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4wd auto transmission questions for a ea81 but more specificly ea81t


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16 replies to this topic

#1 turbosubarubrat

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 12:13 AM

so how good are these trans? i know the autos have problems but this one only has 160k on it plus it has the push button 4wd it has the 3.7 diff in the rear, so should i just run a motor with the auto trany and call it good? or just swap a 4 speed or 5 speed stick without thinking about it. i have to add the motor is out of my 1983 ea81t 3at(i think its 3 speed)right now but thats how i got it last friday so im not in a hurry and i have everything for a 4 speed swap right now, also the transmission fluid is very low but when i hooked up the shifter it shifted ok, so what do you guys think?

heres the build thread for pics
http://www.ultimates...ad.php?t=137681

#2 silverhelme

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 11:19 AM

I know what most people will say and that is to swap to a 4 or 5 speed. That said there are some of us who can't do that for physical reason, we have to have an automatic.

The 3at is ok if it is in good shape to start with and is properly maintained. I have one in my Brat that has over 100k on it since I bought it and it had 130k then. My Turbo Coupe has had 40k put on it since purchased.

Maintaining one is fairly easy. Change the fluid every 30k, (not the filter it is just a screen and just needs cleaned) adjust the 2-3 band every 30k and make sure the governor is working correctly.

They don't generally hold up to anything but normal everyday driving. That means no 4 bying, racing, etc.

#3 carfreak85

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 11:38 AM

Rip that p.o.s. out and throw it as far away as you can. Once those start to go bad, there is no saving them. Apple cored govener gears, dead 3rd gear, etc.

Ea82 d/r 5 speed and be done. Not bolt in at all (no d/r will be into an auto chassis) but totally transforms the car.

#4 turbosubarubrat

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 06:42 PM

Rip that p.o.s. out and throw it as far away as you can. Once those start to go bad, there is no saving them. Apple cored govener gears, dead 3rd gear, etc.

Ea82 d/r 5 speed and be done. Not bolt in at all (no d/r will be into an auto chassis) but totally transforms the car.

i know the 4 speed swap would be easy all i would need is to get my flywheel resurfaced, get a clutch kit, i have the consoles already, maybe drive line(not sure yet if auto is different than stick but theres one for a 5speed 2wd ea81 wagon at the junk yard), i already have the pedal asembile and clutch cable, of coarse i might have to cut some wholes for the dual range shifter and a bigger one for the stick shift, and i could get it done in after noon or a day

#5 TomRhere

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 06:58 PM

Don't forget to swap in the 3.9 rear diff inplace of the 3.7 under there now....

#6 turbosubarubrat

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 07:23 PM

Don't forget to swap in the 3.9 rear diff inplace of the 3.7 under there now....

i also have a eaxtra 3.9 so i could do that so is the manual that hard on the 3.7?

#7 AKghandi

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 09:49 PM

both diffs need to be the same ratio. if you put a 3.9 d/r in and leave the 3.7 rear diff it will bind up and the back will try to go faster than the front. all bad.

#8 turbosubarubrat

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 10:21 PM

both diffs need to be the same ratio. if you put a 3.9 d/r in and leave the 3.7 rear diff it will bind up and the back will try to go faster than the front. all bad.

yah didn't think of that, if i did i would open up the diff to see a bunch of teeth missing or all the teeth worn off:-\my dad put a diff off a second gen brat on a first gen brat and when he put it in 4wd it the front and rear wheels where spinning two different ways:banghead:so he flipped it over to the other side so the drain plug was up instead of down and it worked fine same gearing to it was weird,

but back on topic how long do these trannys last? already heard there not good off road but i dont plan on off roading this, one problem is if i keep the ea81t motor and put a manual trans do i need another computer i have one that has ea81t auto trany on it so would a ea81t computer for manual trans or should i be fine with a manual with the computer i have?

