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Automatic to manual conversion
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satori
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PostPosted: Mon May 04, 2009 12:24 am    Post subject: Automatic to manual conversion Reply with quote

G'day all. I am considering converting my auto vanagon to a manual. I already have a donor van with a good manual. Is this a hard job. Will the auto chassis have to be modified??

thanks
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Terry Kay
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PostPosted: Mon May 04, 2009 3:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You mentioned you you have the stick donor vehicle.

Take a look.

You'll find that the automatic chassis bolt up points are the same.

So it's all a remove & replace program.

Quite the job.

When it's all said & done you'll find out the automatic set up wasn't so bad after all.
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kayakwesty
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PostPosted: Mon May 04, 2009 4:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

why are you going backwards.

The auto is bullet-proof and a better hill climber, and has better re-sale.

The stick has 3-4 slider problems.

I am running a smallcar cooler, type-f fuild and have had no problems.

Mine was a stick and I converter over to an auto.

Stick with the auto

my 2 cents results may vary
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Terry Kay
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PostPosted: Mon May 04, 2009 4:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Amen to that---

The mile or two per gallon an automatic would lose, is worth every penny at the gas pump.

I sure wouldn't make this swap either.

The VW trans is a tough , long lasting, pretty bullet proof unit.

Not worth the labor of making this swap anyway---
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bmwloco
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PostPosted: Mon May 04, 2009 4:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Our Westy has been in the family for years. My Father-in-Law replaced the manual with a Auto so my mother-in-law could drive it.

I've learned to be at peace with the auto. I see the advantages too. No over revving or climbing into red line. It is what it is.

It'll cruise nicely at 75-80 mph. I just did a 300 mile run it to historic auto racing at Road Atlanta. No drama.
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freshintulsa
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PostPosted: Mon May 04, 2009 6:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

i've done both, an auto to manual and a manual to auto conversion, both for different reasons. My camper i converted to a manual, and my daily driver converted to an automatic. Both are "somewhat" challenging, but if you have the donor next to you, and you have somewhat of a grip on things, you'll have no problem. Let me tell you though, just pull the dash. The first one i did, i pulled the pedal assembly through the dash, and it was such a pain, just pull the dash. Its esy to pull the dash and will SAVE you time in the end. As for whether to do it or no. I say do it. THe manual is faster, quicker, and gets a little better gas mileage. It really comes down to what you want to do. If you wanna do it, do it. Its not too bad and you will be happy when done. Let me know if you have anyotehr questions. Doug.
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Brian556
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PostPosted: Mon May 04, 2009 6:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Check out this link. It is an explanation from someone who has done the conversion:

http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=283352
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beeve
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PostPosted: Mon May 04, 2009 7:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Being able to push start a manual is a big plus.
Does anyone have a preference of auto or manual with the Subaru 2.2 conversion?
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Mr. Electric Wizard
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PostPosted: Mon May 04, 2009 7:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

beeve wrote:
Being able to push start a manual is a big plus.
Does anyone have a preference of auto or manual with the Subaru 2.2 conversion?


That's a big plus for me too.
I am still a little bummed that the Van I bought was an Auto. But honestly, the I've driven Manuals my whole driving life (18 years) and I have only push started a vehicle once or twice.
You just don't have to do it very often.
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a914622
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PostPosted: Mon May 04, 2009 8:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Going from an auto to manual is a straight forward swap. Id pull the dash and replace the master cylinder will your in there. There is a neutral wire that needs to be wired open. Its up front by the shifter.

Swapping over to a manual has a lot of advantages. There is lockers / limited slips for manuals and the gearing can be played with. Down Gearing hills in snow is easier with a manual. But to each his own!

