NSX-R Short Shifter

This is a review of the NSX-R short shifter install. The parts include:
  • JDM NSX-R shift knob with Fixing Nut - (Dali),
  • JDM NSX-R shift boot - (rjp),
  • SOS Short Gear Stalk with Extended Threads - (SOS), and
  • Dave's Short Shift Kit - (SOS)

I had been considering doing this mod for quite some time. After hearing the horror stories of scratched center console covers, I'd come to dread doing this mod.

First item in removing the center console is to remove the clock. I carefully tugged on it for about 10 minutes without success... until I got frustrated and gripped the top edge (lip) with my finger nails and pulled - out it came. Here is a photo showing the clock and the clips that hold it in place. (You can see the top edge that I grabbed with my finger nails.)

(Click on the photos for a larger view)

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The next item to remove was the center vent. Here is where I heard the horror stories of scratching the paint on the center console. I'd read instructions on how to remove the vent and referred to the service manual. They all mentioned sticking some device (like a screw driver) in-between the vent and the leather to pry on some clips to get it out. Well, on my 2002, it wasn't bad at all. In fact, it was easier than the clock. I just slid a sheet of plastic in-between the vent and the center console to protect the paint, removed the two screws that held the top portion of the vent, reached in, and pulled... out it came. Here is a photo of the clips on a 2002 vent.

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Next was to remove the arm rest. There is a false floor inside the arm rest. This photo shows the little cut-out that allows a small tool to get underneath in order to pull the false floor up and out. (Sorry about the focus.)

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The four screws in the arm rest. Remove them and it lifts right out.

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To remove the gear shift knob, grab the top of the leather boot and pull down.

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Here's the shift knob showing the clips that hold up the boot.

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Notice the amount of threads on the stock stalk.

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There are two electrical connections which need to be unplugged before the console can be lifted out. Here is one of them.

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Here are the two plugs.

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The boot is held in with three screws.

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Here are all the pieces ready for installation.
Notice the amount of threads on the "SOS Short Gear Stalk with Extended Threads".
Also notice the "Black Chrome Fixing Nut" that Dali provides with the NSX-R Shift Knob. It does not make sense when you look at it, but you need to install the fixing nut onto the stalk with the flange side DOWN so it can hold UP the top part of the NSX-R boot against the bottom of the shift knob.

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Dave's Short Shift kit would NOT fully slide into place without grinding off a small amount of the SOS Short Gear Stalk.

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You can see where I ground off a little material from the top and around the edge.

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Install the nut and washer...

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...and tighten the set screw, and it's nice and snug.

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Remove the four 12mm bolts that hold the shifter assembly in place.

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Remove the two 10mm nuts that hold the shift linkage and pull out the shifter assembly.

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The shifter assembly ready for the swap.

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Remove the two long bolts and the one longer bolt to remove the shift stalk from the shifter assembly... but be careful. There is a little tiny part that could get lost (see next photo.)

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This shows a very small part (out of focus) that goes into one of the plastic bushings.

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Remove the inners from the stock shift stalk. I was able to push these out with my hands. They were only held in with o-rings. Replace the inners into the SOS Short Gear Stalk, taking care not to damage the o-rings of the inners and the o-rings in the end plates.

Once I replaced the SOS Short Gear Stalk into the shifter assembly, I discovered that the shaft of the Short Shift kit (that holds the shift linkage) was galled in place. CRAP! It was almost impossible to remove. Needless to say I was pissed. It took me an extra hour to get the shaft out and modify the hole/shaft so the shaft would slide relatively easy. (It needs to slide easily when installing the shift linkage.)

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Next step is to re-install the shifter assembly. When I tried to insert the linkage into the Short Shift kit, it was so tight that it took almost 45 minutes to get the linkage aligned with the shaft. (This was a real pain in the ass.)

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Replace the four 12mm bolts that hold the shifter assembly in place.

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With the Black Chrome Fixing nut in place (with flange side down), replace the console. The top of the NSX-R boot stays UP because of the Fixing nut flange. You can adjust the fixing nut with the boot over it. Adjust, screw on the knob, and your done.

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Conclusion:

The NSX-R Short Shifter is "SHORT".

Dave's Short Shift Kit reduces the throw by about 25%. Take that and add the SOS Short Gear Stalk (which is 10mm shorter) AND the NSX-R knob that can be screwed down further (because of the extended threads on the SOS stalk), and what you end up with is a short (low), short (throw) shifter.

I installed the NSX-R Short Shifter last night. It took about 4 hours including the problems I had with the Short Shift Kit. I drove the car to work today. It takes a little more effort to shift, but not too much that it is uncomfortable. The shifter is in a lower position and I was not able to drive with my wrist resting on the shift knob while playing with the volume control on the radio - like I usually do.

My car is a daily driver and it will take more time to see how I like this. So far, it feels like a good match with my 300mm steering wheel.