Shifter Linkage Bushings

I used the Speedsource shifter linkage bushing kit for this install. There is at least one other kit out there, but I’m not sure where to find it.

Speedsource sends along instructions with their brass bushings kit, but I want to, in a little better depth, show you how to change these out. The instructions also include a hint that rotating the bushing in your bell-housing will improve shifting. I’ll include information on that on a later date.

I will say that these bushings will reduce perceived smoothness of shifts- the stock rubber bushings have a cushioning effect to them. These brass bushings, however, will decrease shifting times and increase the ‘solidness’ of shifting. I did notice that when my car was in ‘lift’, the shifter buzzed somewhat. But, what do you expect when you have a tighter connection to your transmission (and thus your engine)?

I found that the hardest part of this DIY was the posture you had to be in- more on that later. If you have access to a lift, consider yourself blessed.

Stuff you will need:

Regular needle-nose pliers
Flat-head screwdriver
use Non-corrosive grease of some kind (I used bearing grease) Edit: use spray-on lithium grease!
Hydraulic Jack
Support Jacks
Bushings Kit (I used Speedsource..but there is at least one more out there) [P.S. I didn’t need the emery cloth they sent with the kit]
Paper towels

A lot of this DIY will involve using your hands. If the underside of your car is as greasy as mine is, your hands will get very dirty.

Step 1: Examine Kit
I’m including this as a step so you don’t accidentally install the wrong bushing in the wrong hole. (Warning!) No, both brass bushings are not the same size! The bushing with the “L” printed on it should be installed in the vertical bushing that is farthest from the wheel well. The other bushing should be installed on the horizontal bushing that is closest to the wheel well. Keep all this in mind.
60470ead488377bab9efd3801334518b  Shifter Linkage Bushings

Step 2: Remove driver’s side wheel
d6b1e5e95f52426b83f8035ac117acab  Shifter Linkage Bushings
Hello wheel-well. Follow the red arrow.

Step 3: Locate Bushings
d0b4e2559634df9265c223536aa049cc  Shifter Linkage Bushings
Hello Bushings.

Closer shot:
16a167e4a35fd0dbb8c0bfacd18154d6  Shifter Linkage Bushings

Step 4: Remove Rear (Vertical) Bushing
I replaced this one first because it’s the farthest one and it’s also the easiest believe it or not. Use the needle nose pliers and pull off the retaining pin, then pull off the metal washer. Then, pull or shim off the linkage from the metal pin. Insert the end of the flathead screwdriver into the rubber bushing and push/pop it out- it shouldn’t take too much force. Wipe everything clean with paper towels. At this time, I greased up the brass bushing with the “L” imprinted on it. Insert it into the linkage (the large end of the bushing should point toward the front of your car) and (here’s the pain-in-the-***-part) take the black e-clip (see the first image) and use a combination of your fingers and needle nose pliers to pop it onto the brass bushing. This should hold the bushing firmly in place. Next, shim the bushing/linkage back onto the metal pin. Once through, insert the silver retaining pin through the metal pin’s end and pop it into place.

When you’re done, it should look like this:
fe81c3bd0097a0d036f0eba5c90e73a4  Shifter Linkage Bushings

Step 5: Installing Front (Horizontal) Bushing
This bushing, for me, was a pain in the ***. The old bushing should be removed in a similar fashion to the other bushing. Next, insert the brass bushing into the shifter linkage so that the wide end is down (see the picture) and secure with the e-clip. My hint is to turn the linkage so it faces you (but not too much) so you can see what you’re doing. Good luck. Then, slide the linkage/bushing over the pin and now (I went from lying on my back to sitting on my ***) take the silver retaining pin and insert it into the shifter pin by feel alone.

Finished product:
989aac2f0edbde7d4316d0e022a1268e  Shifter Linkage Bushings

Step 6: Optional Lube
I’m a paranoid person, so I took my jar of bearing grease and coated the hell of out my bushings. You don’t have to do this, I just wanted to make sure that no dust/grit found its way in there. Edit: Use spray on lithium grease!

Take your car out for a spin. I found that in colder weather (~35 F) that the car still shifted ‘harshly’ but that at ~50 F things started to smooth out more [this may have been due to my transmission oil temperature]. You will definitely feel more connected to your transmission. Whether this is good or bad is up to you to decide. Otherwise, enjoy!


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