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Replacing my ZF 45iv transmission/V-drive


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My ZF45 iv transmission/V-drive unit went out on my 2014 Axis A24.  The local dealer was going to replace it but couldn't get one here before my Lake Powell trip, so I am now just going to do it myself since I have plenty of time.  I have one ordered and on the way.  I labeled and disconnected most of the electrical connections and the transmission shift linkage last night.  I pulled the rear seat, but left the metal frame in place that runs over the engine dividers and across the back seat.  It looks like there is plenty of space to pull the transmission even with the frame left in place.  I have an engine hoist in place directly above the engine compartment in my shop.  My plan is to chain up the engine and put just enough tension on it that I can unbolt the transmission mounts without the engine rotating forward, and then unbolt the trans and pull it forward, up, and out.  I have never done this before so I am looking for advice from anyone who has done it- any reason my plan shouldn't work?  I unbolted the driveshaft already also.  How many bolts are there that bolt the trans to the bell housing?  I'm assuming the bell housing and damper plate can be left in place?  The damper plate was just replaced by the dealer, btw.  Long story, but I was going to have them do the transmission at the same time but they couldn't get it here in time so we took a chance and I had them put it back together hoping that the trans was fine and all I really needed was the damper plate.  Turns out the trans was indeed bad, hence the reason it currently has a new damper plate but bad trans.

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Your plan will work fine. I used some wood blocks under the engine to support it while I yanked out the trans. I was able to lift the trans and v-drive as one unit, by myself.

  • If I recall correctly, some of the trans mounts are a PITA to get to and remove. I think I removed them from the stringers, rather than to just remove the trans from the mounts.
  • Don't remember how many bolts to the bell housing. Yes, leave the bell housing and damper plate in place.
  • You'll need to remove the transmission fluid cooler lines too.
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Thanks.  I am at work so I can't check right now, but in looking at that bell housing online I am now guessing that the transmission bolts to the bell housing with the bolts coming from the inside of the bell housing?  Which would mean I am going to need to remove the bell housing from the engine in order to access the bolt heads to unbolt the trans from the bell housing.  Still doesn't look too hard though.

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3 hours ago, atropine said:

My ZF45 iv transmission/V-drive unit went out on my 2014 Axis A24.  The local dealer was going to replace it but couldn't get one here before my Lake Powell trip, so I am now just going to do it myself since I have plenty of time.  I have one ordered and on the way.  I labeled and disconnected most of the electrical connections and the transmission shift linkage last night.  I pulled the rear seat, but left the metal frame in place that runs over the engine dividers and across the back seat.  It looks like there is plenty of space to pull the transmission even with the frame left in place.  I have an engine hoist in place directly above the engine compartment in my shop.  My plan is to chain up the engine and put just enough tension on it that I can unbolt the transmission mounts without the engine rotating forward, and then unbolt the trans and pull it forward, up, and out.  I have never done this before so I am looking for advice from anyone who has done it- any reason my plan shouldn't work?  I unbolted the driveshaft already also.  How many bolts are there that bolt the trans to the bell housing?  I'm assuming the bell housing and damper plate can be left in place?  The damper plate was just replaced by the dealer, btw.  Long story, but I was going to have them do the transmission at the same time but they couldn't get it here in time so we took a chance and I had them put it back together hoping that the trans was fine and all I really needed was the damper plate.  Turns out the trans was indeed bad, hence the reason it currently has a new damper plate but bad trans.

how many hours, ive heard of a 16 pcm a24 drivetrain losing a vdrive but never heard of the old 14 Indmar hurst set up losing one.  i have same as you so very curious 

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538 hours.  Marine Power LS3 engine, ZF 45 iv trans/v-drive unit with a 1.5 gear ratio.  Worked flawlessly up to the day it didn't, although I had noticed it was just a tiny bit "stiff" going into gear the last few days before it just stopped spinning the driveshaft. 

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