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need shifter alignment help
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forgets
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2008 9:33 pm    Post subject: need shifter alignment help Reply with quote

so i've tried reading through whatever i could find in the search topics, which confused me a little more.. i also tried doing the shifter alignment described in the bentley.. made it a little better, but not 'working'..

Here's the problem with my shifter, first and second gear are to left of the lockout for reverse. meaning i have to go past the lockout (my shifter will let me, and then first is just past the lockout, reverse is a little farther left).. so i tried the shifter alignment as described in the bentley, didn't work out that well, i saw in some posts, that this condition is possibly caused by the missing 'dog ears' on the bottom part of the shifter.. however mine still has the dog ears, and they look to be in good condition.. the rear part of the linkage looks ok, as it's supposed to in the bentley picture..

from my estimation, the shifter 'stick' isn't completely 'straight' meaning i can push it about an inch and a half left before i hit the 'reverse lockout', (then i can move it a little up and left, then a little more up to hit first) .. it seems to me (though i am a recent first time westy owner) that first gear should be hit by just going up, instead of a little left, then up (or is it supposed to be like that?) .. how would i fix / align that ? i'll try and get photo's up in a little while so maybe that'll be of more help..

thanks for any input anyone has!
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mightyart
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2008 9:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What year do you own?
Your problems are more then likely worn bushings not adjustment.
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forgets
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2008 10:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

oh, it's a 1985 westy, it's got new shifter trim plate that you just have to align the two holes on per the bentley, so it's been changed at some point, i was reading past articles, and i'm guessing i might need the $100 gowesty kit or the $50 van-cafe one, can anyone point me in the direction of which is the most likely offending piece, and if both shifter rebuild kits contain it? thanks!
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vannygun
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 30, 2008 12:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

i decided to be a hero one day and thought i would try to adjust my linkage by my self,not even close.i had the same problems you are having.the plastic bushings that the shaft going from the base of the shifter to the trans pass through are worn out.i had 1st gear in the reverse lockout position.since i knew how my van should shift i had a buddy underneath loosen the adjuster and adjust and tighten,over and over until 1st was out of the reverse lockout.im back to almost normal with a lot of slop but manageable.(many more items on the to do list in front of bushings like brakes,master cylinder, clutch slave/master,non p rated tires etc etc etc.just find someone who can tell from the drivers seat if first is in the right position while you are underneath making small adjustments or vise versa,remember from underneath everything if reversed and backwards(screwed with my head trying to figure it out alone!)
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vannygun
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 30, 2008 12:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

here is a pic i threw together
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

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forgets
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 30, 2008 12:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

turns out upon further inspection i thought i had the dogs ears bushings..
it really was just a bunch of grease in the shape of them, and a few plastic pieces of their remnants.. so is it possible to get these alone? hopefully getting those will fix this right up..
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levi
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 30, 2008 2:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Unfortunately, no. It's attached to the rod, about 4 feet long, and about 200$ if you can find it. I don't know of anyone that has them for sale right now.
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forgets
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 30, 2008 5:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

hey if anyone's can snap a pic of what the bushings look like, or take some overall measurements, i'd greatly appreciate it, i'll try and find some at the junkyard today, and if not i'm probably going to try and fab some up with some plastic putty, or fiberglass...

p.s. what type of grease do i fill it with again? anything in particular i should look for at the auto parts store, or should i get the stuff straight from the dealership?
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Dogpilot
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 30, 2008 8:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The shaft with the ears on it is a special order item, still available from the dealer. Last time I checked it was $129. Bus Depot may be able to order one for you as well. It is long, so it causes problems with shippers.

If you haven't already, read this little article:

http://www.van-cafe.com/vanagonparts.jsp?pa=ip&ip=957368499
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korkwood
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2008 12:10 am    Post subject: need shifter alignment help Reply with quote

This is common problem, worn out (not bushings) plastic molded to ends of "fork". Most Vanagons have this problem unless front rods were replaced with new ones. Very expensive now.
It is no problem at all to shift without those plastic "wrappers", in fact i have same problem and it's not even noticable on my Syncro
On Westy i installed delrin caps and it works fine, original ones i think were urethane
those 2 adjustment slots on top of shifter box are useless,
real adjustment is at junction of front and rear shifter rods
for proper shifter alignment, shifter in neutral must be in position ligned up with 3-4 gear slot
There should be spriing tension while pushing left.When Released it should go back to same spot
Check condition inside shifter box, clean and lube guides
instead of fork
Leon
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msinabottle
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2009 12:49 pm    Post subject: URL's Changed on the Van Cafe Article Reply with quote

Here's the latest URL for that article on the Vanagon's shifter:

http://www.van-cafe.com/home/van/page_14_9/vanagon_shifter.html

I'm going to take a more serious look at Winston's shifter, but I think it will go better with two of us.

Best!
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larrytrk
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2009 1:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My extreme difficulty getting into first gear was caused by misalignment of the linkage between the rear shift assembly and the middle shaft. loosening the coupling, after marking position with a sharpie, and realigning than tightening in the proper position gave me back butter smooth shifts in all four gears and reverse.
Much trial and error was involved as first four gears were fine ,but, no reverse and finally the proper position was gained.
As was suggested in a previous post a extra set of hands would have helped to maintain the twisted position while you tightened the clamp.
Thank you to the person (danfromsyr ) who gave directions on how to do this, it made it easy, when 2 mechanics didn't seem to know how.
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