how do i make my truck a manual?

245

Asked by Feb 16, 2015 at 10:02 PM about the 1996 Ford F-150 XLT 4WD LB

Question type: Car Customization

i have a 96 ford f150 4x4 with the 351w. the transmission blew out the front seal and
screwed it up internally. i was going to rebuild it but i decided that it would be so much
nicer if it was a stick. my goal is to convert it over to a manual with as little headache
as possible. i know i will need the pedal assy. transmission clutch bell housing etc. but
what i am wondering is if i will have to relocate the factory exhaust, do any metal work
on the truck, and will i have to replace the transmissions cross member? i am looking
to buy all of the necessary parts to get the job done and need a list of everything i will
need, need to do, and need to look into. basically just a checklist, considering i have
never done this before

18 Answers

97,215

You would be better off buying one with a manual tranny, computer systems will have to be changed, not to mention the wiring harnesses, drive line lengths, steering column and the list goes on and on. You might try a wrecking yard, they might have a totaled rig that you can purchase as a donor vehicle. Good luck.

1 of 1 people found this helpful.
245

thanks! i was not aware of the electrical work i would have had to do. it would have been a nightmare to get that far and have to deal with that. i appreciate it.

97,215

Yep when computers entered the field things got complicated real fast.

245

agreed. i think ill just trade the truck for a 80-85. i like the body style more than the newer anyways.

97,215

I had a 77 truck, that thing would pull a loaded semi, but it liked it's fuel, only got 9 down hill with the wind, back then I couldn't afford to feed it and myself.

1 of 1 people found this helpful.
245

i hear that man, i feel pretty lucky to push 18 out of the Windsor. im pretty sure its not supposed to be like that though.

97,215

WOW 18, I'd fix the tranny or get a warrantied rebuilt one and keep driving it, that is really good mileage.

245

i know. i think i am going to put the single port throttle body on it off of the 5.0 for better throttle response. but i dont know how it will effect the mpg vs. having the dual port. all in all i have a $7800 parts list for the truck including everything from performance to style. its one of those trucks that i want to build up. and it be the only project i never get rid of. carid.com stylintrucks, and 4wheelparts are going to be my new buddys ha!

1,555

Don't even think about this conversion it will be so expensive! unless you have a doner manual trans truck, to swap all the parts. Just repair or replace your automatic trans & be practical.

245

so... i checked the fluid, it was only a quart low, but three days ago it was bone dry. i put a quart in it and started it up and let it warm up for 30 min,there was no leaks to be found. drove it around about 6 miles of back roads, still no leaks, and the transmission is acting better than ever. im completely stumped! i dont know if the snow and ice has effected it temporarily or not, it just doesnt make any sense to me. any ideas of what might be going on?

97,215

So apparently the front seal didn't blow but what I would do is completely bypass the transmission cooler in the radiator and put on a good tranny cooler out in front, the transmission fluid may have overheated due to tire slippage or spinning in too high a gear like second gear, I have seen trannies blow fluid out the breather and the front seal due to cooling problems, put on a nice big tranny cooler and no more problem. I saw a nice one on EBay that had an electric fan on it, that would cool it off.

245

it already has a aftermarket tranny cooler on the front of the radiator. also how would i go about installing a aftermarket gauge for tranny temp just to keep an eye on it?

97,215

Ok your getting there, is it plumbed around the radiator or in conjunction with the radiator? If in conjunction, bypass the radiator. You can put a sender in the tranny pan but you have a potential leak there or you can make up some fittings and install one in the outgoing cooler line close to the tranny itself, if I remember correctly it would be the upper line on the tranny. HTH

245

who ever put the aftermarket tranny cooler in already bypassed the radiator completely. i drove it every bit of 20 miles today and i kicked it into passing gear three times still no leaks and reading perfect on the dip stick. you dont recon it was the breather in the tranny do you? it could have got clogged up and busted loose spilling fluid. truth to be told im no transmission expert but i can do just about everything else except transfer cases.

1,555

The section on the bottom of your radiator is seperate for the trans fluid it acts more like a trans oil heater for the trans on cold days. T-ing off of it only doubles the trans oil capacity.

97,215

If the breather was plugged by ice it could have caused the problem but usually it blows the tranny dipstick loose first to relieve excess pressure unless someone had put one of those click lock sticks in it. How big is the cooler? it needs to be at least a 6 X 12 cooler and have 4 rows of tubing to cool properly. HTH

245

i drove over a few small trees no taller than myself and now every gauge but my speedo doesnt work. dash lights and everything work. my cruise control stopped working as well. i have checked all fuses and connection throughout the whole truck cant find the problem

1,555

It's obvious you damaged the wiring harness somewhere? Or the main power cable./ wire. The speedo works mechanically from a cable to the transmition.

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