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Posted On: October 31, 2018


General Transmission Installation Instructions

Posted On: April 05, 2004


 !! CAUTION !!

ONLY qualified personnel should perform a transmission installation.

Improper installation procedures may cause property damage, personal injury or death.





1. INSPECTION - With transmission removed do the following:

a)  Inspect the engine and transmission mounts for cracks or damage.

b)  Check shifter linkage for proper operation.

c)  Carefully inspect the flexplate for warpage, cracks or worn teeth, then torque down the flywheel bolts to the crankshaft.

Torque spec: 3/8-16 & 3/8-24 - 40-50 ft-lbs  &  7/16-14 - 55-65 ft-lbs & 7/16-20 - 70-80 ft-lbs

For aftermarket hardware check Mfg. specifications.

  NOTE:   When installing a converter that uses oversize bolts, you must drill the flexplate holes.

                Use 13/32" for 3/8" bolts or 15/32" for 7/16" bolts.

2. DRIVE SHAFT - Have the drive shaft checked for run out, balance and straightness.  Inspect the U-joints for both condition and quality.  Use only the very best heavy duty U-joints as a driveline failure is costly and dangerous.

3. TRANS COOLER - Flush and reverse flush transmission cooler and lines so they will not contaminate new transmission or converter with particles from old transmission and converter.  If cooler is restricted, it must be replaced.  It must be properly sized for the application.

  NOTE:   An external transmission cooler is required for use with all Hi-stall converters. 

                The extra slippage will generate additional heat.

4.a.  NEW CONVERTOR - ONLY - If a new converter is being installed with a transmission that is not fresh, clean the transmission pan, replace filter, inspect front pump bushing and install new front pump seal.

 b.  USED CONVERTOR - ONLY - when installing a new transmission with a used converter, have a transmission shop flush the converter, inspect its hub and check its endplay.  Make sure the converter is in good condition and not contaminated.

5. O-RINGS - When installing a new transmission, install new O-rings on used dipstick tube, speedometer gear housing, etc. and install speedometer gears from the old transmission into the new transmission.  On some units like GM, this includes the gear on the output shaft and will require removing the extension housing.

6. SHIFT LEVER - Install the proper shift lever on or into the transmission.  The shift lever used on the transmission MUST BE COMPATIBLE with the shifter being used in the car.

7. DIP STICK  - Check to be sure the dipstick and tube are COMPATIBLE and will read the CORRECT fluid level in the transmission.  In most transmissions, the pan rail level is the correct full fluid level.  A bend in the dipstick tube near the O-ring area will cause a leak.  Check it and be sure that its is straight.

8. ALIGNMENT -The (2) transmission alignment dowel pins must be in the engine block and the mating surface of both the engine and transmission must be clean and flat.

9.  MOTOR MID-PLATE - Installations using a motor plate or mid-mount will require the use of special alignment dowel pins that are longer than stock to compensate for the thickness of the motor plate or mid-mount.

  NOTE:  If using motor plate or mid-mount, the converter must be built or sized to compensate for the extra distance between the engine and transmission.

10. CONVERTER - On some GM installations, the converter may not contact the flexplate before it bottoms in the crankshaft. 

  NOTE:   Polish the converter pilot and the pilot bore in the crankshaft then lube both for ease of installation.

11.  COOLING LINES -Do not use copper line for cooling lines since it cannot withstand vibration and it will crack.  Use steel brake line and flare the end of tubing if you are connecting it to a hose.  This is done so that the line pressure will not push clamped hose off of the steel line.  For racing applications, we recommend using braided steel lines and #6 fittings.

12.  TRANS MOUNT - Do not use a solid transmission mount if there is any possibility of chassis flex breaking the transmission case.  We recommend the polyurethane type mount for all high performance applications.

13. SHIFTER w/CABLE - On installations using a shifter with a cable, the shift cable housing should be attached only to the shifter and the transmission.  NEVER attach the shift cable housing to the chassis as movement between the transmission and chassis could result in a shift linkage movement causing a gear change or transmission failure.

