Might have burned my clutch? Salvageable/adjustable or nah?

Discussion in 'Freightliner Forum' started by PermanentTourist, Feb 13, 2024.

  1. PermanentTourist

    PermanentTourist Heavy Load Member

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    Clutch has like 250k miles on it and I've always been gentle with it - highway driving, light loads, slip-shifting, etc.

    But today I was trying to slide tandems on an old and rusty fully loaded trailer, and had to drag it a few feet a couple of times. Smelled clutch smell.

    Now clutch makes squeaks when accelerating through a gear, and slips a bit when in gear (specifically when switching from coasting to going uphill).

    Pedal travel, engagement, etc is fine. Watched some videos about adjusting clutches, measured the gap between the throwout bearing and clutch brake and it's less than half inch. Prolly like .4 inch. I've included the picture of the clutch and the gap.

    Do you think adjusting might help? Or is the clutch just done? Also, can you tell from the wear indicator if the clutch is done or if it still has some meat left? 20240213_201912.jpg
     
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  3. 062

    062 Road Train Member

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  4. Big Road Skateboard

    Big Road Skateboard Road Train Member

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    What truck? Judging by indicator, it looks to have some life. Where is the oil coming from?

    Pretty tight on the gap. Could use another 1/8" to 3/16"'.

    Maybe a problem with the fork or slave cylinder not letting the TO bearing release fully
     
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2024
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  5. Goodysnap

    Goodysnap Road Train Member

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    Very rarely will a solo reach the end of wear indicator. Generously Lube the throw out and make sure you are completing a full clutch application down to the brake. This is how the clutch auto adjusts is during full travel. Generally if the gap is good and you have full release with no dragging or slipping you should be able to get some more miles out of it.

    Might be a good time to save or plan ahead for its replacement.
     
  6. 201

    201 Road Train Member

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    A squeak can only come from 2 places, the throw out bearing or the pilot shaft bearing, pray it's not the latter. Might have just knocked some dust loose, I take it you already greased the throw out bearing. A clutch should never slip and 250K is getting up there for a clutch, even for the most careful driver, and not the end of the world. Adjusting may help, but it's worn. My advice, time for a clutch, and make sure you get the clutch discs with no springs in the middle, "severe duty", they call them. I went through 2 clutches, both times the springs broke. I got the springless, problem solved. Check that pilot bearing in the flywheel. Best just replace it too.
     
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  7. SmallPackage

    SmallPackage Road Train Member

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    Squeak could just be from simply getting it hot enough to liquify the last little bit of grease it had and it dripped away. Down here in the hot climate the inside of a bell housing looks like an oil leak from the grease turning to liquid all the time. Grease it and adjust it.
     
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  8. PermanentTourist

    PermanentTourist Heavy Load Member

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    It's a cascadia with a dd15, 900k miles. The oil is coming from a long-term no-big-deal engine oil leak. It's getting into there because clutch access cover is missing. (My truck is a mess, I know)
     
  9. Oxbow

    Oxbow Road Train Member

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    Once upon a time I used to run a heavy wrecker in the winter when construction was shut down. We used to tow numerous trucks with burnt clutches, twisted drivelines, or broken u-joints/yolks, all from drivers trying to slide trailer tandems or fifth wheels.

    When I went over the road pulling a reefer with sliding tandems, rather than using the clutch to slide them I would get rolling slowly and then apply the trailer brake to slide the tandems. I may have had to do this a few times, but I would put my stop bar in the hole that I wanted to slide to and continue until I contacted the bar. For sliding the fifth wheel I would dolly down the landing gear, dump the air, and gently slide the fifth wheel with no weight on it.

    You may want to try this - it could save some money! I assume they still put trailer brake handles in the new trucks?
     
  10. Big Road Skateboard

    Big Road Skateboard Road Train Member

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    Reach in and see if there is any slack in that fork
     
  11. PermanentTourist

    PermanentTourist Heavy Load Member

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    Yep, I ended up having to do that in the end anyways (trolley brake to get tandems sliding). Lessons learned.

    10 years of trucking, 7 as an owner op, and I'm still making dumb rookie mistakes.
     
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