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Old 04-17-2005, 04:25 PM   #1
Legacy777
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Default Custom 5spd shifter joint bushings

I finally got around to figuring out what I was going to do to replace the stock bushings which add a fair amount of slop.

For a bit of background on the whole shifter slop issues, check out this thread
http://forums.nasioc.com/forums/showthread.php?t=652351

Parts:

4 Nylon flanged bearings - McMaster Carr part # 6294K64
1 Box 3/8" SS button head socket cap screws - McMaster Carr part # 92949A633
1 pack 3/8" hex nut (course threads) - Purchased at Home Depot
1 pack 3/8" flat SS washers - Purchase at Home Depot
1 pack 3/8" flat nylon washer - Purchased at Lowes
1 pack 3/8" x .194" x 1/32" flat nylon washer - Purchased at Lowes
high strength red locktite

Optional: 4 bronze flanged bearings can be substituted for the nylon bearings. McMaster Carr part # 7815K19

Procedure

First thing you need to do is remove the joint from the car. You need to unbolt the bottom shifter support arm, and move it out of the way. Remove the bolt holding the shifter linkage to the joint.

Next you need to remove the spring pins holding the joint to the shifter rod. There are two spring pins, a smaller inner pin, and larger outer pin. I found it easier to get at the spring pins by putting the transmission 5th gear.

There's really no easy way to get at these spring pins. You will need a set of punches....the longer the better. Start be removing the inner/smaller spring pin, and then remove the outer spring pin. Then slide the joint off.

Once you have the joint out, you will need to grind the rivot head off. Grind the small head off, not the big one. Once that is off, the joint will come apart. You will need to drill the smaller hole on the joint cage to 3/8". make sure to file all the burs away after you drill the hole. Clean everything up, put the bearings/bushings in the joint and add the thicker 3/8 nylon washer as a spacer. Slide the socket cap screw through, and tighten down the nut to test fit everything. You want to tighten things enough so there is not too much side-to-side movement, but not too tight that the joint does not move freely. If you need to add/reduce the nylon washers to remove slop, do so with the larger or smaller thickness washers.

Disassemble everything, apply grease to the bearings/bushings, joint & cage, and nylon washer. Reassemble, apply locktite to the threads before you tighten down the nut.

NOTE: The socket cap head must be on the side of the joint that faces the transmission. It should be on the side with the place to hook the centering spring.

Grease the remainging two bearings/bushings and insert them into the joint. Slide the joint back on the shifter rod of the transmission, and reinstall the spring pins. This process can be a pain, because the spring pins do not want to stay put so you can knock them back into place. I ended up fabricating my own custom punches with 1/4" round bar & a grinding wheel. I made the tip of the round bar smaller so that it slid in the center of the spring pin to hold it on the bar. This provided enough support so that the spring pin didn't slide out when I was trying to reinstall it.

I would have been at it a lot longer if I hadn't of made these:
http://www.main.experiencetherave.co...m/DCP_4188.JPG
http://www.main.experiencetherave.co...m/DCP_4192.JPG
http://www.main.experiencetherave.co...m/DCP_4193.JPG

With the joint installed, reconnect the shifter linkage to the joint. I ended up using the smaller thickness nylon washer as a spacer. You'll just need to play around with it and see what works best for your setup.

Reconnect the shifter support arm, and connect the center spring (if equipped).

That's it.

Reviews

I haven't been able to drive the car yet due to it missing a front axle, but once I get the axle back in, I'll give a more thorough review after I've had some time to drive it. However from just sitting in the car and shifting, the feel is definitely more "solid". There's still a little side to side play, due to the tolerances in the bearings/bushings & bolt size, but there's nothing you can really do about that, and it's not too bad.

The only thing I might try differently is to use the bronze bearings. The reason I say that would be due to longevity. I'm not sure how the nylon will hold up. It may hold up fine. I originally chose it due to the fact it would probably not transmit NVH as much as the bronze bearings would.