#9 silverhelme

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 10:54 AM

[quote name='but back on topic how long do these trannys last? already heard there not good off road but i dont plan on off roading this, one problem is if i keep the ea81t motor and put a manual trans do i need another computer i have one that has ea81t auto trany on it so would a ea81t computer for manual trans or should i be fine with a manual with the computer i have?[/QUOTE']

As I said in the earlier post if they are rebuilt or in good shape to start with, properly maintained and not abused they can last a long time. I have been driving my Brat for almost 15 years and over 100k miles.

I have had 4 as drivers and yes behind non turbo motors they are dogs but none of them failed if used as intended and maintained.

I don't think there is an ECM for a manual ea81 turbo (I'm sure someone will correct me if I'm wrong) but there is only a couple of things the ecm wants to see. One is the kick down solenoid and I think gear selection so it should be easy to wire around.

#10 naru

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 11:25 AM

As I said in the earlier post if they are rebuilt or in good shape to start with, properly maintained and not abused they can last a long time. I have been driving my Brat for almost 15 years and over 100k miles.

I have had 4 as drivers and yes behind non turbo motors they are dogs but none of them failed if used as intended and maintained.

I don't think there is an ECM for a manual ea81 turbo (I'm sure someone will correct me if I'm wrong) but there is only a couple of things the ecm wants to see. One is the kick down solenoid and I think gear selection so it should be easy to wire around.


Your ECM will be fine.
All ea-81t ECMs are for autos.
There is nothing to wire around.ECM does not care what gear you are in or about the kickdown solenoid. It does not even care whether you are in gear or not.

I`m no fan of automatics in general,but, I`ve grown to like the ea-81t/auto combo for stop and go around town driving.
There are definite advantages to having a torque convertor at the stop lights.LOL
Can I have your old trans?

#11 carfreak85

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 04:26 PM

Stop. Do not touch another bolt on that car until you have done some research. I am more that happy to help you if you run into any problems since I have done this swap before, but all the questions you've posted here are in the forums or the USRM.

Do your due diligance, and come back after you have read everything on this topic. Twice. Then read them all again.

Also, please check your spelling and grammer. It makes it easier to read and once you're out of school, you'll have no excuse when somone flames you for it. Holes, not "wholes".

#12 turbosubarubrat

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 06:09 PM

Also, please check your spelling and grammer. It makes it easier to read and once you're out of school, you'll have no excuse when somone flames you for it. Holes, not "wholes".


that is not that bad of a mistake considering when you type fast your going to make typo's, and also they upped the standers at my high on almost everything including all the classes and especially state test. which makes you have to work harder to get good grades even though you don't use half the stuff they teach you in life besides reading, writing, math, and science(and some geography for maps, and computers) which should be the only things i need to learn about to be able to go into automotive field because all i want to do is go into auto-body or become a gas or diesel mechanic. they wasted a ton of money on the high school i got to to build it was $110 million if you want to see pictures type in new sandy high school sandy oregon.

and for saying stop what im doing. there is a reason why i ask questions and why i ask people for advise on things for example i ask my dad, another guy with a brat i know in sandy, and a friend down the street that has been in auto-body and automotive for years and his son is a diesel mechanic for semi's, and there is a guy down the road from my house who does custom diffs(makes the gears and cases), lifts, and other stuff like making his a ford ranger propane running on 3/4ton suspenssion or his sammeri running on diesel.

so am not going to do something stupid

back on Topicmy dad found a lead on ea81t heads at a cylinder head shop:headbang:a guy who works there said they might have a set and wants us to bring in ours to compare

#13 Gloyale

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Posted 14 December 2012 - 11:16 AM

It depends on what you want to do with it.

If you want to keep it stock height, and daily drive it.....and your gonna leave the EA81T in it......then leave the 3AT trans. Espescially if you care at all about the collector value of it. A turbo brat in anything like original condition could be worth few coin if kept stock and in good condition.


If you want to wheel it, get a D/R 5spd. But if your gonna do that, don't waste that EA81t in there.....get a N/A EA81 or put an EJ in it.


