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Shifter Rebuild

Original Author: Steve Kupper

If your shifter is a bit looser then you'd like, and you want it to feel like new again (do you know how it felt when it was new?) here are a few simple and very inexpensive things you can do to get the like-new effect. This article is based on a late 2002 style shifter. Please look at what yours looks like before ordering parts.


Part list:

Few more parts needed (don't have them yet): 8 Spacer ring 25 11 1 220 199 9 Circlip 25 11 1 220 379 10 O-Ring 25 11 1 221 243 11 Spacer Ring 25 11 1 220 439 12 Circlip 25 11 1 220 379 13 Tension Bush 25 11 1 203 682 14 Rubber Washer 23 41 1 466 118 15 Dowel Pin 23 41 1 466 134 16 Gear Selector Rod Joint 25 11 1 220 198


  • UUC Motorworks Short Shift kit. (Kit will include Spacer Ring 8 and Circlip 9.)
  • UUC Motorworks Cartridge Bearings


Other Short Shift kits are available, but this is the one I happened to have used and liked.

Time needed: about an hour


  • Lift the car and put it on jack stands. The usual disclaimers apply. Use a solid, flat, ideally level surface and jack from under the front subframe with a block of wood on top of the cradle to protect the subframe. Place the jackstands under the stamped steel frame rails that are welded to the front floors, again with a short piece of 2x4 wood on the stands to protect the frame rails and spread the load.
  • Once the car is SECURELY in the air, get under it and remove the Circlip from the shifter. (It might be a good idea to print out the diagram included in this article so you know where everything is.) Slide the Shifter out from the Selector Rod. Remove the Gear Selector Rod Joint by removing the tension Bushing and then sliding out the Dowel Pin.
  • Now go inside the car and remove the shifter boot. Remove the Circlip and the Spring and then pull on the Shifter. It might require a bit of force, but be careful not to hit yourself in the teeth. :D
  • Go to the workbench and remove the Selector Rod from the Gear Selector Rod joint by removing the Circlip.



  • Connect the Gear Selector Rod to the Joint using the O-Ring, Spacer Ring and Circlip. Wet the Rubber or Sponge Washer with oil and slide it into the Joint.
  • Get under the car and connect the rod to the transmission using the Dowell Pin and Tension Bushing. This is the hardest part of the whole installation. It might take you a while to aim the Dowel Pin correctly. And it is hard to do with the driveshaft in place.
  • Get into the car and install the plastic bushing and the Shifter.
  • Get under the car and slide the Selector Rod into the Shifter and attach it with another Circlip. Make sure to remember to use a spacer ring.
  • Pull the Shifter boot back in place and you are all done. Enjoy the like-new shifter!






Delrin Bushing Installation:

  • It may be necessary to remove part of your exhaust system to have easier access to the bottom of the shifter. Cars are set up differently and abilities of individuals differ as well. It should not be necessary to remove the shifter from inside the car.
  • From under the car, remove the allen socket set screw with the appropriate allen wrench from the rear of the shifter shaft. Remove the cross pivot pin, the transmission shifter yoke will slip down yet remain attached to the transmission. Remove the bushings in either side of the yoke by pushing them in one at a time. Replace with the new bushings and install reverse of removal.
  • FITMENT: These bushings are made slightly thicker on the bearing surfaces (colored purple) and these surfaces may have to be sanded down with common sandpaper to ensure a loose enough fit to place the shifter shaft into the transmission shifter yoke when the bushings are installed. Trial fit your new bushings, if they are too tight, sand the purple surfaces a little at a time and refit. This will give the tightest most precision shifting action in YOUR BMW 1600/2002.


If you have any questions, post them on the Message Board!

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