I did the auto swap in my vanagon in two days. I had bough it with a fryed auto tranny.

jcl
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satori
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PostPosted: Mon May 04, 2009 1:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah I know that it might seem that im going backwards want to convert to a manual. I never really wanted an auto but the car was a nice unit for the price. Since then I have decided to put a suby ej22 in it as the engine has just blown. After removing the transmission, it seems to be from a earlier air cooled bus as didnt have any cooling hooked up and no holes tapped for either a oil cooler or water cooler. I think i'd enjoy it with a manual more, being able to use the rpm's more freely. Ive had a few auto vw's in the past, I never disliked them but always had more fun in manuals
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D Clymer
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PostPosted: Mon May 04, 2009 9:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think you will be much happier with a manual behind that Subaru conversion. I've always found the manual trans vans to be more fun to drive, more economical, and better performing than their automatic counterparts. To get decent performance from the automatic you have to manually hold it down in lower gears since the shift points are set so low. With the manual you just run it through the powerband and shift.

So are Subaru conversions getting popular in Australia? I've done a 2.5 and a 2.2 conversion. You'll be happy with the end product.

David
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allsierra123
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PostPosted: Tue May 05, 2009 8:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is one instance in a vehicle where the automatic is more stout than the manual tranny.
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heynanc
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 21, 2013 4:28 am    Post subject: ANYONE done an 82 Vanagon A/T with a KEG subaru kit? Reply with quote

I've been thinking about going manual, just because the KEG info seems sketchy on making the swap on an A/T older than 84.

Has anyone successfully done an 82 a/t to KEG Subaru (94 2.2 legacy)?

Less is more, if I can do it without a failure. ANd yes, if there is anyway to cool the transmission on this Vanagon, I haven't found it yet, but I haven't ordered my Bentley manual yet.

Many thanks!
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spacecadet
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 21, 2013 5:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

More support for the Auto here. You can drive it like a clutch'less manual- just start in 1, GO! -shift into 2, GO! -shift it into D, GO! hehe.

I do this sometimes while driving to work, which has 2 very steep climbs, I leave it in 1 or 2 and let it rev to higher RPM to help keep the line of cars from running me over.

Or in stop and go, I leave it in 1 so it's not up/down shifting like crazy.

Or when I feel lazy, there is always DRIVE!
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MarkWard
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 21, 2013 9:21 am    Post subject: Re: ANYONE done an 82 Vanagon A/T with a KEG subaru kit? Reply with quote

heynanc wrote:
I've been thinking about going manual, just because the KEG info seems sketchy on making the swap on an A/T older than 84.

Has anyone successfully done an 82 a/t to KEG Subaru (94 2.2 legacy)?

Less is more, if I can do it without a failure. ANd yes, if there is anyway to cool the transmission on this Vanagon, I haven't found it yet, but I haven't ordered my Bentley manual yet.

Many thanks!


KEG? Kennedy Engineering? Anyhow, if the details are sketchy for early auto vanagons it is probably because most with the exception of the diesel were air cooled. As far as cooling your automatic, you could find a used case with the cooler fittings and swap your working innards into it along with some new seals and friction plates. You could also if you had the case apart and understood the fluid flow add fittings to your case by drilling and tapping. Or you could add fittings to the pan and use an external pump and cooler. So lots of options.
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danfromsyr
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 21, 2013 9:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

fwiw we're running a AT w/o cooler on a vanagon camper with a 2.2l Audi Inline 5cyl turbo and it's been no trouble for ~2yrs
but I'd guess it depends on what temperatures, terrain and work load (towing?) you would experiance.
I'd at the least put in Synthetic ATF which would handle higher heat. and there's a advertiser here that makes a scoop for the bottom pan to help cool the fluid.

it's not an instant failure to run w/o a cooler the aircooled AT did afterall.
ATs generate most heat when the torque converter is grunting and multiplying torque. so if you are concerned you can read up on how & when they operate and drive to minimize the effects.

just make sure that you rig the kickdown to work properly. that's a lesson learned the hard way for us.
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Wildthings
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 21, 2013 9:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The automatic tranny is very similar throughout the Vanagon years so fitment shouldn't be a problem.

I have never gotten around to installing a cooler on my '91 with a 2.2 Subi conversion. It has been in use for 5ish years at this point and has worked well. We don't ever do any towing with it though.
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