Shiftster is back




Rock Auto 5% Discount Code: 173A8B749AB83C Expires: January 1, 2020

Bjorn Toulouse

New member
Joined
Nov 1, 2016
Messages
19
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Location
N.E. oHIo
Vehicle Year
2008
Make / Model
Ford
Transmission
Automatic
So, you go from "shift on the fly" to "shift on your back"?
Or do you cut a hole in the floor?


Rex
 

dirtcowboy

Member
V8 Engine Swap
Solid Axle Swap
Joined
Mar 18, 2008
Messages
339
Reaction score
3
Points
18
Location
NW Montana
Vehicle Year
1985,1986(2),19
Make / Model
FORD
Engine Size
2.9, 4.6, 4.0, 6.8, 5.0x4
Transmission
Automatic
Here is the deal. Once upon a time Ford had electric shift t-cases used in RBV and FSB vehicles. Much too often the electric shift motor would burn out. The replacement electric shift motors were outrageously expensive at the time, near $300 or so. Now horrible chinese versions are around $100 or so. But I digress. Industrious RBV dudes figured out how to fix the burnt out shift motors using rubber tubing. Later this dude comes up with the "Shiftster". To operate it one would have to crawl under his RBV to manually turn the knob to whatever drive he needed. RBV people were not impressed but FSB dudes loved them. The inventor of the shiftster was "intimidated" enough to try and build an inside the cab model. Attention wavered, vision became obfuscated, shit happened and production ceased which led to a renewed interest in RBV people wanting to obtain the original "Shiftster". Well, now they are available again. That's all, just a friendly notice.

Some enterprising RBV owners, me included, figured out how to adapt various and sundry parts and pieces to utilize the "shitfster" from inside the cab of their RBV's, thereby eliminating the need to exit their RBV and crawl on the ground and wallow in whatever they were stuck in. Ain't progress great?
 
Last edited:

RonD

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 2, 2012
Messages
14,039
Reaction score
743
Points
113
Location
canada
Vehicle Year
1994
Make / Model
Ford
Transmission
Manual
So, you go from "shift on the fly" to "shift on your back"?
Or do you cut a hole in the floor?


Rex
I see someone has never had a failed shift motor or 4x4 module.............
Well it will happen, 100% failure rate over time.
Tick tock

Thing is you only know they have failed because you NEED 4WD for some reason, you select 4WD and unfortunately it won't be working.

"Shift on the fly" sounds great
"4WD every time" sounds better, well for sure IS better, lol.
 

AzLizard

Member
Joined
May 8, 2015
Messages
243
Reaction score
1
Points
18
Location
TUCSON, AZ
Vehicle Year
1994
1985
Make / Model
Ford
Engine Size
4.0 2.8
Transmission
Automatic
Some enterprising RBV owners said:
Thanks for the heads up.
I would be interested in seeing what you came up with for incab operations.:popcorn:
 

Bjorn Toulouse

New member
Joined
Nov 1, 2016
Messages
19
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Location
N.E. oHIo
Vehicle Year
2008
Make / Model
Ford
Transmission
Automatic
I must profess my ign'ance, I have no idea what an RBV or a FSB is.
I do, however, know a thing or two about 4X4....my first was a 1971 International 1210 pick-up that I bought new, and a 1979 F-150 that I bought new after wearing out the IH.

My '08 Ranger FX4 is a re-entry into 4X4, but chances of it seeing any serious off-road use are slim. I bought it because (IMO) it's cool .

That being said, at first glance the Shiftster struck me as a "nice try", engineering wise.
A Bowden cable set-up to actuate from in the cab would be easy enough to develop.

Everything has a 100% failure rate over time.


Rex
 

85_Ranger4x4

Forum Staff Member
Forum Moderator
Article Contributor
OTOTM Winner
TRS Banner 2010-2011
TRS 20th Anniversary
Joined
Aug 7, 2007
Messages
20,882
Reaction score
1,705
Points
113
Location
SW Iowa
Vehicle Year
1985
Make / Model
Ford
Engine Size
5.0
Transmission
Manual
FSB = Full Size Bronco
RBV = Ranger Based Vehicle (Bronco II, Explorer, Mazda B series and Navajo)

It is better than taking the motor off and using a wrench on the shaft.

IMO the end all is hunting down a manual t-case and corresponding lever.
 

RonD

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 2, 2012
Messages
14,039
Reaction score
743
Points
113
Location
canada
Vehicle Year
1994
Make / Model
Ford
Transmission
Manual
Yes, pretty much everything wears out, but the shift motor doesn't wear out, it fails or..........
A fuse blows, GEM/SJB fails, 4x4 module fails, trans range sensor fails.

Quite a few failure points on the system, not wear out points, failure points.

Shiftster takes ALL those out of the picture, offers a little piece of mind that you will have 4WD when you actually need 4WD, especially if you don't used 4WD very often.

I recommend shifting in to 4high and 4 low once a month, don't need to drive it, just sit in driveway and shift it, that will help keep shift motor brushes clean and also let you know if there is a failure so it can be addressed before you NEED 4WD.

Yes, manual transfer case is THE FIX, and manual hubs if needed

Shiftster is the transition fix that is affordable and reliable.
Nice to see it is available again.

