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HELP Ashcroft R380 box - should it be like this ?


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I know I should ring Ashcroft's and talk to them but it's the weekend and nobody is answering the phone.

I'm supposed to be fitting this gearbox tomorrow with my son and it doesn't seem right.

I don't know if we should go ahead and fit it or wait until Monday and give them a call.

I went to clean the splines where the clutch plate goes prior to fitting the bellhousing.

The end of the shaft that drives the clutch seems to have a lot of free play in it.

You can literally waggle the end of the shaft up / down / left / right about 2mm to 3mm.

The movement is obviously less at the gearbox end of the shaft but you can see the oil seal lip moving about.

It just doesn't feel right.

I checked the old box we've taken out (about 110k on it) and there's barely any perceptable play in the shaft on that one.

If it wasn't a recon box then I'd guess the bearing that shaft runs in was either worn out or didn't have the right pre-load.

What to do ?

Fit it and hope for the best or wait and talk to them Monday ?


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So has nobody ever waggled the input shaft on an R380 box ?

What are they normally like ?

Not like that! I fitted an R380 from a written off D2 to my TDI300 (after changing the input shaft), and there was no noticeable play. That being said, the bearings changed considerably between the later and earlier versions, but the original R380 I replaced was not that bad either.

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Yes they can have an alarming amount of play - the nose of the input shaft is supported in the crank spigot usually so when it's not it can waggle about, mine was like this brand new from Ashcrofts too and it's not had a problem.

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  • 2 weeks later...

The spigot bearing should be self-lubricted phosphor bronze, but it's worth putting a small amount of grease in there as well. Not too much, or the input shaft won't go in the bush easily. There's no need to grease the release bearing, but the slide should be lightly greased, and the clutch fork pivot point with coppaslip.


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