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Thread: Clutch Mice!

  1. #1 Clutch Mice! 
    Forum Professor
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    I thought as many times as I have circled the block, little else could turn up new. Ever see anything like this?

    My clutch started to slip, going up hills. Downshift, no slip, but it just wasn't right! Bought a newe clutch ass'y. Yanked out the starter motor as necessary to drop transmission (5-speed, big, heavy, Mazda made M5-OD), saw some funny looking crap in the clutch housing. Reached in, brought out.....AGGHHH! Petrified mice! And some nest material. Once the box was out, the pressure plate, shown above, was seen to have LOTS of long blades of grass, smuggled in by the nasty little rascals, wound up tightly into an almost braided rope, captured between the clutch release fingers and the pressure plate, keeping the plate from fully squeezing down on the clutch disc, thus allowing slip under high torque situations! The disc itself looked almost new! This at 96,000 miles!

    Above is the interior of the clutch housing. Two quarter-sized vent holes at the back top, not visible, provided the access for the little bastards! I glued screen over those openings, likely something the manufacturers never could have seen a need for. Lower left, two of the mummified mice are visible. Since I had already bought a new clutch ass'y, I installed it, after cleaning things up. The throw-out bearing/slave cylinder assembly visible above were dry, this enclosed design having been used (sickenly) for quite a few years by most manufacturers, expensive to replace, bearing felt just fine, so buttoned the big bugger back up!

    Three weeks later, the unthinkable, and unpredicted (should have known better), the G. D. 'nd slave cylinder was leaking! Don't think for a minute that a 5-speed transmission specified from 1-ton on down to 1/2 ton useage ain't a HEAVY mackeral to mess with! Out it came, I'm doing this shit then at age 65, remember, my 5-year younger nephew admonishing me that an old man has no business crawling around under a vehicle, but it's something I've done all my life! When time comes to sit in a rocking chair, I'm gone! jocular

    Edit: Pics taken by film-type camera, poor focus, sorry, all I had!

    Last edited by jocular; July 28th, 2013 at 01:08 AM. Reason: debateable
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  3. #2  
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Apocalyptic Paradise
    A bit of irony- I pulled a cat out, once.

    Apparently, she had crawled up into the engine compartment since it was warm and fell asleep. I got up in the morning, started the truck and headed out to work. Driving along after a while, I could swear I heard meowing. I pulled off the road and shut the engine down and listened- nothing.
    Thinking better to be sure than just assume I'm crazy, I pulled the hood release and went up to look.
    Right behind the fan blade and belts, I saw a tuft of fur sticking out. Huh boy.
    Figured a cat had gotten mangled- which explained the meowing and the lack of it later. But when I reached in, her head popped up wide eyed. Carefully, I worked her out of the very tight space she had squeezed into trying to get away from the fan blade and the super hot exhaust manifold. Grateful kitty... But took me another two hours to get her out from under the drivers seat later.

    It's a safe bet she never crawled up into engine compartments again.

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