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Old 12-04-2020, 12:50 AM   #1
Join Date: Dec 2020
Default Newbie here. 1993 940 5.0 T5 (high clutch pedal effort)

Iím new to this site and will probably need a little help in the future. I have a Converse Conversion 1993 940 with a 5.0 5 speed. Itís a great car and performs great. The engine has had several upgrades. (Trickflow heads, intake, cam, roller rockers, ARP studs, MLS head gaskets, etc) Iím installing a new griffin radiator because the one in it now has rubbed the core support and now has a hole in it. The clutch is very very stiff. Almost to the point that itís not fun to drive. Iíve had Mustang mechanics to look at it and they say itís not the clutch disc, throw out bearing or pressure plate issue but seems to be a pedal issue. I have a new cable with adjustment but that doesnít help. It seems like they agree that I need a different pedal setup. Just wondering if anyone has suggestions. Thanks in advance for any pointers.
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Old 12-04-2020, 03:21 PM   #2
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YEah go hydraulic instead of cable clutch.
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Old 12-07-2020, 04:16 AM   #3
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... and for what it's worth, that's not necessarily a Volvo pedal problem. A stiff pedal is common for even a bone-stock 5.0 T5 in the Mustang it came in. Power modifications that include stronger clutches create even more leg exercise. And eventually chiropractor bills.

If you don't feel like converting to hydraulic, you could probably fabricate an over-center spring. Check out Audi/VW/BMW to see how they do it. But of course while that decreases your leg pressure, it does nothing to alleviate the stress on the pedal box and firewall. The BMW forums have discussions of trying to beef up stock linkages to withstand it, and weld jobs to repair what hasn't been addressed in time...

Stock cables take a beating, too.
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Old 12-07-2020, 12:53 PM   #4
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Join Date: May 2003
Location: Peoria Illinois

First problem with the clutch is the pedal ratio not matching up to the clutch fork ratio.

You press the pedal X inches, and it pulls Y inches of cable. That ratio is certainly different than the ratio of the Mustang that the transmission came out of.

You could either try to rig something up, or cobble something together. But I'm with sbabbs on this one....go hydraulic. Bit of a PITA, requires some thinking and sourcing of parts. But if executed properly, the end result will be much easier to live with.

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Old 12-12-2020, 10:58 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Toybox View Post
... and for what it's worth, that's not necessarily a Volvo pedal problem. A stiff pedal is common for even a bone-stock 5.0 T5 in the Mustang it came in. Power modifications that include stronger clutches create even more leg exercise. And eventually chiropractor bills.

Go hydraulic.
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Old 12-12-2020, 12:43 PM   #6
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It sounds like a pedal ratio clutch arm ratio issue. Hydraulic system might be the way to go. I have a 1961 MG Midget that had the wrong clutch/slave cylinder diameters, with a H/D pressure plate,It took a lot of pressure to step on the pedal, the clutch disengaged with 1/2 to 3/4" of travel on the pedal, have since corrected it, at the time my left leg got stronger.
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Old 12-12-2020, 01:32 PM   #7
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I used to drive a 7.3 F450 with a 5spd, my knee joint would hurt sitting in traffic. Any clutch that's going to hold V8 torque is going to be a lot stiffer than a 150ft.lb. stock Volvo clutch. I guess I'm saying you need to work out more.
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Old 12-12-2020, 01:40 PM   #8
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Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Portland, OR

Going from my 5.slow 240 to the b230 240, I just about kick a hole in the floorboards the first time I shift.
The 5.0 clutch isn’t too stiff, but it’s definitely not b230 light either.
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Old 12-12-2020, 02:50 PM   #9
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Back in the day (circa 1999-2000) I did the 5.0 swap to my first 740, using Converse's kit. I had a stock 5.0 with stock clutch, and used the cable setup (swapping FROM hydraulic to cable operation in my 16V wagon), since that was what Converse advised. Used the 5.0 cable mated to the Volvo pedal per his instructions.

It worked fine. Maybe a little heavier than a Volvo pedal but not by much. Certainly not enough to object too, and if anything it was lighter than the Mustangs I drove with the same setup. The matchup of the pedal lever ratio to the fork lever ratio was right on, not a problem with the physical compatibility. The Mustang mechanics you talked to are confused on that. I think you're looking at another issue, maybe grease dried up on the release bearing sleeve/fork pivot, or clutch is tired, or someone put in a crappy upgrade clutch. I'd be taking the trans off and just throw a known good new clutch kit at it first, before going crazy with other ideas or breaking something in the pedal box/firewall/pedal/etc from the high effort.

You shouldn't have to reinvent the wheel and change to a hydraulic setup -- no doubt it would be nice, but that is a lot of work compared to just making the cable setup you already have work better, which it can. Converse built a lot of those setups and sold even more, and clutch effort wasn't a common complaint. Some had heavily modified (blown or turbocharged) 5.0's too, so he must have been using heavier clutches sometimes too. A higher capacity clutch for a modified engine doesn't necessarily have to mean insane pedal effort or grabby engagement. The best designed ones add torque capacity without multiplying effort much beyond stock. Look for something from Centerforce, South Bend, Clutchmasters, Clutchnet, or the other respected names for a product that'll perform well but not destroy your leg and firewall, or, if the engine mods aren't too wild and you don't plan to drag race every day, just put in a stock kit, those will work fine for most reasonable situations. The cheap uprated clutch options out there will hold the torque but suck to operate.

The only issue I remember with my 5.0 T5/cable setup was the threaded adjustment on the cable end at the bellhousing would tighten up over time from vibration and I would lose the free pedal. Had to add a jam nut to stop it from doing that.
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