If you don't want to "wheel" but would really like a stick....get a S/R five speed from turbo EA82 car.....3.7 ratio, great gas mileage.

Don't bother with the 4spd. They have as many if not more issues than the 3AT.

#14 mikaleda

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Posted 14 December 2012 - 11:38 AM

Stop. Do not touch another bolt on that car until you have done some research. I am more that happy to help you if you run into any problems since I have done this swap before, but all the questions you've posted here are in the forums or the USRM.

Do your due diligance, and come back after you have read everything on this topic. Twice. Then read them all again.

Also, please check your spelling and grammer. It makes it easier to read and once you're out of school, you'll have no excuse when somone flames you for it. Holes, not "wholes".


It sounds to me like he has read into it and just wants advice from people that have done this stuff before. Ease up on him he's just a kid.

#15 Caboobaroo

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Posted 14 December 2012 - 09:05 PM

It depends on what you want to do with it.

If you want to keep it stock height, and daily drive it.....and your gonna leave the EA81T in it......then leave the 3AT trans. Espescially if you care at all about the collector value of it. A turbo brat in anything like original condition could be worth few coin if kept stock and in good condition.


If you want to wheel it, get a D/R 5spd. But if your gonna do that, don't waste that EA81t in there.....get a N/A EA81 or put an EJ in it.


If you don't want to "wheel" but would really like a stick....get a S/R five speed from turbo EA82 car.....3.7 ratio, great gas mileage.

Don't bother with the 4spd. They have as many if not more issues than the 3AT.



This. If you however want to make it more fun on the street and want to swap a manual in there, it can be done and not at all hard. Make sure you match the front and rear diffs (3.7 -3.7, 3.9 - 3.9), get a kit from Jerry if he's still making them, and bolt a 5-speed in there. You will need a shortened driveline if you put a 5-speed in there as well. Only wiring modification I believe that needs to be done, is a jumper wire to bypass the neutral safety switch and you'll plug that into the connector that the shifter plugs into.

The ECM in these cars is very basic and is only there to run the engine. The transmission has no computer and is regulated off of the engine which is controlled by your foot:banana:

It has been awhile since I played with an EA81T. I could be getting some of it mixed up with the manual swap I did in my '87

#16 Turbone

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Posted 14 December 2012 - 09:45 PM

yah didn't think of that, if i did i would open up the diff to see a bunch of teeth missing or all the teeth worn off:-\my dad put a diff off a second gen brat on a first gen brat and when he put it in 4wd it the front and rear wheels where spinning two different ways:banghead:so he flipped it over to the other side so the drain plug was up instead of down and it worked fine same gearing to it was weird,


I dont think this is possible. Whether it was right side up or down, it would still spin the same way (Why he put the vent tube down is beyond me). I had a divorced rear diff in the front of my lifted hatch and it was fine.

Another thing that needs changed with the trans mount is the radius arm rod plates. These are for the rods from the lower A-arm to the body. The plates on the body also bolt to the trans mount and you need plates for a manual trans.



Do you know what a run on sentence is?
If not, your english teacher should be fired.
The easiest way to fix spelling and grammar is to PROOF READ ;)

#17 turbosubarubrat

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Posted 14 December 2012 - 10:49 PM

I dont think this is possible. Whether it was right side up or down, it would still spin the same way (Why he put the vent tube down is beyond me). I had a divorced rear diff in the front of my lifted hatch and it was fine.

Another thing that needs changed with the trans mount is the radius arm rod plates. These are for the rods from the lower A-arm to the body. The plates on the body also bolt to the trans mount and you need plates for a manual trans.



Do you know what a run on sentence is?
If not, your english teacher should be fired.
The easiest way to fix spelling and grammar is to PROOF READ ;)


i'm thinking of just keeping the auto and later on replace it with a 5 speed d/r, but if its bad i will just swap it over but i'm keeping the auto for now to save money. My dad took in the cracked head in to a place today that only does heads and if the guy can fix it it will cost $165 which i am willing to pay. Because it would be a complete rebuild and resurface.




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