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VF2 Redline - Manual Gearbox / Diff Issues

Discussion in 'VF Holden Commodore (2013 - 2017)' started by Jimunj, Jan 25, 2016.

  1. Jimunj

    Jimunj New Member

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    Afternoon all, just wanted to run this past some members as you will have more technical knowledge than I. Car is a VF2 Redline, manual trans, 1500km on the clock.

    1 - When shifting hard from 1st to 2nd (manual trans) over 5k RPM, I seem to have a slight grind of the gears. Yes my foot is to the floor on the clutch. Has anyone else had this? Is this the syncro not lining up fast enough?? It's done it a few times and I'm very worried about leaving the transmission behind me on the on ramp.

    2 - When under load in 1st (as in I've backed off and am letting the revs drop without my foot on the brake), as I depress the clutch the car thumps. It's very similar to what my 10 year old XR6T used to do. I am thinking this is not normal for a car with 1500 km's on it.

    Brought it up with the dealership this morning as I was there for my first service, but didn't have time to take it for a test drive with the service manager. Service manager advised a small 'thump' is normal as the whole drivetrain tends to move. I said it only does it sometimes when it seems to be in the 'sweet spot'.

    Either way I'm pretty unimpressed that a new car has these issues. I know it's not a high end Benz so I can't expect 'hand made' workmanship, but I do expect better than this from a spanking new car with a pricetag in excess of $50k.

    Would love to hear others experiences and if these are normal for others.

    Cheers,
    Jim
     
  2. Chookah

    Chookah Member

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    I'm going to be that guy.

    WTF are you winding it out to 5k RPM for if it's only had 1500km's on it?
     
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  3. OzTurtle

    OzTurtle Active Member

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    Best way to run in a new engine (the LS3's are extremely tight for the first 5000k's) is to run them all the way through the rev range, and then decelerate naturally. This will ensure the rings bed properly and don't score the cylinder bores. No lighting the tyres on take off, or bounce off the limiter, and no constant speed/revs for extended periods of time for the first 3000k's. So changing over 5k rpm is no problem, but you shouldn't be experiencing that kind of thud! I've tinkered with cars for the last 20+ years, and although I'm no mechanic sounds like a clutch issue. Ask the dealer to change the fluid and see how that goes.
     
  4. 426Cuda

    426Cuda SUBLIME!

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    It may well be two symptoms both related to the same root cause. The root cause sound s clutch related as Turtle said. How the clutch is operating i.e disengaging slow, or late, causing the grind and engaging too suddenly (grippy) under WOT causing the thud. Whether this is due to a mechanical fault e.g. fluid needs a bleed, clutch not adjusted properly etc or driver error remains to be seen. Don't take offence, I'm not having a crack at your driving. But I reckon it's possible to cause any driveline to thud if you release the clutch like a side step at full throttle, at speed and on a grippy surface. I have experienced this in everything from my highly modified 360 cube Charger four speed that had enough grunt to lift the front wheels, to my modified VY SS, VE SS's and more. All of these cars would change no problem at peak RPM, but if you abused them through the timing of your left and right feet, then the drivetrain would let you know about it with a big thud.
    Try changing at high revs, only a little slower i.e. push the clutch all the way in before you pull second, and let the clutch out, rather than just dropping it and see if it still happens. I don't mean nurse it like a grandad. The above would add a few hundredths to your gear changes at most. It's all about timing. I'm not saying there's not a mechanical fault. But I reckon it's more likely how you're changing gear, with a very tourquey motor.
     
  5. OzTurtle

    OzTurtle Active Member

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    Hopefully a fluid change and bleed sorts it out, as they use a hydraulic clutch that can't be adjusted, makes you miss the good old days :undead: Either way it needs to be sorted, driveline shunt should be a thing of the past, and getting used to a new/clutch feel can take a while.
     
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  6. EternityDre

    EternityDre Well-Known Member

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    Given driver input is a possible contributing factor here, I'm hoping you guys with manual VF2 can shed some light on how you've learnt to shift smoothly.

    I have a MY12 VE and have put a deposit down on a MY17 Redline. When I test drove a demo Redline, I found changing gears smoothly way harder than my VE. I stalled the heavy, pick up straight off the floor clutch several times before I got used to it, and it was generally way harder to drive in the hour or so I had the car and distracted me from actually enjoying the rest of the car. I'm sure you get used to it, but I felt like the gearbox out was of a truck.

