I didn't really notice a very strong odor from the original fluid. I still have it so I'll go smell it tomorrow to be sure. The fluid was an amber color and seemed very clean but darker than syrup. The Mercon SP smells a lot like plain old gear oil to me.
I didn't take pictures. This was the most stressful DIY I've ever done simply because of the space constraints. I ended up aligning the sleeve by hand, and then putting a socket that fit perfectly into the sleeve to the plug's depth. Then, I pushed it in with some gentle taps. No chance of pin contact because it was a 12 point socket that was pretty thin walled so it was only touching on the outer portion of the sleeve and wouldn't have touched the pins.
I filled the transmission until it was overflowing cold. Then, I started the car, turned off DTC, put on the parking brake, and shifted manually through all gears and reverse many times before leaving it in D. Once I figured the trans was up to temp, I pulled the fill plug out and started pumping the fluid in. What came out when it started to over flow was warm, probably 80 degrees so I know that at least the trans wasn't cold. It took almost six quarts. Keep in mind, my trans had been leaking so I'd like to think it's possible that I would need to add a little more than someone who was just changing the fluid. I suppose it's possible that it's slightly over filled but I couldn't imagine that it would be under filled, not with adding about 5.8 quarts total. Do you think a tad too much fluid (a couple of ounces, maybe three) could cause the trans to slip?
Perhaps I should warm it up on the road and then jack it up and check the level again. It might come running out. When I put the fill plug back in, it probably would have drained just a touch more if I would have let it but I don't think the fill hose I was using would have prevented the fluid from spilling out when it was supposed to (causing an excessive over fill).