R.A.S. Short Shift Kit

Reviewed by: Mike Bolton - bolton@sprintmail.com

Replacement shifter for the Miata, decreases the amount of throw on the shifter. Installed in a 1994B with other mods.

Installation was very straight forward. Remove the center console, the boot, the retainer, the old shifter. Make sure you have the car in neutral. I changed transmission oil to MTL before installing the shift kit. Figured I could use all tha advantage that I could get since the leverage point is reduced by about 30%. To change oil you must drain the bottom part through the transmission drain plug. Installation of new oil is done through a plug in the side of the transmission, NOT THROUGH THE TOP WERE THE SHIFTER IS! The top part only holds about 1/4 cup of oil. Old oil must be sucked out with a turkey baster. To ensure I got it all out I also used a bulb type anti-freeze tester after removing the balls. I suppose an eye-dropper would also work. I further used paper towels to wick up anything missed with the suction devices. Anyway, once cleaned out I refilled to just over the top of where the pivot ball of the shifter resides with MTL. Removal of the nylon insert from the old shifter was simple, but care should be taken not to ding it up. It probably isn't something you could find at you local parts store on a Sunday afternoon if you err here. Lined up the index pin for the nylon insert mentioned above and dropped it into place. It would not seat into the engagment hole without tapping the top with a PLASTIC screwdriver handle. Don't use a hammer or you will spoil the threads that the shifter ball screws onto. The reason you have to tap it into place is because the oil is in the shifter receptical. The pin that goes into this receptical is nylon and makes a pretty good seal. You must displace the oil from the hole for the pin to go into. Make sure you cover the open shifter area with a rag if you have to tap it into place, once the shifter goes down the oil has a tendency to squirt up and out landing who knows where in the interior. I was lucky, it just went onto the dash and was easily wiped up.

The look and feel of the shifter is different. It sit noticeably lower than the stock unit to the trained Miata eye. The shifter requires an very small amount of additional effort to shift due to the realignment of leverage, but you get used to it by 3rd gear. The feel is super. I have heard that the feel is like a formula 1car and I'd have to agree. The shifts are now snicks from gear to gear. 1st to 2nd is extremely tight, 2nd to third a pleasure and so on. The MTL is a good idea as it seems more slippery than the OEM oil. The clash from 1st to 2nd is gone not because of the shifter, but because of the oil. Kind of an expensive upgrade, but kind of cool too once you experience it. If you are looking for that extra tick I guess this could give it to you.

Reviewed by: Sean Ebron - rdtsr96@aol.com

Reduces shift by 30%

I have been looking to get a short shift kit for some time. I was getting discouraged because I couldn't believe the cost of these items. I happened to be on-line at work and I pulled up the Roebuck Mazda web site. They sold short shifter kits as well as the Voodoo shift knob. I ordered both items on a Wednesday, and they arrived on a Friday. It took me 15 minutes to install. I am the farthest thing from a mechanic so this is very simple to install. I got the textured black shift knob. what a nice feeling. Someone described the shift kit with the knob like a joy stick. That's exactly what it feels like. Shifting to me is very effortless. Sometimes have just a little problem getting into 1st gear.

I would recommend both of these products to anyone. Roebuck is a pleasure to deal with, even if you're asking questions. They were very helpful and friendly.

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15 December, 2001