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A-518 band adjustment

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m...@earthlink.nte

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Jul 26, 2000, 3:00:00 AM7/26/00
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I have a '93 Dodge Ram B250 van, 318 ci engine, and what appears to be
an A-518 transmission (4 speed O.D.). At least that is what the label
under the hood states.

The Haynes manual for Dodge and Plymouth vans lists the band
adjustments as follows.

1992 thru 1994: Kickdown band -- Tighten to 72 in-lb and back off 2.5
turns.

Low/reverse band:
32RH, 42RH -- Tighten to 72 in-lb and back off 4 turns

36RH, 37RH, 46RH -- tighten to 72 in-lb and back off 2 turns

The kickdown band is easy enough, but the low/reverse band is
problematic. I am not sure which transmission I have (other than the
A-518 listing under the hood), so I'm not sure which spec to use for
the low/reverse band adjustment.

I called the local Dodge dealer and one of the people in the service
dept said that backing off 2.5 turns is the correct spec, but he did
not sound too sure himself.

I went ahead and adjusted the band to the 2.5 turns, but the
transmission now shifts at very high rpm. I'm guessing that perhaps
the spec calling for backing off u4 turns is the correct one, but I'm
still not sure.

How can I tell which transmission I have? Other than the label under
the hood, are there any markings, serial numbers, etc, that will
identify the transmission. Also, what is the effect of having the band
adjusted too tight? Does that cause the shift point to be increased to
higer rpm? Too loose has the opposite effect?

thanks in advance for all replies.

Mike

John Kunkel

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Jul 26, 2000, 3:00:00 AM7/26/00
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m...@earthlink.nte wrote:
>
> I have a '93 Dodge Ram B250 van, 318 ci engine, and what appears to be
> an A-518 transmission (4 speed O.D.). At least that is what the label
> under the hood states.
<snip>

> I went ahead and adjusted the band to the 2.5 turns, but the
> transmission now shifts at very high rpm. I'm guessing that perhaps
> the spec calling for backing off u4 turns is the correct one, but I'm
> still not sure.

2 turns out on the rear band is the correct adjustment.

>
> How can I tell which transmission I have? Other than the label under
> the hood, are there any markings, serial numbers, etc, that will
> identify the transmission. Also, what is the effect of having the band
> adjusted too tight? Does that cause the shift point to be increased to
> higer rpm? Too loose has the opposite effect?

318 powered trucks and vans have the A-518, later called the 46RH.
The rear band is only used in Reverse and selector position "1", it has
no function in normal upshifts. Half a turn on the band adjustment will
have little or no effect. The upshift speeds are controlled by the TV
cable adjustment.
John

360view

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Jul 27, 2000, 3:00:00 AM7/27/00
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As John already told you, the A518 was indeed renamed the 46RH
in the 1994 model year.

If there is a Borders or Barnes&Noble bookstore near where you
live, go and look for the book

Chrysler Performance Upgrades
by Frank Adkins
ISBN 1-884-089-40-2
published by CarTech in 1999 as item SA-60

Frank Adkins' chapter in the back of this book on the
TorqueFlite 727/A518/46RH family of transmissions is the best I
have ever read on explaining how these trannys work and what
limitations they have. There are plenty of pics as to how to
identify a particular model and tables of what parts engage when
to make gearshifts happen.

You can sit in a chair at the bookstore and read the auto tranny
chapter for free in about 30 minutes, or buy the book for $20.

As to periodicly adjusting the bands, many Chrysler transmission
specialists say that it is not good preventive maintenance to
adjust the bands if they are not slipping. The adjustment
proceedure that you quote from Haynes above is correct when
setting up a newly re-built transmission - but only 'ballpark'
for a used transmission. If you counted the turnss and know the
settings before you made the adjustments - go back to the
original positions.

Here is a link to a guy who claims another relatively simple
proceedure works best for Torqueflite band adjustment:

http://www.geocities.com/demon360/band.htm

Here is another link to website with pics of the 46RH Throttle
Valve cable end adj that mainly sets what rpm shifts occur at:

http://www.jcj.net/dodgeram/trans_adjustment.htm

Here is a link to a website representing AA Transmissions, a
shop that has a tremendous amount of experience with these
Chrysler autos.

http://www.gotnutz.com/parts_A&A.htm


-----------------------------------------------------------

Got questions? Get answers over the phone at Keen.com.
Up to 100 minutes free!
http://www.keen.com


m...@earthlink.nte

unread,
Jul 27, 2000, 3:00:00 AM7/27/00
to
Thanks guys for the info. I will check out the book and links as
suggested by 360view.

If I may, I would like to ask two follow-up questions. The manual (and
dip stick), states that either Dexron II or ATF+ type 7176 is OK to use
in the A-518. Is one better than the other?

