The 4STB (4-Speed w/optional Trans-Brake) is based on the original Ford AOD transmission. The basic unit was used in many Ford vehicles until 1993. This highly modified and upgraded transmission will bolt-up directly to any Small Block Ford engine. For any other GM, MOPAR, or IMPORT engine the SFI Adapter bellhousing is required.
This high performance transmission is equipped with the finest and safest full manual valvebody available today. It comes standard with the electrically activated Overdrive features. It may also include our optional internal Trans-brake feature. The following information covers both the wiring and operation of all these features in order to make your use of the 4STB transmission both rewarding and enjoyable.
WIRING and Operation (updated 1-07)
Wiring connections are required to make all of the electrical features functional. This connection is provided with (2) colored wires. Each wire must be connected properly as described below:
1. White wire (Over-drive) - connected to a driver - operated toggle switch. Another wire is then connected to a 12V power source. The toggle switch (or Auto Reset Controller) is used to activate and deactivate the transmission's Over-drive feature. This can only be activated when the transmission is in 3rd gear. It must be deactivated when the vehicle comes to a stop and returned to 1st gear. Over-drive is strictly a cruising gear. You cannot activate Over-drive under full throttle conditions. Doing so will damage the transmission.
Special Note: If the Optional Auto Rest Relay controller with Momentary switch and Auto-reset is used, refer to the following link:
2. Black wire (Trans-brake) - connected to momentary switch (similar to a Line-lock switch). The momentary switch should be mounted in a convenient location in the cockpit (like the shifter or steering wheel) to activate the Trans-brake. The other wire on this switch should be connected to a reliable (fused) ignition 12 volt power source. This will provide continuous power for the Trans-brake function when the ignition is on. (An optional toggle switch can also be put in-line to switch power and disable the Trans-brake solenoid entirely)
We have found that by hooking up the trans-brake in conjunction with a roll-control system allows the car to be staged perfectly at any desired rpm. If your car is not equiped with a roll system type of micro-switch, it will do a similar job just as well.
The Forward Shift Pattern of 4STB transmission is: P--R--N--3(EOD)--2--1
1. Remember the Trans-brake must not be engaged at anytime the vehicle is in motion! The trans-brake button can only be activated in 1st gear when the car is stopped.
2. This is not a road racing type transmission and can not be down-shifted into a lower gear at high speed. Doing so will cause immediate internal damage to the transmission. This transmission does not provide "engine-braking" in 1st or 2nd gear.
3. Once the transmission has been shifted into 3rd gear, the toggle switch, momentary push-button (or whatever switch you're using), can be activated causing the transmission to shift into over-drive (4th gear). It will stay in overdrive until the switch is deactivated. If the optional Auto Reset Controller is used then simply move the shifter lever toward the 2nd gear position. As soon as the pressure switch senses a change in pressure Overdrive will be disabled.
It is highly recommended that you open the toggle switch before you come to a stop. If the switch is left closed (Overdrive On), the transmission will shift directly into overdrive when the shift lever is moved from 2nd to 3rd gear when up-shifting. This is not recommended and transmission durability will be compromised. This will not happen with the Auto Reset Controller because as soon as the shifter lever is moved out of the 3rd gear position Overdrive will drop out automatically. The driver never has to worry about accidently leaving the OD switch activated.
4. As with ALL Overdrive transmissions it is IMPORTANT to NEVER active the Overdrive function under full throttle conditions. In order to maintain speed when going into OD, simply lift off the accelerator pedal momentarily and then activate the OD switch (button).
OPERATION - Trans-brake
1. The transmission has a 3- speed Forward Shift Pattern. The Trans-brake will apply only in low (1st) gear. Reverse is engaged by shifting into reverse and then applying the Trans-brake button. This is a built-in safety feature.
Note: For Reverse operation without using the Trans-brake switch and for connecting Neutral Saftey and Reverse lights, refer to diagram #2 at the bottom of the page.
2. Stage the car with the engine above 1000 RPM to obtain higher fluid pressure and volume which will provide a quicker trans-brake engagement.
3. Maximum engine rpm with the trans-brake applied, creates excessive heat very quickly. (40 to 50 degrees/sec) On a full tree, wait for the next to the last yellow bulb, before bringing the engine speed to the full stall rpm. Always use an adequate trans fluid cooler (min. 25,000 GVW capacity) and inspect the condition of the trans fluid very often.
4. For proper operation, the trans-brake solenoid should only be used with a fully charged 12 volt battery source in order for it to function properly.
5. If any operational problems occur with the trans-brake, check the activation button, all electrical connections, and the by-pass delay box if one is used.
6. If you should encounter a delay or hesitation in the release of the trans-brake, check the following:
a. The fluid level in the transmission; a low level can cause a delay in trans-brake release.
b. A faulty release switch; check operation of the switch used to release the trans-brake.
7. Since the trans-brake only works in 1st gear, if you should accidentally hit the activating switch while in any other gear, the mechanism will not engage. This is a built in safety feature.
8. The transmission will operate normally, even if you choose not to use the trans-brake. Simply flip the toggle switch to the off position. The trans-brake itself is an "added" feature for your transmission and cannot adversely affect the transmission's operation when it is not being used.
REACTION TIME is influenced by the following:
1. Position the driver stages the car in relation to the racetrack timing lights.
2. The type of trans-brake button that is used, its location, and when the driver releases it.
3. Release speed of the trans-brake.
4. Weight of the racecar.
5. Horsepower of the engine and the rpm when it produces peak torque.
6. Stall speed and torque multiplication characteristics of the torque converter.
7. Gear ratio's of the transmission and rear axle.
8. Type of chassis and suspension, how it is set up and adjusted.
9. Diameter of the front tires.
10. Drag slick size, the sidewall construction, rubber compound, age or condition, inflation pressure, and the width of the rims they are mounted on.
11. Type and positioning of the race track timing lights (their height and distance apart).
Racecars that produce quick reactions times on a "pro" start tree, are generally setup to lift the front tires out of the timing lights. This method works great on most cars, but will cause a consistency problem on some cars. Consistent reaction times require positioning the race car the same distance into the staging light beam every time.