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Discussion Starter #1
Hey all,
I am in the process of trying to drop the transmission so I can install my new pilot bearing and Exedy clutch (car won't shift gears when engine is on). Per the chilton's manual, it's saying I need to disconnect the starter from the transmission. What it isn't clear about, however, is whether or not I have to do the same, lengthy process of removing the intake manifold or an entire wheel well and everything behind it just to get at it. Or is it easier since the starter doesn't have to be completely removed, just disconnected?

Any advice on what to do in this situation would mean a ton. I can't afford to take in the car to a mechanic who would charge me $2k, so I have to do it myself.

Thanks in advance!
 

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My best advice is to buy a proper set of service manuals from Helm.

I have just read through the procedure in the '08 service manual and I saw no mention of the starter in the tramsmission removal procedure. I could have missed it, of course.

There is mention of removing a wheel to access the engine mount bolts, but that is part of the mount replacement procedure and may not be necessary to simply loosen the mount,
 

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my GM service manual makes no mention of having to remove the starter and looking at the illustrations, I see no reason to remove it. When not in starting mode, the starter bendix is fully retracted from the flywheel and shouldn't be in the way at all.
 

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The guide does say to remove the starter to access the torque converter bolts. It might be different for a manual transmission. If you don't need to move it to get at the bolts, just leave it in place. Since the starter engages with the flywheel (or flex plate on an auto), rather than anything in the transmission, it shouldn't be necessary to remove it.

YMMV.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Gotcha. Thanks so much y'all! I'm currently stuck on the drive/prop shaft. The documentation just shows pictures of how to completely remove it. I'm just trying to slide it out of the transmission. I don't know if I should ask here or on a new thread (I'm new to the forum) but I'm trying to figure out whether or not it's like nearly all drive trains where you unbolt the drive shaft from the differential and then tilt it down to slide it out of the end of the transmission. Since there is not a universal joint, I'm a little confused on what to do here. The CV joint doesn't allow for much play that I can see. The drive shaft is currently unbolted from the differential, but the black rubber spacer in there isn't allowing me to tilt the shaft down and out of the undercarriage. Anyone done this before and/or know how to remove the shaft?
 

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The drive shaft bolts directly to the transmission. It doesn't slide in like the old days. You'll have to remove the front drive shaft bolts to remove the transmission. These cars are different and a good manual is a must.
 

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The "official" way to remove the propeller shaft (as the drive shaft is called in GM parlance) is to lower the differential and slide it to the left which will likely require removing the left hand axle. I didn't have to do that, but I had the entire engine & transmission out. In any case, you need to increase the distance between the transmission and the differential by a couple of inches to remove the shaft.

What year is your car? Torque arm?
 

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Discussion Starter #8
The "official" way to remove the propeller shaft (as the drive shaft is called in GM parlance) is to lower the differential and slide it to the left which will likely require removing the left hand axle. I didn't have to do that, but I had the entire engine & transmission out. In any case, you need to increase the distance between the transmission and the differential by a couple of inches to remove the shaft.

What year is your car? Torque arm?
I've got a bone stock 2006 Solstice. That's rough that the process is that involved. Hoping I don't have to lower the diff just to remove the prop shaft.
 

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So, I talked to a friend who's a Mercedes technician who recently did this on his GXP. He says that he just unbolted the diff from the rear cross member and that gave him enough room to remove the shaft. Didn't have to remove an axle or anything like that.

It's worth a shot, at least.
 

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So, I talked to a friend who's a Mercedes technician who recently did this on his GXP. He says that he just unbolted the diff from the rear cross member and that gave him enough room to remove the shaft. Didn't have to remove an axle or anything like that.

It's worth a shot, at least.
Thanks a bunch for doing that! So he's suggesting that you unscrew both sides - the bolts going in to the diff end from the drive shaft & the bolts going in to the trans end from the drive shaft, followed by unbolting the diff? I'll keep all this advice in mind and post any findings!
 

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The '06 service manual does not list drive axle relocation in the propeller shaft removal procedure.
  1. Remove the rear tunnel closeout panel
  2. Support the rear drive module
  3. Remove the bolt from the differential case bracket assembly to body
  4. Remove the propeller shaft coupling nuts (3) Note: Remove only the three coupler to drive axle input flange bolts
  5. Remove the CV joint mounting bolts (6)
  6. Remove the CV joint mounting bolt spacers
 

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You're welcome.

