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Old 10-06-2013, 12:56 PM   #1
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2nd Gear Grinding

Hey everyone, I've lately been experiencing some grinding when engaging 2nd gear. It doesn't happen every time, usually on cold starts, and usually all the gears become a little less smooth to shift into. I'll notice that the gear doesn't slot all the way into 2nd, and when I let off the clutch that's when the grind will begin.

I'm not sure if these are bad syncros or maybe transmission mounts? I'm hoping the issue is fixable because not only is it annoying to not have 2nd gear sometimes, but I'm sure I'm loosing teeth on 2nd gear the more it happens. What should I check for?

EDIT: Forgot to mention, I drive a 2001 S with a 6 speed manual. Has about 70k miles right now and I drive mostly in town.


Last edited by Lordblood; 10-06-2013 at 01:04 PM.
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Old 10-06-2013, 01:44 PM   #2
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You need this:
2ND GEAR POP-OUT UPGRADE-GBOX Transmission
At 142,000 miles I had to hold the shifter to keep the car in 2nd. Rebuild was pricey.
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Old 10-06-2013, 01:53 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Lordblood View Post
Hey everyone, I've lately been experiencing some grinding when engaging 2nd gear. It doesn't happen every time, usually on cold starts, and usually all the gears become a little less smooth to shift into. I'll notice that the gear doesn't slot all the way into 2nd, and when I let off the clutch that's when the grind will begin.

I'm not sure if these are bad syncros or maybe transmission mounts? I'm hoping the issue is fixable because not only is it annoying to not have 2nd gear sometimes, but I'm sure I'm loosing teeth on 2nd gear the more it happens. What should I check for?

EDIT: Forgot to mention, I drive a 2001 S with a 6 speed manual. Has about 70k miles right now and I drive mostly in town.
What gear oil is in it?
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Old 10-06-2013, 03:41 PM   #4
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What gear oil is in it?
What do you recommend? My local dealer is selling out quarts of Porsce gear lube at $15 per bottle.
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Old 10-06-2013, 04:14 PM   #5
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The OEM product is the only one we will use, too many problems with cold shifting, noise, etc. with aftermarket brands.
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Old 10-06-2013, 04:47 PM   #6
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I'm actually not sure which gear oil it is. I'm the 2nd owner of the car and I'm not sure if the transmission fluid was ever changed, I got at the car at 48k... That pop out mod seems like a good way to go, however I have not had any pop outs yet in 2nd gear, it's just hard to engage when I shift into it.

Another interesting thing to note is that shifting and clutch operation becomes much smoother after I accelerate hard up the rev band. Once that happens the gearbox feels brand new, and the 2nd gear grind also goes away.

Last edited by Lordblood; 10-06-2013 at 04:49 PM.
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Old 10-06-2013, 05:52 PM   #7
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Change the gear oil to fresh OEM. It'll eat he save you a bundle or you'll be out an extra $50.
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Old 10-06-2013, 07:44 PM   #8
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What do you recommend? My local dealer is selling out quarts of Porsce gear lube at $15 per bottle.

You should jump on that deal. I just shelled out $42 a liter for 3 liters, and that was with my PCA discount.

The shifter action wasn't that bad before, especially after installing the 987 shifter, but it is noticeably better now with the fresh oil.

I have 133k km on the car, and I suspect this was the original gear oil I changed
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Old 10-06-2013, 08:18 PM   #9
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Mine did exactly the same thing.
It could be one of two things either it's the syncros or you're about to lose a 2nd gear tooth which is exactly what happened to mine.
You will have to buy a new gear box.
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Old 10-06-2013, 09:16 PM   #10
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One major issue with my car before I bought it ( 2000 S, 130k miles), was the owner before the PO had basically destroyed 2nd gear.
Car would not go into 2nd or stay at all from what i understand.

Transmission was rebuilt with new syncros, and a new clutch. All gears work flawlessly now.
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Old 10-07-2013, 02:27 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by j.fro View Post
You need this:
2ND GEAR POP-OUT UPGRADE-GBOX Transmission
At 142,000 miles I had to hold the shifter to keep the car in 2nd. Rebuild was pricey.
+1 for the Gbox fix. I just had this installed in August and the second gear engagement is more definite. I had 2 incidents of the tranny popping out of second gear in the first couple months I owned the car. First 500kms after the upgrade and no issues. Service from Gbox was prompt and courteous as well.
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Old 10-07-2013, 03:41 PM   #12
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+1 from me as well.
The GBox detent is a really worthwhile improvement.
That and OEM fluid. Nice and smooth, no more crunchy shifts when cold.
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Old 10-07-2013, 04:40 PM   #13
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Have you ever tried double clutching...after shifting out of first, stop in neutral, clutch it then go into second. If it goes in smoothly your disc my not be disengaging all the way, grinds still, 2nd gear synco going bad. Start off in 2nd and see if this works for you. My TIP always starts off in second, first gear is ver low...like a 4 wheeler.
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Old 10-07-2013, 07:32 PM   #14
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Try this. An instant before you shift to second, take three fingers and pull back on the stick very lightly, push the clutch in and without changing the pressure on the stick, it should move to near neutral, hesitate for a moment and then cleanly go to second. Go very lightly.
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Old 10-08-2013, 04:15 AM   #15
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Not to sound like a broken record, but the above recommendations are all spot on. I had your exact problem several years ago, ended up pulling the transmission and sending it to Gbox for a full rebuild. My advice as others;

-Change transmission fluid with Porsche OEM, pretty easy job.
-Gbox 2nd Gear Fix / insert.

If those 2 attempts don't produce results you may try altering your shifting as others have suggested. If still unhappy it may be a good time to pull tranny and deal with the IMS and put in a new clutch like I eventually did, Good Luck.......

My write-up from a few years back:

IMS, RMS, Tranny R & R Tips - 986 Series (Boxster, Boxster S) - RennTech.org Forums
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Old 10-08-2013, 05:46 AM   #16
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2nd Gear shifting troubles

Another + 1 on the GBox Fix.. Installed the detent about 2 years ago with a mechanic buddy of mine.. Easy installation, instant fix. Put my mind at ease...

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Old 10-10-2013, 06:36 PM   #17
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I'll probably start with a fluid flush since I am getting crunchy shifts in all gears in general...After that the insert might be a good investment. I have tried double clutching and it does not fix the problem.
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Old 10-10-2013, 07:14 PM   #18
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I'll probably start with a fluid flush since I am getting crunchy shifts in all gears in general...
If you are getting crunchy shifts in every gear, you may want to try bleeding the slave cylinder first...

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Old 10-11-2013, 04:00 PM   #19
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I've had this problem and for some reason I believe that this is temperature driven problem . When the temp is over 180 it is less likely that the problem will happen and the other thing that has been mentioned is shifting at higher revs( forcefully) and the second gear goes in with no problem. I don't remember when this problem surfaced but the dealer ran away from it by blaming on the engine temperature. I blame porsche since I don't believe it should happen at all.
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Old 10-11-2013, 07:10 PM   #20
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Hi Lordblood, long time no see.

Grinding when going into second sounds like worn synchros.

I would:
Drain the gear oil through a screen and have a look with a bright light. If it is reasonably clean, replace the fluid with OEM and also replace the clutch hydraulic fluid. Maybe you got lucky.

If the screen looks like shiny grenade fragments and lots of metal, fluids alone won't work. At this point you can get a quality rebuild done for about $4K, or find a clean used trans at a dismantler for about $1400.

Good luck!

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