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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm planning to replace the clutch because of this, but I want to make sure it's a clutch problem first. I'm pretty sure it is, but I know someone here can tell me.

When starting out in 1st gear, I have to go really easy on the clutch because it sort of shakes if I let it out too fast. And sometimes it seems to grab at different places in the pedal travel. Like sometimes it starts to grab just after lifting my foot an inch. But most of the time it starts grabbin at about half-way up. It only seems to shake in 1st gear starting out, none of the other gears. But the grabbing thing does happen in other gears. The car only has 79k miles on it, but it's had some rough stop and go Atlanta traffic over the past 2 years / 40k miles.

So what do you mechanics think? I am very confident about doing the job myself, but I just haven't had enough experience to know for sure if it's the tranny or the clutch for sure. I'm about 98% sure it's the clutch.
 

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I would say that you have a warped flywheel... I just got my red one on the road and it does that as well... i take it you car getting no slipping in the clutch? just the chatter that you describe on take off.. A warped flywheel will cause this... seeing as how you have to drop the tranny anyway.. you might as well put a clutch , pressure plate, throwout bearing, pilot bearing in there and resurface or replace the flywheel... ( now would be a good time to get a lightweight one.. just like you get shaking in the brakes with warped rotors... you get clutch chatter from the warped flywheel.. you will rpobably find that the clutch had plenty of friction material left on it the problem is that you are only getting the clutch to properly seat on the high part of the flywheel... you will be in god shape once you fix this , , , good luck . . . . Chris
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Yeah, that makes sense. And I was planning to do the whole deal, flywheel, bearings and everything. I'd like to get a lightweight flywheel. I'll have to see what prices I can get.
 

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Get the flywheel resurfaced, at least. Talk to the machine shop and see if they can lighten it as well. I had a stock '90 Si flywheel lightened from 19 pounds down to 13 when I had it resurfaced, all for $75 out the door. The flywheel has been on the car for over 26,000 miles now with no problems, so I think it's safe to lighten a stock flywheel that much. I wouldn't go much lower than that, though, for fear of it coming apart!

The thing that strikes me in your description, though, is the different-height clutch engagement. I've encountered that on a few different Hondas (two CRXs, a Civic, and an Integra), and in every case it was one or more of the clutch springs (the ones mounted into the clutch disk) coming loose from their mounting tabs and floating around in the bell housing! Only once did it really sideline me - the Integra had the clutch fail when a spring came loose and lodged between the clutch disk and the flywheel. Look, Ma - no clutch! I limped it home, replaced the clutch, and all was well...

In two of the cases where I had the never-in-the-same-place-twice engagement issue, there was a shuddering when starting off in first, and a little bit of it going into second gear - usually more noticeable when the car was cold.

I'd say a clutch replacement is definitely in your future, and as long as you're in there, resurface the flywheel at the very least.

Mike
 
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