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Old 11-24-2013, 07:34 PM   #1
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1982 31' Airstream 310
champaign , Illinois
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My odd gear shift location

Granted i am fairly new to the world of AS motorhomes, but in all the pictures ive seen of other 1882/83 310 turbo diesels, i have never seen one with the same gear shift placement as mine. Mine is located on the left of the drivers seat in the same panel as the overhead spotlight controls. It looks just like one that would be in a center console of a car except without a "P" position for park. All others ive seen in pictures have the gear shift in the conventional position attached to the right hand side of the steering column but not mine! Whats up with that?! Does anyone know what this is all about? It doesnt look like a custom retrofit, it looks very much like it came fm the factory like this. Could someone fill me in on what the heck i have going on here? Ill try and get some pics up tomorrow morning, im really curious as to what this is all about. Thanks all. Im not having any problems with it just wondering what set up i have. Thanks again.
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Old 11-24-2013, 08:40 PM   #2
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Mine's in the same place as yours.
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Old 11-24-2013, 08:52 PM   #3
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Like this. Must be a Diesel thing.
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Old 11-24-2013, 10:43 PM   #4
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Mine's in exactly the same spot on a 1990 325 with the Cummins/Allison power train. I always figured it had something to do with that particular engine or transmission, or both. Don't forget to set the Parking Brake!!
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Old 11-25-2013, 03:59 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Heirstream View Post
Like this. Must be a Diesel thing.
I am curious about some of the other things on your dash-
There is something that appears to be a graphic EQ/booster, a Banks engine monitor, a indoor/outdoor thermometer, a CB, 2 chrome handles that look like the choke or vent on an old car, a toggle switch, and I don't know what all..
Can you elaborate?
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Old 11-25-2013, 04:59 AM   #6
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That is where the gearshift lever would be for an Allison transmission.
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Old 11-25-2013, 05:40 AM   #7
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thanks so much for the quick reply folks. i was wondering if it was indeed an indication of the allison tranny. now.......is this a good thing? ive read that the allison was an option on these units, is it an upgrade over the chevy 475. is it a heavier duty tranny? other than the obvious when it comes to service, are there things i should know about this tranny from an operational stand point? did i luck out by obtaining this unit with the allison or is it just another quirk? your opinion?
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Old 11-25-2013, 11:08 AM   #8
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Allison trannys are considered the best by many. Jim
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Old 11-25-2013, 01:51 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by m.hony View Post
I am curious about some of the other things on your dash-
There is something that appears to be a graphic EQ/booster, a Banks engine monitor, a indoor/outdoor thermometer, a CB, 2 chrome handles that look like the choke or vent on an old car, a toggle switch, and I don't know what all..
Can you elaborate?
That's not my unit. It's just a picture I took off of one for sale in the classifides.
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Old 11-25-2013, 01:59 PM   #10
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1985 34.5' Airstream 345
Centennial , Colorado
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Quote:
Originally Posted by m.hony View Post
I am curious about some of the other things on your dash-
There is something that appears to be a graphic EQ/booster, a Banks engine monitor, a indoor/outdoor thermometer, a CB, 2 chrome handles that look like the choke or vent on an old car, a toggle switch, and I don't know what all..
Can you elaborate?
But since you asked. The EQ came as part of the upgraded Sony sound system. The indoor/outdoor thermometer looks like an add on. On mine, I have one chrome handle that kills the diesel engine. The chrome button is the glow plug activator. The toggle is the generator on/off. Yes these came with a CB. I haven't tried mine yet. I've only had the unit for about a month. I've got much bigger issues!
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Old 11-25-2013, 05:53 PM   #11
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Allison trans

The left handed gear selector is indeed the mark of an Allison AT545 transmission. A $6,000 option at the time! It is a four speed while the standard Turbo-hydramatic was just three. It is considered almost bullet proof if cared for properly. You can look it up on the Allison website.
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Old 11-26-2013, 04:15 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mayco View Post
thanks so much for the quick reply folks. i was wondering if it was indeed an indication of the allison tranny. now.......is this a good thing? ive read that the allison was an option on these units, is it an upgrade over the chevy 475. is it a heavier duty tranny? other than the obvious when it comes to service, are there things i should know about this tranny from an operational stand point? did i luck out by obtaining this unit with the allison or is it just another quirk? your opinion?
From what my mechanic told me ( I am engine inept) The allison transmission diesel combination is the best. School buses used to run the cummins/allison transmission transmission because they could handle the use and abuse of the high mileage and constant shifting as the bus stops and starts constantly taking on or discharging kids on it's route.
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Old 11-26-2013, 05:46 AM   #13
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Well.......thats certainly a nice bit of knowledge. Thanks so much for the info folks, this journey would be awfully lonely without the support of of the people willing to share thier knowledhe on this forum!
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Old 11-26-2013, 06:23 AM   #14
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Some Allison transmissions have a spin-on filter for the transmission fluid. If yours has one, it would be a good idea to replace it before driving it a whole lot.
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Old 11-26-2013, 08:14 AM   #15
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indeed it does, i will be replacing it.
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Old 11-27-2013, 07:09 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by overlander63 View Post
Some Allison transmissions have a spin-on filter for the transmission fluid. If yours has one, it would be a good idea to replace it before driving it a whole lot.
In my humble opinion, I would change all your fluids and filters to get a base line. Then check often and you will be able to quickly tell how it was cared for. It is a small price to pay to ensure everything is good.
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Old 11-28-2013, 07:43 AM   #17
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No doubt there. Ive changed all fluids except for the tranny and rear end. Those will be done sometime soon. I could not believe the condition of the brake fluid, it was so dirty and full of crud. So i had the shop flush both the brake fluid and the power steering. Just got my new master cylinder delivered yesterday so that will go on in the next few days. Slowly but surely making my way thru. She runs great and am looking forward to next spring when we plan to get her out on some adventures.
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