Shifting problem

I just recently purchased a 2005 Focus ZX4. It has a little over 16000 miles. My main problem is, at times, the gear shifts from 1st to neutral. It is very
sporadic. It might happen 3 or 4 times in one day, and then not at all for a few days. The shift always occurs right after a complete stop, right as I press on the acceleration. This complete stop must be accompanied by a shift to 1st. It never happens after a complete stop in which I was already in 1st (ex. traffic congestion).
I have taken it to a dealership, but I was told that they can't attempt to fix it until they can recreate the problem. Like I said, this can be a problem because of its sporadic nature. I would appreciate any thoughts or suggestions.
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It were my vehicle, at 16,000 miles I would take it to a dealership and have the problem analyzed and corrected under the warranty before I did more damage, but that's just me ;)
mike

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I had a similar problem with my 2002 Focus that would only happen after the transmission got warm. I took it to the local independent transmission shop and had them do a flush. They said this would sometimes free a sticky valve. After 2 weeks, I still had the problem. This shop wanted $2300 to replace the transmission. They seemed to think that total replacement was the answer. So I took the Focus to a Ford dealership and had them drive it in stop and go traffic for 20 minutes to get the transmission warm and they recreated the problem. Turned out to be a failing valve on the transmission which was fixed without removing the transmission. Cost me around $500.
Maybe a transmission flush could fix your problem. If not, you'll have to be able to figure out how to recreate the problem before taking it to someone.
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