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2008 Pontiac Solstice GXP - Mysterious (with unkown origin blue sparkle in rear bumper cover paint)
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Discussion Starter · #62 ·
I freely admit I don’t know what to look for but the clutch plate looks “OK”, no?
 

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May I suggest you replace the lower radiator hose while you are this deep and have easy access to the three ends and clamps. I noticed it in the rear view of the engine along with the oil cooler. It is as old as the car and may be perfect, but then again...another piece to fail? KG posted a fine illustration of the hose the other day.

I remember Dave at DDM did not look forward to changing one if that was all being done. With the trans and clutch work it can be done easily and quickly. If you do not already have the hose clamp pliers tool, this is the one he suggested I purchase. I did and it's worked for me.
Astro Pneumatic Tool 9409A Hose Clamp Pliers
Amazon.com

Excellent photos on the clutch project. Following with interest.

Richard Snipes
 

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2008 Pontiac Solstice GXP - Mysterious (with unkown origin blue sparkle in rear bumper cover paint)
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Discussion Starter · #64 ·
Thanks for the tip Richard. I’ll take a close look at the hose and hope it’s good.

anyone have any idea after looking at those pics why the clutch would be slipping?
Again I don’t know what to look for but nothing jumps out at me…
 

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- Steelmesh had a 2.4. Different clutch.

- Surprised you had trouble with the top bolts. Did you remove the wiper cowl and go in that way? Or maybe you tried the tunnel snake method and that's why the shifter bracket was in the way?

-Yes, this flywheel should rotate a bit. That's the dual mass part of it doing its dual mass thing.

- You're catching on to why I just drop the diff. It's more about going back in than coming out.

- The clutch is certainly worn, but not dead. The flywheel and pressure plate on the other hand look cooked. Knowing that your car had/has more power than stock, it's probably been slipping for some time. It doesn't take much to slip the stock clutch. I'm not sure how the two relate to it suddenly becoming more noticable.
 

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2008 Pontiac Solstice GXP - Mysterious (with unkown origin blue sparkle in rear bumper cover paint)
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Discussion Starter · #66 ·
- Steelmesh had a 2.4. Different clutch.

- Surprised you had trouble with the top bolts. Did you remove the wiper cowl and go in that way? Or maybe you tried the tunnel snake method and that's why the shifter bracket was in the way?

-Yes, this flywheel should rotate a bit. That's the dual mass part of it doing its dual mass thing.

- You're catching on to why I just drop the diff. It's more about going back in than coming out.

- The clutch is certainly worn, but not dead. The flywheel and pressure plate on the other hand look cooked. Knowing that your car had/has more power than stock, it's probably been slipping for some time. It doesn't take much to slip the stock clutch. I'm not sure how the two relate to it suddenly becoming more noticable.
Thanks for that Phil!
Yup, after screwing around for a long while we finally pulled the cowl and got one of them (passenger side) from the top. Piece of cake.
The other top bolt… grr. Ended up using an endoscope and going in from the back of the trans over the top. Fortunately they are low torque so once you get on them you are good.

-so FYI for anyone else doing this, pull the cowl under the windshield as you should be able to get to the top bolt at 11 o’clock by running your socket just behind the motor and in Front of the windshield, maybe with more experience, patience and a better back I could have gotten both of them (the on just past 12 o’clock) that way.

also the bolt behind the starter was easy. Just remove the hot wire from the starter, then a long straight extension. I guess the cars are different as I read that one was tough, and Skyler Spaeth’s post had a long set of extensions and elbows but not at all needed for me on the GXP.
Pulled the wheel well liner and wheel and didn’t bother with the manual’s instructions to pull the intake manifold. Easy peesey.


-question, do I just remove the Allen headed bolts in the center of the Flywheel? That’s it? Seems too easy like a trap.

-when it comes time to bleed the new clutch can it be done manually or do I really need a power bleeder?

- if I do need avacuum bleeder can I use the one I use for my coolant fills?
 

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Yes, just remove the bolts and wiggle it off. They probably have high temp loctite on them, and you should put some on the new ones if they don't come with it.

The clutch self bleeds by pumping the pedal about 100 times. Start by hand on your knees because you'll have to pull the pedal back up manually the first dozen pumps.
 

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2008 Pontiac Solstice GXP - Mysterious (with unkown origin blue sparkle in rear bumper cover paint)
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Discussion Starter · #68 ·
And another question while I have it apart. When I rotate the back of the transmission it gently clicks kinda like a ticking watch. This is normal?
 

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And another question while I have it apart. When I rotate the back of the transmission it gently clicks kinda like a ticking watch. This is normal?
If you're changing direction back and forth yes. If you're turning it steadily in one direction no.
 
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Your clutch disk was on the fringe. it didn't have much life left to it.

Wheel Automotive tire Tire Tread Vehicle brake



Flywheel is toast you can see the hot spots.

Tire Wheel Automotive tire Motor vehicle Alloy wheel



Pressure plate didn't have any broke fingers and no wear to the fingers so no issues with the release bearing. I would still replace the release bearing anyhow.

