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How to: Remove Centre Console (986) and fit a Short Shift Kit


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Ok, so without doubt this is the best money you will spend on a 986.  It transforms the car from "a car" to "sports car" with just one reasonably simple swap.  

The kit

Like many others, I got mine from Aliexpress (China).   Even with post Brexit rates, I paid ~£39/$40.03 delivered for my shifter, and it arrived within a week (I paid extra for the quicker e-EMS shipping).   Linky

Mine arrived well packed

Sj2CUY2.jpgnj8zzYi.jpga5SGShm.jpg

 

The Tools

My Box is a '99 2.5, so the fitting, and thus tools, may vary, but I used: 

- Flathead Screwdriver
- Posidrive Screwdriver
- T15 male Torx
- T30 male Torx
- 10mm Socket with Ratchet
- 19mm Ring Spanner
- Allen key (didn't check which size)
- Stanley knife (or similar)
- Marker Pen

YPIWb4A.jpg

 

 

 

Removing the Centre Console

I have the upper Centre Console delete, so this might make things easier for me.  I didn't necessarily have to remove the blanking plate, but it save it falling off/getting damaged anyway...

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Next, unclip the gear gaiter.  On this model, you unclip the front first, as the rear levers and slots towards the front.

IXJBeIX.jpg

Pulling upwards on the gear knob will remove it.  I've had mine off to replace the gaiter in the last 6 months, so it slid off easily.  If your knob is a bit stiffer (:rolleyes:)   watch you don't accidentally pull too hard and end up with it in your face (again, :rolleyes:).

eKkmVJy.jpg

With this removed, there's a T15 Torx under where the front of the gaiter sits - remove.

OTyBP6F.jpg

Next, you'll need to remove the ashtray (or if you have the other kit, then whatever :laugh:).  There's normally a couple of T30 Torx screws under here, mine are more of a lightweight plastic securing rather than a traditional metal screw.  Lift the switch bank out once you have undone the screws, then undo the T15 screw below, visible in the recess.

XlLjgve.jpg

 

Next, you will want to undo the switches.  Either unplug them, or pop the switches out - this can be done by rocking them along the shortest axis (side to side), or with the aid of a flathead.

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The trim next to the handbrake should clip off easily...

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Next up, remove the rubber mat from the storage box.  You'll find a single T15 securing the floor section underneath.  If you want to adjust the handbrake cable, go directly for this part.  Lift the floor section up.  If you struggle, you get pop it up using your fingers, accessible under where you removed the trim at the side of the handbrake..

46yB0PP.jpg

There's another screw in the bottom left of the pic, T15 again, and you will next need to lift out the coin holder to access another screw (T15) under this.  The flathead is useful for popping the coinholder out, as it can be a bugger to do.

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Watch the lockable compartment microswitch that lives under here.  You'll want to disconnect it first, or you'll risk breaking the switch itself (and you'll get a single beep from the horn each time you lock the car, should you c*ck it up).

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The whole centre console should now be loose and can be lifted out.  You might need to angle this towards the driver's seat to clear the handbrake (this is how scratches can happen!)

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All being well, the Centre Console should now be removed and reveals the gear lever unit.

XM8XGmv.jpg

 

 

 

Installing a Quick Shift Kit
 

The plastic cover over the front of the gear change will lift off easily, revealing the cables and connectors...

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You'll want to mark the position of these within the black plastic sleeve - whichever way makes sense to you (this is why the marker pen was in the tools list!)  Make sure its done well, as pen can rub off when handling.

EhTvv1t.jpg

 

Once you have marked the cables, you can slide the plastic covers to allow the cable ends to be lifted out.

CQOitjf.jpgHI5SsK8.jpg

 

Next, unclip the cables from the plastic housing..

 

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The four 10mm nuts on each corner of the gear change unit can now be removed.

GBbiduk.jpgCDzGZPi.jpg

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The gear shift unit can then be lifted out, revealing the true colour of your carpet!

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You'll then need to lift the gear shifter unit out for further work.  There are plastic bushes holding the gear change in.  The easiest way to remove these is to cut out the lugs using a sharp blade.

RDf24YX.jpg

 

Once you have cut each bush free, they should pop out quite easily..

rBWTa5S.jpg

 

Once the bushes can been cut and removed, the shifter should be free to move out...

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Lift the old shifter out and remove the cable arm from the ball joint, then transfer to the new Shifter.  It's recommended to replace these, but I didn't bother.

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Replaced with the new unit.  It's easier to angle the longer 'stub' in first.

hYgQIjx.jpg

 

Side by side comparison of old vs new.  Note that the new one is slightly longer, which I found an issue with later on (and a solution)..

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The circlips should be secured in place, to stop the bushes slipping out...

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Make sure the ball joint/cable connectors are within the housing and not dangling below.

