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General E46 Forum
This is the place to get answers, opinions and everything you need related to your E46 (sedan, coupe, convertible and wagon) BMW!

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Old 01-16-2013, 04:41 PM   #21
E RaK
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Happens a bunch with brand new Subaru's at work too.. like previous posters said, I usually go into second and then first.
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Old 01-16-2013, 05:16 PM   #22
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I haven't ever had this issue.

I thought you could access detent pins with trans up...but in any case, it sounds like something in the shifter might be off a bit...and I know there are parts that are not infrequently replaced...look at the 'shifter' diys.

Also, I'd ask if any of you with this issue might have happened to do any mods to your car? Things like the 'clutch stop' or 'cdv delete' anything like that? If so, start by removing the clutch stop.

Not being able to get into first while on the road can be an issue...so I hope none of you reading this think that's common and thus 'okay.' I hope it's something simple...hope it's fluid or a clutch stop...but that's not good.

To be safe, I think you should replace the entire transmission and clutch.
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Old 01-16-2013, 05:23 PM   #23
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The fix is simple. Swap in an automatic. End of that issue.
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Old 01-16-2013, 05:26 PM   #24
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Like others have said it's something with how the synchros are aligned.

I too put it in 2nd and then shift smoothly into 1st, I guess that action aligns the synchros properly
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Old 01-16-2013, 05:48 PM   #25
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I've heard the first gear locking you out could also be from a hydraulic line issue, where the fluid runs around a piston but doesn't leak out, just passes up the system. Also, the slop to the far right of your shifter is supposed to be from the fifth gear lockout pin being made of a different material than where it slides, so eventually it begins to stick and no longer makes it hard to go into 5th.

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Old 01-16-2013, 05:48 PM   #26
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I bet many of you are not depressing the clutch pedal all the way to the floor before throwing it in gear. My tranny used to do the same thing when i didn't clutch all the way to the bottom and it was very frustrating not being able to get in gear. If you have a silly aftermarket clutch stop remove it as it reduces pedal travel.
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Old 01-16-2013, 06:56 PM   #27
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I had the issue some time ago. It wouldn't go into first or with great difficulty, but only when it was cold - outside and in the tranny. They replaced the clutch at about 45,000 miles. Since I wouldn't imagine they'd have to drain the tranny for this, it's probably old fluid and now, at almost 100,000, it should be replaced, right?
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Old 01-16-2013, 06:59 PM   #28
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Originally Posted by e46alfonso View Post
I bet many of you are not depressing the clutch pedal all the way to the floor before throwing it in gear. My tranny used to do the same thing when i didn't clutch all the way to the bottom and it was very frustrating not being able to get in gear. If you have a silly aftermarket clutch stop remove it as it reduces pedal travel.
I don't have a clutch stop. It always happens, always has. I think its a pretty common problem. I absolutely press the clutch in enough.

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Old 01-17-2013, 12:37 PM   #29
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I have a VERY MILD clutch stop, and I have the same issue going into first at a stop (However it only happens the FIRST time I depress the clutch. If I depress the clutch, try for 1st, it will almost ALWAYS snag. If I keep the clutch depressed and try again, it normally slides in.

BUT I ALSO have this snagging issue shifting from 1st to 2nd under acceleration. It makes it so I can't shift very fast into second. I have to kind of EASE it in, and wait for it to (possibly synchro?) before it will pop into 2nd. (Going to try replacing with OEM clutch stop and possibly change tranny fluid to redline).
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Old 01-17-2013, 02:44 PM   #30
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the fix is simple. Swap in an automatic. End of that issue.
lol, NO
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Old 01-18-2013, 11:38 AM   #31
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Switched out the "short-throw" clutch stop, went back to stock. Can honestly say i think it helped about 5-10%. Not much. Still snagging.
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Old 01-18-2013, 11:47 AM   #32
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We all have this problem.
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Old 01-18-2013, 11:53 AM   #33
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I'm wondering if doing all of the detent bushings/pins in the trans would fix the difficulties going into 1st/2nd gear. I plan on replacing them all when I do my clutch next year using this kit:
http://www.fcpeuro.com/products/bmw-...mw-zfdetentkit

The hard part will be finding/making the tools to get this done.
Nope that's for the shifter returning to center fix.

if its happening often then i would suggest bleeding or getting a clutch job.

Otherwise its normal.

Calling this a "problem" is like saying sometimes your thumb hits the steering wheel when making a turn or sometimes your coat gets jammed between the door when you close the door. its just something that happens. the extremely rare times this happens to me i shift to 2nd then back to 1st or i let the car roll a bit while shifting into first then you *feel* the shifter click in smoothly as the gear teeth/syncros or whatever align indicating this is a rotational/position thing internal to the transmission.
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Old 01-18-2013, 12:25 PM   #34
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I have the problem too with my current e46 as well as previous e46. I think I had this problem with Acura Integra I had looooong time ago too.
I changed tranny fluid and it helps but the problem persists and I think all manual cars does this.
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Old 01-18-2013, 12:57 PM   #35
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1. Double clutch.
2. Fresh fluid.
3. Use fluid that works well in cold weather (Redline D4).
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Old 01-18-2013, 01:08 PM   #36
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double clutch always works for me
i am a double clutch fan

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Old 01-18-2013, 01:35 PM   #37
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Simple Driver effort to tranny equation...
M3: Stick > Auto
All NA NON-M3: Auto > Stick
<200 HP cars: Auto > Stick
Supercars: Paddle
<150HP: Take the bus
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Old 01-18-2013, 02:08 PM   #38
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Simple Driver effort to tranny equation...
M3: Stick > Auto
All NA NON-M3: Auto > Stick
<200 HP cars: Auto > Stick
Supercars: Paddle
<150HP: Take the bus
I'd personally prefer a manual in a less powerful car than a more powerful one...
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Old 01-18-2013, 02:28 PM   #39
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I'd personally prefer a manual in a less powerful car than a more powerful one...
yep. that's why the new M5 is in DCT form. yet they still made stick for the fanboys. apparently stick in a very powerflu car just makes things awkward and somewhat sloppy (not to mention downright slower)

of course we're talking about modern dual clutch transmissions and not traditional slushboxes
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Old 01-18-2013, 02:44 PM   #40
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last time i inquired about this, i was told it could be the clutch master cylinder leaking internally.
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