A few days ago I overloaded the bed of my truck with firewood and pulled a small tent trailer about 130 miles up to our hunting camp. I had to stay in 4th gear for about 50% of the trip to keep her going at 60-65MPH because it was really bogging down with all that weight. I never let it get past about 2900-3000 RPM though.
When I got up there I realized that I had lost reverse. I thought I might have just overheated the tranny but the next morning after it had cooled all the way I still had no reverse.
It will shift into 1st-5th fine, although I did have some trouble finding 4th about 1/2 way through my trip. But after it cooled down at a gas station it was fine for the rest of the trip.
When I try to shift into reverse it feels like I can't quite pull the stick down far enough to get it all the way into gear. Sometimes it feels like I didn't hit the gears at all (like I'm still in the neutral spot between 5th and reverse). Sometimes it feels like it only clicked 1/2 way into gear and I can feel the transmission grinding when I try to let the clutch out.
I'm hoping that it has something to do with the shifter and I don't need to have the tranny rebuilt. But I don't know where to look first.
It's a 99 Dakota 4X4 with the 5.2 and 5 speed manual.
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Well I got the oil changed. The oil was about the color of coffee. I'm sure it needed to be changed. But it didn't really help anything. After changing it and driving a bit I did get it to move backwards about 6" before popping out of gear and then it wouldn't go back into gear, so I'm pretty much where I started with this.
If it's a shift fork or a bearing I'm assuming I'll have to have a shop work on it. Is that something I can easily do myself without any transmission work experience?
Could it be the shift tower or something like that?