1969 Chevrolet Camaro Clutch And Flywheel Replacement

11.22.2005....Camaro is back home again after a 3 year hiatus in a metal storage shed.  MSD Distributor has been replaced due to the infamous rusting insides.  Clutch and flywheel are being replaced currently....This has needed to be done since the motor was put in the car back in 1998 or 1999.  I will need to locate some new front tires for this beotch.   165 80 R15's for the front.  They are worn a little too much on the inside.  I guess the sheer weight of the iron in the front and the small block springs will do it after almost 10 years.    I should have this completed in the next few days.  There are some fresh pictures below for easy inspection of the work performed.

Elevate car with jack stands and a floor jack if available.

I generally use the jack stands and the floor jack when doing this project.   Later I will use the floor jack to remove and reinstall the transmission.  Although it only weighs about 65 pounds,  it is hard to lift up into the car when you are on your back so close to the ground.

Remove driveshaft,  shifter,  transmission cross member and transmission from car....in that order.

Remove bell housing and pressure plate.

Shifter Hole.  This was a good time to take the dimensions and locations of the hole for future conversions.

The floor and tunnel were cut on this car at some point.  I am not sure why.

Interior view without the shifter in the car.

A gathering of the essential pieces.  Clutch,  pressure plate,  bell housing,  transmission, throw out fork, throw out bearing, shifter,  transmission, driveshaft.

Remove flywheel.  I have always used aluminum ones on the big block.  This one has been resurfaced too many times and the geometry is off.

Flywheel added to the pile of parts.

Now is a good time to clean up any goo or other crap now that you have access to the back of the block.   Remove and replace the pilot bearing in the crankshaft now.  I prefer to use the roller pilot bearings.   They can be a pain in the ass to remove sometimes,  so you may have to get creative with a threaded rod and a nut,  or just go and get the tool to remove/replace them with.   Now is a good time to change the oil, since the motor is at a nice draining angle with the transmission disconnected and removed.

Nice and clean back side of the motor with a fresh pilot bearing installed.

Clean hands once the cleaning work is done,  and they should stay that way,  for the most part.

Clean hands once the cleaning work is done,  and they should stay that way,  for the most part.

Reinstall flywheel ,  clutch,  and pressure plate.  make sure to use an alignment tool and some Loctite on the flywheel bolts and pressure plate bolts.  You don't want this rotating mass to come loose at 7 grand,  even with a scatter shield.

Reinstall bell housing.  Get a new throw out bearing,  reinstall throw out fork and reconnect linkage to the z-bar.   I use the Centerforce Dual Friction 11" clutches and pressure plates.  They have a rebuild service for about $90.00 where they will send you another one for your "core".  I have a few of them around so always have a spare ready to go.   They come with a new throw out bearing with the rebuild.

Reinstall transmission,  shifter and transmission cross member.  Use Loctite on all bolts....especially if you are using all solid mounts everywhere.  The last thing to install is the driveshaft.  With it disconnected from the car,  check for wear marks on the input side of the driveshaft.   Slide the driveshaft into the transmission as far as it will go,  and mark the drive shaft right at the seal.  Slide driveshaft back out and check for some space between the wear marks where it has been and the deepest point it will go.   You want some space there because when the engine is under a load,  the rear end may change the pinion angle and slide the driveshaft a little further into the transmission.  If there is no space,  you may damage the transmission or break a lot of driveshafts/yokes/rear ends/ujoints,  etc.   A good 3/4" to 1.25" of space is ok.   If you can see the output shaft with the drive shaft fully installed,  the driveshaft is too short and should be replaced.  The more bite you have on the splines of the transmission,  the better off you are.

I have done this task many times before and always on my back.  Hopefully I will be able to get a car lift to do it in the future.  Cosco has them for a good deal sometimes....so keep your eye out,  I will.