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Clutch Pedal Dragging

1503 Views 17 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  rawill
Hey,

'95 9K Aero

So I replaced my clutch with a SPEC stg. 1 disc and pressure plate a while back , and while I was at it I also replaced the slave, master and hydraulic line which were all looking past their prime.

The clutch disengages with no trouble but is slow or 'drags' when it re-engages or when I lift my foot off the clutch pedal. This makes low speed maneuvering tough, and when shifting at high power/tq causes a nasty clutch slip
(which I can actually hear) for a split second before the clutch fully bites. Can't be good.

I have a proper pressure bleeder and have bleed a few litres of brake fluid through the clutch line so I'm fairly sure there is no air in the line. My next step is to do a reverse bleed (applying pressure at the nipple) to see if that helps.

My question for the forum is how fast does your clutch pedal bounce back after being released? I can literally take my foot off it and it will be slow enough that I can lift my foot fully off the pedal before it snaps back. I remember the clutch pedal being pretty responsive before... I'm looking for a reality check here.

Second question is if anyone has experience with ProParts slave cylinder from eEuro. I was warned about ProParts... and the slave was the only non OEM part I used when I replaced the whole clutch hydraulic system. Has anyone else had issues with the slave binding up or being slow? I've also noticed that the slow engagement is a function of temperature- the colder it is the more sluggish the clutch pedal.

Any help/thoughts here would be grand -

Thanks.
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Clutch splines should have a thin coat of grease.

Clutch pedal action should be as "snappy" as a honda or any other car. Yes, something is wrong with your car.

With the bleed nipple open (so no pressure goes to the slave--no clutch action) you can cycle the M/C and see whether it returns properly or not.

If the hydraulic line is failing it can produce tricky symptoms. The line can swell internally (like an artery) or even have a loose flap of lining act like a one way valve...

What type of hydraulic fluid are you using?
 

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Perhaps related? Air in my system?

I have an issue with my clutch.
The master cylinder has been rekitted twice, the last time a few days ago.
The last time because I thought it was faulty, but it was reasonable but we put a kit in it anyway.

After the vehicle has been sitting a couple of days there is a lot of "slack" in the pedal.

After taking it for a run it "pumps up" and is fine again.

The fluid level is not dropping.

Can't figure out how air can get in there to cause this.
This car has 360,000km on it.

And just replaced the rear shockies, the old ones were still quite servicable.
I was surprised, but the new ones have "tightened" it up.
 

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Slave cylinder Unknown. May have been replaced by PO.
Flexible hose replaced at first Master Cylinder rekit last year. (12 months ago)

I have owned the car for 3 years, done 15,000km in it.
Total km is now 360,000.

Pedal was good this morning after having been sitting overnight.
Will bleed it again, and leave it for a while and see what happens.
 

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How long has the Slave been in service?
Or the Hyd hose for that matter ?
Hyd hose is at least a bit easier to replace.
Everything seems awkward to get at in there.
I sliced the plastic fitting down in by the firewall, had to take everything off to get a new fitting made and replaced!

Grrr.
 

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One of the most frustrating aspects of the slave cylinder design is the very short stroke. This means even a tiny amount of air can cause clutch drag. Also, when the MC was upright on the bulkhead instead of inside above the pedal it could be difficult to persuade the air bubble that settles at the high point in the piping to move way down to the bleed nipple.

Pressure bleeding is really the only really effective solution.

The other really frustrating part about the slave cylinder design was the concentric aspect requiring that the transmission be pulled to repair or replace it. This dates back to the 99 folded drivetrain which allowed the entire clutch to be serviced without pulling the transmission. One merely pulled the first "half" of the input shaft out of the clutch. Nifty. SAAB really should have abandoned that slave cylinder design with the transverse drivetrain.
 

