Column Shift Linkage 700R4

Aug 16, 2010
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#1
I did a search before making the thread, and I already know there are dozens of shift linkage threads out there, but none of them really got me the answer I was looking for, mostly because of how many variables there are to this specific problem.

The problem I'm having I just noticed yesterday. Before I go much further, here's what I'm working with:
1980 Buick Century Wagon
Blueprint 383 SBC w/ full length headers
TCI 700R4

I'm really trying to keep the column shifter since I like it, and I want to keep my bench seat. The shift lever I got off of a TH400 (Looks like a "C" with two enlogated holes through it) since the shift lever from the original transmission wouldn't line up with the linkage. The problem I'm having is that because of the position of the linkage, and the shift lever, what happens is that I'll put it up into park down at the transmission, the linkage will be all lined up, and the second you look at it sideways, it moves down from park and into reverse. No matter how I adjust the linkage between the column and the actual arm that shifts the transmission, it continues to do this. I think what is happening is that the linkage simply can't compensate enough for the changed position of the transmission lever combined with the header tubes.

So my questions are these: Has anybody been able to make the original shift linkage work on a similar application, or would it be easier to look toward something like a Lokar shift cable set up? If the latter, is the steering column on our cars 2" or 2-1/4"?
 

TURNA

Comic Book Super Hero
Jul 24, 2009
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Socialist NY
#2
Us e the linkage from any Gbody that had a 2004r in it from the factory
 
Aug 16, 2010
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#3
Us e the linkage from any Gbody that had a 2004r in it from the factory
Did a little bit of Google research and yeah that looks like it'll do the trick alright... it's absolutely incredible how such a tiny difference can make such an enormous impact.

Found these pictures on this website which looks to be a treasure trove of information in case anybody needs it.

Now... to FIND a 200-4R linkage set.
 

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Aug 16, 2010
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#4
Iffin' I'm unable to find a linkage set for a 200-4R, I might try putting a gentle bend in the upper linkage rod on it's downward travel to bring it a little further away from the firewall, and then another bend to bring it back to being parallel with it's original placement. Not sure if that'll work, but that's why I wanna try to get the link set up you suggested first.
 

TURNA

Comic Book Super Hero
Jul 24, 2009
4,093
2,082
113
Socialist NY
#5
This is only a guess but I would say just about any F body or B body would probably work too.
 
Aug 16, 2010
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#6
F-Body came with column shifters?

B-Body might work though, just gotta find one. I've got a B-Body in the driveway that isn't going anywhere, but the problem is that it does eventually need to go somewhere lol
 
Aug 16, 2010
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#8
Not so much column shifter as column lock backdrive linkage.... same but different.;)
That makes sense. Sort of like the lockout so you can't turn the key unless it's in Park or Neutral. Clever.
 
Aug 16, 2010
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#9
I still have the lever from the 700R4 that was in the Firebird... maybe with the backdrive linkage I can get something to work. If not, then maybe I can fabricate something with what I've got.

All else fails, then I'm gonna try an aftermarket shift rod and hope it doesn't need to be bent too much in order to work.
 
Aug 16, 2010
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#10
I still have the lever from the 700R4 that was in the Firebird... maybe with the backdrive linkage I can get something to work. If not, then maybe I can fabricate something with what I've got.

All else fails, then I'm gonna try an aftermarket shift rod and hope it doesn't need to be bent too much in order to work.
Checked the Firebird. There's no linkage that goes from the column down to the transmission. It looks like it's a cable that goes from the shifter to the column on the inside of the car.
 

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