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Shifter Bushing Time!


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23 replies to this topic

#1 Olnick

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Posted 20 December 2006 - 05:42 PM

My '95 Legacy L Wagon has the classic symptoms of shot shifter bushings--having to reach all over the cabin to find my gears!

Searched back on the board and read everything I could find on the topic.
Big mahalos to BigMattyD for those exceptional pix of the linkage, to subyluvr2212 for a wonderful writeup on the procedure and to Josh (Legacy 777) for always thorough technical information.

Anyway, thought I'd splurge and treat the old girl to some Kartboys. Checked out their website and it's a bit vague, so thought I'd ask here first.

1) Kartboy only offers bushings for the "stay rod," right? (The big round one for the front and the transverse rectangular one for the rear.) And they say for MY '97 up. Will these work in a '95? Are they truly worth the price?

2) For the smaller bushings in the shift rod joints, are there any other good options or should I stick with OEM?

Would appreciate any input, gang.

Aloha.

#2 DerFahrer

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Posted 20 December 2006 - 07:17 PM

I'm going to finally have pics to add to my writeup soon.

My Legacy's shifter is coming apart... AGAIN! Words can't describe how pissed off I am about it, as I only did the bushings some 50k miles ago.

This time, I'm going Legacy777's route and putting an STi short-throw in. I figure, if I'm going to rip the whole thing apart again, I might as well upgrade.

So yeah, assuming I can get my hands on a digicam by then (mine crapped out entirely, f'ing Kodak :mad:), then I'll complete my writeup with detailed pics, and probably put it in the USRM.

#3 Olnick

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Posted 21 December 2006 - 01:50 PM

Thanks for your response, subyluvr 2212.

Sorry to hear about your new shifter problems--what's happening, are the bushings deteriorating? Did you use OEM parts? Did you replace the bushings in both the stay rod and the shifter linkage?

I'm wondering if anyone has any thoughts or leads on reputable aftermarket bushings. Hope Legacy 777 will chime in on this. Maybe a new short shifter is the way to go!

Hope you do get a chance to add the pix to your writeup--I'll be looking forward to that.

Mahalo nui loa, Merry Christmas and Aloha!

#4 DerFahrer

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Posted 21 December 2006 - 02:30 PM

I replaced ALL the bushings, and yeah, I used OEM ones. But the problem is that they're rubber bushings, and they're exposed to the elements underneath the car. So, it's inevitable that they will wear out at some point.

I'm upset that I have to do it again, but at the same time, I knew it would happen again.

Don't be misled by Kartboy's or any of those other websites. The shifter "bushings" that they're talking about are really shifter mount bushings. They're the ones that mount the entire shifter assembly to the body. Yes, they improve the shifting feel... immensely. But they don't fix the wobbly shifter problem that we're talking about.

#5 Olnick

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Posted 23 December 2006 - 08:55 PM

Hmmm, looks like it's just thw two of us, subyluvr2212!!!

Thanks for the input--you confirmed what I thought.

By the way, what size punch did you use to drive the roll pins out, 3/16?

Aloha . . . and Mele Kalikimaka!

#6 DerFahrer

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Posted 23 December 2006 - 10:28 PM

I don't mean to pick on anyone, but I seriously think that once people see what's involved in replacing these damn things, they freak and never give it a shot.

I guess I'm a braver soul than others :lol:

Truth be told, I can't remember what size punch I used. It really doesn't matter that much. Buy yourself a nice set of punches from Sears or something (or hurry up and get your friend/family/spouse to buy one for you for Christmas :D), and that will definitely have the appropriate size for this job.

Good luck!

Oh, and how's the weather in Honolulu? I visited there in 97, and would give anything to go back!

#7 kevinsUBARU

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Posted 24 December 2006 - 08:06 AM

A year ago, I installed the Kartboy short shifter and shifter bushings on my 2001 Legac wagon. The bushings are cake to install, especially if you roll the car up on some ramps. I found it very helpful to wear a backpacking head lamp while changing these out. The difference in feel is amazing:clap: The NHV noise went up very slightly.

