Those of you with a keen eye for detail may have noticed the angle on the two gear shift levers didn't match exactly. Pretty close but not quite the same. This became more apparent once the gear shift was installed in the car. In 1st, 3rd, and 5th the lever sits just above the center of the boot opening. 2nd and 4th sit right at the bottom but doesn't touch. I noticed this and thought it would just be cosmetic so I didn't worry too much about it.
I took the car out for the first time on this past Saturday (our first good weather day after a solid salt rinsing rain shower) and put 220kms on her after adjusting the clutch.
My thoughts, impressions, regrets?
This swap was well worth the work, which was pretty simple really. The shifts are smooth and crisp, downshifting is nothing but fun. The first time I got into a corner a little hard and dropped it into 2nd and got on the skinny pedal was so much fun. She got a little tail happy and ran.
So...now back to the gear shift lever. Between the angle being off slightly and the thick and heavy 5/8" rod the weight causes it to drop out of gear if i'm in 1st at an intersection (big cams +stiff mounts = lots of shaking) and it will drop out of 3rd and 5th occasionally if it's coasting over bumps. By no means a show stopper and by the time I was halfway through my drive I had already started to hold the gear shift at stop lights. It takes only the slightest pressure to hold it up.
My plan it to basically make the same shaft out of aluminum and with the angle corrected. Correcting the angle would likely do it but since it a PITA to install I only want to do it once.
Seriously though...what a dream to drive!!
Thanks to Bianchi and Flybird-T (RIP) for starting the posts on the conversion and Bearbvd for the heads up on the flanged yoke.
All in all with the models I posted, a machine shop and access to a decent driveshaft shop this swap is pretty easy. A bit more involved than a straight change but not much. My biggest hurdles were trying to find solutions and part numbers. Hopefully this post will help reduce those issues.