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87 Avanti floor shifter cables keep separating at the ferules.


Jim S
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I have gone through 3 shifter cables in a month!  They pull apart at the ferules when going into Park.  I  was left stranded in Phoenix, AZ last week on a cross country road trip.  I had to take the car to a repair shop since I did not have my own tools and a jack!  The guys at the shop noticed the bracket that holds the cable on the transmission was set too far back.  So they cut and welded it so it was forward about an inch.  It goes into Park OK, but not first!  I can live with that, but I like things right if I can manage.  Does anyone know what vehicle and year the shifter they used came out of?  Mine does not even have a gear indicator or a light, so one has to put it in gear by feel.  I was sleeping and my wife drove 150 miles in third gear!  $3.75 a gallon for gas, ouch!  

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I've gone through about 5 cables in the last 45,000 miles. The problem seems to be that the cable is rubbing where it goes through the body, I've looked at several 87 Avantis and all have this problem. This applies pressure on the cable, it binds and breaks the plastic cable housing at the shifter. The cable housing is weak at the shifter clip, I've broken one inserting the clip. I don't think that just opening up the hole in the body is the answer because the aftermarket plastic cable do not seem to line up correctly.

I found out the shifter is not a Monte Carlo by buying a cable kit for Monte Carlo shifter and 200R4 transmission. The shifter looks like it is for a 3 speed automatic that has been modified to work with the 200R4 4 speed.

I just broke my cable, so I ordered a special cable that I will install this week.

I'll let you know how it works.

Good luck all,

Jim Wood

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Posted (edited)

Thanks for the info Jim.  Glad to know I'm not alone in this issue.  I'll look forward to hearing how your new cable works.  I just did some searching and it appears the shifter is a mid 80's Camaro/Firebird shifter.  And the cable for that is 29" which would be a bit long for the Avanti.  It also has a stud instead of a loop at the transmission end.

 

Edited by Jim S
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Install new cable with some minor adjustments and its working great.

Here is the web site for the cable.

https://www.mikesmontes.com/Double-Adjustable-Floor-Shift-Cable-200-4R-Transmission_p_2509.html

The cable end will not fit flush up against the shifter stud so I had to file down the stud to the hole size to make it a straight pull. I have had this problem with the plastic cables but had enough metal on the cable to drill it oversize and fit the stud.

One of the problems with the shifter is that when placing the shifter back into Park the angle forces the cable downward causing it to bind. I bent the cable mounting tab a little to lessen the downward force.

IMG_0701.thumb.JPG.3d9eeab4aac39d6ad63a8df92008be37.JPG

I used a round file to open up the right side of the floor opening so the cable isn't touching the floor.

I bent the transmission cable bracket so that it has a straight pull.

The cable wasn't long enough to connect at the transmission so I took the adjuster and its jam nut off, installed the adjuster backwards on the cable first and then the jam nut, worked great.

Before working the shifter, disconnect the linkage at the transmission for the steering column interlock. Some of my problem is coming from that, I will adjust that and reconnect later.

IMG_0702.thumb.JPG.28deb4ac94a84fe155259b48fe8779ee.JPG

Good luck all,

Jim Wood

Edited by IndyJimW
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Great info Thanks!  I have done pretty much what you have done at this point.  The only thing I did not do was bending the clamp at the shifter to lesson the bind at park.  I will look into that and see if I can make that adjustment too.

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