TransGo TH-400 Shift Kit: What do I have to gain?

Discussion in 'The "Juice Box"' started by johnriv67, Sep 25, 2018.

  1. johnriv67

    johnriv67 Well-Known Member

    I'm debating throwing a shift kit into my Riv. I don't know if it is worth the money, so that is why I ask. How much will 2 faster shifts down the 1/4 improve my car's performance?

    What would you recommend for a kit? Either the PRO or the 1-2?
    Thanks all, I'm a bit new to this trans stuff
  2. LARRY70GS

    LARRY70GS a.k.a. "THE WIZARD"

    Save your money, you won't see it on a time slip. Save up for aluminum heads.:) Next time you have the transmission rebuilt, definitely add a shift kit.
  3. TrunkMonkey

    TrunkMonkey Well-Known Member

    Shift kits...

    Earler (read, most of the classic cars we drive 60s-70s) transmissions were very inefficient in the shift points and basically "eased" through one gear into another.

    This gave smooth shifting and the feeling of a manual transmission having both higher RPM, and slipping the clutch during shifts. And the automatic "overlap" period helped give that smoothness at a cost to efficiency and longevity of the components.

    The "Shift Kits" made the transmissions shift more efficiently and the tradeoff was often a harsher shift. Other "kits" created different shifting capabilities such as manual shift and no automatic function, and both auto and manual shifting with the efficient adjustments. And the shift points adjusted to best optimize the power band of the car fro more spirited driving and response.

    Along the line of "...if a little bit is good, and a lot more is better, then too much is what I want!" mentality had people incorrectly adjusting the automatic to shift very harshly, and "barking" the tires on every shift. And the impression that it was really a performance enhancment.

    Until the wallet got tired of bleeding green...

    Create a quadrant matrix in each corner put information for anything you are thinking of doing, and study where the strong point falls and see if it is where you want to be.
    You might be surprised.

    1. Gains (performance)
    2. Cost
    3. Complexity/Time (can you do it, how much work to realize the gains)
    4. Reliability (For example, a drag car vs your daily driver make a difference in this one)

    Remember, "swapping a cam" is more than buying a bump stick and sticking it in the little hole of the middle of the block.

    Often one will start down that path and not realize everything else that gets "touched" by that process of upgrading.

    And just bolting on a set of heads and picking up 50 or more HP, and then drving the car harder than the people that had it for the previous 50 years, without considering the bottom end wear over all those years and oiling issues, you will be tossing $2500 in one direction and have a problem chasing you from another.

    Look at the car holistically.

    You go faster, can you stop faster?

    The car makes more power, can the other stock compnents/age handle that power?

    I have seen you posts on a 13 second from a heavy car, to get there, you need to look at the whole package and work backwards from the finish line of 13 seconds-ish at 100-sish MPH.

    You can do it, but you want to do it right. :)

    johnriv67 and mrolds69 like this.
  4. johnriv67

    johnriv67 Well-Known Member

    I like this BuzzKillMonkey fellow, even though the trunk guy's threads have been interesting too. Thank you for the slap of reality. I see that not all, or maybe none, of this would be how you guys would go about this, which is why I need the boards advice to bring me back down to earth.

    This is my first real "build" of anything at all, besides a shitty 76 Corvette and remote control toy boats, and I want results that may not be in line with what can be done. I'm working hard to do it right. I did start with brakes on this car and fixed ailing parts of the suspension. I've tried to start from the ground up, except for bodywork and interior. Then get the engine reliable. Then exhaust. Then performance. Then more performance. Then playing catchup on the way on body/interior/brakes/suspension, and when I'm satisfied with the performance, I might stop altering things. We will see
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2018
  5. Matt Knutson

    Matt Knutson Well-Known Member

    Buzzkill is absolutely right, but, if you start performance upgrades on the car you will want the transmission freshened up and it's something that can be done without tying up the car for a long time, you could do it yourself and if it's original it probably could use it. That being said go with the Trans-go 1 2.
  6. Dwayne B

    Dwayne B Well-Known Member

    I put A Trans Go reprogramming kit in my TH350 last summer and really like it.
    The kit came with two different springs to choose from, I used the mild spring for the street .
    It gave me A nice crisp shift not harsh,and wasn't to hard to install, plus I wanted to change my filter and fluid any way.I figured why I had the pan off for the money the kit was worth doing.
  7. telriv

    telriv Well-Known Member

    You can get somewhat the same results drilling two holes, eliminating some balls, stretch a spring or two & flip a servo. NO need for a kit. Need new valve body gaskets & a filter kit. The thing about faster shifts, to some extent, is the clutch packs will fill FASTER & this leads to longer clutch life.

    Tom T.
    docgsx and sailbrd like this.
  8. scubasteve455

    scubasteve455 Well-Known Member

    He said trunk guy
  9. scubasteve455

    scubasteve455 Well-Known Member

    My guy fully rebuilt my B.B. Th400. He would not even put in the Trans go
  10. TexasT

    TexasT Texas, where are you from

    Some have ways of doing it without the kit. As mentioned above, some holes in the vb plate drilled, some checkb@//$ eliminated and some spring swapping in the vb can yield a dandy outcome for much less money but you will have to do some home work.

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