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Transmission cable, only three positions?

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Transmission cable, only three positions?

 
Old 01-14-2019, 09:13 PM
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Default Transmission cable, only three positions?

Took all the cladding around my 1997 A8 transmission shifter to see what is going on in there, looks like the cable has three positions park reverse and D. Somehow mine is stuck in neutral. Anyone know where the common breakage spot is for these tranny cables? I can confirm that is attached to the pass side of the shifter and does move the whole three positions From P to R N and D but led display still says N.. Are the next gears down the line solenoid induced I take it?

Last edited by a8gd; 01-14-2019 at 10:06 PM.
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Old 01-15-2019, 06:09 AM
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I've had mine freeze if I have snowmelt refreeze after I park or if there is a freezing rain. Somehow ice forms under there, but I think it only happens if I am parked nose-up on a slight incline. Just had to warm up the car and wait.
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Old 01-15-2019, 08:13 PM
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On my 97 A8, there's a mechanical lever with a ball (the end of the cable snaps over the ball) on the driver's side of the trans that gets moved through all the 7 positions as the cable is moved by the gear selector inside the cockpit. Have someone move the selector lever inside the cockpit while you watch to see if the lever with ball is being moved. The operator should feel all 7 detents (clicks). There's also the F125 switch on the side of the trans that reads the position of the lever with ball and tells the computer what gear is selected. I wouldn't think your problem is that switch, since you only feel 3 positions (or is it 4, P R N D?) when you should feel 7 (if I understand you correctly.) Did the clamping mechanism at the trans end of the cable sheath, or the U-shaped clip holding the sheath to the selector at the cockpit end come loose? If that happens I imagine the whole cable, not just the inside wire rope, could move, which would make it seem like you're running out of travel on the selector. But if the car is actually in neutral the whole time (does it idle down in R and in D like it should?), it sounds like the cable is not actually moving the lever on the side of the trans or the manual valve inside the trans. If the car does idle down in R and D, but reads N, it could be the F125 switch not sensing the position correctly. You'd probably get a code if that happens.

I don't know where the cables usually break, though the plastic ring at the cockpit end of my cable broke when the manual valve inside the trans (which is moved by the lever with ball) seized up when hot and I kept pushing on the selector handle real hard trying to get it into Park. I bought a used cable and replaced the manual valve that was seizing in place when hot. The thread at https://www.audiworld.com/forums/a8-...2891020/page2/ has more info on that problem, with a lot of other meandering about valve body crack, F125 switch, and blown A drum. Since my cable was intact except for where it hooked to the selector, I was able to drive the car for testing before I had a replacement cable by unhooking the cable completely from the selector, and just pulling or pushing on the cockpit cable end (with the broken ring) to select the gears. I also bought a replacement F125 switch because I opened mine for inspection by drilling out the rivets and I didn't want to mess with reassembling it.

Last edited by hillpc; 01-15-2019 at 08:20 PM.
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Old 01-17-2019, 10:23 PM
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Thanks y'all, my ball since it is a left hand drive is on the passenger side, when I move the handle back the ball goes to a position where it cannot pull anymore cable so straight down parallell to a metal shelf after the three clicks: that's why I was thinking about the solenoids. I'll try and get some pics next time I'm back to it. I spoke to the tow guy again and he is pretty confident that it was stuck in park when he got it and he used a screwdriver to pop some button that has seemingly never been photographed or at least well documented to get it into neutral..
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Old 01-18-2019, 06:20 AM
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Regarding using a screwdriver to release it from Park - there's a solenoid that keeps one from shifting out of park unless the brake is being pushed. It's in the gear selector assembly. Pushing the roughly 3/8" diameter solenoid rod in (back out of the hole in the selector that is being locked by the rod) with something will allow the selector to be moved out of Park. You have to pull the selector lever back out of Park a little bit while holding the rod in (it does look like a button) so it can't pop back into the locking hole.

I had to do this every time I drove the car for a while but the solenoid eventually fixed itself, or, more likely, maybe I had disturbed the wires going to it, and it got reconnected in all the work I was doing.

Last edited by hillpc; 01-18-2019 at 06:22 AM.
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