LOCKED AND LOADED FOR A SAFE 5–4 SHIFT
I promised at the end of last month’s how-to – about Stomski Racing’s excellent gear-shift coupler and uprated engine/transmission mounts for those 911s with the 901 and 915 transmission – to show how to fit a new gear-lever ‘gate’, in order to overcome the all too common problem of a broken reverse-gear lock-out pawl. Or the pawl’s tiny spring, to be more precise.
So here we are. Part number of the complete assembly – neither the spring nor the pawl is available separately, and would in any case be a real faff to fit – is 911 424 063 04, and from Porsche it is currently priced at £51.14 including VAT.
Fitting times will depend upon how easy it is to remove and refit the gear-lever knob and gaiter (the knob in this 1981 SC had broken and had subsequently been glued on, and so would have to be refitted accordingly) but based on the times recorded on my original digital images you – and certainly an experienced Porsche technician – would struggle to take more than around 10–15 minutes.
Points to note? Primarily that there are two fairly strong springs pushing up against the underside of the left-hand side of the plate – they provide the slight but necessary resistance you should feel as you move the lever over to the right for fifth and reverse – and so you need to take care as you undo and remove the two M6 securing nuts and washers.
Conversely, the springs will naturally try to ‘escape’ as you push the new plate down over them, and you also need to ensure that the latter is positioned such that the two vertical bars passing through the springs are able to project into the matching rectangular slots as the lever goes over to the right. (See photos.) Even so, it’s a task that is probably more difficult to describe than it is actually to do.
Tighten the M6 nuts to 15Nm – perhaps replacing their original spring washers with the so-called wave washers we looked at here in Technical Topics a month ago. (Or maybe fit some Nyloc-style self-locking nuts, plus washers.) And finally, of course, make sure once again that you can select all five forward gears and reverse, with the tab welded to the right-hand side of the shift lever passing correctly around the vertical lugs on the baseplate. See the photos below.
All pretty straightforward, though – and a big step towards a foolproof gear change in your older 911. Thanks to Robin Hayers at BS Motorsport (01296 658422; www.bsmotorsport.co.uk). PW
Usually the only problem with the old device is a broken pawl spring, but that would be too much trouble to fit separately. Make sure each of the two main springs is located on its rectangular-section central ‘blade’, and that those are themselves able to project into the cut-outs in the now secured baseplate as the gear lever is moved to the right
This gear lever – like many – has been repaired at some time. Final sequence shows how tag on side of lever interacts with matching tags on baseplate and spring-loaded pawl to allow fast and safe movement from fourth to fifth, and back to fourth. Reverse can be selected only after moving lever across the gate in neutral and then again to the right
Arguably the best £50 or so you will spend on your pre-g50 911. Gear change will function without reverse-gear lock lock-out pawl, but there is always a danger a downshift from fifth to fourth goes badly wrong. To fit new baseplate, take off gear-lever knob and gaiter, and then undo the two M6 nuts. Be ready for the two springs to try to ‘escape’