Project Pieces and Parts - Shift Linkage
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by: Terry L. Howe
Fabricating the shift linkage bracket and tunnel cover was an entire weekend
of careful cutting, bending, welding, and drilling. The work was worth it,
I got the clean look I wanted and I maximized floor space. The key to the
success of the project was borrowing a small brake from my neighbor.
To avoid shifting problems caused by frame and tub flex, I wanted all the
shift linkage attached to the transmission. I purchased a relatively
inexpensive Daytona floor shifter for my Turbo 350. It wasn't gated at
all except for park, but it looks good and allows quick shifts. I fabricated
a bracket that attaches to the top hole in the transmission and one
of the holes on transmission to transfer case adapter. I also used the
bracket to attach the shift lever for the Warn Over Drive.
The tunnel cover was complicated because I was using two fuel tanks, one
in the stock location under the drivers seat and one extra one under the
passenger seat. I wanted a tunnel cover that was removable, but I didn't
want to remove the gas tanks to get it all off. I ended up bending five
pieces of metal, two under the tanks and three outside of the tanks. I
welded seams from the back side to give them a clean look.
The transmission shifter came with its own shift boot that worked well.
When I bought the Scout Dana 18 transfer case, I grabbed the shift boot
with it. The Scout 80s and some of the Scout 800s use a real nice twin
stick shift boot. I had another one of these shift boots that I cut in
half to use as a shift boot for the Warn overdrive. The over drive and
transfer case levers required some minor bending to clear the gas tanks
The Transfer case shift linkage is kind of intrusive on the passenger
side floor, but with some bending of the shift levers, they are pretty
much out of the way. The passenger side still has more floor room than
the drivers side. A coat of Durabak on top of the tunnel cover gives it
a nice finish.
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