Best clutch to use? - Diesel Truck Forum - TheDieselGarage.com
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post #1 of 21 (permalink) Old 07-20-2014, 01:40 AM Thread Starter
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Best clutch to use?

I have a 97 f-250 2wd.
Zf-5
I had the flywheel and clutch, Throwout bearing, etc...replaced in February of this year with a duralast unit. I've replaced the Throwout bearing once since then(mid april), and put in a national seal and bearing Throwout bearing. This bearing is starting to chirp and squeal now as well.

The clutch pedal since I got it replaced seemed harder to push in than stock, I'm thinking maybe this pressure plate is stiffer than it should be and causing more pressure on the bearing than it should have. I don't know.

I'm wanting to know what are you alls opnions on brands Of clutches. I really liked my Luk clutch in my thunderbird supercoupe. But I was wondering what ones you guys have good luck with.


I replaced the clutch fork as well as the pedal pivot arm, slave cyl, and master cylinder when I put this newer throw put earring in.
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post #2 of 21 (permalink) Old 07-21-2014, 01:59 AM
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If your pedal effort is high and you are destroying release bearings, there may be an issue with that pressure plate. Did you machine or change the flywheel at the same time? Have you inspected the release bearing lever for signs of bending or wear? And how is the pivot for the lever?

I've done a lot of clutch work including building pressure plates and setting up racing clutches, and usually there is a reason for a heavy pedal. If you purchased a "heavy duty" pressure plate, designed for more torque capacity and they may have changed the setup of the pivots which will increase pedal effort.

For what it's worth, there is a reason for the popularity of some clutches. I had excellent results with South Bend on my 6.0L 6-Speed. Taking the time to make a call to a clutch manufacturer to get feedback on what parts you really need will result in you being much happier and ultimately spending less time and money to do so.

The Current Truck (Oct-2013 to Present):
1999 (Early) F-350 Lariat, CCLB, SRW, Black/Tan

7.3L Powerstroke, 4R100, 4x4, 3.73, 37x13.50-18s, '05 Axle Swap, 6" Fabtech lift, GTP38 "D66" turbo upgrade, SCT 4-position chip with custom tuning by me, Straight Piped 4" down pipe through 5" dual stacks, N-Fab full length triple steps, Pro-Tech cab guard and tool box, louvered 5th wheel gate, Hella 500 Fog and Driving lamps, much more to come...
The one I'll miss, (Mar-2009 to Jan-2014):
2000 Excursion XLT 4x4

6.8L V-10, 4R100, 4.30, 285/75-18, 271whp / 388wtq
The one I won't, (Jul-2005 to Sep-2012):
2005 F-350 XLT, CCLB, SRW, 4x4 FX4

6.0L PSD, ZF-6S650, 3.73, 35x12.5-18, 4.5" Lift
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post #3 of 21 (permalink) Old 07-21-2014, 02:16 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the reply.


I have put in a new flywheel and clutch fork. The old was in terrible shape(the shop I had put it in didn't tell me that either until I pulled the tranny myself).
I tried to purchase a new pivot ball since I had the tranny pulled, but had no luck locating one. For some reason ford can't get them(surprise surprise), and I couldn't find an aftermarket source for them.
However, the ball did appear fine with no grooving to speak of, and it was smooth. So I just lubed it up, and put a bit of lube in the ball part of the fork.


My thought is as well this cheap pressure plate. I've driven many big trucks and this one is by far the hardest, I almost dread driving it sometimes in the city because it's so stiff, and I love manual trans! I will not buy an auto trans vehicle for my car. I've ne'er owned an auto trans vehicle.

I've looked at southbend clutches, just trying to find a decent price for one, I know you get what you pay for. Do you by chance know a part number for a basic southbend clutch kit?
Would you recommend changing flywheels out to a southbend flywheel or leave what I have(duralast)? I have a valair flywheel that was pulled out of the truck when I bought it along with a good valair friction plate. The valair pressure plate had a couple teeth missing because that Throwout bearing disintegrated.
I've thought of machining the valair flywheel I have and buying a valair pressure plate(if possible) and putting that together.

