Hello, everyone! I've had an account here for a couple of years, and I've enjoyed following the discussions. Thank you for the informative reading.
Now I'm stuck - and it's my own fault. But I'm hoping for some constructive suggestions.
I'm restoring a '59 Mack H653LT with a Triplex transmission. The truck hadn't run for five years or so, when I bought it, in September 2015. I got it running during the Spring of 2017 - that's a story in itself. But it runs great. I've been able to drive it short distances, though I soon determined that the 5-speed was stuck in 2nd, and the 3-speed was stuck in Direct.
Everything was so caked with grease and dirt I couldn't see much, but that clued me that the time had come for some serious clean-up. Got the chassis and underside of cab stripped clean by a friend with "dustless blasting" equipment, this past September. Painted all exposed metal with flat black chassis primer, and moved on.
Both shift levers were badly worn - slotted hole for pivot augured out, pivot pin necked down. A friend tidied them up by TIG-welding replacement metal into the holes and then milling them back to original slot dimensions on his Bridgeport. He even furnished a pair of hardened pins - a complete success. But that's when I discovered that the mechanisms actuated by the shift levers were bound up, due to rust and dirt-packed grease, external to the gearboxes themselves. I got the 5-speed section cleaned up and working smoothly, and then tackled the 3-speed (For anyone not familiar with the geography, that's the portion at the right-hand side in the "TriPlex" photo.)
Based on my experience with the 5-speed, I imagined that the actuator shafts were bound up. These enter the 3-speed at its "lower-left corner" in the photo. After talking with an actual mechanic (not a "hobbyist" like myself) I got up the courage to remove the top cover - simple as pie. No problem. You can see it upside down on my bench, in the "TopCover" photo.
Over a weekend, I dosed the shafts a bunch of times with penetrating oil ("Aero Kroil") and finally they began to free-up. In fact, things were going so well, before I knew it, I'd managed to pull one of the shafts nearly all the way out of the housing! I wanted to inspect it - and also the "detent" mechanism, which seemed way too stiff (Worn out?). And this is where I made the mistake that put me in my "Quandry" - As I attempted to remove the shaft from the case, I inadvertently rotated it to the point where the detent mechanism (ball-and-spring?) found its way into the milled slot near the end of the shaft. (You can see it, if you zoom in on the upper right-hand corner of the "TopCover" photo).
Now the shaft is trapped! I can move it in or out about an inch - until I hit the end of the slot. I can rotate the shaft either direction - until the flat side of the slot runs up against the "ball" - or whatever it is.
Can someone give me the number of the nearest "Triplexes-R-Us" so I can pick up another set of parts? Oh .... No? That's what I thought!
So my "Quandry": The parts I have are irreplaceable! I don't want to risk damaging anything - but I do want to continue making progress.
What should I do?
Thanks in advance!
-Doug- (The Draggin thing is a nickname from another life!)