I have been racking my brains over this very odd issue. Here is the problem. I recently got this car (95 Honda Del Sol Si 5 spd 160k miles) as a second car. The previous owner claimed that the clutch had been changed fairly recently but I foolishly allowed their superficially nice personality to sway me and didn't demand paperwork. Unfortunately the car seems to have the following problem:
- When the car is started cold, the idle stays high (1500 rpm) for a bit - I believe this is normal.
- What is odd is that while the idle of the car remains > 1000 rpm, I am unable to shift the car to any gear while holding the clutch down. The gear lever just won't go into any gear. Trying to put it into reverse grinds so horribly that I stop quickly.
- Once the idle is <= 1000 rpm, the car is able to shift reasonably ok.
What I have done so far:
- Bled the clutch and verified that the master and slave cylinders aren't leaking on the outside. The clutch fluid I got out was nasty as heck (brown, black). This appeared to make no difference to the above behavior.
- Changed the transmission oil. No difference in behavior as well and the oil that came out of there was pretty brown.
- Adjusted the clutch freeplay. Original freeplay was over an inch (close to 2 IMO) and I was able to bring it to barely under an inch though I don't have much more adjustment left before I run out of threads.
Any ideas please? Is this transmission shot or is there a less expensive explanation/fix? EDITS: updated list of done tasks and moved history/context to the top paragraph.