Community Member Credit: nismopc
Well, I did the STS mod today using a bolt and did not like the final version. I originally posted my results in the Free STS post, but decided this was worthy of a new post due to finding the perfect parts to make a perfect STS for less than $2 dollars.
So being bored on this wet Sunday evening, I went to Lowe’s and found the exact part I needed for a DIYer STS.
My original STS was done by drilling a 5/16 hole through the shifter arm and then cutting off the threaded part of a long 5/16 bolt and drilling a small hole for the cotter pin. It was a OK job, but I noticed the bolt allowed for a lil too much play with the shifter cable. Not pleased.
I picked this up from Lowe’s. It is a 5/16×2 Clevis Pin. Just a slight bit bigger in diameter than the bolt and a perfect match to the factory shifter cable connector. Perfect match!
Part Name: Hillman 2-in Clevis Pin
Description: Clevis pin – adjustable 5/16 x 2 1pc/bag Adjustable
Order Link: https://www.lowes.com/pd/Hillman-2-in-Clevis-Pin/3012908
Here is the Clevis Pin installed from below. I had to tap it in place from under the car due to a very tight fit from surrounding items. Look at how it is the same exact height as the factory pin.
Here is the final install with factory pin in place. I originally was gonna use a cotter pin but decided to use the factory one instead. Easier to remove if needed.
Additional Reference via trooplewis
Thought I would share some additional hints if you haven’t messed with stuff like this before, and post a few pictures.
First step, get rid of all the air intake plumbing!
You need to loosen the hose clamp around the pleated rubber that connects to the throttle body, you need to remove the breather hose where it connects to the block, you need to pinch the clip and pull off the MAF connector, and then you need to remove 4 screws to take out all the air intake plumbing.
That takes 5 or 6 minutes if you have not done it before.
When that plastic crap is off, this is what you will see. The area you are going to be working in is in the lower right of this photo, under that red electrical connection you see. Speaking of which, watch your drill, make sure the chuck is not spinning against it. You don’t want to mess up the wires or the connector there.
The hole you are going to drill is DEEP, I don’t think anyone mentioned that before. It is about an inch of metal you drill through. I used regular 30-wt motor oil to keep the tip of the 5/16 bit cool, putting a few drops into the hole every couple minutes. I just took my time, running the drill at a slow speed with moderate pressure on it. If you drill on high speed, you better have some really nice bits or you are going to destroy them. Take your time.
Drill a pilot hole first with a 3/16 or 1/8 inch bit, but then you can use a sharp 5/16 to go all the way through. You do not have to drill the hole twice with 2 bits, just get your pilot hole set so the 5/16 doesn’t “walk” the surface metal. The drilling took about 20 minutes.
I got the same clevis pin at Lowes, but it didn’t fit neatly into the new hole, as there were burrs on the holes in the pin. I had to put it in a vise and take some crocus cloth to it to smooth it down, then it worked OK.
Here is a photo of the location where I put the hole. NOTE in this image the pin is upside down, just there for the purpose of seeing the location. You have to install the pin from below.
OK, I don’t know if anyone can put the clevis pin in from above the car; not enough area to get your hand into. I jacked up the front of the car (be safe!) and crawled under, still could not get my hand with the pin in my fingers up into that area.
I ended up using one of those long magnetic flexible things you use to get nuts and bolts out of hard to get places that they fall into. I put the clevis pin on the magnet and got it up through the hole then an assistant grabbed and held it while I got out from under the car.
I used needle nosed pliers to hold the lower part of the pin while I slid the linkage back over it, and installed the factory lock clip. You can see the end result in this photo.
Nothing binds, everything works well, and the “smile factor” is definitely there. I don’t think this mod affects the side-to-side movement of the shift knob, but it has a big impact on the up-down travel of the shift handle. Way shorter throw, I did not notice a change in ‘notchiness’, but it is a lot of fun.
You will notice I did not re-install the factory washer, I could not get it to fit under the hole the lock pin slides through. I don’t think that will have any effect on the shifting of the car or the life of the bushing in that location.
Took me about an hour and a half from the time I popped the hood to the time I drove out and tested it.