SHORT SHIFT LEVER IMPLEMENTATION
I have the Fiero parts book P22, and tryed to identify the shift lever
alone, so I could buy one and shorten it, but I could not find a breakdown
of the shift assembly. I had to buy the whole thing. So I went to a junk
yard and found a shifter off an earlier year. I have an 86GT-4 speed. I
have also come to know that ANY manual shift lever WILL work on ANY year
Fiero. Keith Peterson on the net has brought that info to me, as he has put
his 84-4 speed shift lever on his 88-5 speed Formula. If you are looking to
find one to shorten, I have found that the earlier years with the two 90
degree bends worked great. I cut the straight shaft section with the knob
threads, to the maximum length possible, just after the bend, so there is a
semi-circular tip to it. (is this clear?) Then I ground away the two weld
beads at the main base to remove the L-shaped leftover section of shaft.
Then I had the knob shaft welded in the grove, that the original section was
The end result was GREAT. Not only is the shift action more responsive, but
the knob is NOW centered over the center console, making the radio more easy
to get to. The way is was before, the shift knob was always in the way of
reaching the radio, while I was in certain gears. The only issues the short
shifter raises is...
For me, the new location of the shift knob has actually improved my comfort.
I am 5'-10" with longer than typical arms.
- You must have well lubricated and adjusted shift cables to minimize the
difficult shift action, typically experienced by manual trans Fieros,
especially the 4-speeds. Consider the leverage the long shafted lever
provides. Be prepared to occasionally perform this maintenance.
- If you have short arms, the short shifter will be more difficult to
reach, being an additional 2 to 3 inches away.
The vinyl boot gets a little wrinkled with the relocated and shorter shaft,
but I think it looks fine.
I have not tryed shortening a long shaft with the less angled bends, but it
might work OK too. I now have a 2nd GT that I want to shorten the shifter,
but I want to keep my originals in tact, so I'm looking again or another junk
yard one, which is not a problem.
From: Ron Dittmer
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