Tire Wheel Automotive tire Alloy wheel Tread



Because your clutch disk has the wear it has this is probably the reason why the clutch began to slip. Because of the clutch disk being thin the amount of pressure that is being put on it is reduced and slipping of the clutch is the way you know it is time to replace it. With a stock GXP you may have been able to get more life out of the clutch but with the added torque from the upgrades you have done the clutch was not able to hold given the amount of pressure that was being put by the pressure plate.

Make sense?

On a note. I never rally paid attention but I didn't realize the OE clutch in the GXP is springless. GM probably did this because of the ECM controlling the RPM and the "hang" when shifting. Normally there would be 4 springs on the clutch disk to soften the engagement of the clutch.
 
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If I was you I would replace the lower radiator hose no matter what the current condition is. It's almost 14 years old and the dry rotting process is well on it's way. It's a mother to get the new hose fed into place but making the connections between the firewall and engine are not an easy task to do from above. With the transmission out you can do it from below making is far easier to do. I suggest not using spring clamps or worm gear clamps, use t-bolt lamps and get them positioned so you can undo them from above if necessary. You may also take this time to pull the oil cooler and replace the o-rings. another not so easy thing to do with the transmission in place.
 

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2008 Pontiac Solstice GXP - Mysterious (with unkown origin blue sparkle in rear bumper cover paint)
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Discussion Starter · #73 ·
Yes between Richard and you KG I just ordered one.
Boo. I am at a point where I’d like to drive the thing more than work on it.

min other news we cleaned the tranny up and put orange duct tape behind the two hard to see bolt holes on top. Hopefully that will make putting them back in a little easier. It’s pretty dark in there even in full daylight.

Wheel Car Tire Vehicle Photograph
 

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2008 Pontiac Solstice GXP - Mysterious (with unkown origin blue sparkle in rear bumper cover paint)
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Discussion Starter · #74 ·
Bread trick worked great. Other than the fact that my hair and shirt are full of bread crumbs.
At my house we ONLY use non-GMO, organic whole grain bread for this type of work.
Out of my mystery box of bolts I got from eBay on a kappa strip down I found this large black bolt (assuming it goes on front on the pulley)
Had to add a little electrical tape a couple times but got it done in 15 minutes. I suppose I should hope my new pilot bearing never ends up “toasted”. (Bad Pun intended)
:)
Wood Fluid Pollution Waste Food
Automotive tire Tire Tread Gas Automotive wheel system
 

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2008 Pontiac Solstice GXP - Mysterious (with unkown origin blue sparkle in rear bumper cover paint)
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Discussion Starter · #76 · (Edited)
God forsaken torque arm came down once the tranny was out.
GM welded two bolts to a plate that inserts from the top of the torque arm through the differential carrier.
Because of this there is no way to get it out unless you drop the diff completely or after you struggle bus the tranny out with it in (as I did)

the cast metal piece on the side of the dif and the torque arm itself make for a very heavy and awkward piece..

Motor vehicle Automotive tire Hood Automotive design Wood
Tire Wheel Automotive tire Blue Hood

Hood Automotive tire Wheel Tire Wood
a couple more torque arm shots
Motor vehicle Automotive tire Hood Automotive design Wood
Tire Wheel Automotive tire Blue Hood
Hood Automotive tire Wheel Tire Wood
Motor vehicle Automotive tire Hood Automotive design Wood
Tire Wheel Automotive tire Blue Hood
 

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Ah yes, Dave's Bread. Industrial bread that...

FWIW, the spring Hose Clamp Pliers will pay for themselves in frustration getting the clamps off that lower radiator hose.

Going with the KG t-bolt clamps means having the correct size, diameter and width, plus room to install it and a bit of Loctite so you never have to see them again. If you decide to go this way have them on hand. They are not easy to find sometimes and get in a timely manner if you can locate them. I would think it unwise to ever use worm drive clamps where you cannot easily get at them but if you do, get the special clamps for silicone hoses. They keep the gear from cutting into the hose by virtue of a smooth inner band surface plus the benefit of even pressure on the hose.

The most simple things can get complex rather easily once we start to really think of what's being done.

Loving the visual documentation BTW.

One more little thing, I had a stud with a nut that held a bracket on the rear of my Wagon's LT1 AC compressor. It defeated every combination of drive, extension, flex, socket I have in the tool collection. I finally ordered a long arm, flex head, box head ratchet wrench set and that took 5 minutes to remove this one unaccessible fitting. Your description of the top bolts on the trans brought this back to me. It was so little money difference for the complete set vs. the one wrench it was worth it. Now all I have to do is remember I have the set and where I put it!

All the best,

Richard
 

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2008 Pontiac Solstice GXP - Mysterious (with unkown origin blue sparkle in rear bumper cover paint)
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Discussion Starter · #79 ·
On KGs advice (than ks) order the oil cooler o-Rings.
Of COurse they used two diifernt O-Ring sizes for the Oil Cooler.
Hopefully these are the correct part numbers for the GXP LNF Oil Cooler:
GM # 12601371
GM # 12601372
 

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2008 Pontiac Solstice GXP - Mysterious (with unkown origin blue sparkle in rear bumper cover paint)
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Discussion Starter · #80 ·
PS> It's going to be up on Jack stands for a few days. If any one wants any pictures for their own edification while the Tranny is out, now would be the time to ask :)
 
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