Here are the pics:
http://www.main.experiencetherave.co...s/jointcustom/

Josh
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Old 04-17-2005, 04:45 PM   #2
tom@kartboy
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cool
one tip
change the nuts to some sort of mechanical lock. they will get loose and fall out
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Old 04-17-2005, 05:00 PM   #3
Legacy777
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Even with the locktite on there? I can add a lock washer or lock nut if that's what you're talking about?
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Old 04-17-2005, 06:51 PM   #4
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My suggestion would be to go with a castlenut and drill a hole in the end of the bolt. That way you can use safety wire or a cotter pin.
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Old 04-20-2005, 12:30 PM   #5
Legacy777
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I finally got my cv axle back in, and took it for a quick drive yesterday evening. I'm happy with the results. The feel is a much firmer feel, and does not have that extra softness the stock bushings had.

One issue/thing I will probably modify is to tighten the bolt/nut that holds the horizontal joint on. I think with use, the pieces have "set" in, and the amount of play has increased compared to when I originally tightened things.

So I will probably remove the joint, drill a hole in the bolt for a castle nut, and then re-tighten everything.

I'll update things when I make that modification.

One other note. I have the spare joint I removed from the car. Once I get things squared away, I will probably modify it, and sell it if anyone is interested.
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Old 05-05-2005, 10:26 PM   #6
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I got the joint off, retightened things, and put a lock washer on. There is still just a little bit of play, 1/32" or less due to the tolerances in the bolt & the nylon bearing. It's possible the bronze bearings would fix that, but I'm not sure. I may order the bronze ones and use them in the spare joint I have.

updated pics
http://www.main.experiencetherave.co...m/DCP_4227.JPG
http://www.main.experiencetherave.co...m/DCP_4228.JPG
http://www.main.experiencetherave.co...m/DCP_4229.JPG

Overall I think this is pretty good custom mod. It could definitely use some refinement. I'm curious to see what cboggess and subieworx come up with, assuming they come up with a solution for the 5spds.

Josh
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Old 06-17-2007, 02:16 AM   #7
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Josh

I am in the process of replacing these on my car too. I am guessing the reason for the above note about the cap side being towards the tranny does indicate a clearance problem like both you and cboggess alluded to in the two threads? Man it would be so simple if you could just reuse the same oem shoulder bolt/nut combo found in the other half of the joint. I wonder if they had reversed the drill order if it would have worked that way(larger opening in the fork on the tranny side instead of the smaller)? Then you would only need clearance for the head of the shoulder bolt.

Its over two years down the road, how are the nylon bushings holding up?

Thanks
ss
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Old 06-18-2007, 12:36 PM   #8
Legacy777
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Hey man....I haven't seen you on here in a while.

I used the cap side nearest the transmission because of possible fitment issues. From the pictures I posted & this one.....I'm pretty sure you wouldn't be able to put the bolt/nut setup I used on the other side
http://www.surrealmirage.com/subaru/...5/DCP_3352.JPG

As for everything holding up.....they feel the same as when I installed them. WOW....it's been that long since I installed them....

Josh
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Old 06-18-2007, 02:34 PM   #9
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Yea Josh been swamped with a lot of things offline, been in and out, but not here as often as Id like.

Did you order the McMaster parts or did you find them at a local hardware?

ss
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Old 06-18-2007, 05:24 PM   #10
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Couple of other things.

Tried to do some investigating today on the potential clearance problem at that riveted joint on the u-joint. If theres a clearance issue I am missing it somehow. I unpinned the fork at the shift rod on the tranny and rotated it 180 degrees, repinned it, and with the shoulder bolt from the other half of the joint installed, I cycled it through its potential movements while selecting gears and while close I found ample clearance in all positions. So curious that, it appears if Subaru had reversed the drilling order and used an identical shoulder bolt at that fork it would have worked unless I am missing something.