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Everything seems awkward to get at in there.
Grrr.
Agreed... it's genuinely Awful to work on the clutch hydraulics.
Even getting the Master in and out is a painful chore.
Clutch work ain't no picnic either ;)
At 300+ k Likely the clutch and slave have been replaced.. at least once. Hopefully Twice.. which would preclude an Ugly job looming

Possibly there is air still hidden in the system ??
Alternatively: could air be going in at the slave to Hose fitting?
It can be tricky to get the slaves' bleeder 'tight' enough .
I always worried about it not being tight enough And /Or stripping it's threads trying.
A 2 0z disposable Syringe full of fluid fitted into the Slave Bleeder...
Force feeding fresh fluid.
As the ONLY reliable method I've found over the years to .. effectively.. bleed the Clutch system.
Pressurising the Reservoir is a lesser technique in My experiences

Slow process though... it takes a lot of pressure on the syringe plunger (careful to Not to pop off the feed tubing in process)
for what seems an interminable amount of time required to empty the syringe into the system . Repeat if necessary.
Once it took me three syringes.. grrr.
G luck.. no envy on this one.
 

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Pressure bleeding is really the only really effective solution.
Correct, which is why I use the brake system to bleed the clutch.

Waste hose from the brake bleed nipple to the clutch bleed nipple and reverse bleed. seems to work very well, but maybe in this instance I need to do it with a "friend" "helper".

I did it on my own so maybe I did not get all the air out.
 

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The other really frustrating part about the slave cylinder design was the concentric aspect requiring that the transmission be pulled to repair or replace it. This dates back to the 99 folded drivetrain which allowed the entire clutch to be serviced without pulling the transmission. One merely pulled the first "half" of the input shaft out of the clutch. Nifty. SAAB really should have abandoned that slave cylinder design with the transverse drivetrain.
Yes! they should have dumped this design.
It is inherently flawed in this application,
And in the F1600 (Formula Ford) race car.
People are forever having to work on them.
The "O" rings fail frequently in the race car!

Another "quirky" thing Saab engineers got wrong.
Mind you, I don't think they got too much wrong in the 9000.
 

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Disagree. I've uttered more than few profanities at Saab Slaves over the years. I've found wisdom and knowledge in my later years :)
Nothing! is wrong with the design. swap in a fresh one at Clutch time and Life is good.
Aftermarket slaves have garnered massive criticism over the years.
Never understood that... as under close examination these are Damned Good copies.
One day I found out why.... the things rear o ring can (usually does) fall out / gets shifted during inept installs.
Then it's only a matter of time 'till failure.
But Hey! it's the part that failed not the bungler with the wrench.
Yes... the makers could have machined the o ring groove a fraction of a MM deeper. But still.. a small excuse for bungling the install.

Ever seen the clutch fork onna 911? For decades the stoopid things would seize their ball /socket 'pivot' point then snap off.
Yet Porsche refused to alter the design.. for decades.
 

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i have found a DIY pressure bleeder (using home depot handheld weed sprayer)is very effective at bleeding clutch, but one key is the fluid level in the m/c must be very high while bleeding. the clutch feeds fluid from very high up in the m/c (higher than the brakes). if level falls below that, air gets in.

agree the clutch slave is bad design, definitely do it whenever clutch is done to avoid having to pull trans again.
 

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In the race car application there is a small flat washer that goes in beside the "O" ring to hold it firm and stop it "rolling".

Some throw it away, bad move, the "O" ring can roll.
Grit can get in and cause issues.
I wonder if it is the same in the 9000.
 

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On the Saab slave there is a thin largish O ring on it's back face.
This presses against the bell housing face for an effective seal.
OEM Saab slave's oring, fitted there, stays in place fairly reliably during install. Aftermarket ones don't, the slightly not deep enough o ring groove issue.
Being displaced, and consequently squeezed flat between the castings, failure is inevitable.
Ineptitude can be found anywhere .. No news there :cheesy:
 

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So. You are saying use an original Saab slave.
I wonder where I can get one and throw it in my "tool box" just incase.
 

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No... I'm saying there is actually Nothing intrinsically wrong with the Aftermarket one. Despite years of Complaints.
The install does require that one has their brain engaged , although same could be said of the OEM or Any other part one expects to function as it should.
Used to be an oem Saab slave rebuild Kit (O ring set) Dunno if still available.
 
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