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Old 12-08-2012, 03:29 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Loose shifter ball joint? (w/video)

Hey all,

Went to do Stan's shifter mod and s111 re-Enforcer today and noticed something a little off when checking the angles of the shifter cable sockets (both seem off to me). I'm thinking at one time the shifter may have been hit by something, bending the tab the ball joint is mounted to. I took a video to try and illustrate what I'm talking about:


I have never seen any others in the person, and I couldn't be sure just looking at static pictures.

Any insight would be greatly appreciated.

-Blake
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Old 12-08-2012, 03:42 PM   #2 (permalink)
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On my shifter, the ball for the ball joint fits firmly in the cup *and* (most importantly) the ball does not wobble around on the plate. It looks like the ball is not properly secured to the plate.
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Old 12-08-2012, 03:49 PM   #3 (permalink)
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On my shifter, the ball for the ball joint fits firmly in the cup *and* (most importantly) the ball does not wobble around on the plate. It looks like the ball is not properly secured to the plate.
Thanks for the reply.

Yeah, that was my thinking. There is no slop in the actual cup, but the ball is definitely off. Do you remember if the metal tab the ball is connected to off the shaft is flat? Mine seems to have a little waviness to it.
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Old 12-08-2012, 04:40 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I can't specifically state, but I suspect it was flat.
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Old 12-08-2012, 05:28 PM   #5 (permalink)
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That ball is a swedged fit to the arm, looks like a weld would fix it, or replace the lever. I recall others had this same issue on early cars.


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Old 12-08-2012, 06:11 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Mine did this as well, I just pulled the shift lever out and welded it. It's an extremely overdressed joint and given enough time, I expect all of them to do this.
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Old 12-08-2012, 08:35 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Thanks for the responses guys.

Looks like its time weld it up then. And just to confirm, the tab it's connected to is supposed to be flat as well right? Do you think there would be any long term problems if it were left slightly tweakedas it is?
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Old 12-09-2012, 05:08 AM   #8 (permalink)
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^ tweaked is fine. You'll need to slightly adjust that cable end anyway which will compensate for it.
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Old 12-09-2012, 09:08 AM   #9 (permalink)
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^ tweaked is fine. You'll need to slightly adjust that cable end anyway which will compensate for it.
Sounds good.

While I've got the shifter out, is there any place to source the cup for the shifter to crossgate lever union. It appears as if the cup is wiggling inside the lever when the shifter is moved side to side before it actually moves the lever up or down, leading to some slop. Looked on lotusgarage and they only list the whole shifter matrix base at $1150
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Old 12-09-2012, 11:36 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Holy Jesus that's a rip, your best bet would be to bring the ball socket end into a *decent* auto parts / hardware store. It should be fairly easy to find a new metric ball socket and a corresponding ball. Then just remove the wiggly ball altogether and install the new piece. When I did mine I put a washer under the ball to add a little metal to that area since Lotus felt that 1/8" by 1/8" was plenty.
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Old 12-09-2012, 02:16 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Holy Jesus that's a rip, your best bet would be to bring the ball socket end into a *decent* auto parts / hardware store. It should be fairly easy to find a new metric ball socket and a corresponding ball. Then just remove the wiggly ball altogether and install the new piece. When I did mine I put a washer under the ball to add a little metal to that area since Lotus felt that 1/8" by 1/8" was plenty.
In this picture, (thank you mr. sands), did you put the washer under the bolt at the blue arrow? Couldn't really follow that last bit. And the wiggly cup I'm referring to is the one at the red arrow. The actual union between the cup and the ball coming off the shifter seems ok, it's just the cup that's loose in the bracket. It appears that the cup just clips into the bracket, but I was wondering if there was maybe a missing c-clip or something.
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Old 01-18-2013, 08:01 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Bumping this up to see if someone can help with this. I decided to replace the ball joints on the cable ends with rod ends, so I took the shifter out of the shifter matrix to cut the swaged fitting off the bracket. Now I can't get it back though....... Any one have experience on getting the shifter back in and clipping the little black cup onto the shifter? Definitely can't get the shifter into the position with the cup already on. It's a bit of a head scratcher.
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