On looking at the McMaster site, I also found a similar sized bushing(6294K88) that was available in Delrin and Teflon as well that looked like it would work. The only dimensional difference was 3/4" overall length vs 1/2" overall length that you used Josh. Any reason I might have missed you chose the shorter one? Any further upside to Delrin or Teflon?

ss
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Old 06-19-2007, 12:27 PM   #11
Legacy777
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What I have listed in the first post of this thread is what I bought and where I bought it.

As for the clearance....Where you testing with all Subaru parts? I'm not sure which bolt you're referring to as the shoulder bolt. It's possible it'd work, but with the setup I have on there, I didn't want to take any chances. Plus it's been a while since I've done this, and don't remember all the details.

I think 3/4" overall length may be too long. From looking at this picture:
http://www.main.experiencetherave.co...m/DCP_4168.JPG

two 3/4" flanged bushings wouldn't probably fit in that center joint. I'm sure you could sand some of the material down.....I'm not sure if Delrin or Teflon would provide any better properties when compared to nylon. You don't want the material to be too soft, because then it would wear out.....and I'm not sure how either of those two materials compare to nylon.

Josh
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Old 06-19-2007, 06:36 PM   #12
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Hey josh, yea I was testing with all subaru parts. The shoulder bolt is the bolt found on the other side of the universal joint that has the identical bushings. Its the bolt with the 10mm(3/8") shaft but the threaded section is 8mm(5/16".) Its the reason for the the two different sized holes in the linkage arm fork. I just took the fork attached to the tranny shift rod loose(by popping out the twin roll pins) and then spun it around the shaft 180 degrees(cause its drilled 10mm away from the tranny and 8mm next to it) and repinned it with that shoulder bolt inserted to see if the head would hit the side of the tranny. And I saw no probs. Im gonna take some pics and post them up to show you what Im talking about.

The bushings in question list overall length at either 1/2" or 3/4" with flange thicknesses of 1/16". The barrel in which the bushings are inserted is slightly over 1 3/8" and would need to accomodate 1 3/8" of the inserted parts of the bushings from each side for the 3/4" length bushings. So again unless I am missing something youd get near continuous bushing coverage through the barrel and maybe a bit more support for the load and have several more material options. Im not sure either if Delrin or Teflon bring anything additional to the table tho.

ss

Last edited by subysouth; 06-19-2007 at 06:46 PM.
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Old 06-19-2007, 08:27 PM   #13
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Pics as promised:

Rod forward(as would be in 1st 3rd and 5th)


Rod center(neutral)


Rod rear(as would be in 2nd 4th and Reverse)


Then just to be sure, I unpinned the fork again and rotated it all the way vertical in both directions(with the shoulder bolt still in place) at all three of these points(and a few in between) to see if the angle would create interference and again no problems.

Another interesting point is that drilling out the smaller side to 3/8"(as Josh did above) but instead using a 3/8" x 1.75" shoulder bolt would be a near ideal solution to replacing the pinned rod in question. Reason being, the fork in question's outside measurement is 1 51/64" which would allow the edge of the shoulder to pass into the newly enlarged hole from the other side but not completely through the entire fork(the metal of the fork is 1/8" thick.) Meaning tightening it down through that extra 3/64" would fully seat the nut and eliminate almost all additional side to side slop in the fork itself and obviously prevent any wobbling around of the shoulder bolt itself.

This too would be easier to see with pics I think so Ill take some once I get the pieces together.

ss

Last edited by subysouth; 06-19-2007 at 08:35 PM.
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Old 06-20-2007, 09:31 AM   #14
Legacy777
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What year joint is that from? Was it similar to the one in my picture before you separated things?

If you've taken measurements and everything fits, that's great. I didn't have the luxury of having the tranny out of the car at the time. Also, in regards to the longer bushings, they may help, but most of your load is going to be at the edges. I guess you could look up the material properties for the three bushings in question and see which ones are tougher/harder, as they would wear better.