Then a couple of months later when I had a new clutch installed, I had a USDM STi tranny mount installed as well. These are found on nasioc.com for something like $30 shipped, and they make a night/day difference in the crispness of your shifting. NHV noise seemed to be very loud at first, but has since quieted (or I got used to it). No complaints from passengers, and it's fine when cruising at 75.

Kevin

#8 seanski06

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Posted 24 December 2006 - 05:01 PM

i've done both kartboy bushings......and i've attempted to replace the linkage part that connects to the tranny rod i believe its called the "joint boss"...i got the first inner pin out, but for the love of god could not get the larger pin out

personally i thought this was a pain in the arse....and probably will just put up with my sloppy shifter than to try and wrestle with that again..my car is a 96 and is no stranger to road salt, so maybe thats why it was so difficult

#9 DerFahrer

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Posted 24 December 2006 - 08:49 PM

Kevin, you installed the shifter MOUNT bushings. Look up a few posts, you'll see the differentiation I made.

Sean understands what I'm talking about. That's what I've always heard it called, a "boss." It's held onto the shift rod by those two pins, and yes they are a HUGE pain in the nutz to get out. And, he said exactly what I thought he would, he gave up :)

Keep your pants on everybody. Once I get my hands on the STi short-throw and get some time, I'll redo my shifter and take lots of pics to explain the process.

#10 Legacy777

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Posted 25 December 2006 - 04:40 PM

These bushings can be a real pain to install, especially the rear one. I had to remove the joint on my impreza, and pull the whole linkage out. However I replaced both the front & rear mount bushings, put a new joint in, and replaced the bushings at the pivot point for the arm and lever. It feels MUCH better.

I'm going to be helping a friend replace the joint piece for her 96 legacy. The bushings are shot. From what I found, there's three different styles of joint setup. The old metal ones found on the first gen legacies, the one where the joint is half metal, and half bushing, and the newer one where it has bushings on both parts of the joint.

#11 subie94

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Posted 26 December 2006 - 08:21 AM

my 94 leg gt wagon has had sloppy shifter problems since i've owned it(2+yrs) and it's at the point where it's causeing miss-shifts and annoying the heck out of me...

guess i should have repaired it along time ago..did someone say they did a write up? and does it have pics?

#12 seanski06

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Posted 26 December 2006 - 11:52 AM

once i get my digital camera back...i can take pictures of what this stuff looks like if u want me to.... i have a spare transmission on my back porch right now that still has the boss on it

#13 Olnick

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Posted 27 December 2006 - 03:42 AM

..did someone say they did a write up?


Subie94--there's lots of info out there. Subyluvr2212 did an excellent writeup.

Try a search for "Shifter Bushing" here on USMB. You'll also find links to NASIOC, Legacy Central and ScoobyMods that are helpful. Some have great pix.

#14 Olnick

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Posted 27 December 2006 - 03:49 AM

However I replaced both the front & rear mount bushings,


Josh, quick question. The Kartboy bushings for the shifter mount (the stay rod) are listed for '97 or '98 and later models. But I think you said somewhere that they will work on earlier models--is that right?

I have a '95 Legacy.

#15 Legacy777

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Posted 27 December 2006 - 12:23 PM

I don't know why they list them for only those models, they should work just fine on the older models as well.

The only thing I noticed on my 91 turbo legacy transmission is that with the plate/bracket that holds the bushing & front mount to the transmission, there was a little gap/clearance. I don't know if this was because of the bushing or the transmission. I just put a big washer there to take up the clearance.

#16 nkx

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Posted 20 February 2008 - 12:02 AM

old thread bumpage!

has anyone decided that replacing the roll pins would be a giant PITA, and just put a normal bolt through that hole? i had a hard enough time getting the center roll pin out, and the outer one is being super stubborn. methinks ill have to go buy some new sturdier punches.

#17 Olnick

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Posted 20 February 2008 - 03:17 AM

old thread bumpage!

has anyone decided that replacing the roll pins would be a giant PITA, and just put a normal bolt through that hole? i had a hard enough time getting the center roll pin out, and the outer one is being super stubborn. methinks ill have to go buy some new sturdier punches.


