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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We have seen stock transmissions start to have an issue at stock power levels with long term driving on them, let alone at higher power levels then stock. So we have come up with the ultimate upgrade to the stock 5 speed transmission. This T56 conversion swaps in a 6 speed T56 transmission from a Pontiac GTO with a LS2 V8 into the Pontiac Solstice or Saturn Sky.

This conversion can be completed on either an automatic car to convert it to a manual, or as a straight upgrade from the stock 5 speed. Also available as an option is to have your stock driveshaft modified, or a new lightweight aluminum driveshaft for the conversion. The base kit includes the following parts -

New GM Clutch Master Cylinder
New GM Clutch Slave Cylinder
New GM Pilot bearing
Slave Cylinder spacer
New GM flywheel bolts
New DDMworks lightweight flywheel
New DDMworks Clutch kit
New DDMworks custom bellhousing adapter
New VSS plug
New backup swithc
New T56 shifter adapter
New T56 shift ball
New DDMworks Custom T56 backbone 1/2" thick
All new associated hardware needed for install

This is everything needed to convert your car from the stock 5 speed to the much stronger T56 6 speed transmission found on our V8 swaps into the Solstice/Sky. You can choose to source your own transmission from a 2006 or newer Pontiac GTO, or purchase a new one as an option listed above and have everything delivered together. We also offer this as a conversion service here at the shop, please email or contact us for current price of installation.

If converting an automatic car, you will also need a new clutch pedal and brake pedal and a few other components. Please contact us and we can get you the additional parts needed.

The install kit starts at $3150 and goes up from there depending on what options you pick.

Installation is about the same as doing a clutch swap on the car, if converting a manual car, obviously an automatic takes a little bit more with doing the pedals and some other wiring needs to be done.

Link to the product page on our site - T56 Conversion for Solstice/Sky

We have done some of these conversions, here are some pictures from the installs:



This is a picture of the custom backbone that comes with the install kit. It is 1/2" thick and unique for this conversion, although very similar to the one used on the V8 swaps we do.



Picture of the custom bell housing adapter being fit to the engine first, then the transmission gets bolted to it in place

Please let me know if you have any other questions I can answer for you.

Thanks,
Dave
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
$3150+tranny???? Or $3150 includes tranny?
The install kit is $3150 using a modified stock driveshaft, the T56 runs $3400 for a new one by itself.
 

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T-56 question

I know the T-56 is a tried and true tranny from old Mustang mods that I would drool about back when I had one so I know that this mod for Kappas is a BIG thing. What would be the pros & cons to installing a T-56 tranny in a 2.0? Would performance characteristics change or is it more for reliability?
 

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Sweet!

Now a couple questions:
What type of clutch is included in the kit, is it the equivalent of a stage 3,4, or 5 clutch?
Also, if one were to do this then eventually go for a V8 swap, would the only stuff needed be the engine, wiring harness, radiator and hoses, mounts, and ECU? This could be a good way to piece out an eventual V8 swap and split it up over time...
 

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Dave! Wow, interesting my question now is how much weight does this add to the car?
 

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weight and gear ratios are gonna be a big difference. i dont think the little 2.0 or 2.4 is gonna like the big gears and heavier weight of the t56 at low rpms...
 

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Dave! Wow, interesting my question now is how much weight does this add to the car?
I found this info on the net:

From GM website:
Aisin AR-5 rear wheel drive, five-speed manual transmission.
Max Gearbox Torque: N/A
Weight: 107 lbs.dry weight (no bellhousing?)
Applications: Chevrolet Colorado, GMC Canyon, Hummer H3, Pontiac Solstice, Saturn Sky
Gear ratios are 3.75 first 2.26 second 1.51 third 1.00 fourth 0.73 fifth 3.67 reverse


From A Tremec T56 Vendors site:
Tremec T56 6-Speed transmission
700lb-ft torque capacity
Weight: 135 lbs. dry weight (no bellhousing)
Applications: Many
Gear ratios are 2.95 first 2.10 second 1.46 third 1.00 fourth 0.74 fifth 0.50 sixth and 2.90 reverse
(gear ratios for this vendor)

If the specs listed are accurate, the T56 is 28 lbs (dry weight) heavier.
 

