Adding overdrive to a 1942 C-8

m_mmanm_mman Posts: 19Member
Hello, I am soon to take delivery of a 42 Commodore 8 sedan. It doesn't have Overdrive but I certainly want to add it.
I am very familiar with basic Borg-Warner OD units so the wiring etc. doesn't phase me. 

But what transmission fits? 41-47 has the "Handi-shift" but is it the same mechanism-linkage as a stepdown? How far up can I go with a transmission? 

Are there any driveshaft issues. On some cars, the non-OD tail shaft is long enough that it matches an OD transmission and a complete swap is easy. Is this true for Husdon?

Are there any clutch issues between straight drive and OD?  I wouldn't think so. 
Thanks. 

Comments

  • allanallan Posts: 224Member
    any single lever overdrive 41 through 51 will fit; the driveshaft will have to be shortened.
  • lostmindlostmind Posts: 1,417Expert Adviser
    Clutch is usually 9"  for non-overdrive , 10" with Overdrive.
    I'm pretty sure 10" could be ordered as an Option.
  • 54coupe54coupe Posts: 793Member
    lostmind said:
    Clutch is usually 9"  for non-overdrive , 10" with Overdrive.
    I'm pretty sure 10" could be ordered as an Option.
    It's an 8 cylinder car, It should have come with a 10" clutch.
  • lostmindlostmind Posts: 1,417Expert Adviser
    54coupe said:
    lostmind said:
    Clutch is usually 9"  for non-overdrive , 10" with Overdrive.
    I'm pretty sure 10" could be ordered as an Option.
    It's an 8 cylinder car, It should have come with a 10" clutch.
    Missed the 8 cyl part. Applies to others wanting to make the change.
    I'm sure there are some running around with 9" and overdrive and doing Ok ,
    for now.
  • m_mmanm_mman Posts: 19Member
    Thanks. So I am guessing the 2 lever transmission started in 52?
  • Jon BJon B Posts: 7,329Administrator
    Then there is the question of the rearend gear ratio.  I'm guessing yours is a 4.11.  Factory overdrive-equipped Hudsons came with a lower ratio (4.50?) but when the car was an eight, it might have been 4.11.  Anyway, if you have 4.11, I would advise sticking with it because your 8-cyl. has the power to handle overdrive without pooping out on hills. I converted my '37 6-cyl. to OD 43 years ago and stuck with the 4.11, and it proved to be acceptable.
  • m_mmanm_mman Posts: 19Member
    Oh yes. An OD lowers the effective ratio by 0.7. So a 4.11 in direct (good for hills & take off) translates to a 2.87 on the highway in OD. and you would not want to go any higher than that.   ;)
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