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Re: Difficulty changing down from 2nd

Yes, I believe it's normal, mine is certainly the same. With a bit of practise you know when you can do it without getting a crunch !
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Re: Difficulty changing down from 2nd

Yep quite normal. You will get used to it, I very rarely use 1st unless pulling away from a full stop now.
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Re: Difficulty changing down from 2nd

My TS was also the same, but u only need 1st when pulling away from stand still. So dont down change to 1st, u can crawl along in 2nd without stalling in slow traffic.
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Re: Difficulty changing down from 2nd

I think the synchro on the TS does not have quite the smooth operation from large speed differences that my little Clio has. I gunned up to 60 in 2nd the other day coming off a roundabout, then clutch and short shift into 5th but got a real kick back and it popped out before properly engaging. That has not happened to me before and my Clio will happily do this all day. I guess the synchro is just not able to match speeds so quickly.
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Re: Difficulty changing down from 2nd

My spider 'crunches on the up change from 2nd to 3rd...only once on the first change of the day. all ok after that
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Re: Difficulty changing down from 2nd

Very similar to that which you describe on five Fiats, and two Lancias that we have owned. The Alfa 147 Selespeed? Never noticed as it was all electronic/hydraulic gear shift controlled?:
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Re: Difficulty changing down from 2nd

Why would you want to shift to first gear at any speed other then crawling? Second gear is smoother for use at 5mph than first, because car doesnt jump at every move of the gas pedal.
So shift to first gear when you almost stop and it's fine...
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Re: Difficulty changing down from 2nd

My GTV and last few Citroens were like that, you can not change into 1st unless you are at a standstill.

Before that, I had a hateful Ford Orion with a gearbox like stirring coal that would stall before you got into 1st gear anyway, and a wee 4 speed Clio which didn't seem to care, but had a heavy clutch for a first car.
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Re: Difficulty changing down from 2nd

I don't really 'change down' from 2nd to 1st very often, as 1st is so close to stopping that I find it a bit violent for engine braking. Normally go from 2nd to neutral, then 1st a few seconds later to pull away.

That said, I find the ratio difference between 1st and 2nd does hamper my upshifts... I have crunched it a fair few times and still occassionally do, by trying to complete the change while the rpm's are still matching up through the synchro

I think BigMac's summed it up right - the synchro's not smooth enough to handle big rpm changes quickly...

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Re: Difficulty changing down from 2nd

How bizaar as for some reason I popped it into 1st twice today approaching a couple of turns off the main road (no idea why) I must have been doing > 10mph and it was sweet as you like.

My gearbox must be better than yours
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Re: Difficulty changing down from 2nd

Yes no reason to use 1st like that. 2nd is very flexible and the trick is to slip to neutral when coming to a stop. Being in neutral at stop is correct procedure anyway.

Remember, it is an Italian car. It is a good gearbox but you need to play to its strengths and work around the weaknesses. Be sympathetic and it will last, treat it roughly and repair bills will loom as inevitably as night follows day.
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