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Discussion Starter #1
This is certainly a shot in the dark since I've already discussed this with DZAUTO whose Muncie prowess preceeds him, but:

Have any of you had any expereice grafting a round shaft '67 shifter handle onto a Hurst Comp Plus? It probably was more popular on Vettes then Chevelles. I was thinking of having something machined up, but I thought I put a post out there first so maybe, just maybe, I didn't have to reinvent the wheel.
 

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I once modified a Hurst shifter by cutting and welding it back together at the angle I wanted. The big thing is that you want to grind the two pieces so that there is a "V" that is filled with weld. You can then grind the weld flush. I never got around to haveing it rechromed.

I never hammered on it real hard, and it never broke.

If you are real conserned with breakage, get a short section of thick wall steel tube that slides over the base of the round lever. Grind the square section so that the tube slides over it. The ends of the two pieces should touch one another and the tube is centered over the splice. Grind off any chrome in the area where the tube will be, and then braze it together. This is assuming that the "splice" will be hidden below the boot.

Wes.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Wes, I'm leaning more towards a fixture, a square box that slips over the shifter mount, bolts up to it using very short socket head caps and has two "wings" which come around and allow you to directly bolt the handle on. We'll see. I'm just getting it drawn up on paper and I'll show it to two relations that are tool and die guys and see how difficult it'll be to machine. Unfortunately, it seems that a casting would work best for the basic shape although it could be welded up. Definitely in steel, not alum. I tend to horse on things.

For now, Wally's narly old Hurst stick will be poking out of my console!

If I can design something that can be easily machined, I might be able to do a small production run of these things for other enthusiasts.

[This message has been edited by Gene Chas (edited 07-20-99).]
 

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Gene,
I am also looking at fabricating a bracket to bolt my original shifter to using a comp plus setup. I believe that it can be made using steel and welding it. I am doing it this way so I don't have to destroy my original shifter. As mentioned strength will be a big factor as to how this part should be made.

Jeff
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Jeff, exactly. We should compare notes. I'll take my plans through the "machinists review board", hopefully this weekend and see what the boys think.
 

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Gene;

I'm not really clear about what you are planning so what I'm going to say, may not be relevant.

When you are talking about a "square box" section, keep in mind that if bolting through a box section, it will tend to crush due to the bolting force. If not reinforced, the box will continue to crush, and as a result the bolts will always be loose after a few days.

Wes.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Wes, my thoughts are quite preliminary but let me see if I can paint a picture using words. I suppose it should look alot like the windshield washer bracket on a '67, in shape anyway. I figure 1" bar stock would be strong enough. A flat, upright piece that bolts to the back of the shifter bracket. From this piece come arms off both sides fitting around the bracket snugly, which then have two, smaller "palms up" pads which the stock shifter bolts directly to.DZAUTO had me looking at the shifter mount pad on the original Muncie shifter, which is not a bad thought. As I think of it, 1" bar may not work on these pads because the thread depth may not be sufficient. Here you'll use two short fat socket head caps to literally bolt the shifter handle to through the existing handle mount. I'll have to die grind away the lower slotted portion of the CompPlus shifter mount for clearance.

I'm not very good at this but does that provide a picture of what I'm thinking about? If so, can you see any problems with it in terms of range of travel, etc.?

I should email Hurst and see if they can cough up a shifter mount ( prefereably used and free ) to do my measuring and initial fitting with.

BTW, whatever steel I use should not be able to be collapsed unless I've got in in a press!

I've got a feeling that I'm not the only guy out there who could use such a bracket.



[This message has been edited by Gene Chas (edited 07-20-99).]
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Update. I worked on some drawings last night. This is going to be a PITA to machine. Essentially, you start with a blank of steel and end up with a U.
Plan two. I am going to remove the original mount from the original shifter. This is a soild cast base. The "toe" needs to be cut off and as near as I can see it, drilled to accept the two bolts that bolt onto the Hurst base. Looks relatively clean.

The only problem is those rubber bushings that were originally in the holes of the base of the shifter handle. I think they gave it some play for the reverse lock out feature. I'll have to have someone spin up some buttons to fit around the stud, filling the clearance and provide a nice clamping surface. Other than that it looks easy.

But, stay tuned....
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Status: I pulledthe shifter mount off my original shifter. The made these suckers from good steel because it is hard to cut, especially with a hacksaw. Had to start it with a glass/ceramic blade like it was hardended and then used a sawsall with plenty of cutting oil.

It was necessay to cut the "foot" off the shifter mount to allowing it it come out of the "box" it's mounted in. The cut was made using the "box" that the mount is installed as a guide. The shorter the better. Now that I have the shifter mount removed it fits into the Husrt bracket well on length and is much too narrow to fill out the width.

The next step may be as simple as drilling 2 3/8+ holes in the block the shifter mount is affixed to. I fear the high one will break into the existing hole for the pin ( which runs cross ways to the new holes ). It would have been slick to run a bolt through this exisiting hole and pin the shifter across the width of the Hurst mount.

Option two is to drill two blind holes in the shifter mount block and tap them to accept a 3/8 or slightly smaller thread so the fasteners will clear through the Hurst mount's threaded 3/8/ holes. This would allow the use of the crossbolt through the original pin location. It would lend a great deal of strength I think, more than offsetting the use of smaller bolts for the fastening of the handle mount to shifter.

