Clutch change

In preparation for the next trackday at Oulton Park I wanted to change the clutch as the last one was slipping at the last trackday at Anglesey.

So I got the car up in the air on axle stands and set about clearing the decks of wiring looms, the battery, and airbox etc. The hub nuts were a pain to remove, but once off, I drained the gearbox of oil and removed the driveshafts to give me more space.

Gearbox metal shavingsBox off Snapped linkage mount

I took out the wishbones, purely because I always find it quicker than trying to get the balljoingt out of the hub any other way. Once the gearbox was easily accessible I removed all the allen key bolts that hold it to the block as well as the starter motor 13mm bolts and supported the gearbox on a jack. I removed the offside gearbox mount and gently lowered the ‘box down. After a lot of wiggling and pulling the ‘box eventually came off exposing the clutch. It didn’t looks in too bad a condition for 136,000 miles with just some signs of overheating on the cover plate. The friction plate was worn but would have kept going in road use for another 20-30,000 miles im sure.

Old clutchI grabbed the 2nd hand clutch id bought months earlier only to discover the cover plates were different and the mounting holes don’t match! Typical!  Turns out I have been sent the clutch for a  year 2000+ model and my car uses the older style clutch. So I placed and order at Peugeot for a new clutch which came to £100 + VAT which wasn’t too bad. I always prefer to use genuine Valeo clutches as they have a good reputation and last well. However this meant I had to leave the car unfinished on what was a good day, weatherwise, leaving me only 3 and a half nights of available work in bad weather.

I was happy to see Peugeot had got the right clutch, and so I removed the old one in no time and carefully torqued up the new one using the included alignment tool to keep the plate centred.

Now the real pain! With the days running out until the Oulton Park trackday I spent 4 evenings in the rain and cold, getting the gearbox and all the ancilliaries back on the car. The gearbox was a real pain to get lined back up and over the chassis  at the back of the engine bay. Eventually we got it back into place. Be sure if you do this, that the release bearing on the clutch fork stays in place, as it can fall off easily if you turn the fork while manhandling the ‘box.

Clutch comparisonClutch comparison

With the gearbox back on and bolted in place, I reattached the clutch cable and linkages  and tested it in the car. I could select gears which was good!

I reinstalled the driveshafts and wishbones leaving two problems:

1) I had damaged the near side driveshaft thread when removing the hub nut

2) The ball on the gearbox that the lowest gear linkage attaches to had snapped on when removing it.

Problem one took about 15 minutes to sort with a file, carefully filing down the threads until the new nut went back on.

Broken mountProblem two was more of a pain; Peugeot had initially told me they could get me a new bracket no problem. Turnsout two days later there was no stock available for 5 days. So I took the bracket to be welded, only to bolt it to the ‘box and find out the gear linkage wouldn’t stay on no matter what I did. The weld wasnt 100% in the exact place, and the linkage kept popping off, even when cable tied to the hilt. After a 2 minute test drive down the road, the linkage came off, leaving the gearstick flopping around and I lost patience…

So I gave up  at 7.30 pm on the day before the trackday – in a bad mood, and decided to load up the Evo with tools and tyres and set off for the hotel I’d booked. All that hard work in freezing and raining temperatures and I still didn’t make it.

Bad times…

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