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Old 11-25-2012
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custom shifter ideas?

is there anyone here who has a custom shifter set up for their manual trans that is not an fx4 chrome arm or hurst shifter? i bought a hurst replica rubber shifter boot with chrome trim plate for my truck bu i need ideas for a cool shifter arm. i am trying to keep this little project low buck and different. dont really want to spend $100+ to get a hurst arm and **** for my truck.
i have been throwing around the idea of using a large chrome wrench or big snap-on screwdriver as shifters. i really love the look of the chrome hurst arms with the white ball **** but im not going to pay that much for them.

curious to see what others have done!
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Old 11-25-2012
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My buddy has a long old ratchet handle with the mechanism removed for his. Not a ranger, it's a 91 cummins dodge, but it's an idea.
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Old 11-25-2012
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got any pics?
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Old 11-25-2012
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Not at the moment. I can probably get some tuesday, because it's at our votech shop and I won't be back at school till then at the earliest. It's pretty red-necked, but the whole truck is pretty red-necked anyways
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Old 11-26-2012
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Grenade, beer tap, novelty skull. There are websites that tons of cool looking shifters. Whatever you do I think you'd wanna use something hand friendly. A open ended wrench doesn't contour the hand as well at a screwdriver. It might look badass but you have to shift it in the long run.
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Old 11-26-2012
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i was thinking more the closed end... lol. and im looking for the shift arm not the handle
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Old 11-26-2012
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Ahhhhh. I see. I have no advice then except to wish you good luck.
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Old 11-26-2012
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i was thinking of cutting the open end off a 1 1/4 or 1 1/2" wrench and have the wrench body go through the shifter boot as the handle. maybe even cut both ends off and drill/tap the wrench body to install a ****/ i dont know exactly what i am going to do right now, probably go with something clean and classic instead but i am always open to something different
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Old 11-27-2012
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Not to unique but how about a ¾” pice of steel bar, something hefty, round or square, mybe even diamond shaped. Round would be easier to work with, bends easier to fit your truck and arm length.

You could thread the lower end to fit a nut, which in turn could be welded to the OEM Shift lever and the top would need rework, turned down to a size that can be threaded to the shift-handle you will be using.

Could be painted any color or even plated chrome.

If round stock is used, it would have a slight resemblance to an FX4 Shifter.

Just thinking out loud… always good to make something, luck.

Last edited by Scrambler82; 11-27-2012 at 12:27 PM. Reason: spl chk
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Old 11-27-2012
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To the OP, are you able to fabricate and weld?

You can buy a few pieces of steel, and do something completely custom.
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Old 11-27-2012
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You could try an old gun barrel or something. Maybe a sword (dulled edges of course). Golf club of something?
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Old 11-27-2012
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Here's what I was talking about. There's no **** on the end of it, but it gets the job done. Guess I could've taken a pic of the entire thing to show the length, but that's pretty much all of it anyways. Made in China!
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Old 11-27-2012
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hell ya i can weld and fab! and fix things too lol! i think i might pick up some aluminum bar and make my own shifter now. we have an aluminum spool gun at my shop so i think i can do something cool
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Old 11-27-2012
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Originally Posted by ranger4.0 View Post
hell ya i can weld and fab! and fix things too lol! i think i might pick up some aluminum bar and make my own shifter now. we have an aluminum spool gun at my shop so i think i can do something cool
So have you had any new ideas or thinking on one of the suggestions ?
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Old 11-27-2012
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i was watching on of the old biker build off episodes last night with indian larry and he was doing a twisted metal down tube for the front of the bike frame. i thought that looked pretty sweet. i might do something like that with a cool **** on it
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Old 11-27-2012
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i was also thinking of doing an aluminum arm similar in shape to the hurst ones with hot rod style holes in it getting smaller as they go up the length of the tapered arm
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Old 11-27-2012
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Originally Posted by ranger4.0 View Post
i was also thinking of doing an aluminum arm similar in shape to the hurst ones with hot rod style holes in it getting smaller as they go up the length of the tapered arm
Pain in the *** to make but would look cool for sure!
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Old 11-28-2012
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Originally Posted by ranger4.0 View Post
i was also thinking of doing an aluminum arm similar in shape to the hurst ones with hot rod style holes in it getting smaller as they go up the length of the tapered arm
Watch the thickness of the metal, if metal is thinner, too many holes and you end up with a bent shifter.
Aluminum is nice, polishes better than chrome, lighter than steel but some draw backs.
Would be a nice setup.

What about a flat steel bar with holes if you want, once painted you will not know if it is steel or aluminum; also you can mount a Mag Light, brake lock or manual throttle to the stick if you wanted.


Thinking too much, what about a small shock absorber ?
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Old 11-28-2012
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ya i was thinking about going with a nice thick aluminum arm. at least 3/8" with the holes and polish it. my only real concern will be drilling and tapping a hole in the shifter for a stud to mount a ****. dont know if it will weaken the top and cause the **** to break off over time
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Old 11-29-2012
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Making a slot in the aluminum the size of the lower OEM shifter arm would be easy the hard part is attaching it, steel to aluminum.
Maybe an aluminum nut welded to the end of the new shift stick, maybe in a slot and then tap the end of the cut off OEM Shifter to fit the nut or re-drill the nut to fit.

If you use steel and paint it, you can weld the new steel stick to the cut end of the OEM Stick, fully compatible steel to steel. you can slot the end of the steel and slide it over the cut end and weld, will make a stronger joint.

BUT… always a but(t), you still have the OEM shift arm in the trans and that is what causes the most trouble and wide shift points.

Have you looked on eBay or Craigs List for a used Hurst Kit, maybe even just the lower part that goes in and bolt to the trans; that could end all of these problems.
Then the shift stick will bolt on and you can use any flat bar you want if it bends then make a new one thicker.

Smoke...Thinking again…do you smell the wood burning… what if you take a flat steel bar, your size, and weld steel flat stock to the sides making sort of an “X” or “Plus +” sign, a little different.

Luck on this, make it strong, think steel, aluminum is nice but usually will bend with the sideway force.
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Old 11-29-2012
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i have a body lift shifter extension made of steel. i was planning to cut it and weld a piece of flat bar to it and drill two holes to mount the new arm like the hurst shifters. i had a hurst shifter but decided not to put it in, i sold it for a lot more than i paid for it and it was incomplete kit
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Old 06-24-2013
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My dad took some old chain he had laying around and a bolt and made a shifter for his ranger. He hacked off the old shifter and left about 3 inches so he could mount it to the original piece and welded the bolt to the top so he could screw on a one off shifter **** I made him for xmas. Nice shifter, he has it sitting up high so its comfortable to use and it makes a nice clicking sound when you shift. Next time I go over to his place I can get a picture of it.
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Old 06-27-2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whitedevil View Post
My dad took some old chain he had laying around and a bolt and made a shifter for his ranger. He hacked off the old shifter and left about 3 inches so he could mount it to the original piece and welded the bolt to the top so he could screw on a one off shifter **** I made him for xmas. Nice shifter, he has it sitting up high so its comfortable to use and it makes a nice clicking sound when you shift. Next time I go over to his place I can get a picture of it.
Wouldn't the chain be floppy?
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Old 06-27-2013
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Nah he used some pretty thick chain. If you weld each link together, you can place the **** in any position you like. His comes up to where in first gear, you can fit your hand between the steering and the ****.he's an old rat rodder, so he uses whatever he has laying around. He's got a scrap piece of diamond plate surrounding both shifters on the floor.
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  #25  
Old 06-27-2013
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Sorry. That was my pathetic attempt at humor.

Cheers!
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