    Not trying to derail this thread, but based on my experience I think it could be party OPs driving, and am just wondering with a new manual VF2, how should they be driven? Are they expected to be rough out of the box so to speak?
     
  7. Jimunj

    Jimunj New Member

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    Thanks for the replies to date gents.

    To answer a few questions, and to clarify;

    - Dealer told me on delivery not to baby it. But did tell me not to light the tyres up on launch (which I haven't been doing), and to not go on long highway drives (which I also haven't been doing).
    - Regarding the thud; this is only happening at very low speeds, ie. under 30 km/h. And only in first gear. Usually happens when I'm putting the clutch in just before I stop if that makes sense? It's not doing it under WOT or when I'm accelerating and changing into second. Only just before I stop. I hope that makes more sense?

    EternityDre - it takes a week to get used to it. I've had the car a month and still have sloppy changes when I'm not really thinking about what I'm doing.

    As much as I would like to say I'm a poor driver and it is driver error, I've been driving manuals for over 10 years and am fairly comfortable I know how to shift. Having said that, I will take your feedback on board and slightly slow down my 1st to 2nd shifts to see if that makes a difference (which I'm sure it will), however, it also kind of takes the enjoyment out of the freeway on ramps.

    When the car is due for it's next service, I'll mention to change the clutch fluid. I also didn't get the chance to take the service manager out this morning as I had to get to work, but I would like to be able to give them a demo when I'm in next.

    Thanks again gents,

    Jim
     
  8. dgp

    dgp Well-Known Member

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    Jim you could be changing too fast, the boxes have improved but they are still pretty agricultural. What other manual cars have you owned? If they were Japanese or sv6 with Japanese box the T56 will not be as slick as you are used to.
     
  9. Smashfist

    Smashfist Active Member

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    The boxes do get better. Mine was very tight when new but with ~6500km on it it feels fine apart from the 1-2 shift when cold, which isn't going to change. They revised some parts between VE and VF boxes with the end result being the VF ones are near bullet proof (triple cone synchros on first and second, double cone synchros for all other gears except reverse). It's notchy when cold on first and second because the oil isn't up to temp, and Holden have issued a bulletin to dealers to say that it's a characteristic and can't be changed.

    End result: It will get better but don't go full retard on it when it's cold and you'll never break it. I haven't seen a warranty claim for an SS 6 speed in yonks.

    Go a bit easy on it and put some more k's on before worrying about the gearbox/clutch. It doesn't really sound like you're having any real problems with it, just that it needs a bit of wearing in and driving style adjustment.

    The best way I could describe a good run-in is to not go easy on it, but show some mechanical sympathy.
     
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  10. panhead

    panhead Well-Known Member

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    Getting the occasional bit of a clonk when changing down from 2nd to 1st has always been a feature of the Holden setup and for most other manufacturers as well.

    Take a little care to know what revs it happens at and adjust your driving to suit.

    If you still find it annoying then learn to rev match as you change down and the problem is solved. :driving:
     
  11. Adza75

    Adza75 Active Member

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    Sounds very similar to my VE SS manual... a thud or clunk as you'd put on and off the accelerator, and if you tried to change too quick, it didn't like it and would grind. I've ordered a new SSV Redline manual as well so will check it out when it's delivered.
     
  12. Jimunj

    Jimunj New Member

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    Thank you kind sir - this is pretty much what I needed to hear.
     
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  13. Smitty

    Smitty Well-Known Member

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    LS3s need at least 10,000 before they are sweet .. and the whole drive train is the same
    cluncky and 'orrid til at least 10,000 under the wheels
     
  14. Foggsy

    Foggsy Active Member

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    Jim,

    What you are describing sounds normal to me. If you want to make your gearbox a little smoother though then I can highly recommend draining your gearbox oil and refilling with Penrite Progear 70w75 fully synthetic gearbox oil. They make this specifically for this type of box and it works. Buy 3.5 Litres (you'll really notice it after about 2-3 days of driving).

    It doesn't help that holden use bloody auto tranny fluid in the manual boxes in V8 commodores and the rubbish splashes out like red cordial.......its no wonder the shift quality on the manual v8 box is notchy and slow from factory.

     
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  15. EternityDre

    EternityDre Well-Known Member

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    I'm keen to get everyone's thoughts on my experience yesterday and what my dealer told me.