I've gone threw almost 2 release bearings in under 1500 miles.
I should have just replaced the whole assembly when I had to pull it myself, But oh well, live and learn I guess.
Atleast it only takes about 1.5 hours to pull the tranny lol.

Last edited by Coreycox91; 07-21-2014 at 02:19 AM.
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post #4 of 21 (permalink) Old 07-21-2014, 04:51 AM
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Like I said, I had a 6.0, and a dirty little secret that most clutch manufacturers don't let be known but the the at South Bend did, is that because the 6.0 uses a self adjusting pressure plate, modifying it is complicated and can make the pressure plate junk if done wrong, so they use a stock pressure plate in their single disc kits for the 6.0, or at least that was the case in 2008. So I had a single disc (stock pressure plate) with their CB - Ceramic Button disc. Torque holding capacity was excellent with that disc. It would squak on occasion, and chattered a bit when cold, but it had no problem holding power or towing at up to 22,000lbs gross combined.

That being said, their website is pretty basic. You can browse their offerings on their website. http://www.southbendclutch.com/1944ps5.html I'd suggest you be honest with yourself for power level and intended use, don't get "too much" clutch for your application. A heavy duty full organic clutch should be fine for an OBS 7.3 with a chip, an exhaust, and an air intake/6637 setup, running stock sticks and turbo.

The final thing to note is the truck's gear ratio and tire size will change the ability of the clutch. So basically, a 3.55 gear is harder on the clutch than a 4.10 gear, and a 30" tire is easier on the clutch than a 33" tire. In my case, I had 3.73 gears and. 35" tires, so I needed a clutch with more torque capacity than the stock clutch could handle running a tow tune that made 50hp/150tq more than stock.

Now, there is one more thing, Kevlar might make a fantastic bullet proof vest, but it's a terrible clutch facing material. Organic facings, including asbestos (yes it's still available and why you still shouldn't use compressed air to blow out bell housings or clutches) will provide the smoothest engagement and longest life when matched to the application and used with the correct clamp force from the pressure plate.

The Current Truck (Oct-2013 to Present):
1999 (Early) F-350 Lariat, CCLB, SRW, Black/Tan

7.3L Powerstroke, 4R100, 4x4, 3.73, 37x13.50-18s, '05 Axle Swap, 6" Fabtech lift, GTP38 "D66" turbo upgrade, SCT 4-position chip with custom tuning by me, Straight Piped 4" down pipe through 5" dual stacks, N-Fab full length triple steps, Pro-Tech cab guard and tool box, louvered 5th wheel gate, Hella 500 Fog and Driving lamps, much more to come...
The one I'll miss, (Mar-2009 to Jan-2014):
2000 Excursion XLT 4x4

6.8L V-10, 4R100, 4.30, 285/75-18, 271whp / 388wtq
The one I won't, (Jul-2005 to Sep-2012):
2005 F-350 XLT, CCLB, SRW, 4x4 FX4

6.0L PSD, ZF-6S650, 3.73, 35x12.5-18, 4.5" Lift
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post #5 of 21 (permalink) Old 07-21-2014, 03:26 PM Thread Starter
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Ok, thanks for the info.

I have 4.10's, and whatever size 265's are. I don't have a tune, but I do plan on getting a ts6 tuner(maybe in the next year) and also getting a wicked wheel compressor wheel. I have a 3" down pipe to straight pipe 4" exhaust.
I also have the 6637 air filter as well.
Also plan on getting a set of better injectors and HPOP when these decide to bite the dust(still going strong at 215k)

I was looking at the clutch kit one up from stock on their website.
I think that'll be enough for my future upgrades as well, but not sure.
I don't see most if the expensive upgrades happening for another 2 or more years.


Thanks for the advice
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post #6 of 21 (permalink) Old 07-21-2014, 10:24 PM
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That's where you want to be. That would be just enough clutch with 4.10s on that small tire for a set of Baby Swamps 150/146 injectors or 160cc AC code injectors (depending if your truck has single shots or split shots now) and a slightly better turbo with an intercooler, and an appropriate set of tunes on a chip. But I wouldn't push it much harder than that.

