New Ranger, shift quality questions

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Bought an 09' Ranger Sport 4.0L/5spd. The transmission in it is the Mazda M50D-R1HD also used in the F150 behind the V-6. Having driven nothing but cars the past couple of years I notice this truck seems harder to shift than the cars I'm used to. I'm not getting a grind, it almost feels like the synchronizers are much slower. Any Ranger owners that can help me with this one? Is it just me not used driving a truck or should I be concerned?
 
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Probably just newness and what you're used to. Let it break in for a few thousand miles and then switch the gear lube to synthetic. That's what I did in my Tacoma. Also, going into reverse, it helps if you double clutch. e.i., let the clutch out in the neutral position on the way to reverse and re-clutch and put it into reverse--rather than going from a forward gear directly into reverse. Hope this helps.
 
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Give it time to break in and switch to a quality synthetic. You shouldn't have to double clutch going into any gear on a new car or truck.
 
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How many miles? I'd say at about 500-1k miles change out to M1 or Merc V it'll be a little better. I've had RP's synchromax in mine for 30k and either it's starting to thin or the trans is breaking in but it's finally starting to shift without all the notchiness. M1 will be going in soon. I'd stick with the thin stuff.
 

Maritime Storm

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It comes from from Ford with synthetic MerconV in it, I only have 900Kms on it. That could be part of it, I suppose, not being broke in. I don't double clutch on this truck, I know it's stickier than my father's '02 Ranger Edge Stepside, but his truck has the lighter M50D-R1 as opposed to the M50D-R1HD in mine, which has a heavier synchro set in it. I'll leave it be for now.
 
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Ultimately I would go to Redline MTL, but only after warranty (Redline recommends ATF for an ATF-spec'ed tranny). MTL made my 160,000 mile M5OD (1995 F150) shift beautifully. Was always notchy on ATF--too thin!
 
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I don't believe that syn in the trans will have any effect on the shift. I switched my 5 spd VUE to amsoil ATF at around 50K, no difference at all. I thought I would notice it at least in the winter, but no change.
 
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 Originally Posted By: mpvue
I don't believe that syn in the trans will have any effect on the shift. I switched my 5 spd VUE to amsoil ATF at around 50K, no difference at all. I thought I would notice it at least in the winter, but no change.
I guess that would depend on the transmission. I switched my MTF from the OEM Nissan fluid to Specialty Formuations Full Synthetic and noticed quite a difference. Most notice the change.
 
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On mine, I really didn't get significant improvement going from conventional to synthetic, but the increased thickness really did the job. Even if you stay thin (ATF) at least Redline (and probably some but not all others) has a boatload of anti wear additive. Redline will take a boatload of heat too.
 
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On my 3rd truck with that transmission. It is not known for it's smoothness in either the F150 or ranger, I have had both. The Redline MTL has worked best for me. Even then, it's less than stellar, but better. I have found that if you wait just a second longer after pushing the cluth, it will be better. As you say, the synchros are a littl slow. Seems to be very durable though. Between the three , I have nearly 450,000 miles with no trouble.
 
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It can take quite a while for a tranny to break in. Some get better initially after a few thousand miles, then a bit better after 20,000 miles. Anyway, after 5,000+ miles, switch to a dedicated manual trans lube, instead of ATF. Use a lightweight one, like Redline MTL or Amsoil MTF.
 
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For northern location, theres not much need to go thicker then ATF unless its overworked. A full synthetic ATF would be a great choice. I don't see Mercon-V as a good OE fill for a manual. Motorcraft full synthetic Mercon, Castrol Transynd, Amsoil ATD, RoyalPurple Synchromax, Redline ATF, Wynns TC/MTF... would be my 1st choices. Moving up a couple points in cst: Amsoil MTF, Redline MTL, BG SyncroshiftII, Honda MTF,.... and equivalents would be milder thicker choices. I find that 'thicker' protects gearboxes better.
 
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I had a 91 Explorer with the M5OD and after a highway trip the trans got so hot that you could not touch it. I took out the [censored] ATF and used Redline MTL; it was like pouring in a new transmission...
 
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 Originally Posted By: Bluestream
Redline MTL; it was like pouring in a new transmission...
I see a Redline slogan here. See if you can sell it to them. Just a slight revision: Redline MTL: It's like pouring in a new transmission!
 
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A little thickerlube in a manual trans or transaxle is not going to hurt you. Great for bearings and gears. But having ATF that is NOT designed for shifting and synchronizers is not optimal. Why not use a better fluid??
 
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As others have said, use a proper synthetic manual tranny fluid. The use of ATF in manual trannies by the manufactures is for cost savings and to insure ease of shifting in all climates. But it's not the best for the tranny. It'll work in the near term but fluid designed specifically for manual trannies will help your tranny live a longer healthier life. I have the larger Mazda MOD in my 2002 F-150, V-8. The tranny shifts bad, real notchy. I'm using RP SynchroMax, BUT it shifted HORRIBLY with Mercon ATF. It would grind miserably in any temps above freezing. There are a variety of synthetic manual tranny fluids for all circumstances. Synchromesh fluids are about the same viscosity as ATF fluids, so they give good shifting in cold temps but better protection than ATF. Other manual tranny fluids are thicker so shift better in warmer temps but may cause stiffer shifting in cold temps. For me the RP SynchroMax shifts good in the winter but gets notchy otherwise. I'm going to try a slightly thicker syntetic manual tranny fluid and see if it can maintain good cold weather temp shifting and improve non winter shifting. Whimsey
 
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Ford has a special brew they use in the Focus 5spd. Part number XT-M5-QS. Great stuff, might want to give it a try. Its expensive though, roughly $15 a quart...though it is synthetic, and should last a long time (lifetime fill in the focus, yada yada).
 

JTK

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 Originally Posted By: Maritime Storm
..Having driven nothing but cars the past couple of years I notice this truck seems harder to shift than the cars I'm used to.
IMO, that's the issue right there. You're comparing apples/oranges. Having owned many manual trans cars and trucks, MT trucks are a chore. Stiff clutches, long throws, etc. Joel
 
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