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Pistol grip shifter build for a '57 Fork pickup restomod

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  • Pistol grip shifter build for a '57 Fork pickup restomod

    a friend of mine is doing a restomod on a '57 Ford F100 (I think) and needed a new shifter as the one that came on the '89 Mustang GT 5.0 he stuffed in there (old V8 needed too much work to be economical to fix) only came up to his ankle.

    So I made a new shifter rod and bracket out of a piece of 5/8" stainless rod (scrapyard find) and some alu scrap
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    and then started hacking away at a piece of 4.5 x 2 x 1.75" piece of alu. Drilled it ~3.5" deep for a 3/8-24" thread (what I thought was the female thread on the end of the shifter rod), then realised that I had no way of tapping a hole that deep. Doh! So made this with spit and superglue
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    in action
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    then bored and reamed the hole 2.5" deep to 5/8" to match the shifter rod
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    also made a 3/8-24 set screw to join the female threads on the shifter with the female threads on the shifter rod. Only later found out it was some weird azz fine M10 thread. Doh!

  • #2
    so, got the shifter rod's sister, cut the end off and retapped it 3/8-24. Added a set screw and we're now set up for shaping the shifter
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    stuck it in a collet block then tilted and skewed it to the right angle
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    close up
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    used a 1/2" round over router bit for the ends and corners, then a ball end mill for the finger cut outs, then a hell of a lot of work with some files to finish shaping the profile
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    • #3
      Is the shifter going to be 3 foot long???



      • #4
        My friend politely told me that stamped numbers was not really the look he was going for, so our very own Stepside stepped (ha!) up and made me a couple of shifter medallions with the same shift pattern and numbers as the original Mustang shifter. A very big thank you! I owe you one

        Boring out the recess for the medallion. Screwed up the first time (they were 33.xx mm in diameter, not the 35.xx mm my eyes somehow read on the caliper) so cut the shifter back 3mm and started again.
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        Ended up with a pretty tight slip fit. Tight enough that I had to use a suction cut to get it out after test fitting! A bit of JB weld and 24h later:
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        Next step was anodising. What a pain the proverbial that turned out to be. Took 4 tries before I got something that wasn't purple (not his style) and then it was a another whole pain in the.. to do the numbers. I tried blanking the shift pattern with superglue after anodising, but cleaning up the edges with acetone screwed up the oxide layer so the top looked like a$$ after dying. I then painted the pattern black, but machining the surface down pulled some of the paint out. ARGH! A little touch up and a coat of lacquer and we have...
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        fitting it to the truck this afternoon. A fun project but I'll be glad to see the back of it - it's taken a LONG time and I want to do something else for a change


        • #5
          Originally posted by Doozer View Post
          Is the shifter going to be 3 foot long???

          I'll have to measure it, but I think it's about 2'6" long. Enough plus the shifter to put the top at about elbow height in driving position. We had to make a couple of bends to get the rod to clear the seat and not end up somewhere by the front bumper in 5th, plus he added a short shifter to get the throws down to something reasonable. It's a 60yr old truck remember


          • #6
            That is what I thought, because it looks like an underhand grip for it to be comfortable.



            • #7
              I'll take a pic of it when I go round this afternoon. The end result was after alot of "fitting", which is why the back is more rounded than the front, the top is well rounded and the cutouts are more angled up on the right side than the left. He wanted a shifter like the one he has in his delivery truck, which he can hold from the side (arm at 90deg) or rest his hand on top.


              • #8
                Something about it makes me think
                3 finger death punch ! ! !



                • #9
                  Wear gloves in the winter or you could end up stuck to it and frozen solid...


                  • #10
                    winter isn't a thing here


                    • #11
                      installed The rest is a bit of a work in progress..
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                      friend was happy to have it and I was happy to see it finished


                      • #12
                        That tranny is obviously not the original. Even though the shaft is long, probably still a shorter throw that the original, and I’m sure slicker shifting!


                        • #13
                          oh hell no, I think it was a four speed where you had to stand up to reach 4th He replaced the engine and transmission with a 5.0 from a '89 Mustang GT as the original V8 had a blockage on the oil supply to one of the heads = trashed rockers and whatever that tube is that they ride on (sorry, not well up on OHV engines). The other head wasn't much better. When he added up all the parts needed to fix the one he had he could get a replacement engine and tranny for a few hundred more, netting fuel injection and a whole wide world of 5.0 V8 mods. The rear end is of a '90 Explorer (I think), so he has disks all round and a better choice of wheels, and he got a new drive shaft made up using the original and some exhaust pipe as a template.

                          It's going to be pretty fun when he finishes it, though he's temporarily distracted with tuning his new to him F150 Ecoboost V6


                          • #14
                            If that's the short version id hate to see the long, still lots of mass hanging on the end, let us know if she finds neutral over speed bumps and pothole's or even attempts to get into another gear for you lol


                            • #15
                              thanks for the positive thoughts AK. As for self shifting, we'll see. There's theory and there's reality.