And a 265/75-16 is about a 31" tire.

The Current Truck (Oct-2013 to Present):
1999 (Early) F-350 Lariat, CCLB, SRW, Black/Tan

7.3L Powerstroke, 4R100, 4x4, 3.73, 37x13.50-18s, '05 Axle Swap, 6" Fabtech lift, GTP38 "D66" turbo upgrade, SCT 4-position chip with custom tuning by me, Straight Piped 4" down pipe through 5" dual stacks, N-Fab full length triple steps, Pro-Tech cab guard and tool box, louvered 5th wheel gate, Hella 500 Fog and Driving lamps, much more to come...
The one I'll miss, (Mar-2009 to Jan-2014):
2000 Excursion XLT 4x4

6.8L V-10, 4R100, 4.30, 285/75-18, 271whp / 388wtq
The one I won't, (Jul-2005 to Sep-2012):
2005 F-350 XLT, CCLB, SRW, 4x4 FX4

6.0L PSD, ZF-6S650, 3.73, 35x12.5-18, 4.5" Lift
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post #7 of 21 (permalink) Old 07-22-2014, 02:38 AM Thread Starter
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Ok, thanks for all the info.
Idk why I said 265, That could have been any size. They are 265-75-16.
Again, Thanks for the help.

Do you but direct from south bend?
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post #8 of 21 (permalink) Old 09-07-2014, 10:22 PM Thread Starter
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I ended up buying the 1944-5or from southbend.
I plan on installing it this weekend.
I had my old flywheel machined, they took .005 off and it's in perfect condition, No heat cracks or checks anywhere.

I searched this forum for torque specs but didn't find any for my truck.
So, just curious if anyone knows the specs for flywheel to crank and pressure plate to flywheel.
Thanks!
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post #9 of 21 (permalink) Old 09-08-2014, 12:21 AM
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South Bend is pretty good about including the torque specs. They did with mine.

If you don't have specs, you should be able to gather them with a quick google search by fastener size.

Words of advice: Everything needs to be clean and free of oil, friction surfaces, fasteners, everything including your hands while you put it together. And use a drop of blue loctite on the first couple threads of the flywheel and pressure plate bolts.

The Current Truck (Oct-2013 to Present):
1999 (Early) F-350 Lariat, CCLB, SRW, Black/Tan

7.3L Powerstroke, 4R100, 4x4, 3.73, 37x13.50-18s, '05 Axle Swap, 6" Fabtech lift, GTP38 "D66" turbo upgrade, SCT 4-position chip with custom tuning by me, Straight Piped 4" down pipe through 5" dual stacks, N-Fab full length triple steps, Pro-Tech cab guard and tool box, louvered 5th wheel gate, Hella 500 Fog and Driving lamps, much more to come...
The one I'll miss, (Mar-2009 to Jan-2014):
2000 Excursion XLT 4x4

6.8L V-10, 4R100, 4.30, 285/75-18, 271whp / 388wtq
The one I won't, (Jul-2005 to Sep-2012):
2005 F-350 XLT, CCLB, SRW, 4x4 FX4

6.0L PSD, ZF-6S650, 3.73, 35x12.5-18, 4.5" Lift
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post #10 of 21 (permalink) Old 09-08-2014, 01:45 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by IdahoF350 View Post
South Bend is pretty good about including the torque specs. They did with mine.

If you don't have specs, you should be able to gather them with a quick google search by fastener size.

Words of advice: Everything needs to be clean and free of oil, friction surfaces, fasteners, everything including your hands while you put it together. And use a drop of blue loctite on the first couple threads of the flywheel and pressure plate bolts.


They included an install manual.....for a dodge! So, idk about this one. They didn't send the heavy duty cast iron throw out bearing like they say they come with, nor did it have the mounting bolts. I've already contacted the place were I bought it from. Still waiting to get a reply.
I've searched google and haven't been able to find the pressure plate torque specs, Found the flywheel tho.

I planned on using loc-tite.



I guess I can always use grade 8 bolts in the flywheel, but I'm Not sure what thread the crank is. Hopefully they'll send my the correct bolts and Throwout bearing before Friday.
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