A manual or standard transmission is the alternative to an automatic transmission,
controlled by the vehicle's driver with the use of a gear selector and a clutch
pedal assembly. The manual transmission has less moving parts and is more fuel efficient,
stronger and less expensive to produce than its counterpart. The gear selector or
shifter is located at the center of the passenger compartment between the driver
and passenger seats and will display the shift pattern of each gear including reverse,
first gear being the lowest and fifth or sixth gear being the highest selection.
Because the manual transmission is a direct drive to the differential and drive
wheels there must be a controllable coupler between the transmission and the engine
that can be disengaged when the vehicle is at a stop, and then engaged when the
vehicle is in motion. This device is called a
clutch which is positioned
between the transmission and engine
and is activated by the driver using the clutch pedal, pushed down to disengage,
while allowing the pedal to rest in the upward position leaves the clutch and transmission
Here is what the manual transmission looks like still attached (bolted) to the
engine with the transmission cross member removed for easy viewing, at the rear
you can see where the driveshaft
is attached which bolted to the differential.
Inside the transmission is a series of gears, bearings, shafts and Synchros which
are used at various times during the transmission's operation. These components
are lubricated by transmission fluid or gear oil inside the case. Most transmissions
contain three shafts: input, output and counter or lay shaft in which the gears
and bearings reside. Syncros are designed to slow gears to a stop before they are
engaged to avoid gear grinding, when these Syncros wear out the gear remains spinning
which produces a grinding sound. Gear quantity and ratios are designed into a particular
transmission to perform a specific task by the manufacturer. In the image below
you can see the gears and bearing but the Synchros are hidden inside the body or
each gear and are un-viewable.
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