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Discussion Starter #1
I have put a '99 Cobra 32V engine into my '96 Mustang GT.
Now I got a Tremec T56 6-speed transmission that I want to swap in, replacing the stock T45.
The Tremec T56 (out of a 2003 Cobra) that I bought has an electrical connector on the left side of the shifter tower.
I was wondering if that is a Reverse Lockout? If it is: it needs to be connected to the brake pedal switch, right?
My existing T45 does not have a reverse lockout feature, so in that case I'll have to make up some wiring for it... or just install an additional switch somewhere that must be pressed while engaging reverse...
Or am I wrong altogether and the electrical connector is for something else?
 

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Yes, that's a Reverse lockout solenoid. One way to energize it is to tie it into the brake light circuit, but that's not the only way. Some people opt for a separate switch to energize the solenoid when desired. I modified my shift knob by adding a momentary contact switch when I installed my T-56, but there are shift knobs out there that come with such switches already installed.

 

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Taz- How exactly did you modify the momo knob; looked at your website, a very nice nice job. Did you drill out the top and what type of momentary switch did you get, any particular brand or catalog number you may recall?Did it require a tap, or just press fit. Were you able to route the wires without any difficulty? thanks for your time- m weiss
 

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AC Delco number 12101857 for reverse lockout pigtail for those who may need one.
 

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Taz- How exactly did you modify the momo knob; looked at your website, a very nice nice job. Did you drill out the top and what type of momentary switch did you get, any particular brand or catalog number you may recall?Did it require a tap, or just press fit. Were you able to route the wires without any difficulty? thanks for your time- m weiss
Thanks for the kind words.

I spent a lot of time modifying that Momo knob, but you could make it easy on yourself by just picking up a shift knob that is already equipped with a switch. There are several on the market that have momentary buttons - Hurst, among others, makes a couple different designs. One of those would give you a nearly plug-and-play installation.

I would have gone that route myself, except I wanted a knob that cosmetically matched my E-brake handle, and I wanted to keep the wires completely hidden. That project was a couple years ago, and I didn't record any notes at the time, so I apologize if my response is little vague. I used a Radio Shack #275-644 pushbutton. This is the part: momentary contact pushbutton.

I used the nut that came with the pushbutton to secure it to the top plate of my shift knob, but the knob I used is a multi-piece design, which made the modifications for the switch easier than they might have been. If yours is a solid piece, I imagine it would be easier for you to drill the knob and either tap it and thread the switch in from the top or drill a large enough passage to just slide the switch in and secure it with adhesive.

Getting the wires to exit out the bottom may or may not be possible, depending on the shift knob you are working with. If the neck of your shift knob threads onto your shifter handle, and you want to keep the threads, you'll probably want to drill the side of the knob above the threads and exit the wires there.

The neck of my Momo knob wasn't threaded for installation on the shifter handle. Instead, it was designed to secure to the handle with supplied Allen screws, and I was able to use this to my advantage during the pushbutton mod.

I had already learned with a previous Momo knob this set screw arrangement isn't acceptable, because the knob continuously works itself loose, and it never really sits right on the handle, even when it's tight. That previous experience had led me to come up with a workaround. Specifically, I found that I could press a piece of ASTM pipe into the neck of the Momo, and then tap the ASTM to the correct thread for the handle. That way, I could thread the knob on just like the factory part.

This workaround turned out to be doubly important in modifying the new Momo. I hogged out a channel just large enough to accommodate the wires along one side of the knob's central cavity and recessed the wires there before installing and tapping the ASTM. This way, the wires would be coming directly out the bottom of the knob, and they'd be completely concealed once the knob was screwed into the boot.

Most Momo shifter boots are equipped with threaded collars that enable various Momo shift knobs like mine to be screwed into the top of the boot for a very clean appearance. Since I had routed the wires directly out the bottom of the knob, inside the perimeter of the collar, I was able to keep the wires completely hidden once everything was all buttoned up.

Routing the wires down to the REV solenoid on the transmission isn't any big deal. I just cut a hole in the outer shift boot (the one with the metal plate that secures with 4 bolts) to make a passage for the harness.
 

