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Re-use the bonded separator plate on a 5R55E?

Fredness

Elite Explorer
Joined
June 2, 2000
Messages
612
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24
City, State
Tejas!
Year, Model & Trim Level
'05 Sport Trac Adrenalin
Once removed from the trans and left to dry, the gaskets seem to lift and stretch over the paths. Can these be reused?
Or do they have to be purchased new everytime we drop the VB?
Thanks!
 



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Hey Fredness, great question!
Here's the scoop - you MUST replace the Separator plate to transmission gasket everytime you drop the VB.
If you use a bonded separator plate, some of the adhesive releases from the ATF and temps, the PAPER gasket lifts from the plate causing issues. The overall dimensions of the gasket itself changes enough to cause issues with your torquing - the gasket actually bunches up at the bolt, laying over itself.

Pix to follow - they are pretty dramatic.

There was a pathway in the TCC area that lifted 1/8” (or more) and actually ruptured at the end – I believe this was a result of poor torque from the bunched gasket.

Lesson learned, replace the gasket each time.

Now, why don’t I say “replace the separator plate and bonded gaskets each time”? I’m glad you asked! I would lose at least 5 modifications to the separator plate, to include:
One TCC port closed off – EPC overboost fix from Ford.
OD apply/4th gear engagement boost (Sonnax/CVB).
TCC exhaust hole enlargement (reduce TCC slip and code P0741).
Direct Clutch and Servo Release Feed hole enlargement.
EPC solenoid feed enlargement.
Pressure Regulator balance orifice enlargement.
Line pressure to converter feed orifice enlargement.

So, basically, if you have a Sonnax/CVB or Ford EPC correction kit, you will have TCC issues and lose up to 5 mods. If you replace the bonded separator plate, you will have to re-do the TCC block off at a minimum.
 






It's not a good idea to reuse gaskets in general except for certain types such as rubber pan gaskets if they are relatively new.
 






Yeah - The only one I'm having luck with is the Reverse Servo Cover gasket.
Thx
 






That gasket is pretty durable. You shouldn't have a problem reusing it just as long as it doesn't get kinked, and develop creases.
 






Full_View_Bonded.jpg


This is the full shot - after a couple seconds, you'll notice the "slight" misalignment.

Bonded_Rupture.jpg


OK, not hard to see one possible source of issues...

Bonded_Rupture2.jpg


Here's a second area that is suspect, to the left you'll see what appears to be a pressure induced rip above the port.

So, here is the lesson kids: Don't reuse the separator plate gaskets, even if they are bonded.
 






Every one with a 4r/5r55e

and is having issues - AFTER replacing/removing VB needs to read this!
Bump.

Thanks for the update Fredness!
 






No problem - if I can keep one person from going through stuff like this, it is worth the effort.
As a follow up, the trans is great - no issues at all, and it shifts as well or better than the first time the CVB was installed. I believe the CVB's performance was compromised by the failed OD Servo on the first install - that's the only way I can explain it.
 






Fred,
When you initially replaced the VB did you use the FORD OEM Bonded Sep Gasket and Plate or did Central VB come with a comperable one? I am sorry for repetition if you answered this elsewhere.

Thanks,
Mike
 






CVB comes with the separator plate and gasket torqued. It also has the (loose) vb to trans gasket - not bonded.
 






Follow up, it's been over 3 weeks, a couple hundred miles and no issues.
Trans temps with the CVB and Sonnax mods are lower WITHOUT an external cooler than stock WITH the external cooler.

So, make sure it is always a NEW gasket, make sure all the mods are done and don't pinch pennies on a "rebuild", go with CVB.
 






Good thread Fred, I haven't gone back into mine since the first time.
 






I just received a vb from CVB for my '99 Explorer Sport. It has the 2nd to 3rd slip.

This thread answered several questions but could you tell me what torque settings you used when putting the trans pan back on?...also the torque for the vb bolts. CVB said 95 in lbs...I'm having trouble finding a small torque wrench...might have to go to Sears...kaching...
Thanks
 






Not a big fan of quoting specs, I used the Ford Service CD as a guide and printed the bolt flayout/torque specs. Used 3 steps to the final torque. A Harbor Freight cheap-o 1/4" in/lb wrench is FAR better then guessing. At least it is repeatable.
 






Fredness did you decide to eliminate the thermoblocker yet?

After installing my CVB I monitored the tranny fluid temps before the radiator cooler and I could see the temps have dropped even with the thermoblocker still installed...

Out of curiousty I mounted a temp gauge on my Chargers' tranny lines and it runs an average of 30 F cooler than the Ford Explorer...Even with ambient of over 90 F the Chargers' tranny fluid never gets over 157 F and that was after running at really high speed around a racetrack here in Texas...

I think I am going to drop the vb and remove the thermoblocker the next time I service the tranny in the Explorer...I will never race it or drive it as fast as the Charger but grenading a tranny is not in my gameplan either...Especially from heat that I can remove from the process...
 






I would also consider doing a bigger external cooler too.
 






Does anyone know the part number for the separator plate with gasket pre-bonded to it? I cant' seem to find it anywhere.
 






( Have you tried your local ford dealer?) Removed wrong information.
 









Join the Elite Explorers for $20 each year.
Elite Explorer members see no advertisements, no banner ads, no double underlined links,.
Add an avatar, upload photo attachments, and more!
.





Hey Fredness, great question!
Here's the scoop - you MUST replace the Separator plate to transmission gasket everytime you drop the VB.
If you use a bonded separator plate, some of the adhesive releases from the ATF and temps, the PAPER gasket lifts from the plate causing issues. The overall dimensions of the gasket itself changes enough to cause issues with your torquing - the gasket actually bunches up at the bolt, laying over itself.

Pix to follow - they are pretty dramatic.

There was a pathway in the TCC area that lifted 1/8” (or more) and actually ruptured at the end – I believe this was a result of poor torque from the bunched gasket.

Lesson learned, replace the gasket each time.

Now, why don’t I say “replace the separator plate and bonded gaskets each time”? I’m glad you asked! I would lose at least 5 modifications to the separator plate, to include:
One TCC port closed off – EPC overboost fix from Ford.
OD apply/4th gear engagement boost (Sonnax/CVB).
TCC exhaust hole enlargement (reduce TCC slip and code P0741).
Direct Clutch and Servo Release Feed hole enlargement.
EPC solenoid feed enlargement.
Pressure Regulator balance orifice enlargement.
Line pressure to converter feed orifice enlargement.

So, basically, if you have a Sonnax/CVB or Ford EPC correction kit, you will have TCC issues and lose up to 5 mods. If you replace the bonded separator plate, you will have to re-do the TCC block off at a minimum.
Are these mods you did to the OE plate or mods that are already done to the plate?? Is there different plates that came in this trans??
 






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