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Changing my 6-speed manual to an automatic transmission???

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Changing my 6-speed manual to an automatic transmission???

 
Old 11-23-2001, 10:47 PM
  #1  
pineskier
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Default Changing my 6-speed manual to an automatic transmission???

Hello, I hope somebody here can help me out here. I bought a brand new Corvette with a 6-speed manual transmission in 1995. I was paralyzed just a couple months later. I can drive a car using hand controls but only if it has an automatic transmission. My vette is virtually brand new and has sat in my garage for 6 years so trading mine for one with an automatic is not an option. My question is; can my transmission be changed to an automatic without too much modification or cost? What are the modifications and approximate cost? I live near Sacramento California and would consider traveling a modest distance to have the work done if you know anyone in this area that could do the work??? Any input would be greatly appreciated.
Thank You
Tim Torgerson
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Old 11-23-2001, 11:33 PM
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ZBRA
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Default Re: Changing my 6-speed manual to an automatic transmission??? (pineskier)

I have done several automatic to 6-speed swaps in F-bodies, in fact I will be doing a '95 Z28 'vert this weekend. I have swapped in T56s and ZF6s, but I have never done a MT to AT swap.

One problem you will have is the computer as the ECM controls the shifting of the 4L60E. You will need the complete wiring harness and computer. Other than the transmission, this will probably be your biggest expense.

The only thing I can think of that won't be a bolt in is the shifter, as there is a hole where it would bolt. Normally, you could just weld in the floor section from the donar car, but the floorpan in the 'Vette is fiberglass. I guess you could stick a metal plate in and bolt it to that. This will probably be the biggest area of fabrication.

The rest of the swap is turning wrenches. All of the parts bolt right in, but there are a lot of them, so this is a time consuming process and with labor between $50 and $65 an hour, a $costly$ one.

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Old 11-23-2001, 11:42 PM
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Don Martin
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Default Re: Changing my 6-speed manual to an automatic transmission??? (ZBRA)

I don't understand why selling the 6M is not a option? If it has not been used much it could bring a very good price. Then buy a A-4 convertable. It will be easier to get in and out of.

Consider a C-5. They are much easier to get in and out of and have more room inside and they ride a lot better. In fact they ride better than some regular cars.
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Old 11-24-2001, 12:10 AM
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Default Re: Changing my 6-speed manual to an automatic transmission??? (pineskier)

Welcome to the forum. Yes, i'd just look for another car.
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Old 11-24-2001, 12:29 AM
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Default Re: Changing my 6-speed manual to an automatic transmission??? (pineskier)

welcome to the forum. Sorry about your condition. I have a close friend who was paralyized in a motorcycle crash.

and the one thing that kept him going was the desire to drive his big chevy 4x4 again.

I can understand your desire to drive your vette again... but the sad reality is this - it is worth about 20k as it sits. I would sell it and get a newer C5. Getting in and out can be tough enough when your healthy... I cannot imagine how hard it would be with such a handicap.

good luck and keep us posted on what you decide.
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Old 11-24-2001, 01:26 AM
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Default Re: Changing my 6-speed manual to an automatic transmission??? (pineskier)

Tim,
I am in the middle of doing an automatic transmission swap myself. If i can help you, feel free to give me a call 941-573-5895. I live in Florida, so the time difference may be hard for us to catch up with each other. If it's any help, I am up until at least midnight your time (3:00 - 4:00 am my time) everynight, so you can call me really late if you like.
Tony
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Old 11-24-2001, 02:44 AM
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Default Re: Changing my 6-speed manual to an automatic transmission??? (KLLRVET)

Good Luck with the swap. Personally though I would recommend going to a C5. As Don stated earlier, the C4 is a PITA to get out of and in to. If you have low miles, you could probably get close to the price of a decent '97-8 and they have alot more storage for chairs and such. Just my .02$. But good deal that you are sticking with a vette. You must be a true fan. Throw chevy a few emails to include paddle shifting on the C6 like they have on the 911s so you can go manual again! Good Luck!
BTW, welcome to the Forum!
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[Modified by 92TripleBlack, 1:44 AM 11/24/2001]
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Old 11-24-2001, 02:48 AM
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Default Re: Changing my 6-speed manual to an automatic transmission??? (92TripleBlack)

There's a Corvette place in Rancho... maybe they can help?
What "part near Sacramento" are you?
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Old 11-24-2001, 10:31 AM
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Default Re: Changing my 6-speed manual to an automatic transmission??? (ZBRA)

Pineskier, you are a strong person to persevere to the point where you are ready to drive your Vette again. I bet you want to drive your Vette, not trade it. I hope we can help you.

One problem you will have is the computer as the ECM controls the shifting of the 4L60E. You will need the complete wiring harness and computer. Other than the transmission, this will probably be your biggest expense.
He could install a 4L60/700R4 (the 4L60E without the electronic controls). The PCM would never know the swap was done (a manual's PCM doesn't have any idea what gear it's in. I don't think this will cost too much. His almost brand new ZF 6 speed bell housing and clutch must be worth ~$3.5K, a rebuilt, good as new 4L60/700R4 and torque converter should run ~$2K. Need a AT drive shaft too.

Eric

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Old 11-24-2001, 10:47 AM
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Default Re: Changing my 6-speed manual to an automatic transmission??? (silver & red CE)

I know in the F-Bodies, it just a matter of reflashing the PCM with an Automatic file. Same PCM for both M6 & A4 cars. I would assume the Vette is the same way, so you would just need to reprogram the PCM, however you still need the harness, etc. as others have mentioned.

If you do go through with the swap and cannot find someone local to reprogram it (without wanting to charge $300), email me and I can help you out.

Jimmy
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Old 11-24-2001, 02:02 PM
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Default Re: Changing my 6-speed manual to an automatic transmission??? (pineskier)

Welcome! Your best bet, is to sell your car and get one that's an automatic. In the longrun you will have less headaches with it.
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