Either way, ( blind tap or drill through ) the modification will leave the shifter as much as two inches higher than the original installation. I can't picture how this is going to affect the fit into the console, although I know I'll have longer throw at the ball. It might not affect the console clearance I hope.

Plan B would be to cut the shifter mount off of its mounting block and somehow weld this onto the Hurst shifter. Lots of gaps to fill.This would drop it by 2" or so.

Anyway that's where I am so far on the great shifter graft project. Since it's raining outside, no "on the driveway" time today.

[This message has been edited by Gene Chas (edited 07-25-99).]
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Dropped my shifter/original mount today at a local auto machine shop for drilling tapping two blind holes. Wow too easy. Now lets see how it fits!
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Nothing is ever easy. Just got a call from the auto machine shop. Their drills couldn't touch the stuff. Mingya ( now that I'm known as "*** *** Chas") what did they make these things out of? Sure the Hurst design is way better, but I can't fault GM on their choice of materials!Can't machine the stuff.

[This message has been edited by Gene Chas (edited 07-26-99).]
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Bob, the machinist ( at a one man shop around the corner), confirmed my suspicions, this piece is case hardended. Hard skin, baby. Even though he could file the metal exposed by my cut, he surmised that there's a good chance he'd break a tap, and he didn't really want to fire up his EDM ( nor I it would've tapped me). So he went with a 3/8 hole to clear the 3/8 NF bolts.

I'm using grade 5 fasteners, the stock Hurst bolts are too short. You'll need 1 1/2 plus.

Pulled the old Hurst and loosley fit the new one in place. The handle sits at least two inches higher than stock. It's noticeable. The base of the stock stick sits up high in the console "box" and the rubber boot is barely going to cover it. Additionally, the boot will probably wear hard, being pushed around by the shifter base. I might wrap the base to limit metal/boot contact.

But most importantly, IT WORKS. The console clears the shifter, barely. DZ if you tune in, the clearance problem is not going into reverse with this setup, it's 2nd and 4th. I'd bend the shifter, but I'm scared, freaked out by the brute strength of the other pieces of the stock Muncie assembly. The handle comes very close to the rear of the "box", and I didn't have the chrome surround in place.

Yes!Success. I'll try to move this post over to tips and fixes for everybody's future reference. In case another stooge with a 64/67 wants to rip through the gears with that stock chrome ball in their hand!



[This message has been edited by Gene Chas (edited 07-26-99).]
 

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It would be nice if you could post a closeup picture.

------------------
 

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Discussion Starter #14
DZ, I'll shoot a few and see what comes out. BTW, anyone with some Bridgeport skill can probably machine a suitable bracket for this install that could correct, to some extent, the height problem.

[This message has been edited by Gene Chas (edited 07-27-99).]
 

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Gene, thanks for the concepts. I have been thinking of doing the same thing. I bought a reproduction Muncie shifter, but it has the same old problems. If you could publish some drawings or pictures that would be great.

A couple of notes: It is possible to get the muncie shifter mount lever out of its box without cutting it. It's been a while since I've done it, but it involves removing the half moon wedge from the top and unscrewing the base plate flange.

Also, the reproduction Munice shifter mount lever being sold is different than stock. The oval shaped top piece (base plate flange) (the one with the two studs that stick up) just slips on to the lever piece. It is held in place by a set screw. This doesn't work worth a damn because the set screw won't keep the shifter from twisting. However, this piece may be very useful in a Hurst conversion. At least you would not have to cut the foot off the shift mount lever.

Tell me this: If I just do a full conversion over to the Hurst unit, how well does it fit in a 67 console?

------------------
Jameel Qazi
#'s 67 SS
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Jameel, I can't answer your last question, yet. I have the stock Hurst handle and I see no reason it wouldn't work. I can certainly fit it up and see.

After my first experience with shifters, I wouldn't think of using a set screw, but I had no idea such a part is available. If so, it would be simple as pie to weld a machinable chunk of cold rolled to this mount and lower the whole setup.

I specifically asked the machinist about that union holding the mount onto the base, itlooks bulletproof.

I'm clueless as to this posting picture business, but I'm going to take some snapshots, tomorrow, since I want to get her done before Sunday's cruise event. The photo place charges $2.50 to scan a pic., yeech.

And finally, Jameel, the "cutting off of the foot" is required anyway. In fact the cut could be a bit further up than allowed by the "box" the lever sits in.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Damn! I just got all the linkages adjusted, new steel washers all the way around, floor pan cover on and there was just a little too much play in the handle mounted on those rubber bushings. Just a little more torque on that bolt .... snap

The stock stud in the shifter mount snapped off. Man, I do tend to horse on things!

I cry uncle and call my fellow Chevelle owner and retired welder and ask, please, can you weld this together. Tried like heck to keep that original handle from being welded. Screw it. Perma fix is in. At least now I know it fits and works.

Wes, I can grind a nice bevel onto the handle to remove the chrome and give a nice V to fill all the way around. I hope it doesn't discolor the whole handle.

BTW, man does it feel worlds better than the original shifter mechanism. Can't wait to take it out for a spin.




[This message has been edited by Gene Chas (edited 07-30-99).]
 
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