Lancia Beta Forum

Technical stuff => Transmission => Topic started by: 1970s wedge on April 30, 2015, 10:54:45 PM

Title: Sticking clutch plate
Post by: 1970s wedge on April 30, 2015, 10:54:45 PM
Hi all, been a while ! Does any one else who lays their car up for the winter months or longer, get their clutch plate sticking to the cover plate?? ,it never sticks to flywheel, ALWAYS to clutch cover face? every year, I can't imagine its just me that has the problem of 'NO' gear selection on the first start up of the year??? Just wondered if there are any 'lay up' tips or 'wake up' tips to prevent these annoying time consuming, knuckle shredding, problems from occurring?  ::) Thanks, Kev B.

Title: Re: Sticking clutch plate
Post by: Neil-yaj396 on May 01, 2015, 07:40:53 AM
Never had this on a Beta, but it used to happen on my AH Sprite. I just used to start it in 3rd gear and hope the clutch popped before I hit the wall opposite my old garage!

I've heard of people storing their cars with a brick on the clutch pedal to avoid this?

Title: Re: Sticking clutch plate
Post by: 1970s wedge on May 02, 2015, 12:19:27 AM
Hi Neil-yaj396
    Yes, I used to try jolting it with starter, with various gears engaged with little or no success and with just a little trepidation that carrying this act out on a regular basis, would cause wear or even breakage somewhere else! As for the brick on the clutch for 6-7 months (hydraulic!!) I fear the clutch master/slave seals,  release bearing, cover plate finger springs would succumb to some kind of failure???.
  I have over the years, found the best way to free the plate is to depress the clutch pedal with a piece of wood fashioned to the correct length to wedge between pedal and seat crossmember, I then rotate the crank pulley ( spark plugs out is easier obviously and convenient as on each years initial start up after storage, I introduce a 5ml petrol oil mix to each cylinder and crank on starter to lubricate cylinder bores and aid firing when plugs are installed) with an assistant watching at the bell housing timing port for each 'Third' of the exposed clutch plate to align with window, I then introduce a 6" knife edged 'S' bent steel rule down between the plate and cover and lever it apart, very rarely does the whole plate come away at the first third ! (I think it's happened once in over 20 odd years!!!) it usual comes away after the second 'Third' is pried apart with a satisfying 'Ssshhlumk' but I usually do all three just to be sure and to confirm it is actually free, I rotate the plate one full turn with a thin screw driver, Its a real faff, and is rather annoying, I just hoped that someone else has encountered this  :o and who has a preventative tip or less aggressive method than 'Shocking' it free?
  Thanks for the reply fella  :D I hope you're out about at the bank hol, I'm hoping to get to a local Classic show (Thorsby, Notts) on Monday, but looking at weather, I think I'll find some 'earth connections' to clean up or something?  ::).
 Kev B.

Title: Re: Sticking clutch plate
Post by: Neil-yaj396 on May 02, 2015, 09:13:49 AM
That's a seriously sticky clutch, it makes me think that the plate material is deteriorated or water is getting in there? You are right, keeping the pedal depressed only works on a cable operated system.

I have a two week start up regime through the winter, with the clutch down for start up. Back in my Sprite days I found the leaving a car for the full winter just led to too many problems.

Title: Re: Sticking clutch plate
Post by: Ammy on May 02, 2015, 10:01:03 AM
I have similar regime in winter. I start up and run until temp. rises on the last day of the month from October to March.  Never had a clutch problem in22 years. Hope I'm not  "pushing my luck" 

Title: Re: Sticking clutch plate
Post by: rossocorsa on May 02, 2015, 01:46:30 PM
When I had a functioning lancia , which is now a long time ago, I found it better to keep the car taxed all year round and to get it out for a drive on nice dry winter days that way everything kept sort of working not sure that the ,admittedly steep, road tax saving is really worth it. If I did take the car off the road it took quite a lot of driving until it felt right again even if something hadn't seized.

Title: Re: Sticking clutch plate
Post by: 1970s wedge on May 03, 2015, 11:51:19 PM
Thankyou very much all for the replies, I was hoping that from some other unfortunate owner I'd receive a reply stating, "I have exactly the same problem! ", You guys with the regimes, are probably implementing the correct course of action in regards to a winter lay up ?. I too used to have one and I guess if I (remembered to) 'depressed' the clutch every week over the lay up period, i may indeed reduce the risk of the plate sticking?.
Neil-yaj396 its as dry as a the proverbial in the bell housing, no water or oil and as I overhauled the gearbox two years ago and inspected everything on rebuild so can confirm the plate and cover are in fine fettle.

Ammy, that's similar to the regime I used to have, but then one year when I'd forgot a 'warm up run' and let 3 months slip by, I thought "ah fkit, I'll sort it in new year!", came that year and I didn't use the car for a whole 12mnths !!!, the day the tax ran out, I pulled spark plugs, added a drip of clean engine oil to each bore turned over at crank pulley by hand and then left it until following year, that then became my regime, 'tax out, plugs out' and so on. Its just remembering and having the incentive and time to carry out these actions.

rossocorsa, used to do that too, run it through winter on nice dry days, then one day I got caught out by a 'nice dry salted winter day' that turned wet..... never again!, made a right pigs ear of the underside bare ally floor panels and powder coating  >:( oh! and my garage floor!. As for the road tax saving, DON'T get me started!  :-\.
I know what you mean about the first few drives after a lay up, noises,rattles, flats on all four tyres, scary brakes, gauges steaming up on the inside of the glass! and probably worse? the worrying smells  :o.

Come on someone, Get your car out of mothballs and have 'NO' gear selection at idle and use this excellent forum to post a query  :D.

Thanks again for all time and effort in replies so far.
Kev B.   


Title: Re: Sticking clutch plate
Post by: mangocrazy on December 13, 2015, 11:41:58 PM
I've got an engine and gearbox of largely unknown provenance sitting on my garage floor that I'm planning to use in the near-ish future. With the engine out of the car, would it be sensible to go the next step and separate the engine/gearbox and inspect the clutch, or would 1970s wedge's regime be the smarter choice? Not quite sure how I'm going to disengage the clutch without hydraulic assistance though...

I honestly have no idea whether the clutch is stuck or not, but seeing as the engine has been idle for 3-4 years in my possession, it would seem reasonable to assume so.

Title: Re: Sticking clutch plate
Post by: Neil-yaj396 on December 14, 2015, 07:22:22 AM
Worth splitting it just to check the condition of the clutch I would say. So much harder once you put it in the car and find that it's shot.

Title: Re: Sticking clutch plate
Post by: WestonE on December 14, 2015, 07:32:16 AM
I am with Neil on checking the clutch is not stuck on layup engine and gearboxes. I have so far been lucky with no sticking clutch, but the garage is heated.


Title: Re: Sticking clutch plate
Post by: mangocrazy on December 14, 2015, 11:28:35 PM
Yes, I knew what the sensible answer was to my question. Imagine the chagrin if you'd installed the engine in the car and then found it was stuck fast or shot...