14.  FORD SHIFT LEVER - When installing a shift lever into a Ford transmission, make sure that it is extra clean.  Ford valve bodies and governors stick very easily.

15.  FORD CONVERTER - Ford stock diameter converters with a drain plug must have plug lined up with a hole in the flywheel.

16.  MOPAR CONVERTER - Chrysler Torqueflite converters must be checked for engine external balance weights, new converter weights must match old weights if engine is externally balanced. Chrysler Torqueflite converters will only bolt to the flexplate in one position.

  NOTE:  It will be necessary to change the flexplate on Chrysler products when changing the diameter of a converter.

17.  MOPAR SPEEDO GEAR -The Torqueflite transmission speedometer gear housing is an offset design to accommodate different diameter gears, be sure to rotate it to the proper position for the gear used.

18.  MOPAR THROTTLE VALVE -Torqueflite transmissions must have the throttle valve linkage properly installed and adjusted or the transmission will fail from low internal fluid pressure.

19.  TRANS FLUID - Use a quality name brand Dextron II (if available), or Ford Type "F" type fluid.  They withstands heat better than most other type fluids and have the proper lubricating qualities.

NOTE:  Do not use Dextron 3/Mercon transmission fluid.

               Use only Ford Type F or Dextron 2E



 1.  CONVERTER WARNING - Never install the transmission with the converter bolted to the engine.  Pour one quart of transmission fluid into the converter to prelube it.  Align the converter hub drive slots with the transmission pump drive lugs and install the converter onto the transmission, properly engaging the two sets of splines and the pump drive.  The converter should be rotated back and forth until its completely nested into the front pump.

2.  TRANSMISSION - Bolt the transmission to the engine carefully, DO NOT FORCE IT.  If the transmission will not easily install flat against the engine, FIND OUT WHY.  The converter hub slots may not be properly engaging the transmission pump gear lugs and using force will result in damage to both the converter hub and the transmission front pump.

3.  CONVERTER CHECK - VERY IMPORTANT - After bolting the transmission to the engine, make sure that unbolted converter is still nested into the transmission as far as it will go. Then check to be sure there is approximately a 1/8" to 3/16" gap between the converter mounting pad and the flexplate.  Use a drill bit as a feeler gauge.   (EXAMPLE: For Larger Gap - With a clearance of 1/4", the gap must be reduced by installing (1) flat washer (1/16 thick) between each converter mount and the flexplate)  The converter pilot should have a good fit into the crankshaft and extend approximately 1/8" into the crankshaft pilot. If the gap is correct, then pull the converter out to meet the flexplate and secure it properly with the appropriate hardware.   

NOTE:  In the event that the converter to flexplate clearance is less then 1/8", the converter mounting pads have to be modified.  Do Not Install a Converter with Incorrect Clearance.

4.  CONVERTER - After the installed converter clearance has proven to be correct, bolt the converter to the flexplate.  Proper converter clearance is necessary to allow for normal movement of the crankshaft, flexplate, converter and transmission pump gears.  The clearance variation is caused by the manufacturing tolerances of all the related components, engine, flywheel or flexplate, transmission, etc.

5.  ADDING FLUID - After installation is complete but while car is still on the JACK STANDS, pour (4-5) quarts of transmission fluid into the transmission.  Then place transmission into neutral, start engine, and quickly add transmission fluid until it reaches the full mark (pan rail level on most applications) on the dipstick.  Shift transmission into reverse and let run approximately (3) minutes.  Running in reverse (3) minutes will give any contaminants in the transmission, converter, cooler or lines a chance to settle into the transmission pan and not be introduced to the automatic shift control part of the valve body or governor, causing the shift valves to stick.

  NOTE:  After running in reverse approximately (3) minutes, shift through all the gears and recheck the fluid level.

WARNING:  DO NOT run TRANS-BRAKE equipped transmissions in reverse (3) minutes as the Solenoid will overheat.

DO NOT OVERFILL - Overfilling will cause fluid foaming at dipstick or breather, overheating and premature unit failure.