    Context: I spent an hour driving a LSA R8 yesterday and it was way easier to drive than the Redline demo I drove a few months ago.
    Dealer Quote: "The manual gearbox is much easier to manage and drive smoothly with more torque behind it"

    In the Redline I had a really tough time adjusting to the gearbox from my VE. The take-up was immediate and was really heavy, causing me to stall several times. I didn't really enjoy the drive that much as I was focusing on the gearbox so much. After 5 or so stalls the car took ages to start and we had to limp it back to the dealer. I later learnt that that particular demo ended up needing repairs because multiple people in a row were stalling it. My dealer told me this is common with manual Redlines.

    In the R8, the manual gearbox was silky smooth and I never even came close to stalling. I could enjoy the car without thinking about it and I got to drive it hard.

    Both cars were demos and had about 4000kms on them when I drove them.

    Thoughts? Agree? Anyone else driven both a manual VF SS and a manual Gen F HSV and want to share your experiences?

    I've got a deposit down and I'm waiting for a MY17 Redline. I always wanted to get a powerpack (leaning towards C&A Auto 385 upgrade for $4800) and this experience suggests the Redline will drive better afterwards.
     
  16. Carcool

    Carcool Member

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    I have test driven a Manual SS demo ute and taken delivery of a Manual SSV sedan and never once stalled it or the demo. Just depends on your skill level with a clutch and rev / accelerator co-ordination, and the info that I have says the R8 has exactly the same transmission.
     
  17. ls3 304

    ls3 304 Active Member

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    Dude this is probably not what you want to hear, but id bet that there is absolutely nothing wrong with that car and more how you are Changing Gears is the problem, from what your saying it sounds like your still slightly on the Throttle when you Engage the Clutch, hence the loud Thud and Clunk you are referring too. My previous car was a XR6 Turbo manual you think the Holden gearbox is tuff. From my experience these gearbox are built to take alot of Torque. thats why when your timing is wrong you will know about it. Ive only ecer had Manual cars before, never automatics, i also work in the transport industry my truck has an 18 speed road ranger, we dont use clutch only to take off and stop, the rest is Rev Matching. Listern to your engine man, it will tell you when it wants another gear...

    This is just my opinion man, take it or leave it, yeah there may just be something wrong with your car, but i doubt it.
     
  18. DanielSS-V

    DanielSS-V Active Member

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    Well mine is the series 1 Redline with the L77, but I don't think the gearbox is any different or the clutch for that matter as they were both beefed up to the same spec as the HSV's which ran the LS3. Mine was and still is notchy on first to second gear changes, when the gearbox is cold. Otherwise I've never had an issue with gear changes and can't recall ever stalling it. My wife hasn't either and she used to stall my old Falcon GT all the time back in the day. I was the first to test drive my car and put a deposit on it, so apart from the mechanics racing it around the block after a service only my wife and I drive it.

    I'm wondering if the demo you test drove a while ago had already seen a very hard life before you got to drive it or it was just a Friday car? It does seem odd that you had so much trouble with it. The Tremec gearboxes are never going to be silky smooth and any clutch dealing with that much torque isn't going to be super light either, but I honestly never even considered the clutch and gearbox an issue and actually thought they were both a big step up from the old Falcon of mine. The clutch is something I actually like in the setup of the car and even is better than my early build Mazda 6 MPS.

    I would give another base LS3 manual a test drive, before you decide if the driveline is the issue for you.

    I will however agree that these cars need 10000+ km's on them to really loosen up. Mine got to around 11000 and its a much smoother and nicer car now. Still absolutely love it.
     
  19. EternityDre

    EternityDre Well-Known Member

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    I agree Daniel, I think it was the car, as it needed repairs soon after.
    I was told there is now up to a 5 month wait for Redlines, so the chances of the dealer getting another demo is 0. That's why I drove the R8 - it was the closest power and spec to a Redline with a power pack.
    I had absolutely no issues in the R8 which is encouraging, but still think the extra torque helped as per my dealer's comments.
     
  20. ls3 304

    ls3 304 Active Member

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    It needed repairs man, cos the ppl test driving it cant drive either..

    Im sorry but i laugh when ppl complain about gearbox in a brand new car, yeah every now and then it could be screwede but like i said i highly doubt it. What i think the problem is ppl get a manual license when they first start driving, then for some reason they spend years driving Autos either cos they prefer autos or its easier for the family. Then one day there like lets get a manual high performance car after not driving a manual for a while, come on here and say Gearbox is Fuxked brand new SS Commodore.
    Sorry guys i dont buy it
     
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