Cheap Bastard fix for clutch switch - RX7Club.com - Mazda RX7 Forum

Cheap Bastard fix for clutch switch

 

 
 
 
Old 01-01-06, 03:13 PM
  #1  
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Talking Cheap Bastard fix for clutch switch

My friend Kory ("kory_yahi" on the forum) recently bought a 93 R1. He brought it by one day to show me his new ride. Its a pretty nice car . Black on black. All stock except for a nice RB catback. He let me take it for a short drive. While we were out, I noticed that the clutch engaged a bit high, and that the idle was around 1200, and wasn't smooth.

A few days later, I invited him over to see about fixing the clutch & idle. I started by adjusting the clutch pedal. It had virtually no play in it. I used a 12mm wrench to loosen the lock nut, and adjusted it properly. After tightening it down , I checked out the clutch switch. When depressing the clutch pedal, the white "button" didn't come out. It's supposed to pop out when you depress the clutch. I unbolted it with a 17mm wrench, and took it out of the car. I told Kory that it was bad, and that it was not an expensive part to replace. Maybe around $20?? Then I remembered that I am a "Cheap Bastard", and I decided to try and fix it. I couldn't get the button to come out, so I decided to take apart the switch. There are 4 metal tabs on the bottom of the switch. I carefully bent them up with a pliers, being careful not to break them. Once the tabs were bent, the plastic slid right out, and all of the parts became accessible. What was once a functioning spring, was now a rusted, broken pile of little coils. No wonder it didn't work. After a few minutes of looking in my "spare parts" (nuts, bolts, etc.) drawer, I didn't find a spring. Hmmmmmmmm ...... now what?? And there it was. A simple ball point pen. Just sitting there on my work bench. Nah. That can't work. That would be too lucky. I opened up the pen, and took out the spring. Sure enough, it fit perfectly . I reassembled the clutch switch, and installed it.

Kory started the car, and the idle was now as smooth as can be. A quick adjustment of the air adjustment screw, and the idle was now perfect.

Sometimes even a "Cheap Bastard" gets lucky
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Old 01-01-06, 04:29 PM
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This thread should be stickied! "How to re-man your clutch switch" :P . Thanks again adam .
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Old 01-01-06, 04:32 PM
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Haha. Nothin wrong with a cheap fix. Who would have known the potential fixing power a ball point pen could hold?
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Old 01-01-06, 06:51 PM
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post pics and get mahjik to sticky =)
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Old 01-01-06, 07:24 PM
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LOL sticky? come on fellas, cheap fixes are great and all but i dont think it should be the standard for fixing problems. dont get me wrong, adam c's fix is sweet. with all the noobs lately they may get the wrong idea. well...its not like they read stickies anyway
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Old 01-01-06, 07:31 PM
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Hahahaha good thinking adam
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Old 01-01-06, 07:59 PM
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Haha I did the exact same thing to fix mine.
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Old 01-01-06, 08:09 PM
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LOL, That's awesome. Reminds me when I had a short in my engine wire harness, and I went out and bought a 200ft roll of speaker wire and made a homemade wire harness. True Story!



.
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Old 01-01-06, 11:23 PM
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you forgot to indicate what pen it was, the most important part

all pen springs are NOT created equal, I've taken them apart for fix a flowmeter before (not automotive related)
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Old 01-01-06, 11:56 PM
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Old 01-02-06, 03:25 AM
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It's been 7 odd months now since I fixed mine this way (see linked thread with pics) and it's still working perfectly

I can't see why anybody would buy a new clutch switch because the spring failed, when it's so easy to put a new spring in it. Now if the contacts were dodgy, and couldnt be cleaned/fixed, then that's another story.......

Nice work Adam
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Old 01-02-06, 02:55 PM
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I guess its hard to be the first one to do anything on a 12 year old car
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Old 01-02-06, 05:19 PM
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lol ^
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Old 01-02-06, 06:23 PM
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Sorry to rain on your parade. I'm sure there are plenty more ways to be an original "cheap bastard." I recently had this problem too, that's how I found the thread that I linked.
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Old 11-03-06, 08:16 PM
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I recently had an idle issue where it would bounce from 500-800rpm in idle while in gear. Well, turns out the spring inside the clutch switch was broken in three pieces, not allowing the plunger to make contact with contacts. Well, a dead pen and 10mins later, the problem was solved.
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Old 01-13-07, 12:31 PM
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Dear Mods,

This fix is deserving of a sticky or at least a spot under FAQ and other useful links.

Fast and easy r&r of a ballpoint pen spring, an efficient use of time. No phone calls to order or waiting on part.

17mm wrench to remove, needle nose and flathead to open tabs, standard ball point pen spring, channel locks to squeeze tabs back down. then back under the dash noting how many threads forward and back of the nuts (5 forward, 3 back, anybody had different #'s?).

My car was stalling on cold start idle when letting the clutch out, PFC indicated no clutch when depressed, I had about 1/4" of plunger on the clutch switch showing instead of a 1/2" which wasn't enough travel outward to activate the switch.

Most of the threads regarding this fix seem to be about stalling when coming to stop and depressing clutch. My symptom was getting a load on startup, having to double clutch or let the clutch out slowly, often I would stall and the ensuing startup would be a backfire, thoughts of breaking apex seals concerned me.

It took more time for me to post this than to do the repair. I'm going to let the Power FC relearn idle. Thanks Adam C you Cheap Bastard!

Last edited by danny hahn; 01-13-07 at 12:47 PM.
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Old 01-13-07, 01:26 PM
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Old 01-13-07, 02:29 PM
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I love it! Exactly the fix I would do! I now have the other clutch switch (interlock) going out....we'll see if it works there.
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Old 06-10-08, 03:50 AM
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your not cheap, you just use whats at hand.. now if you used duct tape to fix stuff then yoru cheap, but you actaully took time to take things apart and see if you can fix it, big thumbs up.
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Old 06-10-08, 09:41 AM
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This thread is over two years old.
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Old 06-10-08, 12:09 PM
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I'm surprised nobody brought up the MacGyver episode in which he fixed the throttle cable spring on an old truck with a spring from a ball point pen.

Oh and. . .. ZOMBIE THREAD!!!!
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Old 06-10-08, 03:57 PM
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Now selling clutch switch reman parts!!
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Old 06-10-08, 07:45 PM
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Great, nothing like pure innovation from off-the-shelf parts. Saves money, I'll remember this thread if my clutch switch ever does go south.

Many thanks for the idea!
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Old 06-10-08, 10:05 PM
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In these troubled times it's good to know there are cheap bastard fixes and cheap bastards willing to do them.
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Old 06-11-08, 02:58 AM
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I found this thread over a year ago and did the fix, still going strong!
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