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New brushes for automatic shift cover

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The brushed in my automatic (1976) shift cover had become brittle with age and almost half had broken off, leaving it looking very poor.


Old Brushes


You can't buy the original parts anymore. So I though I'd make my own. 

It took a while to find something similar enough to look right, cheap, and the right size. Took a while but I got 2 out of the 3. They size isn't exactly right, but we'll fix that.


I ordered a strip brush from McMaster-Carr https://www.mcmaster.com/74405t1

You can buy it by the foot, which is nice, as I didn't want to buy in bulk.

The bristles are 0.006" in diameter, the bristles in the original varied from 0.006"-0.009".

The width from back of base to end of bristle is 3/4" which is longer than the original's 0.66". So you'll need to trim the bristles.

Here is pic of the brush (after i started trimming)





here is the inside of the shift cover with old brushes removed.


Shift cover inside


Using scissors seemed like a bad idea (unless you are a barber), so I decided to clamp the bristle in place with a straight-edge. It will hold them in place and make so you can adjust the depth of cut. My first cut was exactly the amount I need to trim to get the width down to 0.66". 




Use a new razor blade so you don't have to press hard.


Cutting the brush


When I took it out to measure, I had only cut about half what I needed.

What happens is, as you drag the blade along the bristles you end up tilting them from perpendicular to the spine. They bunch up together and hide under the straight edge.

Since I didn't know exactly how much extra needs to protrude beyond the straight-edge, I had to creep up on the desired width with successive cuts.


Now you'll need to bend the strip to match the curve in the cover. A vise helps. Do a little at a time and then move the strip. 

Bendin the strip


Check the bend often. The strip bends more towards the aft part of the shift cover.


Test fit the strip


Once you are satisfied with the bend. It's time to glue them in. I used a little JB-Weld Kwik (who wants to wait 4 hours for it to set)


Gluing the strip


Here is the cover with brushes installed

Brushed installed


The only imperfection from the outside is the angle of the bristles. Bending the strip causes the bristles to fan upwards a little. They don't stay in the plane of the cover. I can live with that.Bristle angle


Here is how the shift lever looks in the bristles (on the bench). It moves smoothly through the bristles.




One more piece of the car looking good. Next is the shift numbers (notice the vacant slot on the left).


I have no idea why this image appears here, I can't seem to delete it. oh well. Extra image of the brush.


Edited by rufurt
deleted double posted image

1976 2002A

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