Ford Focus Forum, Ford Focus ST Forum, Ford Focus RS Forum - View Single Post - "How To" - Cutting the Stock shifter
View Single Post
Old 02-18-2004, 06:30 PM   #1
FF #1 Most Wanted
microtonal's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2003
Fan#: 470
Location: Seattle, WA
What I Drive: 2012 GTI, 2014 Forester XT

Posts: 6,890
FF Reputation: 12 microtonal Great Standing Member
Buy-Sell-Trade Rating: (7)
Cutting the Stock shifter

Cutting the Stock Shifter

I done this mod a while ago and just wanted to pass it on for those on a budget.
About $20-30 and some labor.
Makes your stock shifter shorter and makes the throw somewhat shorter but not much.

**You will loose your Reverse lockout mechanism if you do this mod.**

Time to complete task:
1 hour

Required tools:
12mm X 1.25 Cutting die - you can get this at Sears for $5. This will re-thread your shifter.
1-inch die Tool - the Cutting die fits inside and is used to get even leveage on the cutting die. So when you start threading the shifter, you can easily thread it. $5-10 at HW store.
Hacksaw - $5-10 at any HW store. Or try Walmart, Target, etc.
Ruler - $1
Phillips head Screwdriver
Black marker pen(sharpie)
8 inch zip tie
3 - Plastic bags
Wire cutter/dykes
10mm socket and rachet-(My 2003 ZX3 had a 10mm bolt for the rear mount of the console)

Twist off stock shifter knob.

Remove the console. There should be two screws under the cup holders and one under the rear cup holder. The one in the rear was a bolt on my 2003 ZX3.
There might be a zip tie holding the top of the shift boot to the shifter.
If you can, cut it with the dykes/wire cutters to remove the shift boot from the shifter.
Remove or cut the Reverse lock-out mechanism as needed to remove it.
I have a 2003 ZX3 and had to cut it off.

*At this point, the console should be removed with the shifter assembly exposed.*

Measure the total thread length. Meaning. Measure from the top of the shifter to where the threads ends on the shifter. This is your reference to how much you will need to re-thread.
Make a note of this measurement.

Poke a small hole in the middle of one of the plastic bags and place it over the shifter, all the way down to the base.
This will be used to catch the metal that will be flaking off when you start threading the shifter. Use another bag if you want for extra protection.

Measure from the top of the shifter down about 2 inches. Or less. Or more. It's up to you.
Use the pen to mark where you want to cut it.

Screw the Cutting Die on the shifter until you can't go any further.
Put the Die Tool on the Cutting die and start threading down past about an inch below the pen marking. Make sure the cutting die is below the pen mark. Repeat Step 5 if need.

Remove the Die tool but leave the cutting die in place.

Take the hacksaw and cut away. Just go slow and be patient. Don't rush it.

After you've cut the shifter off with the hacksaw, put the Die Tool back on the Cutting die.

Now thread the die until you have the same length as measured and noted in step 3.

Once you've got it threaded to the proper length, twist the die off so you can remove it.
Use the Die tool if need. It should come off pretty easy. The top will be the hardest point since that's where you cut the shifter.

Remove the plastic bag carefully, not to spill any metal flakes.

Put the console back on. Use the zip tie to put the shifter boot on snug but not too tight.
The zip tie should lace inside the top of the shift boot.

Screw the shift knob on.

You're done.

Cutting die and tool

microtonal is offline  
    Reply With Quote