View Full Version : Shortened my Shift lever

05-25-2007, 08:08 PM
Looking at the overdrive I will get in the TR6, ( one of these days) I got to thinking and of course it hurt, but why don't I shorten the shift lever and make the throw shorter. I taped off where I thought was a good place and tried to shift on the one in the six now and found I was a bit over enthusiastic and getting into reverse was a problem. After trying a few different lengths the cut was made at 2 inches below the flat area where the turned bit that holds the gear shift knob. I found that it's much easier to hold in a vise if you have a rubber golf shaft holder.
Now for the tech stuff, the thread for the gear shift knob is 5/16 and 18 threads per inch. I got a 2 inch #8 grade bolt from Lowe’s (not cheap) of the same size. The tap drill is 17/64 and that is the only way, do not try to use a ¼ inch. I pre drilled with an 1/8 drill down about ¾ of and inch just to get everything centered down the shaft. Drill with the 17/64 to a depth of 1 and ¼ inch and this will allow you to tap with the 5/16 18 for a usable 15/16 to 1 inch, as taps are pointed it’s hard to get any more usable depth. I screwed the bolt in very snugly with locktite and cut the head off very carefully, giving about a 1 inch thread just like the original.
This will give you a little over a 1 inch shorted throw, which doesn’t sound like much, but it sure feels snappy. You can go shorter but I don’t recommend it, because the shifter is bent, it appears to be a 2 for 1 deal.

Best of British Luck.


05-25-2007, 08:47 PM
You can also use a bottom tap to get more thread depth, if needed.

05-25-2007, 10:24 PM
Wayne- Why don't you make us all one. We'll send you the shifters.

05-26-2007, 07:23 AM
Thanks Wayne. I've been wanting to do the same thing, but my plan was to have the shaft turned down and male threaded for the knob. However, your idea of drilling and tapping the bolt into the shaft has some real merits that I have to consider, not the least of which is that it can be done in car without pulling the shifter. That is, if you're a good aim with the drill.

05-26-2007, 08:05 AM
To make it all easier, just get a TR3 shift lever; they're short and straight and are a bolt on replacement. But the knob is a different thread, 7/16-32 UNF I think so you'll have to change that too.

Geo Hahn
05-26-2007, 10:46 AM
Wouldn't TR3 shifter send your knuckles crunching into the dash support (it would on a TR4). That's why they had to bend the later shifter.

Too bad cause the '3 shifter is lovely... like flicking a big toggle switch.

05-26-2007, 12:27 PM
Can the 3 shifter be bent if it is that nice???

05-26-2007, 01:20 PM
I have a TR6 OD gearbox with a TR3 lever in my TR3. It is hollow so I topped it with a Stag OD switched knob, ran the wires through it and mounted it with a nut inside the knob. It works for me -- does not hit the dash (I don't remember if I shortened the lever, but the knob isn't tall like the original TR3).

05-26-2007, 01:23 PM
Oops. Of course a TR3 lever won't hit the dash in a TR3 car! Sorry -- I don't read so well in my old age.