So this Thanksgiving I took a trip in my brother’s new truck from NH down to Natchez, MI. His new truck is an 85 Ford Ranger with an automatic A4LD transmission (it is a piece of shit by the way). So about 1000 miles in, near Greer, South Carolina the transmission shit the bed. Puked out of the front seal all of it’s life blood. First things first, automatic transmissions run on witchcraft, second thing… witchcraft.

This will take time to fix, spent 24 hours on our backs under a truck in 1 degree (34 fahrenheit) in the rain trying to pull off the transmission. For all you about to attempt this, know this: this truck uses both metric and US Standard bolts… and some magic bolts. Also, a couple 2 by 6s under the tires creates just enough height to work on this project. Anything less and the window for leverage on things that have not been used for 25 years do not exist.


The truck after a night of working till 1 am in this driveway. It started pouring at 12:45 so gave up, and then in the morning moved the car (which had a frozen e-brake) that was under the shed.


All in, without proper tools, took about 20 hours to pull this out. Not sure if it’s worth putting it in, or modding the truck for a manual transmission… My brother’s truck…


An Update:

Turned out the truck threw a valve at the same moment the front seal went. This, then was beyond our away from home, roadside repair skillset. So, we limped it over to a garage, had it looked at by a professional, and several hundred dollars later, my brother drove it home. Well, made it home, lost power to his dash and wipers, lost power going up hills, and cursed the day he ever purchased an automatic vehicle. After making it home without wipers in the first major snowstorm of the year, he decided to scrap it. First he lightened up the rear of the truck by cutting it down to the frame, then he welded wheel covers on and the rear lights with the plate holder… and wa-la, you have yourself a little drift truck. worked a treat on the freshly packed snow covered roads up southern NH, and boy did that thing overheat, another problem from the thrown valve..

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