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thanks so much TAZ; I also will probably make a custom switch, for the same reasons you did; the hurst knob is ok, they even make one with the correct shift pattern on it, but it may not be cosmetically acceptable. I am working not on a mustang, but a 53 studebaker with twin turbo stude engine and a viper T56 mated to it,(hence my interest in what you were doing) and the interior is going to be like a Hawk if you have any idea of what that is...The button part number is real helpful. I reckoned you did pretty much what you explained. LG makes a nice knob with a momentary for the vettes, but its a little pricey.It seems to be designed for some silly exhaust noise, but would be effective for my purpose. Right now one of my issues is the T56 from the 92-96 viper I have, the reverse lockout seems to be a mechanical one, and doesn't have the electromagnetic solenoid the later models have.I am looking into retrofitting the later model lockout; I for one think its worthwhile, because it really is possible to go from sixth down into reverse, especially if you're not driving the car every day- thanks- m weiss
 

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thanks so much TAZ; I also will probably make a custom switch, for the same reasons you did; the hurst knob is ok, they even make one with the correct shift pattern on it, but it may not be cosmetically acceptable. I am working not on a mustang, but a 53 studebaker with twin turbo stude engine and a viper T56 mated to it,(hence my interest in what you were doing) and the interior is going to be like a Hawk if you have any idea of what that is...The button part number is real helpful. I reckoned you did pretty much what you explained. LG makes a nice knob with a momentary for the vettes, but its a little pricey.It seems to be designed for some silly exhaust noise, but would be effective for my purpose. Right now one of my issues is the T56 from the 92-96 viper I have, the reverse lockout seems to be a mechanical one, and doesn't have the electromagnetic solenoid the later models have.I am looking into retrofitting the later model lockout; I for one think its worthwhile, because it really is possible to go from sixth down into reverse, especially if you're not driving the car every day- thanks- m weiss
Sounds like a GREAT project! Being a card-carrying AARP member, I certainly remember the Studebakers. The '53 2-door HT Commander is one of my all time favorite body styles.

I don't think changing the REV lockout over to the solenoid style will be any big deal, but you'll probably need to swap out the tail housing for one of the newer ones.

Best of luck with the project.

:thumb2:
 

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Just did this. Put a switch in the boot bezel. I picked up some of those tiny momentary switches and was going to mount one under the left headlights switch but opted not to.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
My preferred solution would still be a vehicle speed triggered release of the solenoid, in a way that it opens the solenoid for engagement of the reverse at speeds, let's say, below 3 mph. Using the speedo signal would probably be a bit unaccurate as it would not take into account the final drive ratio, but at those low speeds it would not really matter if the solenoid opens at 3, 5 or 7 mph, as long as it does NOT open at higher forward speeds. Such a device would work without any button.
However if I don't get such a solution to work, a switch button plus delay timer would be the second best solution...
 

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My preferred solution would still be a vehicle speed triggered release of the solenoid, in a way that it opens the solenoid for engagement of the reverse at speeds, let's say, below 3 mph. Using the speedo signal would probably be a bit unaccurate as it would not take into account the final drive ratio, but at those low speeds it would not really matter if the solenoid opens at 3, 5 or 7 mph, as long as it does NOT open at higher forward speeds. Such a device would work without any button.
However if I don't get such a solution to work, a switch button plus delay timer would be the second best solution...
Such a device exists. A friend of mine recently brought this little gizmo to my attention ...

T56 Reverse Solenoid Actuator

This controller wouldn't be a option for an older vehicle, but it should work fine for your car.
 

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Such a device exists. A friend of mine recently brought this little gizmo to my attention ...

T56 Reverse Solenoid Actuator

This controller wouldn't be a option for an older vehicle, but it should work fine for your car.
Now thats what I'm talking about!!!

I may have to get one of them. Having a switch is DUMB. I can't stand it.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Such a device exists. A friend of mine recently brought this little gizmo to my attention ...

T56 Reverse Solenoid Actuator

This controller wouldn't be a option for an older vehicle, but it should work fine for your car.
Good find, thank you!
Indeed, I have other issues with the speedo signal as the transmission has a Hall sensor whereas the ('96) car has wiring for a gear-driven VSS sensor. I want to use a converter by Dallas Mustang, but did not get that to work yet. However, this should be independent from that, as I could connect this first (to the sensor signal from the transmission) and connect the signal converter in series to it....

