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Old 07-14-2016, 02:03 PM   #1
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: North Carolina
Posts: 26
Year: 1996
Coachwork: Mid-bus
Chassis: international
Engine: t444e
Rated Cap: 49?
gutless

my 96 international 3400 with T444E and auto trans wont crawl out from behind my house where its been parked for 4 year. It needs to go uphill (maybe 20% grade?) from basically a stand still, but it will not go, gets going then basically looses momentum and engine just revs.

Last time I had to have it towed out, so this isn't out of the ordinary for it. Once i got on flat ground it was able to get the momentum it needed, but its always been pretty sluggish on takeoff. Im probably going to have a buddy try to pull me out with his 4x4 army truck.

Is this a sign of the torque converter crapping out? Or are these things just gutless? Hoping to get it to a shop for trans fluids and filter swap. Might this help improve performance?

Its essentially empty, minus some flooring and minimal kitchen setup...
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Old 07-14-2016, 02:13 PM   #2
Bus Nut
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
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Year: 1997
Chassis: Ford e-350 single wheel
Engine: 5.4 litre
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sounds like the tranny is bad.
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Old 07-14-2016, 02:24 PM   #3
Bus Nut
 
Join Date: Jun 2016
Location: Garden State (rural NJ)
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Which tranny do you have?
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Old 07-14-2016, 03:53 PM   #4
Bus Geek
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Columbus Ohio
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Year: 1991
Coachwork: Carpenter
Chassis: International S3800
Engine: DT360
Rated Cap: 7 Row Handicap
if the engine just revs either you are low on fluid.. (check the fluid level with the bus RUNNING not turned off).. or the transmission is on its way to going bad..

-Christopher
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Old 07-14-2016, 06:27 PM   #5
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: North Carolina
Posts: 26
Year: 1996
Coachwork: Mid-bus
Chassis: international
Engine: t444e
Rated Cap: 49?
Im not sure which trans it is, either 545 or 643?

Well ****... Will check fluid. Hope its not goin out...
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Old 07-14-2016, 07:19 PM   #6
Bus Nut
 
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Join Date: May 2016
Location: Richmond Virginia
Posts: 893
Year: 1984
Engine: 366 Big block Chevy! :) w/ Stick shift
Yep transmission. The free reving engine is the tale tale sign.
Fingers crossed its low on fluids

Good luck!
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Old 07-14-2016, 07:32 PM   #7
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Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: So Cal
Posts: 1,872
Year: 1935
Coachwork: Superior
Chassis: Chevy
Engine: 317 ci/tid / Isuzu
I've never been much of a believer in miracle fixes out of a can, but---I've had good luck with "TransX". I've used the stuff in half a dozen cars having the same symptoms as your bus. The symptoms are usually due to the internal seals getting hard with age and the product softens them up. As long as a seal isn't broken TransX should help. Also, as others have said, check the oil level with the bus running in neutral to be sure it is full. Then try letting the bus idle in neutral for half an hour or so as that will warm up the tranny and perhaps let it engage more or less normally. Be careful not to over fill the transmission as that will lead to foamy oil which has next to no hydraulic properties.

I see that Wallmart caries TransX. K&W Trans-X Automatic Transmission Slip-Stop & Leak Fix, 15 Fl Oz - Walmart.com.

Hope this helps. Jack
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Old 07-14-2016, 08:03 PM   #8
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: North Carolina
Posts: 26
Year: 1996
Coachwork: Mid-bus
Chassis: international
Engine: t444e
Rated Cap: 49?
ok ,so to be clear its not revving like its in neutral (free rev), it just sort of raises rpm but doesn't have momentum. I can tell the engine is straining, and the bus is struggling against the incline.



if the trans is going, what might it cost to have it replaced?
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Old 07-14-2016, 08:17 PM   #9
Skoolie
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Port angeles, Wa
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Coachwork: bluebird conventional
Chassis: international
Engine: dt466
Rated Cap: 72
There is the possibility the brakes or parking brake is locked up.
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Old 07-14-2016, 08:26 PM   #10
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: North Carolina
Posts: 26
Year: 1996
Coachwork: Mid-bus
Chassis: international
Engine: t444e
Rated Cap: 49?
well it was rolling free to get up to the incline so prob not. Reverse and D as well as 1 were working fine, its just when I hit this steep incline without necessary momentum it slows then just sort of strains against the hill.

getting pulled out tomorrow, gonna change engine oil and filters, fuel filters. Will double check trans fluid, then take it to a big rig shop for trans fluid and filters change.
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