Sunday, March 9, 2008

Tech Tip- Automatic Transmission "Lock"

Automatic Transmission "Lock"

I am pleased to pass on this interesting tip concerning the 1955 through 1957 Ford Thunderbird Automatic Transmission. With much thanks to Bert Eisenhour, Dan Mrozek, Ken Smizinski, Bill Neff and the other knowledgeable Bird-owners present at the last club meeting, I was educated as to a little known safety measure Little Bird owners take to "lock" their car's gear shift lever into the "Park" position. By "locking" the gear shift lever into "Park", the car's transmission is rendered inoperable, thus the car is unmovable. A gear shift lever that refuses to go into "Drive" would discourage most car thieves, at least those not familiar with the 1955-57 Thunderbird. The best part about this safety measure is that you don't have to buy anything. Your car already comes equipped with the locking device. Like myself, most of us just need to be educated as to how we can lock our transmission.

The procedure is very simple. First park your car in the desired location. Place the gear shift lever into "Park". Turn off your engine. Now, while remaining seated in your Thunderbird, turn the knob of your gear shift lever counter-clockwise until the push button in the center of the gear shift knob will not release your transmission out of the "Park" position. Do not unscrew your knob higher than your button. To do so would risk the removal of your gear shift knob from the gear shift. To "unlock" your transmission, simply turn your gear shift lever clockwise until snug on the lever. This procedure, though simple, may save your car. I hope you find this "tech tip" useful.

source: CTCC Tech-Tip Manual 1993-1997

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