DO NOT UNDERFILL - A low fluid level will result in damage to pump, bushings, thrust washers, gears and burn the clutches and bands.

After a short road test, inspect the completed installation including the drive-shaft to be sure everything is properly installed and safe.  CHECK shifter adjustment in all gear positions.  CHECK for fluid leaks and RECHECK fluid level in transmission.


6.  Chrysler Torqueflite throttle valve linkage must be properly adjusted or the transmission will prematurely fail.

7.  GM and Ford detent controls (down shift) must be adjusted for proper operation.

8.  GM and Ford Modulators require a good vacuum and they may have to be adjusted for proper shift points.  Turn the small screw in its vacuum port in for later shifts or out for earlier shifts.

9.  Always use a transmission fluid cooler.

10.  On Race Cars, always install a transmission shield or blanket and a drive shaft retaining loop for safety.





Low fluid level.

  • Shifter misadjusted.
  • Pump damage  


Insufficient vacuum at modulator.

Kick-down linkage or switch misadjusted or stuck.

Valve body or governor valves stuck because of contaminants


or misadjusted.

 Vacuum line cracked or leaking

Torqueflite throttle pressure linkage loose
Incorrect fluid level.
Shifter or kick-down is misadjusted


 Adjust Vacuum Modulator:  in for later shifts, out for earlier shifts.

 Torqueflite:  adjust throttle pressure linkage 


Fluid level to high.


Insufficient or restricted cooler 


Incorrect fluid level.

Worn or damaged pump or converter pump hub

 An RPM flare up in hard launching race cars may be caused by fluid moving away from filter resulting in air entering transmission circuits and converter.


                                    2. INSTALL A DEEP PAN.

                                    3. INSTALL A BAFFLE IN PAN.



Special Instructions for the 4STB Transmission

Posted On: March 05, 2004

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.




4STB- Overdrive, Optional Relay Controller w/Auto Reset

Posted On: March 02, 2004

Relay Controller Components:

1. Momentary Push Button Switch

2. Relay Controller

3. Pressure switch

Wire Color                         Function

- (Blue)............................ Oil Pressure switch on side of trans (either terminal  doesn't matter)

- (Red)............................. 12v+ switched from ignition (fused)

- (Black)........................... Ground

- (Yellow) ........................ to white wire on the driver's side at rear of transmission (overdrive solenoid)

- (White).......................... to O/D momentary button

- (Green).......................... to O/D momentary button ( White and Green are NOT polarity sensitive!!!)

 NOTE: 1.  Transmission case must be properly grounded for this system to operate correctly.

            2.  O/D switch can be any 2-prong single throw momentary switch.   A regular on/off toggle switch will not work with this system. 

Valve Body Removal General Instructions



Its's really not that difficult a job to do as long as you have access to the underside of the car. 

1. It involves first unbolting and removing the trans oil pan.  A catch basin should be placed underneath to capture the trans fluid when the trans pan is removed.  We generally loosen all of the bolts first, enough to just seperate the pan from the trans case.  Because the pan flange usually sticks to the case, a screwdriver is used to pry it off slightly.  Once it's seperated, we remove all of the bolts except 2 located together on one end of the pan.  This will allow the pan to tilt in one direction and permit some of the fluid to drop off into the catch basin.

2. Once the pan is removed you'll see the cast aluminum valve body bolted directly to the underside of trans case.  Please be aware that there are some electrical connections.  Pull the wire connectors apart and not the wire to seperate them.

3. Remove oil filter by removing the 3 bolts.

4. Once the electrical wires are disconnected and the filter is removed you can proceed to remove each of the valve body bolts.  The valve body is relatively light so once the last bolt is loosened it will start to seperate from the trans case.  Remove the last bolt slowly and do not let it drop.

5. For convenience keep all of the hardware together for re-assembly.

6. Then wrap the valve body with rags and put it into a box (for shipping if necessary).  Before sealing the box, please include all of your information so we know where it originated.  When you're ready to ship just give us a call so we'll know it's on it's way.

If you run into any difficulties or have any questions please call.