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Overdrive solenoid removal


Donation Time
re: Series 3 overdrive.
Is there a trick tool and or method to remove the OD solenoid while gearbox is still in the car? The top mounting screw is the problem for me. Lower one is no problem.
thanks, Bob

Ken Ellis

Donation Time
You mean the screws shown in this pic:
PDF page 30, paper page 29

Have you pulled out your right angle ratcheting screwdriver yet? Hex drive, using a 6" long hex drive flathead screwdriver 'bit'?
When replacing, I'd go for hex drive cap screws, so it'll stay on the driver as you offer it up. Plus hex keys are inherently long enough to get up in there while holding it rearward of the actual solenoid body. But yeah, it's tight and challenging.

Ken Ellis

Donation Time
Yup. Same screw, different view. Either right angle or a screwdriver held past the solenoid body. Is the car elevated?
If you're using a standard screwdriver, your hand needs to be about where the speedo cable comes out of the housing.
You might also try a flex-shaft screwdriver, if you can get your hand in there at the screw to hold the bit in place.
A slotted driver with a 'keeper' or guide sleeve will help (not a great illustration, but searchable term):

Is the solenoid verified not operating? Or are you going for mechanical-only actuation? (Hmmm...)


Donation Time
In process of trouble shooting the OD. It was supposedly rebuilt under the previous owner but does not engage at all. The solenoid does move the lever and lines up the lever hole with the dimple in the case but while checking that, I noticed the solenoid was heating up quite a bit to the touch. More than I expected. I read there are instances where even though the lever lines up as it should, wear may necessitate the lever moving further toward the solenoid.

Ken Ellis

Donation Time
Page 17 of WSM 124 says that the actuated (holding) current reading should be 2A. The initial current can be 17A, and would be damaging to your solenoid if the solenoid does not go far enough (to shift from actuating coil section to holding coil section). Plus, it would heat up quite a bit as you may be seeing. So, read up on how to measure DC current with your meter, (and post questions if you have them) to see what current is flowing while engaged. They make clamp-on DC ammeters (multimeters) now, so you don't have to interrupt the wiring to get the measurement. You do have to actuate the circuit, though.
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Donation Time
I’m also trying to get my overdrive working on my Series II so thought I would check the solenoid alignment as described in the workshop manual to check the holes align. I have attached a copy of the diagram in the manual and a photo of the solenoid lever on my car. You will see in my photo that there is not as much space for the lever to move as there is shown in the diagram. When the overdrive switch is off the lever is as far to the right of the control box as it can be and when the switch is on the arm is pulled to the left so that the holes are in alignment. Just wondered if anyone could confirm that this is correct.

I have also drain the gearbox and overdrive and have removed the filter to clean but have not yet re-filled the oil to test. Any other tips much appreciated.


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