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Lost 5th gear


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I have a 79 5 speed and it is hard to shift into 2nd gear and also it would come out of 5th gear if you let off the accelerator. I was driving down the highway and the shifter was in 5th gear but the engine would just free rev like the clutch was disengaged. All the other gears are still the same and it doesnt grind or anything, what could be the problem and is it still OK to drive on?? Any help would be appreciated. Thanks

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Have you had the tranny apart recently?

If yes, something in the synchros for 5th gear is not right.

If no, then something in the synchro for 5th gear is broken and not right.

I've had something similar happen to a Ford tranny I rebuilt a few years ago. There are round spring like wires that help hold the detent pins and synchros together in the tranny. If these wires get loose, they can let the detent pins shift. Once that happens, the gear will not be able to go into gear or it won't stay in gear.

You need to have the tranny pulled and opened up. This will be the only way to fix this problem. If the car is not your daily driver, I suggest trying it yourself. Manual trannies are very easy to work on, you just need a large enough space to lay things out and a little patience. This way, you'll know how to fix things if/when it breaks again.

Btw, the Haynes manual has a pretty section on manual trannies. Get one.

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