And finally, I've read that using a "less slippery" transmission fluid
is better because it keeps slipping to a minimum, thereby reducing the
wear on components. The only drawback is harder shifts. I can live
with harder shifts if this is indeed better for the transmission. Any
thoughts on this, and can anyone recommend a "less slippery" fluid?

Again, thanks for all replies.
Mike

Matt Bertsch

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Jul 27, 2000, 3:00:00 AM7/27/00
to
I couldn't agree more with the comments from the guy at the second link you
described (geocities.) I tried the factory (Haynes) adjustment, by the
book, and found the my upshifts were disgustingly slopply and had a lot more
slip. I turned the front band out another full turn and noticed an
immediate, positive difference. So much for "by the book."

Matt

360view wrote in message <038f0203...@usw-ex0107-055.remarq.com>...

360view

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Jul 27, 2000, 3:00:00 AM7/27/00
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The Chrysler 7176 type of ATF is called a 'Friction Modified'
fluid. It is similar but not exactly identical to that used by
Honda and some other Japanese manufacturers.

The Chrysler engineers and the Honda engineers believe you can
build a torque converter of higher efficiency and less power
loss with a Friction Modified 7176 ATF style fluid. Honda's
choice carries more weight with me than Chrysler's, but I guess
the point is they agree.

Supposedly the number one cause of automatic transmission
failure in the Chrysler 46RH/RE/RFE is using Dextron II style
fluid in them - despite what the stamping on the dipstick says.

Notice that the 46RH torque converter housing no longer has a
drain plug ? Supposedly this is a 'safety feature' designed so
that a mis-informed mechanic can only put 4 quarts of the wrong
ATF fluid in there during a pan drop and fill, and the 14 other
quarts stored undrainable in the torque converter will keep the
fluid from being totally wrong composition. Chrysler tech
literature in 1996 claims removing the torque converter drain
plug reduced the number of ruined trannys they had to replace
under warranty.

My opinion on ATF for 46RH autos is to use the 7176+3 fluid
only. The new-last-year 7176+4 is not supposed to be best for
the older 46RH but is mandatory for the newest 45RFE behind the
4.7V8. Chrysler's literature claims the 7176+3 is 'semi-
synthetic' and the 7176+4 is fully synthetic. Both cost a lot
at the dealership.

The 1995 Ram Field Service Manual (FSM) recommends at least 4 qt
changes outs as often as every 15,000 miles under 'severe
service' such as towing or frequent hot footed accelerations.

I also believe in the 18 quart flush-out on a 46RH,
at a cost of about $75,
of nearly all the ATF including that in the torque converter.

You can get this service at either Kmart/Penske's "Filter
Injection Flush" or at Jiffy Lube's "T-Tech" clear plastic
cylinder flusher. The quality of the employee training varies a
lot at those two establishments - so insist on watching it
done. The Kmart system may be superior because of less re-
mixing inside the trans of new and old ATF fluid. Also make
certain the employee uses 7176+3 to refill. their minds can
wander.

Once you see how the T-Tech works using the transmission cooler
lines that go up to the radiator, it is easy to see how you
could do it yourself with two 5 gallon buckets and a handpump -
but it is best to see it done the first time.

Amsoil makes a fully-synthetic 7176+3 composition ATF. It is
expensive, but may be worth it for severe duty.

I am also a believer in - I kid you not - synthetic sperm whale
oil as made by Universal Lubricants as their Lubegard additive,
available as the 'Red Bottle' at Napa Auto Parts Stores. The
guys who founded Universal Lub are ex-Mobil One engineers. The
USDA funded some of the research in how to make synthetic whale
oil from canola oil. See this webpage:

http://www.lubegard.com/automotive/atp.html

Universal Lubricants also makes a 'Black Bottle' additive that
tUL claims will convert Dextron II ATF into 7176+3 spec.

I have thought about using this for converting Mobil One
synthetic ATF into something I can safely use in the 46RH of
my '95 Ram. The Mobil 1 ATF has been working well for 186,000
miles in my '84 T-Bird. But I haven't done this - I have been
doing 20,000 mile changeouts with Pennzoil 7176+3 at the Jiffy
Lube T-Tech machine, and adding two Red Bottles of Lubegard
additive afterwards.

Mean Gene

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Jul 28, 2000, 3:00:00 AM7/28/00
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Mike wrote:
And finally, I've read that using a "less slippery" transmission fluid
is better because it keeps slipping to a minimum, thereby reducing the
wear on components. The only drawback is harder shifts. I can live with
harder shifts if this is indeed better for the transmission. Any
thoughts on this, and can anyone recommend a "less slippery" fluid?

ATF Type F

Gene K
Decatur AL
'00 GG300EC
'01 Dodge 1500 CC 2WD


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