View Full Version : Truck Top-loader O.K. for Maverick?
I have come across a top-loader for sale in my area for dirt cheap. The dude selling claims he bought an 1984 F-250 with 60,000 miles on it for the engine, and is selling the tranny. As far as I can tell it is a top-loader. It's a 4-speed with entry plate on top and a side mounted shifter. It was mated to a 300 I-6. Will this fit into a 1976 maverick currently fitted with a 3-speed? Will i be able to convert to floor-shifted still? I am planning on installing a 302. The guy says the bellhousing won't fit because the starter is in a different location, but the bolt pattern is the same. Can I Gerry-rig it together? Will a truck gear ratio be appropriate for such a small car? I want a lot of off the line torque, will I need to replace my rear diff. as well? Please help, I am very confused!
If that trans is out of an F-250,first gear is going to be a granny and useless in a car.As far as the starter location is concerned you may be able to relocate the starter to the side the new trans requires if there are no clearance issues(I think there will be)Clutch linkage comes to mind.It should mount to a regular 302 std shift bell housing if it isnt an integral BH/trans set up.Fish around in the search section here for tranny swaps.You will find answers to most if not all or your questions.Good luck.
That transmission should be a 3 speed overdrive. 3 + 1 OD. Maybe not.
It should work the same as any top loader 4 speed. Although the shifter may not be in a primo location.
If I am reading the post correctly this transmission is from an inline 6 cylinder Ford.
Granada's also had this type top loader 3 speed OD transmission.
I read somewhere that the granada od trannys were more alike to the real toploaders than the truck ones.
http://www.5speeds.com/toploader.html this is the site I was refering to.
I don't know that any truck came with a tranny that will be suited to a car, but you describe something close...
You can unbolt your tranny from the bellhousing, leaving all that hooked to the engine/car, and slide the tranny right out.
Then, if this is truely a 3+1 toploader, it will slide right back into the bell pretty as you please. You will just have to get a car friendly shifter, the truck shifter may not fit.
The 3+1 toploader has all the exact same gear ratios as your current 3 speed.
The only difference is that it has an OD stacked on top of the 3 gears.
You may or may not like that idea.
If you like the gear spread of your 3 speed now, and can appreciate the economy of having another gear, then it's all good.
If you are wanting the 4 speed in order to bring your gears closer together, which is the more common want, then this tranny will not do the trick.
For street driving, the wide ratio toploader is the best option.
It has the same top and bottom gears as the 3 speed, but has the 3 speed's second gear split into 2 gears.
The 3+1 should be looked at as an "ultra wide" toploader.
The close ratio has all the gear ratios close together and is not as street friendly.
All depends on what outcome you want.
3+1 is great for fuel economy.
And the 250/300 use the same starter and location.
If it is a toploader with a side mount shifter then it will work fine in either car. If it was made for that year vehicle then it is most likely a four speed over-drive transmission. They are essentially a three speed with an overdrive gear built in. If you have the rear gears for it it should work well. Just remember that it is not as strong as a Ford Top loader. YOu can, I believe, put the "Toploader" gearset in it and make it a toploader but you will lose the over-drive function. The shifter is mounted just a bit further back than the toploader but the real give away is the bulge in the passenger side of the gearbox for the over-drive. The true Toploader has no bulge in the side of the case.
If it is a toploader with a side mount shifter then it will work fine in either car. If it was made for that year vehicle then it is most likely a four speed over-drive transmission.
I would agree with you but for the fact that it is coming out of a F250 therefore I am lead to believe it is either a NP435 or a Borg Warner T18 I also know the put T19 in those years of F250's but they were only behind the diesel motors if it is one of those three then they will be 3 speeds with the granny low, what you need to do is look at the tags and casting numbers on the transmission they are usually bolted to the top plate. We also have not been told if the truck is a 2 or 4 wheel drive we can only assume it is a two wheel drive. If it is a 4 wheel drive don't even consider it because of the transfer case and if it is a 2 wheel drive make sure everything fits because some of those truck transmissions had pretty long output shafts you might have to modify the tunnel.
Many of the truck transmissions are very very heavy to take the load requried and they have a large amount of mass and weight if you look at the height of a NP435 in comparison to a T5 there is a several inches on the 435 and about an 80 pound difference between the two even though the T5 is a 5 speed and the 435 is a 4 speed.
you would have better luck looking here http://www.car-part.com for a T5 or T56 out of a mustang in your area you can probably find one cheaper, give you a better gear ratio then the transmission in the F250 and give you alot less hastle installing it plus it is a 5 speed. Well thats my :2cents: worth.
