I Do This For The Glory
Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: Nobleboro, Maine
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Re: Chevy Conversion Issues
There was a good size discussion on the Chevy board about this. Basically they came with ATF from the factory in cold climates. The leaking you talk about has been experienced before by a few people. The ATF is thinnner and will leak out of a marginal seal whereas the gear oil is heavier and won't. A plus to this is there won't be any cross contamination between the tranny and transfer if the seal is gone between the two.
I run gear oil in mine, does fine. I have even seen an SM465 tranny with ATF in it (6 oz, supposed to be 4.2 qts, do search, amazing it worked) from the factory. There were lots of vehicles with combinations like this from the factory as well. He can try and run gear oil in it, just drain the ATF, fill with gear oil, run for 50-100 miles, drain and refill with gear oil. It's a stout transfer, neither will hurt it, but I've heard there is more power loss using the gear oil than the ATF due to the viscosity difference (fluidic drag, makes sense). IMHO I bet you couldn't tell the difference.
'81 CJ-8 Scrambled!
GM151/SM465/NP205 twinstick/7"Lift/33"TSL's/IHC D44's 4.10's Lock'd