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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Shifting in my Coupe GT has been having a big negative impact on my driving satisfaction. I resolved to see what I could do about it as it has gradually deteriorated. I've had 2 issues. First is the widely reported balkiness of the 1-2 shift, especially when cold. Second is that the side-to-side motion of the shifter has gradually gotten stiffer, causing too much effort and a general feeling of wrestling with the shifter and imprecise shifts.

Today, I focused on this issue. I started by draining the gearbox and refilling with some fresh Mobil 1 75-90 gear lube. The magnetic drain plug looked clear of debris.

Next, I started looking over the shifter mechanism on the left side of the gearbox. The cables were routed smoothly and nothing looked bent or otherwise physically damaged. I got my son to watch the shifter and determined that the cable that works the rocker which attaches to the turnbuckle adjuster is the one that handles the side-to-side motion.

Ok, so now to the good part you've been looking for. The rocker pivots on a stud and is held on with an 8mm nut (13 mm wrench) on the end of the stud. I noticed some light corrosion on the washer between the nut and the rocker. I removed the nut and slid the rocker as far off the stud as I could without disconnecting the cable. I saw no corrosion so applied some moly grease and slid it back on. I replaced the washer with a stainless steel washer of the same size. Now to the real issue. When I reinstalled the self locking nut, I saw that when it was snugged down, it caused some binding of the rocker. Slightly backing off let the piece move much better. There was enough thread sticking out the back of the nut to install a lock-nut. I tightened the nut just enough to have no play in the rocker and then locked it in place with the lock nut.

Now, I have a very light and lively shifter with much more precise shifting. Even the 1-2 shift is much better. Having examined the mechanism, I feel that some slight fine tuning of the turnbuckle may well yield further improvement of the 1-2 shift. I get the best shift when I hold the shifter hard left as I pull back. I believe that it can be adjusted so that that isn't necessary. I ran out of time but I will report on this when I get it done.

For now, I'm very satisfied with a very substantial improvement. My shifter now has the light and lively feel that is proper for an Italian car. No more wrestling with a clunky stick. A thumb and two fingers easily "snicks" through the gears.
 

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GT shifter

Great post, I have a 2003 GT and would like to improve my shifting as well. Mine does not sound as bad has your did. but there is always room for improvement. Keep us informed when you get it done.
 
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