Old thread answerage:

Yeah, that outer roll pin is a real bear isn't it? As I recall it helped to have my son sit in the car and hold the shifter hard in gear (5th I think) so I could get a better bite with the punch, then I just wailed away at it! Eventually the pin loosened up and it popped right out.

I remember reading a lot about replacing the pins with a bolt but can't recall the sources. Legacy777 might have talked about it, maybe a search will turn something up.

Good luck. Not easy but well worth the effort!

#18 Legacy777

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Posted 20 February 2008 - 10:01 AM

Those roll pins are used to help eliminate play in the linkage. If you have a bench grinder, make yourself a set of punches out of some 1/4" round bar. That in conjunction with a good set of longer punches will make removing and installing the roll pins much easier.

http://www.main.expe...om/DCP_4188.JPG
http://www.main.expe...es/jointcustom/

#19 nkx

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Posted 20 February 2008 - 11:00 PM

Those roll pins are used to help eliminate play in the linkage. If you have a bench grinder, make yourself a set of punches out of some 1/4" round bar. That in conjunction with a good set of longer punches will make removing and installing the roll pins much easier.

http://www.main.expe...om/DCP_4188.JPG
http://www.main.expe...es/jointcustom/


the pins are meant to eliminate play in the linkage, but the rest of the linkage isnt, ironic!

i think i saw those pics when i was digging around nasioc. your custom punches make more sense now that ive been digging around under the car, but i dont have the means of making something like that, plus i dont have that much clearance under the car to be able to hammer it with a punch of that length. i thought about putting a punch in the hole in the linkage, and then trying to get a jack under it to press it out instead of using my 3lb sledge...

#20 Legacy777

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Posted 21 February 2008 - 12:12 PM

Those punches I made definitely help keep the punch on the roll pin so you can get a whack on it. This can be especially important when putting them back in. That's more of a pain then taking them out.

I'm not sure what to tell you, yeah maybe look for some new punches.

#21 nkx

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Posted 02 March 2008 - 12:17 AM

i finally got that linkage joint replaced. what a PITA. definately worth it though. got the return spring that was missing too. i had to get a new set of punches, but more tools never hurt anybody. ;)

shifts like a brand new car!

#22 BigMattyD

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Posted 16 March 2008 - 12:14 AM

Punching that double spring pin out was a big hassle, in fact, the biggest pain in the rump roast of the whole procedure. mine were fused together, so I couldn't get the inner one out first. I had to use a drill to make a flat spot in which I could fit a punch and beat the heck out of it with a 4 lb sledge hammer, and liberal amounts of pb blaster.... all the while on a bed of coarse gravel... plus the pb blaster smells like bum bum. My wife was not too fond of me after that..

Getting the new spring pins in was a bit easier, but took a little creative thinking a la Legacy 777.

But a couple yrs later, it is still feeling great... so I guess it was worth the rehabilitation.

Matt

#23 Olnick

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Posted 16 March 2008 - 03:04 AM

But a couple yrs later, it is still feeling great... so I guess it was worth the rehabilitation.

Matt


Hey Matt, good to see you here--and thanks again for your experience in tackling those pesky bushings.

Yeah, it's a wonderful feeling when that lever slips into position precisely where it's supposed to be. I think the Kartboys and TiC pieces added a great deal to the feel too. 'Course a gearbox full of Red Line NS really frosted the cake!

To anyone thinking of tackling their shifter bushings: Go for it! It's not the most pleasant job but it's well worth it.

#24 1-3-2-4

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Posted 10 May 2012 - 06:06 PM

I know this topic is old but so that kartboy rear shifter bushing fits a 97 outback as well right? I can't see why not.. I just ask because I saw the review on the kartboy website with a person with a 2.5 RS who said it supported his but he cross threaded his bolt or something like that.

It's been since 2005 since I drove a new Subaru (XT at that) it's going to be nice to feel nicer shifts, how hard is it to get to the rear bushing? Would it be better to take the stay rod out? I can't picture how you can take that bushing out without having to remove it.




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