And Shiftster is also what you would use inside the cab if you wanted to design a retrofit manual shift to replace electric shift setup.

Shiftster already has the positions IDed and detents to hold shifter in position.
Just need a Flexible Shaft cable to transmit the rotational force to the transfer case shift rod.

Flexible Shaft cable transfers rotational movement, i.e. speedometer cable or plumbers snake
Bowden cable transfers linear movement, i.e. Transmission Column shifter cable or emergency brake cable.
But the terms are often used interchangeably, like calling a relay a solenoid, lol, my pet peeve
 
Last edited:

dirtcowboy

Member
V8 Engine Swap
Solid Axle Swap
Joined
Mar 18, 2008
Messages
339
Reaction score
3
Points
18
Location
NW Montana
Vehicle Year
1985,1986(2),19
Make / Model
FORD
Engine Size
2.9, 4.6, 4.0, 6.8, 5.0x4
Transmission
Automatic
You can tell RonD has had a motor or selector switch shit the bed out in BFE. He is also right on target with the flexible shaft cable idea.

Here is the tutorial I copied to put the Shiftster in the cab.

http://www.ford-trucks.com/forums/1160665-ranger-4wd-manual-shift-conversion.html

Unfortunately it appears the pics are not available, too bad, it's stoopid simple. At first I built a bracket to hold the "Shiftster" but I ended up enlarging the hole for the cable and bolted it to the trans tunnel.

Manual T-cases "USED TO BE" the solution, but they are very hard to find, WITH LINKAGES, in my neck of the woods.
 
Last edited:

Bjorn Toulouse

New member
Joined
Nov 1, 2016
Messages
19
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Location
N.E. oHIo
Vehicle Year
2008
Make / Model
Ford
Transmission
Automatic
I know the difference betwixt a Bowden cable (such as the one in the attached pic) and a flexible cable, and IMO the Bowden cable would be the way to go.
An "L" bracket underdash for the handle end, an anchor bracket on the transfer case, and a lever to replace the knob on the Shiftster......Done deal.

Pedantry, my pet peeve.


Rex
 

Attachments

alwaysFlOoReD

Forum Staff Member
Forum Moderator
TRS Banner 2012-2015
TRS 20th Anniversary
Joined
Apr 13, 2009
Messages
9,601
Reaction score
734
Points
113
Location
Red Deer, Canada
Vehicle Year
'91, '94, '80
Make / Model
Ford, GMC
Engine Size
4.0,4.0,350
Transmission
Manual
^^^ I'm pretty sure the shiftster rotates more than 180 degrees, which I think would make the push/pull cable a no go.

This is the plate that bolts to the transfer case in place of the electric shift motor;

[/URL][/IMG]

You can see where I drilled a detente for neutral for towing. IIRC there is 270 degrees rotation, if not more.
 
Last edited:

RonD

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 2, 2012
Messages
14,039
Reaction score
743
Points
113
Location
canada
Vehicle Year
1994
Make / Model
Ford
Transmission
Manual
Picture of Transfer case with shift motor removed: http://s972.photobucket.com/user/jds3403/media/bw 1354/1354transfer.jpg.html

Shifter rod is pointed at 2H, Neutral is not marked but is opposite 2H, like in alwaysFloored's picture

Here is pic of manual transfer case shift pattern: http://www.explorerforum.com/photopost/data/3553/medium/transfercase_012_Medium_.jpg
Start in 2H then 4H, Neutral and 4Low.
And for electric shift rod, 2H to 4low would be 270deg, and then you have to come back the same way, can't loop over to 2H from 4Low

Yes linear would be hard to do, not impossible, but not simple, couple of gears and it would work OK, 1 to 3 ratio so 100deg of linear movement causes 300deg of rotational movement, need bowden cable with a twist lock so it didn't move after selection was made.

Although I do think a Shiftster mounted in the cab with a Flexible Cable would be easier, already marked and detented
 
Last edited:

dirtcowboy

Member
V8 Engine Swap
Solid Axle Swap
Joined
Mar 18, 2008
Messages
339
Reaction score
3
Points
18
Location
NW Montana
Vehicle Year
1985,1986(2),19
Make / Model
FORD
Engine Size
2.9, 4.6, 4.0, 6.8, 5.0x4
Transmission
Automatic
Forgot the link

http://www.ford-trucks.com/forums/1160665-ranger-4wd-manual-shift-conversion.html

I know it looks too simple, but, the "Shiftster", a flexible cable and some tools makes a very inexpensive and permanent fix for a fried e-case. I've had the one in my '89 for over 3 years, never failed to operate, in all weather conditions. I have a manual case in the shop, but there isn't any reason to change the old one out. (knock on wood)
 

alwaysFlOoReD

Forum Staff Member
Forum Moderator
TRS Banner 2012-2015
TRS 20th Anniversary
Joined
Apr 13, 2009
Messages
9,601
Reaction score
734
Points
113
Location
Red Deer, Canada
Vehicle Year
'91, '94, '80
Make / Model
Ford, GMC
Engine Size
4.0,4.0,350
Transmission
Manual
^^^ Thanks for the link. The pictures aren't there anymore but I think I figured out what he was talking about.
 


Top