View Full Version : Speaking of 5 speeds...

05-04-2011, 04:20 PM
Many of you have done this conversion, some of you have future plans for one. Some of you have had or will have trouble using the original metal shift cans because they can interfere with getting the car in gear. If that's the case you will need to use the later style "gaiter solution" from post '72 cars. The problem is the metal hold down rings are NLA and haven't been available for a decade or more. The gaiters are still produced however.

I have the pictured part available as an identical replacement in aluminum. It can be polished to a chrome finish, painted or used as is with the grained finish.

Available with or without original pre-drilled holes.


Trevor Jessie
05-04-2011, 04:27 PM
Nice. Here is another product ide: How about making a silicone gaiter that is larger than stock so that the stock "can" may be used (with a larger opening cut in)? Feasible?

05-04-2011, 04:35 PM
I think BillL (pythias) shortened his can and moved it back a bit to get it to work.

I'm sure it took lots of effort but it looks stock.

Trevor Jessie
05-04-2011, 04:40 PM
I shortened my can and moved it. It works, but I think a custom gaiter might look better. Or move the fulcrum of the shift lever to have a short throw shifter.

John Kuzman
05-04-2011, 05:36 PM
I opened up the shifter hole in the can then used the rubber gaiter from a big Healey (BJ7).

05-04-2011, 05:56 PM
I have heard that the rubber gaiter from a MGB works with the standard can. Has anyone tried that? I would assume that the stock can could be opened up some if the lever actually hit.
Scott in CA

05-04-2011, 06:26 PM
Nice. Here is another product ide: How about making a silicone gaiter that is larger than stock so that the stock "can" may be used (with a larger opening cut in)? Feasible?

Feasible and I can do it, just not sure if it can be done at a price that's what people would pay. I'm already expecting from the comments that there won't be big demand for even this nice little item.

Feel free to provide me with feedback and I'll consider it.

05-04-2011, 08:24 PM
I am using the MGB gaiter with my five speed. It was installed very recently and I haven't had much chance to use it. I had thought that just putting it into place the the "steps" in it would keep it in place but it didn't. Today I put a small cable tie around the top of it and so far that is keeping it where it belongs. Time will tell.

05-04-2011, 09:21 PM
I cut (had cut rather, I'm not a metal guy) 1" off the height of the can. (We cut the the bottom inch off then refashioned the trim around the bottom. Then we filled in the top so that there was no hole at all, then moved the hole forward as far as possible cutting it to the size of the big healey rubber ring.... it worked, but the ring was too stiff and kept popping out. Last year I got the rubber from some british car, from the Northwest British Car Parts stall at the swap meet. .. Now it works perfectly, and looks stock unless someone really looks hard. ...

But... before I did all that I used the trim ring from one of the later cars and a generic rubber gaiter, which IS the much simpler solution.

05-04-2011, 10:43 PM
That is a pretty hold-down ring, Gerard. I'm not nearly to that degree of finish yet on Nigel, but I likes it nonetheless. :thumbsup:

05-05-2011, 12:10 AM
I sort of like trevor's idea, looks like the original, but is a larger gasket to take care of the greater shift lever movement. I have couple of cans to donate to the cause of figuring out what works. Maybe we open up the hole offset as mentioned above. All we need is a mold and the silicone is molded at room temperature with a vacuum bell.
Scott in CA

05-05-2011, 01:28 AM
Bill L. could we see a picture of your gaiter?
Then all the world of british car owners could figure out what kind of car it was from, and then Gerard could buy up the world's supply for our 5-speed conversions. We could have a send in and return program to have the cover modified. It could be an option on the 5-speed kits....the possibilities are endless....OK Scott it is time for bed now...back to your room.
Scott in CA

05-05-2011, 11:55 AM
Interesting discussion. On my '69 Sprite, I started out using the standard can with a standard puck-style gaiter. Since I had Rivergate do the modification to my shift lever, it 'almost' worked. I was able to use a new, pliable gaiter puck and didn't really have any pop-out issues. However, once the puck started drying up, issues started with popping out of 3rd/5th due to pressure on the shift lever by the gaiter.

I recently went out and bought an MGB shift lever for about $6 and put that in by just stuffing the base of the gaiter inside the can. The top of the gaiter is nice and tight near the top of the shifter, underneath the knob. Upon driving, I no longer have any issue with binding constraints or clearance issues that might cause pop-out. (at least so far.)