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Old 07-13-2015, 11:35 PM   #1
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What type transmission fluid?

I'm doing my final check before heading out to Ilwacco on Friday. I have a 1978 Californian with 354 Perkins. Upon checking tranny fluid, I see that starboard engine.could use some to bring level up to full. Tranny is a Borg warner. I didn't find model #. I figured it would be just as eAsy to get a consensus here. I'm assuming standard ATF?

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Old 07-13-2015, 11:46 PM   #2
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According to our 1973 BW Velvet Drive manual the recommended fluid is ATF. We use Dexron. The transmissions can also be run on Ford Mercon or any SAE10 hydraulic fluid that meets Allison C-3 or Cat T0-2 specs. The manual does caution against mixing different types of ATF.

The manual states the transmissions can also be run on engine lube oil (Delo 400 30 wt in our case) if necessary. However, the manual states that the transmission(s) should be changed back to ATF at the first possible opportunity.

I would assume it would be pretty easy to tell what's currently in your transmissions from what's on the dipsticks when you pull them. If the fluid is redish it's ATF. If it's brown/gold it's engine lube oil. ATF also has a different smell than lube oil.

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Old 07-13-2015, 11:52 PM   #3
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I would think that if there is ATF in there now, it will be a red color. You might call Harbor Marine in Everett, and ask for there transmission rebuild shop. They could probably help you.
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Old 07-14-2015, 12:04 AM   #4
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Perhaps it is time to drain and refill the transmissions?
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Old 07-14-2015, 12:20 AM   #5
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I run Dexron ATF in my 1977 BW Velvet Drives.
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Old 07-14-2015, 06:27 AM   #6
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Here is a copy of the manual. It says you can use Dextron III, Ford Mercon, Daimler-Benz 236.6, or any SAE 10 Hydralic oil that meets Alison C3 specifications. We use Dextron III. I would not mix anything. If you are unsure what is in it, I would drain it andrefill so you know what you have.
"Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect." Mark Twain
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Old 07-14-2015, 01:32 PM   #7
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Good luck Sam. Heading up around the horn for the San Juans?
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Old 07-14-2015, 03:12 PM   #8
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Our 1989 BW manual calls for 30#.
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Old 07-14-2015, 03:37 PM   #9
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In the Library, there is the Velvet Drive Borg Warner Installation Manual. Page 11 addresses what fluids to use.

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