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Hope someone can help, I have a 1980 Merak SS and can not get it to shift into 1st or 2nd gear. The gear shift goes into the proper postions (1,2,3,4) but when in 1st gear position the transmisson/gearbox is actly in 3rd gear and when in 2nd gear position the transmisson/gearbox is in 4th gear. I was having trouble getting it into reverse and 5th overdrive, adjusted the slack out of the cable so now that shift is ok but now having the problems with 1st and 2nd. Any thoughts or help would be greatly appreciated.
 

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Merak shifting

sorry to hear the shifting problem. They are tricky to adjust. i have never done it but the mechanic that worked on my cars fiddled with one for half a day. good luck. look for wear on the linkage like a flat stop that caused some of my problem. that could be a problem
 

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I have fiddled with mine a lot and it does go out of adjustment essy too. ...
There are two shifting movements and associated assemblies. A). the rod linkage move with the shifter front to back, thus selecting the 1st to 2nd shift and the 3rd to 4th shift. Then there is B). the cable which selects along the other axis, side to side1st, 3rd, 5th on top and the 2nd, 4th, and reverse. If you play with the adjustment of the cable the other direction it will go into 1st easier but then may be hard to get into 5th and reverse. You kinda' have to try different settings between losening the cable and tightening it. It is very sensitive and sometimes a 1/4 or 1/2 turn of the adjusting nut will be all that is needed to make a difference.
there is also a small adjusting nut on the cable up by the shifter itself, I haven't had much luck in making any good affect on the shifting with it however.
It sounds like if you loosen (or maybe tighten) the cable you, ( try just a 1/2 turn of the nut) you will find 1st you are probably going 3rd to 5th and not 4th. Just think of it as your shift pattern has shifted sideways a notch and 1st fell of the grid....does that make any sense?
 
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