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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
last night my wife parked our 95 sidekick in 4th gear with the parking brake on. this morning the shifter WILL NOT move. i say 4th gear. that is where the stick points. usually she comes in in 2d gear. at any rate it feels like it is stuck between gears. anybody had this problem? the transfer case was recently rebuilt. it shifts fine.
 

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Hmmm.....there are two plastic pieces in the shift lever assembly that break - most often this prevents the shifter from going into gear, but I imagine that one of them can also be wedged to prevent it from going out, as well. A diagram of the shift lever mechanism is in post #2 here:
http://www.suzuki-forums.com/attach...4-tracker-2wd-wont-stay-fifth-shift-stick.jpg
As was asked in post #3 above, have you checked all the mounts too?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
the mounts are new. everything underneath is clean. no prior problems, except it is hard to get into 1st when cold. (below 45 degrees) fine once warmed up.. probably has wrong gear lube. i'll change it once i get the shifting fixed. when i start it and try to let the clutch out it makes a kind of GZZZ squeel. like it's not quite in gear. perhaps it's just clutch slip noise. very strange.
 

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I didn't mention anything about clutch, as normally I can pop my shift lever out of gear without engaging the clutch at all, when the car is off. However, if you are getting a grinding sound when putting the car into gear, you may want to check the clutch cable adjustment. When you push in the lever at the tranny, at the end of the clutch cable, just until you feel resistance, and then have someone depress the clutch pedal, the clutch cable (the cable itself, not the rubber sheath) should move forward about one inch.
 

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Do you have a lift on the sidekick? I would first check the plastic bushing under the shifter. There should be instructions on this site on how to do it. Sounds like the shift lever is out of place.


You double checked to make sure the tcase is not in neutral?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
do you mean a lift kit? yes we do. wife's home, it's in 2d. one thing i should mention; we've had the truck for a couple of weeks. nice truck, lots of upgrades, never abused. the weather has been mild; 30s>50s. everything's been working fine. it was 11 this morning, never got above 20. could there be condensation around the shift rails or somewhere else water could had accumulated and frozen? i'll definitely check the shifter bushing, tomorrow when it's back above freezing. THANKS
transfer case is in 2wd
 

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That shifter locks into place. To unlock it, you push down on the shifter and turn counterclockwise and pull up.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks Bex, that was helpful. the shifter was frozen. moisture had accumulated in the shift tower. once thawed everything is fine. what gives? is this common?? where does the moisture come from? is there a breather on the transmission case and can it be accessed and cleaned without lowering the transmission?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
95 sidekicker 5 spd shifter frozen (ice)

yesterday i posted a question when we found the shift stick in in our 95 sidekick stuck fast. turns out it was frozen. temp dropped to 11 degrees overnight and accumulated moisture in the shift tower froze locking the stick. thawed out, works fine. is this common? where did the moisture come from? how do we prevent this from happening again? is there a breather that could be clogged and is it accessible? THANKS
 

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Interesting. There is a tranny breather tube that you should see coming from the tranny at the firewall just by the bellhousing - I see it from the passenger side of the car. What kind of tranny fluid is in the car - has it ever changed - and what kind of weather are you having? Could just be an oil viscosity problem.
 

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Ah, put a response in your other post which relates to this problem. So, one question, why do you assume that it was ice? Did you visually see ice, or do you just assume as the car shifted once it was warmed up? How old is your tranny oil and what is it rated at? And what kind of weather are you having?? When gear oil gets cold, it gets like concrete, actually.
 

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For the purpose of this discussion, I'm going to assume that it was ice - have you examined the "shift tower"?

If your answer is anything other than yes - remove the console, remove the #2 & #3 shift boots and take a look - chances are the #1 boot, which seals the shifter to the shifter extension is either torn or missing, allowing moisture in to the extension.

Yes there is a breather, you should be able to see it in front of the shift extension after removing the #2 & #3 boots.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
i talked to the previous owner this morning. same thing happened to him. he heated the shift stick with a hair dryer. came right loose. it's definitely ice. it was not stiff, it was stuck fast. as i said earlier, it was 11 degrees yesterday am after several weeks of above freezing temps. the humidity is very low with no rain or snow for a while. question is, where is the moisture coming from? anyone else in a cold climate had this problem? the gear lube may be wrong. the transfer case was recently rebuilt and perhaps they used regular gear lube. i'll change it to Pennzoil Syncromesh or synthetic.
 

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I think you probably should change the fluids, if the vehicle has been off roaded we run into these problems. Water gets into the tcase, tranny, differentials etc. usually through the vents. Once it gets cold it freezes doesn't take much moisture. Some people think it is a hoot to forge rivers and have water running I the doors. Not sure why the original owner would just keep using a hair dryer in stead of fixing the problem.

What failed in the original Tcase that may be a hint.
 

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i talked to the previous owner this morning. same thing happened to him. he heated the shift stick with a hair dryer. came right loose. it's definitely ice. it was not stiff, it was stuck fast. as i said earlier, it was 11 degrees yesterday am after several weeks of above freezing temps. the humidity is very low with no rain or snow for a while. question is, where is the moisture coming from? anyone else in a cold climate had this problem? the gear lube may be wrong. the transfer case was recently rebuilt and perhaps they used regular gear lube. i'll change it to Pennzoil Syncromesh or synthetic.
Maybe I'm missing something - what does a rebuilt transfer case and possibly the wrong gear lube have to do with the transmission being stuck in 4th gear?

What is wrong with "regular gear lube" as long as it meets the manufacturer's specification?
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Hi Riley: i opened the shift tower and found at least 1/2 cup of water. the transmission and transfer case vents were joined by rubber hose with a tee fitting at the firewall. the third hose from the tee was open and pointed straight up. i think when the engine was rebuilt, the engine compartment was power washed and water went right down the vent hoses. got the water out of the shift box and everything is fine. there was no water in the transmission or transfer case. thanks for the help. Ranger
 
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