OT computerless classic cars (was Re: Heathkit EC-1)

From: Tony Duell <ard_at_p850ug1.demon.co.uk>
Date: Sat May 3 19:12:52 2003

> I think somebody might had missed a shift. The old bug autosticks
> came with manual box and clutch, has a sensitive sensor
> built into shifter handle (according what I see in bug/bus aircooled
> newsgroups), touch it effectively "pushes clutch in" instead of your
> left foot. It's electronics/vacuum operated and very crankerous to
> maintain.

This sounds like the Morris 'Manumatic' that was fitted to some of their
cars in the 1960s (I think). It was a part electrical, part mechanical
system that automattically controlled the clutch _and engine speed_ when
changing gear (shifting). There were synchroniser contacts in the clutch
unit, a vacuum servo to operate the clutch release mechansism, and
another servo that connected to the throttle linkage to control the
engine speed. I have the shop manual (I would, right :-)) and it contains
considerable detail as to how it works.

Another strange transmission was the Renault Electroshift. This had a
speed sensor which was connected to a relay box. That controlled an
electromagnetic clutch (from what I can tell, this was not an electrical
release for a conventional clutch), and a motor/solenoid assembly
connected to the gear shift forks in the gearbox. I have the shop manual
for that too, but it's a module-swapper guide with no details as to what
goes on inside the units. I would love to obtain an old relay box so I
could pull it apart and reverse-engineer it (for interest, of course).

Finally, for strange transmissions, there's the 'Roverdrive', fitted to
the Rover 105R. It consists of (starting at the engine) : A torque
converter. A convetnional clutch. A 2 speed and reverse (I think)
gearbox. An overdrive unit, which is controlled automatically by a speed

> Chrysler is working on and patented number of them on an
> "automanualic" using clutches instead of converter. I'm watching
> that with keen interest. It's there in www.allpar.com

As I'v ejust mentioned, automatics without a torque converter were built
by Renault in the 1960s. I wonder what they've changed...

> > LOL! I'm imagining a stream of compressed, vaporized politicians
> > squirting into the combustion chamber. :-)

That is surely the best use for politicians :-). It gives a whole new
meaning to the term 'hot air engine'...

Received on Sat May 03 2003 - 19:12:52 BST

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