Some projects take a little longer than you expect, this one took me about ten times longer than I expected.
The T-5 Camaro transmission places the shift just about directly beneath the dash board. This requires the dash to be cut out and the shifter boot to bend around a corner. From a purely aesthetic point of view it is a disaster. Add to that that I screwed up cutting the dash and I have been very unhappy with the way the dash turned out.
The Camaro version of the T-5 has the shifter as far to the rear as any version of the T-5 sold. There is a remote shifter that moves it even further to the rear, but that seemed to be for a car built in Korea and I could never track down those parts. If I wanted to move it further I would have to do it myself.
Several ideas went through my head, mostly involving Rube Goldberg contraptions that were way too complex. Ideally I would have just extended the shifter fork rod, but I am not skilled enough to rebuild a transmission, and I didn’t want to pull it out of the car. So I decided to make an extension to the actuator in place. Like this:
The shifter is a short shifter designed for a SN95 Mustang short shifter. Is is bolted to the rear most hole of the transmission casing and to a custom housing with actuator extension. The housing inserts through the 2″ freeze plug hole at the rear of the T-5 housing. A plate is bolted to it from inside the housing to seal the transmission and maintain alignment with the actuator. I used aluminum for the housing, 1/2″ drill rod for the actuator shafting and 12L14 steel for the machine actuator couplings.
The tolerances needed to be quite close, and I had a very difficult time measuring the shafting dimensions in the transmission. The machining was very challenging for my limited abilities but in the end it seems to work well, if a little stiff. I hope the stiffness will mitigate with time and some wear.