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Really cool but I'll do this when my current trans blows up.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Dave! Wow, interesting my question now is how much weight does this add to the car?
These are the weights of actual transmissions we have here in the back -

The stock 5 speed weighs - 118#
The T56 weighs - 128#
The stock auto weighs - 156#

from there it gets a little tricky because we use a lightweight flywheel with the swap, which is lighter then the dual mass setup on the GXP and lighter then the stock 2.4L also. The backbone we are using is heavier then stock, but if you already have a backbone, then there would be no additional weight penalty.

In general on an automatic car you should drop around 30-40 pounds, on a manual car it will be pretty close to a wash if you had a stock flywheel and backbone already.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
weight and gear ratios are gonna be a big difference. i dont think the little 2.0 or 2.4 is gonna like the big gears and heavier weight of the t56 at low rpms...
I am interested in why you would think this. The automatic cars lose weight when switching to the T56 and the cars we have done this to already have so much power that the short first gear in the stock car is worthless. With the T56 they can use first and hold it out longer, same with second gear and also have a really low cruising gear. Here is the comparison of the calculated torque at the wheels between the stock trans and the T56 -

 

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For some reason you lose the ability to shift into 2nd and/ or 3rd; sometimes even 4th. Reverse was a pain, too. I had to have my transmission replaced because it was giving me problems. I did it when I upgraded to DDMs stage 3 clutch and flywheel. I don't know what caused it, but I'm not the only one that experienced the problem.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
What "problems" have you ran into with the stock transmission? The tranny is essentially an R154 which can withstand over 500whp without a problem
Helios covered it pretty good, but the main "problem" we have seen here is with the synchros on the transmission. We have had a lot of them need replacing by customers with Superchargers, Turbos, 2.4L or 2.0L, with stock fluid, aftermarket fluid, doesn't really seem to matter. We have even had them die on completely stock cars. Usually it is the 2nd or 3rd gear that goes out, sometimes 4th. It gets so bad that the customers can not even get it into that gear after awhile.

Hope that helps,
Dave
 

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Helios covered it pretty good, but the main "problem" we have seen here is with the synchros on the transmission. We have had a lot of them need replacing by customers with Superchargers, Turbos, 2.4L or 2.0L, with stock fluid, aftermarket fluid, doesn't really seem to matter. We have even had them die on completely stock cars. Usually it is the 2nd or 3rd gear that goes out, sometimes 4th. It gets so bad that the customers can not even get it into that gear after awhile.

Hope that helps,
Dave
I had a 3rd gear synchro go within the the first 5000 miles on my car due to trying to shift it too fast. After having it fixed under warranty I switched to a thinner Royal Purple transmission fluid and haven't had a problem since.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I had a 3rd gear synchro go within the the first 5000 miles on my car due to trying to shift it too fast. After having it fixed under warranty I switched to a thinner Royal Purple transmission fluid and haven't had a problem since.
We have had the synchros die with Royal purple, mobil 1, amsoil and stock fluid in the transmission, didn't seem to matter. Some of the cars were driven very hard and some were just commuters more or less. Although, this is all based on what the customers have told us and one persons "driven hard" can be another persons "easy driving".
 

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We have had the synchros die with Royal purple, mobil 1, amsoil and stock fluid in the transmission, didn't seem to matter. Some of the cars were driven very hard and some were just commuters more or less. Although, this is all based on what the customers have told us and one persons "driven hard" can be another persons "easy driving".
Spoken from a guy who his "cruise up a mountain" would land most folks in a ditch! :lol:

However good feet-shifting coordination lets the synchros live. On a scale of grandma to Jimmy J, I would say im about a 8 on the harshness scale, and my synchros never had an issue. (i also had the stock clutch, so that could be a factor as well)

IMO a lot of the synchro life is how well your feet and shifting are synchronized.
 
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