DIY: Short Throw Shifter (dial-up alert) - Page 2 - Toyota RAV4 Forums
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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old 11-04-2012, 07:19 PM
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well done, this will be one of my to do list in my rav4.1 :-)
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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-15-2013, 03:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DNA View Post
It's totally different from my US 96. Everything is matel except the shift ball housing. There is an extra "C" shape thing on the shifter itself held by 2 pins go across the shifter. There is a ball w/ spring behind on the shift ball housing. The ball and the C shape thing make a click and hold. No snap ring holding the shift ball.

I had to go to work and just put everything back together.

Gonna look into it more this weekend.
This is correct. Much to my surprise, a lot of things looked different when the center console came off.

On eBay, I ordered this $18 shifter -- Nice 93 97 Toyota Corolla Short Throw Shifter CE Le DX 94 96 | eBay -- which looks identical to the one that Corrupt_File used. Short shifter, four risers, and four longer bolts.

I didn't take photos but almost everything is metal including the cage. The shift ball housing is plastic and so is this unknown "C" looking thing as DNA states.

Fortunately, removal was easier than Corrupt_File's version. The cage never left the vehicle and I didn't have to R&I the electrical wires nor the shifter cables from the cage. The main two pins easily slide out the left after removing the two nuts on the right side. In addition to the ratchet or wrench for the nuts on the right, I used a hex key on the left for the front pin and pliers on the back pin to prevent both sides from concurrently spinning. The cotter pin on the left bottom didn't put up any fight.

After removing the shifter assembly is where the difficulty began. Taking the C clamp thing off was easy. Used a punch with hammer. I don't know what it's for but I didn't use it on the new shifter because it didn't the guide holes for the clamp.

For me, the hardest part was next: removing the shift ball housing from the ball and removing the two white bushings. For the former, I tried many ways to remove it but for some weird reason it wouldn't slide off. I ended up using two long screwdrivers between the two pin sleeves (right word?) and and hitting the shifter upside down into the ground. As for the white bushings, those came off fairly easy with a vise. In previous short shifter installs on other vehicles, I've always replaced those bushings...not this time through.

There was about a 1 inch spring that pointed forward/downward in the shifter ball housing which use I haven't the vaguest. That never went back in either. Maybe it worked in conjunction with the "C" thing that wasn't used.

There was a lot of grease everywhere that I cleaned off. Used lithium white grease in its place.

Upon installation of the new shifter into the cage, make sure you squeeze that spring thing so it's putting negative (?) force on the shifter "side arm" or else the shifter won't return to the middle position when in neutral. It'll kind of "stick" between 1-2 or 5-R.

I didn't have to remove the four rubber feet nor did I "modify" the metal bracket under the back of the cage. Instead, I removed the bracket altogether. I believe its use was for two (of five) of the center console screws. I didn't think it was that necessary.


Observations: the shifting is noticeably shorter. In fact, it's pretty significant. I didn't do any measures so can't say if it's 45-55% shorter. Gears 1-5 are still pretty easy. Reverse is a bit harder but it was already tricky sometimes. Everything takes about 50% more force, which is fine, because stock shifters on cars that I've driven have always been a lot easier than the trucks.

Assuming no problems arise, this was a great modification and definitely worth the $18 plus shipping ($5)...I would definitely do it, again.

If anybody needs photos of the finished product, let me know. I can easily snap some. I had things to do so I didn't take photos immediately after installing.

Last edited by mkawada; 09-16-2013 at 12:06 AM.
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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old 06-26-2014, 05:26 PM
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OK, Corrupt_File I'm having trouble with my quick shifter. I think the lower bushing, the one you refer to as "that little white plastic thing" in your above pictures. In the early Dodge Colts, they were nosotriusly always mis-shifting because of this little bushing. So much, my broth had one made of copper in a machine shop for a permanent fix.

Question; Is it dificult to remove and fix? I see you had trouble fixing this one.
What do I have to watch for?
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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old 07-04-2016, 12:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by craigh View Post
Hi All!
I am new here as a registered member, but have been following this site and this excellent Posting and thread in particular for a couple of months (THANK YOU who ever put this together!). I just purchased a short shifter for my 1998 Rav4L following this advice above, which is sound and proven for most years. However I discovered that this is not true for '98 thru 2000s. The post '97 RAV4s still use the common (cheaper) '93 to '97 Corolla shifters. If you buy a '98 Corolla shifter, it won't have the necessary groove on the short horizontal post to keep the centering spring in place. The shift rod is also straight without any bend or curve, which would put the shift knob too far forward for comfortable gear changes.

Fortunately, I figured all this out before trying to install it! I bought it from TWM Performance because I couldn't find anything cheaper on ebay for a 1998 Corolla -They take a huge price jump after 1997 and are harder to find.

So if anybody with a later model RAV4.1 want's a short shifter, you need to get the earlier '93~'97 shifter. And that's great news because they are WAY cheaper!!

Cheers!
Craig
Does it matter if the RAV4 is 4WD or FWD (I have the 4WD) and what kind of 93-97 Corolla it is (engine, trim, etc.)? Or is everything compatible as long as it is a 93-97 Corolla and a Gen1 RAV4?

Thanks in advance!!

1997 RAV4 3-door 4WD, manual, "Ocean Mist Metallic" color
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