FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

                                       GENERAL QUESTIONS

Question:

What is meant by Left Hand (LH) and Right Hand (RH) rotation?

An engine that is turning counter-clockwise from the rear, the top of the flywheel turns to 

the left, is called a Left Hand engine.  It is also called automobile or standard rotation. 
An engine that turns clockwise from the rear, the top of the flywheel turns to the right, is 

called a Right Hand (RH) engine.  This is also called marine rotation or counter rotation.

Question:

My transmission fluid smells burnt or is discolored.  Should I have the transmission replaced?

Answer:

We have found that in every case where the fluid smells burnt or is at all discolored the 

clutch plates have slipped and are worn or even warped out of shape.  There is no way short 

of replacing these plates or replacing the whole transmission, that this condition does not 

lead to total clutch failure in a short time.  The clutch pack will continue to slip and generate 

heat leading in the end to the plates welding themselves together.  Also, pieces may be lost 

off the plates that damage the other parts of the transmission.
Question:.

My transmission fluid looks like milkshake, what happened?
Answer:

Water leaking into the transmission via the cooler makes it look like either strawberry 

milkshake if ATF is used, or vanilla milkshake if oil is used.  Just draining the transmission

and refilling it will not remove all the water no matter how many times you do it!   Some water will always remain in the clutch cylinders and low spots in the case. As quickly 

as possible have the transmission disassembled and cleaned ASAP.  If it cannot be serviced 

quickly then drain the old fluid and refill as full as possible with ATF, motor oil,

kerosene, diesel fuel or paint thinner to prevent rust till service can be obtained.   

Question:

Why can't I use an automatic car transmission in my boat?

Answer:

All the push developed by the propeller is applied to the output bearing of the marine 

transmission.  It is designed to handle this force.  A car or truck transmission is not designed 

to have any push applied to the output bearing.   Even if you install a load bearing between 

the car transmission and the prop shaft I've been told that an automatic transmission will go 

up through the gears then start to shift back and forth between the gears.  If using auto 

transmissions was a viable option then I'm sure boat builders would have gone to them long 

ago as they were cheaper than boat transmissions!

Question:

How about using a stick shift auto transmission?

Consider the linkage required both for the clutch and the shift.  Such an arrangement would be difficult on anything larger than a ski boat.

Question:

Why is the replacement of the fluid cooler required by the warranty?
Every time the engine is stopped the cooler flow stops and any particles in the fluid settle

out. Some particles clump together and are not picked up when the fluid starts to move again.  Because of baffles built into almost all fluid coolers total clean out is almost 

impossible.  Leftover particles in the cooler can break loose and go through the transmission.  

Also, over time corrosion and scale can build up on the inside of the cooler and reduce heat transfer. 
  

                     FAQ's ABOUT VELVET DRIVE TRANSMISSIONS
Question:

Is it true that you can run Borg-Warner/Velvet Drive marine transmissions with either LH 

or RH engines?
Answer:

Some models will operate with either LH or RH engines if the pump is set to match the 

engine rotation.  Some models are made to only operate with LH engines.  See the Rotation Guide page for a list of models that will and will not work with both rotations.
Question: 

How can I make my Velvet Drive transmission reverse its output rotation in forward?
Answer:

You can't on models 71C, 72C, 1017, 1018, 1013, 1014, 1004 & 1005. The reason is that, 

except for certain other models specifically designed to reverse the output rotation in forward, 

the reverse gear is not made to handle speed higher than idle RPM.  Reversal or non-reversal 

of rotation between input and output is due to the internal layout of the gear reduction 

section and it is not changeable without changing the reverse pinion carrier and/or all the 

reduction gearing.  This option is usually more expensive than replacing the transmission. 

See the Rotation Guide page or call us for specific rotation information.

Question:

I have a sailboat, will it hurt my Velvet Drive transmission to free-wheel when I am under sail?

Answer:

Free-wheeling is not recommended. All Velvet Drive / Borg-Warner Marine transmissions 

require the engine to be running to deliver lubrication to the various bearing and gears.