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Old 07-28-2014, 08:24 PM
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Default Opinions on linkages on transmission shifters

I have been very slowly working on a transmission conversion project for my 4runner, as my free time is limited. The first step was to rebuild the transmission, which I've done.

For those that have interest, it is an R151 5 speed transmission. If used, it will give me a lower 1st gear, a stronger transmission, and the ability to bolt a gear driven mini truck transfer case directly to it, without need of an adapter = less likely to have leaks.

However, one of the issues with this transmission is that it has a different shifter location than my current transmission. It also has a spot for a t-case shifter on the transmission (from the factory, the transfer case shift lever was bolted to the transmission)

This puts the shifter about 3 or so inches forward of my current trans. In addition, the bell housings are different lengths. Not a huge deal, as I can swap input shafts and bell housings, but on this trans, the bell housing and input shaft are about 1" farther forward than my current one.

So, this nets a little over 4" of difference between the two. However, the t-case mount is just over 4" back, meaning that if this trans and bell housing combo are used, a shifter mounted at the t-case location would come up nearly exactly where my current transmission shifter is located.

The factory location on this transmission comes up right under my console: not an option as I want to keep the interior as factory and clean as possible.

So, I began fabbing and working on a possible solution, and this is the current prototype. It works fine, meaning I can shift into all the gears:







My concern is strength and reliability. I know that some cars come with linkages from the factory, but I don't know if any have a single linkage like this, which requires not just back and forth movement, but side to side. Obviously, the direct shifter is stronger, but how bad would this be?

I know many of you have much more experience than I with other types of vehicles. The amount of work to mount the transmission is enough that I don't want to put this in there on a "well, it COULD work, if you're lucky..." kind of thing. If its a "yeah it'll work, not guaranteed, but this is done all the time..." situation, then it would be worth it, if that makes sense.

Thanks for the input!
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Old 07-29-2014, 09:41 AM
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No thoughts? If you think it sucks, please say so. I am certainly not sold on this idea at all, so any criticism is welcome, positive or negative.
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Old 07-29-2014, 09:41 AM
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So the R151 isn't the "normal" 5 speed for the 3.4 V6? Is the current tranny an auto?
I don't have anything to offer for your problem - just more curious about what you are doing.
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Old 07-29-2014, 10:52 AM
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Don't you have to push down to get into reverse? Also, I'd fab a turnbuckle in the link to be able to fine tune the spacing between the pivots.
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Old 07-29-2014, 12:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jacket View Post
So the R151 isn't the "normal" 5 speed for the 3.4 V6? Is the current tranny an auto?
I don't have anything to offer for your problem - just more curious about what you are doing.
No, its a 5 speed, its an R150 currently. The R150 from the 3.4 has a longer bell housing and input shaft than the R150 from the 3.0.

The R151 is the only R series that came with a gear drive, 23 spline tcase, and a low first gear (4.3 vs 3.9). The reason for attempting this is more to see if it can be done cleanly. If not, I can swap guts into an R150 and just use the adapter. The adapters have issues leaking, and require an extra coupler. Not the end of the world, just more moolah and more hassle.

The other advantage is that by removing the adapter and using the shorter bell housing, I shorten the drivetrain length by 2", which is helpful is clearing crossmembers.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 60wag View Post
Don't you have to push down to get into reverse? Also, I'd fab a turnbuckle in the link to be able to fine tune the spacing between the pivots.
No, reverse is just over to the right and back. I thought about a turn buckle, but my concern was that it would make this weak.
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Old 07-29-2014, 05:41 PM
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When I built this '92 third gen,



I replaced the R-150 with the R-151F "Turbo" transmission for the same reasons. I needed to move the transmission shifter rearward 3" and the t/case shifter forward 1.25". The following pictures show the method I used. Admittedly not as well engineered as yours! Has been working quite well for the last 2 years.
I see no reason your shifter mod wouldn't work just fine as long as it clears the floorboard. I appears to be robust enough.





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Old 07-30-2014, 10:01 AM
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I'd considered that Steve, but I was concerned about the "up" part of the shifting: meaning, when you shift into 1st, 3rd, or 5th, I was worried that, because the shifter moves upwards, it would interfere with the shift boot and possible come out of gear. Seems like its not an issue for you though.
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Old 07-31-2014, 06:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve View Post
When I built this '92 third gen,







I replaced the R-150 with the R-151F "Turbo" transmission for the same reasons. I needed to move the transmission shifter rearward 3" and the t/case shifter forward 1.25". The following pictures show the method I used. Admittedly not as well engineered as yours! Has been working quite well for the last 2 years.

I see no reason your shifter mod wouldn't work just fine as long as it clears the floorboard. I appears to be robust enough.












My dad used the same method and I'm not a fan at all. It works great but I feel like I'm shifting a big rig. I like clean concise shifts like I have with my short throw on the civic. I'll be interested in how this works, Issac. Ya know if I ever inherit the Chili.
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Old 07-31-2014, 11:57 AM
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Doesn't strike me as the worst thing. Using the forward shift seat as a pivot is pretty dang clever and since there shouldn't be much movement I wouldn't think it could bind or twist. I don't think adding a turnbuckle to dial in the length wouldn't be a bad idea, I think ultimately the difference in strength is less important than making sure you don't have pressure on the shifter forks and snychros. You see a lot of high mile W56 and R150 that pop out of gear in 2nd and 4th because people tend to rest their hand on the shifter and that little bit of pressure wears stuff out.
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Last edited by DaveInDenver; 07-31-2014 at 01:51 PM.
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Old 07-31-2014, 12:21 PM
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I'm not understanding the pressure thing? The forward shift tcase base is free floating, and the added weight of the connecting rod is very minimal. The only weight then resting on the actual shift levers is that of the shifter itself (and my fat hand LOL), but that shouldn't be different than normal?

I can add a turn buckle, but I'm not seeing how it would change the pressures on the shift levers? Please explain a bit more.

FWIW, the entire trans was torn down, and all new components (including syncros on every gear) were put in.
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