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Old 08-11-2009, 09:23 PM   #1
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How long should a manual transmission last?

I know this is sort of a hard question to answer, but whats the average lifetime for the 6 speed transmissions on the 02-03 Maximas?

Do they generally last the life of the car?

It obviously depends on how you drive the car and whatnot, but are syncros considered a "maintenance" item?

I've read the stories about the bad 3rd gear syncros, so I'm wondering if its only a matter of time before my transmission dies on me, because I have the 3rd gear crunch, actually more like the 4th gear crunch.

The reason I ask is that I plan on doing a clutch soon, so I'm trying to decide if I should just get a new transmission now to save money in the long run.
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Old 08-11-2009, 09:36 PM   #2
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02-03 Maximas' 6MTs are one of the weaker Maxima manuals.

From what I've seen/read on the .Org the syncros tend to have issues so if it's causing a problem go and buy the HLSD 6MT from an '04+ Maxima. No known reliability problems and shorter final drive should be more fun.
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Old 08-11-2009, 09:43 PM   #3
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The 02/03 are known for that. You could probably go a really long time like that if you had to.

You could look here http://car-part.com/ for a used 04/06 HLSD tranny. They have better syncros and are a direct swap. You should be able to get one with reasonable miles to your door for well under $1,000.00 and sell yours to a local rebuild shop for a few hundred. If you're going to swap the time to do it would be while you're doing the clutch.
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Old 08-12-2009, 05:45 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MoncefA33 View Post
02-03 Maximas' 6MTs are one of the weaker Maxima manuals.
Wrong. They're actually the strongest. The only think weak about them is their 3rd gear synchros, but the result is more of an annoyance than anything. I haven't heard of someone busting one of these 6 speeds due to worn synchros... My transmission has had a bad 3rd gear synchro for about 30k miles and all I have to do is double clutch if I downshift into third. Not a big deal.
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Old 08-12-2009, 09:08 AM   #5
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Wrong. They're actually the strongest. The only think weak about them is their 3rd gear synchros, but the result is more of an annoyance than anything. I haven't heard of someone busting one of these 6 speeds due to worn synchros... My transmission has had a bad 3rd gear synchro for about 30k miles and all I have to do is double clutch if I downshift into third. Not a big deal.
Interesting. Would it be possible/cheaper to have my transmission guy replace the syncros with 04-06 ones?
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Old 08-12-2009, 09:55 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Unklejoe View Post
Interesting. Would it be possible/cheaper to have my transmission guy replace the syncros with 04-06 ones?
That's a good question. It seems unreasonable to replace the entire transmission for a poorly designed component... but I base that mechanical opinion on nothing what-so-ever.

I really hate my 3rd gear crunch. I get it in the winter, before the engine warms all the way up. And about 90% of the time if I wind out 2nd gear.

It's that last scenario that makes me sad. Redline is where all the fun is.
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Old 08-12-2009, 02:20 PM   #7
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I actually have more of a 4th gear crunch. My 3rd gear is relatively smooth.

I don't know if what I'm feeling is really a crunch, its like it clicks 2 times when I slide it into 4th.

Ill try to research some more and see if I can put syncros from an 04-06 transmission in there.

If anyone knows definitively, please let me know if this will work.
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Old 08-13-2009, 06:19 PM   #8
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2000 maxima 5speed here at 104k miles, no problems. but i dont drive it like a rental either.
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Old 08-13-2009, 06:21 PM   #9
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98K on my car...hard driving...shifts are as smooth as when i bought it with 25K...actually smoother...but thats the STS and bushings...
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Old 08-13-2009, 07:18 PM   #10
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98K on my car...hard driving...shifts are as smooth as when i bought it with 25K...actually smoother...but thats the STS and bushings...
That's nice for you.

SoonerFan... you've been around the Org forever. You know the 5.5 gen as well or better as anyone here. Can you weigh in on Unklejoe's question, when he asked -
"Would it be possible/cheaper to have my transmission guy replace the syncros with 04-06 ones?"
In other words, can the infamous "crunch" be repaired, or do you have to upgrade to the 6th Gen manual tranny?
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Old 08-13-2009, 07:37 PM   #11
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but i dont drive it like a rental either.
If you drive it right it lasts forever, in other words don't drive it like a rental.
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Old 08-13-2009, 09:52 PM   #12
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Quote:
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That's nice for you.

SoonerFan... you've been around the Org forever. You know the 5.5 gen as well or better as anyone here. Can you weigh in on Unklejoe's question, when he asked -
"Would it be possible/cheaper to have my transmission guy replace the syncros with 04-06 ones?"
In other words, can the infamous "crunch" be repaired, or do you have to upgrade to the 6th Gen manual tranny?
Anything can be fixed. I do remember something about the 04/06 syncros not fitting though.

The point of swapping is that you can get one with less miles and upgrade to HLSD which most of the cars in the U.S.A. didn't come with.

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If you drive it right it lasts forever, in other words don't drive it like a rental.
Not true at all. This is a flawed design in the 02/03 and prone to failure. Not on every car but a very high percent compared to other cars. This problem isn't because of abuse.
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Old 08-13-2009, 11:37 PM   #13
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My car already has the HLSD, this is why I'm interested in swapping syncros.

Thanks for all the responses guys, just trying to get a grasp on how wide-spread this problem is.

I remember seeing a thread about the 3rd gear crunch, but it seems that people only post in threads like that if they actually have the problem, so its nice to hear from some people who don't actually have the crunch.
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Old 08-14-2009, 01:51 AM   #14
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for the record, they do fall apart with proper maintenance. My 1st tranny started to whine in all gears, it was very loud, gears 1, 2 and 3 sounded like reverse, most of the bearings were toast, the synchros were toast. I didn't drive it like a grandma, but it lasted about 180K km.
My 06 tranny that i swapped into the car last year already spun a bearing so it is being replaced in a few weeks...
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Old 08-14-2009, 01:51 AM
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