The same toploading four speed was used in cars and trucks.
In 1977 and 1978 there was a late model 3 speed overdrive transmission made for intermediate passenger cars, light duty pickup trucks and vans. This transmission looks just like an early Toploader but is not a performance transmission at all.The tag numbers are: RUG BP; RUG CA; RUG CL; and RUG CD. The casting numbers on the main case or tail-housing start with D7DR for 1977 model. Some of the main cases have an ORION cast on the drivers side. The gear teeth are cut very thin and the ratios are almost the same as an early 3 speed with .85 or so overdrive in 4th.
At first glance it looks just like the original Toploader.
Many more Toploaders were transplanted into pickups to get rid of the granny gear top loaders with top mount shift towers. All of the side mount shifter top loading trannies will fit in cars and trucks with the appropriate shifter.
if it is one of those three then they will be 3 speeds with the granny low, what you need to do is look at the tags and casting numbers on the transmission they are usually bolted to the top plate.
I will not disagree with you on what the transmission it might be I will disagree with you on the probability that it is one. I do not know if the transmission is different then the original, I don't know if it is 4 wheel drive, and I don't know if the motor in the truck is even the original. I do know he needs to check the tags and find out what transmission it is. I think the use of a truck transmission is not that desirable in a Maverick.
It is like trying to find a clark 5 speed out of a 1969 International school bus for your truck 98% of the time you are going to run into the most common transmissions out there. I am not disagreeing that they were not in the trucks and they were not in them that year but what is the probability of it? It would be a more feasable option to find a T5, a T56 or something else along that line.
I would agree but for the fact that he said it had a side mounted shifter.
Both the New Process and Borg Warner truck transmissions have the shifter mounted on the top plate and are integral with the transmission. I have never seen one with a shifter mounted on the side, have you?
If you look at the empherical data released by ford and most transmissions shops the transmission he is describing is not for use in a 250 but for bronco's and f150's. It is a t170F (code rug) or a SMOD side mounted overdrive.
According to this you might be right with the "light truck" passage
but from what I have found on these they are not that desireable due to the lack of parts. I reitterate my statement that it would be cheaper and easier just to find a car transmission and put it in.:2thumbs:
I had a 4 speed toploader in my 302 GT 71. Nice......very nice. Over the 3 speed toploader. Gave it to my brother for a Cobra kit car retro
I scored a T-5 out of a T-bird supercoupe.
I'm going to pop the 3 speed out later this month and compare the two--to see if I can get the T-5 to adapt.
No sure about the end shaft shifter and the clearance
BTW, the 4 speed toploader was a boat anchor in weight! Twice as heavy as the 3 speed.
Came out of a 66 Ranchero 289---have you priced a toploader on EBAY?
I always wanted a T-10 but never found one
The Top Loader is way stronger than the T-10 or even the "Super T-10" and there is no comparison even to Ford's "Top loading" 3 speed. The gear set in the Top Loader 4 speed was originally designed for the GT-40 Transaxle. Super strong and made to take all the torque you can put to it - even with "clutch drop" drag racing starts. All that weight is right where it needs to be to make it the strongest 4 speed ever put into production cars.
The T-5 will require a different bell housing or an adapter to fit on the old bell housing. The use of the old bell housing will mean a lot of work to make clutch linkage work. You are better off to use a bell that comes off your doner car. Then you can adapt the clutch linkage to your car.
Just use a T-5 with an adapter plate on your bellhousing and keep your present linkage. The T-5 has a 1" longer input so the plate lets you run it with your shallower bell. Many of the Classic Mustang vendors sell the T-5 plates
Remember that the 3.03 three speed came out first and was the initial design used as a pattern for the top loader four speed. And everbody who needed a tough three speed bought it, including General Motors. It was used with 400 Pontiac Firebirds and other fairly high powered cars. And they weren't planning on many warranty failures! So I have to slightly disagree that the 3.03 is not as tough as the 4-speed.
And I'm sure that the four speed gear set in the GT-40's was made out of slightly more exotic steel materials than the regular passenger car ones. Of course, also by that reasoning, the three speed gear sets were no doubt made out of less strong material than the regular passenger car four speeds, but the three speed is pretty close to the four speed's strength. When production was transferred to
Tremec, that's when the strength dropped. Just my opinion.
If you look at the gear train of the three and four speeds you will stop saying things like the three speed was the pattern for the Toploader. You can't compare the two - the only thing they have in common is a piece of tin on the top of the tranny.