Josh
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Old 06-20-2007, 10:12 AM   #15
subysouth
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Thats outta my 97 Legacy. The joint appeared identical to yours before I seperated it(ground the pinned shaft out.) That fork in the pic appears identical to yours, its just flipped upside down for test fitting.

Yea gonna do a bit more research on the bushing materials, but today I am opening the tranny itslef to see if I can fix that syncro.

ss
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Old 06-20-2007, 12:09 PM   #16
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Josh one other thing, do you think the 3/8" bushings you used will slide over a 10mm shaft?

ss
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Old 06-21-2007, 12:10 PM   #17
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I'm not sure. I can check, I think I still have some bushings left over.

I'll write myself a note to remind me.

Josh
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Old 06-21-2007, 02:07 PM   #18
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Cool. I was mistaken about the additional materials for that second bushing option I posted above. The Delrin and Teflon are available for an adjacent bushing which I dont think is applicable for us. I ordered the same material you used(MDS-filled nylon) but 4 of the 3/4" bushings for the u-joint and 2 of the 1/2" bushings for the shifter itself.

4 McMaster 6294K88
2 McMaster 6294K64

I also ordered a second Subaru oem shoulder bolt(cause it has that unique and near perfect shoulder length) to use where I removed the riveted pin. I am convinced clearance isnt gonna be a prob or at minimum a little grinder work on the tip of the shoulder bolt. Ill post up pics when the parts get here.

ss
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Old 06-25-2007, 12:36 PM   #19
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Cool,

Yeah post up some pics when you get everything together.

I looked around the garage, and couldn't find any of the bushings I used, so I couldn't check whether a 10mm shaft would work.

Josh
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Old 06-25-2007, 10:08 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by subysouth View Post

Rod rear(as would be in 2nd 4th and Reverse)


ss
You do know that the knuckle is upside down in this pic right?

Andrew
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Old 06-26-2007, 01:27 AM   #21
subysouth
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrewtech View Post
You do know that the knuckle is upside down in this pic right?

Andrew
You mean the fork assembly attached to the shift rod? If so yep, I posted that above. I was just trying to see how much bolt head clearance there was on the tranny side and the easiest way I could see to do that was to unpin it and rotate 180 degrees and then cycle the rod.

ss
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Old 06-26-2007, 10:51 AM   #22
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Kudos for the writeup.
I do have a quick question. While mine is not off the car yet (waiting for the bushings to come in) I can't see it first hand yet. But would it be possible to use a flat head bolt similar to stock with a small weld instead of the nut and bolt? It seems like you could eliminate any clearance issues and any worries about the nut ever backing out. Forgive me if I'm totally off track but like I said, it's still on the car so I'm just throwing out an idea.
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Old 06-27-2007, 09:12 AM   #23
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So I got mine off yesterday and did things a little differently.
I grinded both heads off and punched out the dowel that they connected.
It was in there tight and it goes back in just as tight. So both sides of the knuckle are perfectly flat and when punched reassembled it's just as flat.
What I'm planning on doing once my bushings get here is to reassemble it and have a few welds done on it. This should eliminate any concern with it ever backing out. Then I'll grind it off and make it look pretty. Then I'll cover it with some paint to protect from rust.
Does this make sense or am I missing something? I'll get some pics up once it's all said and done.
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Old 06-27-2007, 03:35 PM   #24
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B0d, that sounds like it would work, with the exception of possibly damaging the sleeve bearings with the heat from the welds.

Also another part of my goal is not just secruiring the joint but making it servicable too. Earlier Legacys and STis have bolts through both sides of these linkage assemblies such that you can service them under the car fairly easily.

My oem parts are now in in Mobile but I am not gonna be able to get them now until Friday, which sucks. My McMaster sleeve bearings got here Friday.

ss

Last edited by subysouth; 06-27-2007 at 03:43 PM.
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Old 07-10-2007, 12:30 PM   #25
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How are things going with each of your setups?
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