That sequence makes sense to me. At the very least, make sure the shaft is disconnected from the diff first. It probably goes without saying, but keep a jack under the differential while you're doing this. :) If you remove the transmission mount - which you'll have to at some point anyway - the whole engine + transmission assembly should also be able to tilt backwards which will give you some more room to work with.

Best of luck, and yes please come back and let us know how it goes.

Have you considered doing an AL flywheel while you're at it? It's the only really effective performance mod for a 2.4 that I've discovered, other than forced induction.
 

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Also, note the "(3) Note:" in John's response. IIRC, there are six bolts on the diff end of the shaft. You don't want to remove the rubber bit from the shaft.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
You're welcome.

That sequence makes sense to me. At the very least, make sure the shaft is disconnected from the diff first. It probably goes without saying, but keep a jack under the differential while you're doing this. :) If you remove the transmission mount - which you'll have to at some point anyway - the whole engine + transmission assembly should also be able to tilt backwards which will give you some more room to work with.

Best of luck, and yes please come back and let us know how it goes.

Have you considered doing an AL flywheel while you're at it? It's the only really effective performance mod for a 2.4 that I've discovered, other than forced induction.
Do you have any aluminum/lightweight flywheels to recommend? I doubt I'll find something locally, and I don't have much time to wait for something online to come in since car is in a friends garage right now as mine is too small to accommodate. But still curious what the price range would be for something solid.

John - thanks for the text from the actual manual! Gonna come in handy.
 

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Could somebody clarify which bolt is being talked about here? The diagram and callout for number 3 looks like 3 different bolts but the text says just one bolt. I just want to make sure I'm removing the right bolts on the differential. I see where the back of the diff connects to the frame at the rear cross member and I'm thinking that's what I need to disconnect even though there's two of those?
 

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Could somebody clarify which bolt is being talked about here? The diagram and callout for number 3 looks like 3 different bolts but the text says just one bolt. I just want to make sure I'm removing the right bolts on the differential. I see where the back of the diff connects to the frame at the rear cross member and I'm thinking that's what I need to disconnect even though there's two of those?
To lower the diff? Should be two bolts connecting to the subframe.

This is one of those situations where you kind of need to look at it, figure out what's holding the diff up, and take those out.
 

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Have you decided that you do want to remove the differential? If so there are three bolts shown and described in the '06 manual:
  1. Front carrier bracket to frame
  2. Left rear differential mounting bolt
  3. Right rear differential to support mounting bolt
Or, look at it, figure out what's holding the diff up, and take those out.

If you are referring to #3 in the description that I posted there three bolts that attach the propeller shaft to the rubber coupler, and three that attach the coupler to the drive axle input flange. Only remove the three that attach the coupler to the drive axle, leaving the coupler attached to the propeller shaft.
 

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Alright guys. Thanks to everyone's help, I got the drive shaft off by completely removing the diff (3 bolts holding it in - 2 on the frame and 1 of the pivot joint at the front end of the diff). Even then though, when we had several inches of play in the diff, it was still fused. Prying with a pry bar and hitting it with a mallet finally worked. Next step for me is to unbolt the 9 bolts matting the trans to the motor. Hearing that's easy except for the top 2.
 

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Alright guys. Thanks to everyone's help, I got the drive shaft off by completely removing the diff (3 bolts holding it in - 2 on the frame and 1 of the pivot joint at the front end of the diff). Even then though, when we had several inches of play in the diff, it was still fused. Prying with a pry bar and hitting it with a mallet finally worked. Next step for me is to unbolt the 9 bolts matting the trans to the motor. Hearing that's easy except for the top 2.
Had to tighten the bolts on the eng/trans as mine were loose. Found that a cut down 18m deep socket with a short extension and a small head ratchet worked on the 2 top bolts.( socket cut to 2 1/2 ", not sure of extension length.) tightening the one above the starter took several different wrenches and was a chore.
Went looking for a vacuum leak at a later date and removed the intake. The easy-es job i've found on this engine. With the intake out of the way you can get to the starter and that bell housing bolt above it.
Some times a screw jack or block of wood can be put between the engine and fire wall to stop the back of the engine from lowering too far and stressing the motor mounts.
Hope this helps and have fun with your project
 
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