[Healeys] Overdrive

Michael Salter michaelsalter at gmail.com
Wed Jun 28 15:14:32 MDT 2017

Hi Fred,
If you are trying to determine if there is voltage being applied to the
solenoid you are best to connect a wire to the solenoid side of the gear
lever switch near the bottom of the gear lever then connect a test light
between that wire and ground.That will give you a positive indication that
the solenoid is or is not being powered.

However there are other easier checks that will help you.

With the ignition on but the engine not running turn on the overdrive and,
without touching the throttle you should hear the solenoid click in and out
as you move the gear lever back and forth across the gate i.e. left to
If you hear that noise then the overdrive gearlever switch is working okay.

Now, again with the ignition on but the engine not running put the
gearlever in 4th gear and apply about 1/2 throttle. Now turn the overdrive
switch on and off, on and off and you should hear the solenoid clacking in
and out  each time you operate the switch.
If you get that result, with the throttle depressed then the overdrive
throttle switch is working.

You should  get one clack noise when you turn the overdrive switch on *with
the throttle closed* and no noise when you turn the overdrive switch off
and then on again.

An overdrive can reputedly stay in overdrive for some time after the
solenoid power is disconnected *if *the bleed off port in the operating
valve is blocked but I have never actually encountered that fault.

I suspect that you will find that the overdrive is staying in as a result
of the solenoid is still being powered because once the hydraulic pressure
is removed from the operating pistons, which is what happens when you
de-energize the solenoid, there 8 pretty strong springs that move the
overdrive out of operation.

Michael S

On Wed, Jun 28, 2017 at 12:46 PM, Fred Wescoe <fredwescoe at gmail.com> wrote:

> List,
> Having just had the transmission and overdrive rebuilt, I am gun shy.  I
> have never had a problem previously with an overdrive disengaging when it
> is switched off and I moved the shifter thru neutral and into 2nd.  But,
> apparently that was the case before I purchased the car and I did not
> realize it.  The overdrive appeared to work properly but in fact, it was
> not releasing when it was turned off and that caused the problem.  I am
> thinking about adding a warning light that indicates the overdrive is still
> engaged even if the switch is off and I'm trying to figure out how to
> accomplish this.
> I believe that a light in the power line with solenoid simply means that
> the solenoid is off but not that the overdrive is disengaged.  The same is
> true with all of the other switches.
> What is the wisdom of the list on how best to do this.  How can a warning
> light be installed properly?
> Thanks,
> Fred
> 66 BJ8
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*Nothing is impossible with the correct attitude and a hammer.*
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