Jump to content

Gearbox OR Clutch problem ?

dream machine

Recommended Posts



I'm looking for advice re problems I'm experiencing with my Autosleeper Rambler (similiar to the Symphony model).


It's a X reg Sept 2000 Boxer petrol which I have owned for 5 years and it's only done 32000 miles.


Initially like many MotorHomes it was used infrequently but for the last 12 months I have been using it on a regular weekly basis.


It's always been inclined to make a crunching / grinding noise if hurried too fast when engaging 1st & reverse gears (taken slowly after fully depressing the clutch helped to avoid it) also it became stiff changing from 1st to 2nd but recently this has got worse. It has now also started to make a different grating noise when changing from 3rd up into 4th.


In very hot weather the gear lever 'squeaks' too which I have tried to cure by lifting the gaiter away from the lever and using a spray Lub on the inner mech which has helped but not entirely stopped it.



When I put it in for it's MOT (it sailed through Ok) I mentioned it to the garage but they were very busy and could not fit in a proper check of the problem but hinted it was probably the gearbox and could carry on for sometime before it needed a replacement.



But is it the gearbox or is it the clutch that's causing the problem?


Obviously there is a big difference in cost replacing a clutch against replacing or reconditioning a gearbox - could you give me your opinion as where the problem lies.


What would a clutch likely to cost including fitting ?


What would a new or recon gearbox cost including fitting ?


Obviously I'm now reluctant to go any distance in it until I can pinpoint & resolve the problems.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


There will be FAR more qualified folk on here to answer this than me..

But I would doubt that it would be a "gearbox" issue as such..

It may well be that a new clutch kit is required by now...but it may just be that it means "adjusting"?

(..or what ever mechanism that normally does the "adjusting", needs looking at?)...


As I say, there'll probably be some folk with first hand knowledge of Boxers of your vintage along soon..



(..and if not, repost it on the "Motorhome Matters" section,as it gets more traffic)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

pepe63 - 2013-09-27 4:09 PM

I think they make have a cable..?

I think they also may use cables for the actual gear selection as well...?

It all may just need adjusting/oiling /greasing...?


Good point about the gear cables - I had forgotten!


The cables themselves are pretty well made and are probably OK? In any case they are next to impossible to lubricate in situ and Peugeot will be delighted to sell you a new set for the thick end of 500 quid - best avoided methinks!


If gear selection is an issue first check the gear change shafts at the bottom ends of the cables where they enter the gearbox as they are made of mild steel and can corrode which stops them sliding in and out of the gearbox and makes gear selection difficult making one suspect a gearbox or clutch problem.


Not hard to clean them with emery tape and then grease them to help prevent recurrence but they are real sods to get at being on top of the gearbox towards the centre of the van. Simple enough if you have a ramp or pit but a pain in the bum on your back underneath the van, but well worth the efoort every couple of years in view of how much it saves.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This sound like the clutch is not completly disengaging, a fault also known as clutch spin or drag.


Unfortunatly it seems to be getting worse.


The most likely cause is rust or gunge on the splines on the gearbox input shaft and friction plate so that the plate no longer slides freely along the spline. The result is that even though the pedal is fully depressed and the pressure plate held away from the friction plate, that plate is still in contact with the flywheel and transmiting power to the gearbox.


The lack of use albeit some years ago could be a contributory factor but last years long wet winter probably did not help with condensation forming on exposed steel parts.


To check if this is the problem find a stretch of slightly sloping road. it need to be just enough to make the van roll when the brakes are off and its out of gear. With the engine stopped engage a low gear gear take your foot off the clutch and let the brakes off . The engine should still hold the van. Now fully depress the clutch and the van should roll away. If it doesnt the clutch has not freed and is acting as a brake. Another indicator is if after several second with the clutch on the floor reverse gear continues to graunch on attempting engagement.


Sometimes giving the clutch a good work out frees up the splines but it may well be the gearbox has to come out so the clutch input shaft can be cleaned up and a new clutch fitted.


Best of luck.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Or one could jack up a front wheel until it's clear of the ground, start the motor, put the vehicle in gear and check if drive to the wheel continues when the clutch-pedal is depressed. (I suppose I'd better add "Be careful!")


As the clutch is cable-operated, there's the (perhaps small) possibility that the cable itself is the culprit or, if there's an automatic adjustment mechanism, that the fault lies there.


An inspection by a competent mechanic should permit an accurate diagnosis to be made regarding whether the problem is clutch- or gearbox-related.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Water ingress can be an issue due to the cleverly designed scuttle water drain that empties over the gearbox, but as the gearbox is a sealed unit so oil cannot get out it seems unlikely that water can get in.


However the running water does help corrode the gear selector shafts and that does affect gear selection.


The water drain is easily extended so it empties at a lower level.


Both issues are easily resolved, cost nothing to sort and if the problems persist at least you know what it isn't.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Many thanks for the suggested checks.

I have tried the clutch test on a slope and the vehicle did not move until I depressed the clutch in fully - so it would appear the problem is elsewhere.


There are no oil leaks & as I said earlier the gearbox oil was changed last year & showed no sign of contamination.


I think (hope) that it is possibly the linkage causing the problems.

As I suffer back trouble I can't grovel in / under the engine compartment any more so as soon as I can I'll take it in to my trusted local garage & get them to check / clean / grease the linkage & see if that sorts it.

fingers crossed.


I'll show them in the garage all the useful advice that you have all given & hopefully it will soon get sorted.


Many thanks to you all for your advice & suggestions

Link to comment
Share on other sites


This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

  • Create New...