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Then temporarily adjust the lock nuts so there is no longitudinal slack, using a 19mm spanner and an Allen key.

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The gear shifter can then be 'bolted' back in place with the four 10mm nuts..

TTmEhgU.jpghzCmjwG.jpg

 

Note:  Due to the extra length of the short shift, I found that the connector's spring kept fouling on the green plastic tab that lives on the bottom of the housing.  The part number is 986.424.010.001 - although it's nigh on impossible to find out what it's purpose in life is.  I've read that it is referred to as a 'coin deflector'.  Either way, it needed to go.

kmkByHe.jpg

 

The cables can now be reattached to their original positions.   Once exception to this, and a slight adjustment:

The left cable position will allow a certain amount of adjustment for the central position of the gearknob.  I adjusted mine quite significantly, as I found that neutral was too far over to the left.  You could do the same for the right cable, but you have to be sure it can reach its extremities.  

People may talk about calibration and tools for this, but it's not that difficult to get things set up how you like if you're reasonably adept with the 'feel'.  Just set things up and adjust, then readjust if required.

tT6Qu3p.jpg   zKvHOBF.jpg

 

Once you're happy with the adjustment, make sure there is no slack in the gear change and adjust as required.

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Again, once happy, you get put the centre console back on - in true Haynes Manual style, refitting is reverse of removal.

 

In case you forgot, the passenger side switch are the white plugs.

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I found that the new 'bushes' found on the centre console too, so you could either adjust this end to compensate, or do as I did and 'modify' a small clearance in the console.

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It's not visible, so no worries there.

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All done, stand back and admire.  I went for a short drive and was chuffed at the results :thumbsup_still:

 

 

 

Normal stuff applies - take your time, don't do anything silly, don't cut your fingers off with the knife, don't attempt if you're a clumsy danger to yourself, and not my fault of BoXa.net's fault if you make a dogs dinner of it all!

 

Have fun! :rocks:

 

Edited by cj225
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Good write up.  I believe that these quickshifts are predominantly for the LHD market, hence why the lever was pointing over towards the left when you assembled it.  I think most people disassemble the shifter beforehand and spin the lever around so it suits RHD cars, and the cables can go back in the same position.

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When you say unclip the gear lever gaiter from the front, is that the front nearest the windscreen? do you need levers? I've been trying to get mine off a 987 for months, asked on forums, but still been unable to do it.

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2 minutes ago, richardy said:

When you say unclip the gear lever gaiter from the front, is that the front nearest the windscreen? do you need levers? I've been trying to get mine off a 987 for months, asked on forums, but still been unable to do it.

 

The front is nearest the handbrake (i.e. the front as you look at it).

 

987 is the same, it just clips in.  I didn't pry mine out, just applied a pulling force in the right area.  The very front (again, nearer the h/brake) is clipped centrally.

 

You'll see the clips in the photo below:

 

997-ShiftCable10-768x1024.jpg

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Thanks for that, I've pulled at the back, again with 2 people pulling on each side but it still remains in. I recon the previous owner must have glued it in!  All I want to do is spray some WD40 on the gear change mechanism.

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3 minutes ago, richardy said:

Thanks for that, I've pulled at the back, again with 2 people pulling on each side but it still remains in. I recon the previous owner must have glued it in!  All I want to do is spray some WD40 on the gear change mechanism.

Use silicon grease if you ever get in there. 

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3 minutes ago, richardy said:

Thanks for that, I've pulled at the back, again with 2 people pulling on each side but it still remains in. I recon the previous owner must have glued it in!  All I want to do is spray some WD40 on the gear change mechanism.

Could always buy a tool for the job. You can get some trim removal pliers for less than a tenner from eBay or Amazon

21t1oV23QaL.jpg

 

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5 minutes ago, mike597 said:

Use silicon grease if you ever get in there. 

If...........

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6 minutes ago, cj225 said:

Could always buy a tool for the job. You can get some trim removal pliers for less than a tenner from eBay or Amazon

21t1oV23QaL.jpg

 

Thanks, looking now!

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On 10/08/2016 at 0:00 PM, witko999 said:

Good write up.  I believe that these quickshifts are predominantly for the LHD market, hence why the lever was pointing over towards the left when you assembled it.  I think most people disassemble the shifter beforehand and spin the lever around so it suits RHD cars, and the cables can go back in the same position.

Thanks for the tip.

 

I'd heard this being the case, but didn't quite click at the time.  I swapped everything over and reset the cable today.

20160813_163515_HDR.jpg

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Just now, el 3.2S said:

Great how2.

 

Would the action of the short shifter improve acceleration times?

 

Technically speaking, it could potentially improve shift times, which will influence acceleration times.  it's subjective, and depends how you shift anyway (with the hope that won't sound American).  

 

 

What it will do, in the opinion of many, is improve your enjoyment and overall impression of the car.

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