Recently, they pulled and rebuilt the three-speed Ford Cruise-O-Matic automatic transmission from a 1962 Ford Thunderbird. Also called Ford-O-Matic or Merc-O-Matic, Ford developed this bulletproof transmission in 1952 and was eventually phased out by the wildly popular C4 transmission.
In this time lapse, you see all the necessary parts of an automatic transmission being taken apart and rebuilt. Hagerty condensed the process into a neatly-packed five-minute time lapse. This particular time-lapse video will make you dizzy with the hundreds of tiny parts inside an automatic transmission.
Unlike a simpler manual transmission, an auto ‘box is full of tiny pieces and complex mechanisms whose operation even we have trouble understanding.
Holy hell, this things are complicated. This is why automatic transmission service costs a fortune. They are so intricate and complex and have hundreds of parts, requiring a good chunk of time from a skilled mechanic. Props to the people with the skill and expertise to work on them!
There are a lot of pieces that are small and look the same and there are many sections where tolerances are very low with very little room for error. Even how hard you tighten the bolts can be a factor, where things have to be torqued to a specific tightness. Props to the people with the skill and expertise to work on them!
“Slow it down,” you said. “What’s going on?”
Opening an automatic transmission for some people is like opening Pandora’s Box. Basically, automatic transmissions look frightening if you’re unaccustomed to their workings so Hagerty took some time out with Davin, who undertook the rebuild, to explain the video.