Those are the challenges with mods like this, but then, isn't overcoming such obstacles part of the fun!? Once done, one can take pride in getting it to work...
 

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Such a device exists. A friend of mine recently brought this little gizmo to my attention ...

T56 Reverse Solenoid Actuator

This controller wouldn't be a option for an older vehicle, but it should work fine for your car.
After a struggle trying to make contact via e mail I phoned GRC and was told this product no longer manufactured.So back to the timer!!
If anyone has better luck than me please let me know.
 

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After a struggle trying to make contact via e mail I phoned GRC and was told this product no longer manufactured.So back to the timer!!
If anyone has better luck than me please let me know.
Very disappointing. I hope you suggested that they pull the product off the company's website to avoid any further confusion.

I don't like the timer circuit, so I guess I'll just stick with the little button on my shift knob. I can mash it with the palm of my hand while finding reverse, so it's no more of a hassle than the lockout on the console shifter of most automatics. Not a big deal.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I am wondering if nobody else could build a device like GRC's.
I am not an elecronics d-i-y expert myself but I imagine it cannot be that hard... and the cost of producing those is probably in the range of a few bucks per piece only, so at $ 99 there is quite a profit margin in there... any soldering experts??
 

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I am wondering if nobody else could build a device like GRC's.
I am not an elecronics d-i-y expert myself but I imagine it cannot be that hard... and the cost of producing those is probably in the range of a few bucks per piece only, so at $ 99 there is quite a profit margin in there... any soldering experts??
LOL It would cost more than a "few" bucks. The plastic hobby box would cost you that much. But parts would run you well under a hundred dollars, and there shouldn't be any rocket science involved in coming up with a circuit to duplicate this functionality. Here's one grossly oversimplified possibility.

The OSS is a Hall-effect sensor, right? You'd need to know the voltage vs. speed characteristics for that sensor. Specifically, what is its output voltage at 3 - 5 mph?

You could use that as the switching voltage for a circuit that energizes the primary side of a solid-state relay.

Then, you could connect an ignition-switched 12V source to the input of the relay's secondary side, and the lockout solenoid to the normally closed contact of the secondary.

Such a power circuit would deliver 12V to the lockout solenoid whenever the ignition was on and the OSS voltage was below the threshold required to energize the relay, i.e. below 3 - 5 mph. Once the OSS voltage exceeded the level necessary to close the relay, voltage at the output end of the normally closed relay would drop to zero, locking out reverse.

The one obvious problem with this simple circuit is that it isn't failsafe. By that, I mean the solenoid would remain energized all the time if the relay craps out. That's unacceptable from a controls standpoint, so you'd need some watchdog circuitry in addition to what's outlined above.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Thanks for that detailed explanation.
I still believe that such a circuit could be produced for significantly less than $ 100, leaving enough margin for the seller. (that may be "LOL" or not...)
 

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Thanks for that detailed explanation.
I still believe that such a circuit could be produced for significantly less than $ 100, leaving enough margin for the seller. (that may be "LOL" or not...)
No argument there. As I said, the parts would run well under $100. By the same token, making the them for "significantly less than $100" is not the same as knocking them out for "a few bucks per piece."

With respect to the level of complexity and the parts complement, I've built similar gizmos in the past, and I'd estimate the raw parts cost would be in the neighborhood of $20 - $25 for each unit in small quantities (500 or so). To that, you'd need to add assembly labor costs, documentation costs, and packaging, not to mention an amortized cost for your R&D time.

In small lots, someone might end up netting perhaps $50, maybe even $60 profit on each unit. Certainly "enough margin for the seller," but nowhere near enough to cover that vacation property on Maui. LOL
 

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Sounds like a GREAT project! Being a card-carrying AARP member, I certainly remember the Studebakers. The '53 2-door HT Commander is one of my all time favorite body styles.

I don't think changing the REV lockout over to the solenoid style will be any big deal, but you'll probably need to swap out the tail housing for one of the newer ones.

Best of luck with the project.

:thumb2:
And who would think that Mustangs are all kids stuff, from one AARP member to another. Great web site, I just spent two hours, much to the digress of others. You wouldn't happen to recall the supplier or dealer you used for the exhaust manifold coating. I would go into detail about this project but I am trying to keep the
time/space thing to a minimum. Also you answered a ton of questions without even knowing.
Greg
 
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