Does your manual gearshift return to center?

Discussion in 'General Motoring' started by weelliott, Nov 20, 2008.

  1. weelliott

    weelliott Guest

    When I bought my 95 legacy in 2002, the gearshift wouldn't return to
    the center position. Every other car I've ever owned will return to a
    point exactly in the center of the shift pattern--between third and
    fourth. Mine will sit there if you put it there, or if you just pull
    it out of second it will stay between first and second. I got used to
    it and it doesn't bother me.

    However, at 190k miles the transmission was having problems staying in
    fourth, and the syncros were slow on second and fifth. So I had a shop
    replace the transmission with one out of a crashed car with 120k miles
    on it to the tune of 2100 bucks. When I got it back I expected the
    gear shift to be normal since I believe that this is an internally
    gated transmission. It wasn't though. It behaved the same way. Now I
    am at 233k Miles and I am starting to notice some reluctant shifts and
    suspect that perhaps they just serviced the transmission, but didn't
    actually replace it. So how many other people have a 'broken' shifter?
    What are the odds that the other transmission out of a car with 120k
    miles on it was also broken in the same way?

    Thank you for your input.

    Have a good one,
    weelliott, Nov 20, 2008
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  2. weelliott

    Dano58 Guest

    Perhaps it is just the way those transmissions are. Having never
    driven a manual-transmission Legacy, I can't comment. But it may just
    be a characteristic of the transmission.

    Dan D
    '99 Impreza 2.5 RS (son's)
    Central NJ USA
    Dano58, Nov 20, 2008
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  3. weelliott

    weelliott Guest

    I've driven a 97 legacy that didn't have any problems returning to
    center, and a 94 impreza that also had no problem. I really doubt it
    is by design. The first tiem I drove it I couldn't get it into third.
    I had been taught to let the spring do the work so as not to wind up
    accidentally in fifth, so I pushed forward and wound up hitting no-
    mans-land between first and third. I thought the car had no third gear
    and was pretty unimpressed until I figured out that the spring that
    returns it to center wasn't working.

    I'm starting to wonder about the legal recourse I have to sue this
    place for the difference between the work they charged me for and what
    they did. My limited research tells me that the VIN is stamped on the
    transmission case. So if it matches my chassis, it means they didn't
    swap it. I think this counts as fraud. Even though it was in January
    2005, I wonder if I could still sue them.

    weelliott, Nov 20, 2008
  4. weelliott

    Bob Noble Guest

    Are you sure this return to center thing is the transmission, or maybe just
    the shifting mechanism, under the shifter?
    Bob Noble, Nov 21, 2008
  5. weelliott

    weelliott Guest

    I'm fairly sure the return mechanism is in the transmission, but I
    could be mistaken. When I did the clutch job on the car I'm pretty
    sure that once the transmission was pulled, the shifter had no
    springiness in any direction. You could just row around with it like
    an old VW microbus.

    weelliott, Nov 21, 2008
  6. weelliott

    bugalugs Guest

    I was of the opposite opinion; that the spring which kept the shift
    lever in the 3 4 plane was in the console at the base of the shift lever.
    bugalugs, Nov 21, 2008
  7. weelliott

    scarano1 Guest

    I just got done replacing the spring on my 98 legacy and it was
    accessible from underneath the car near the crossmember. The spring
    itself was about an inch and a half long and the old one had rusted
    and snapped. The symptom I was addressing was that the transmission
    wouldn't center if wiggled to the left, but it would center fine if
    wiggled to the right. After the new spring was in place, everything
    worked fine.

    scarano1, Dec 1, 2008
  8. weelliott

    weelliott Guest

    So it is external to the transmission. I stand corrected and have my
    answer. Thank you Steve.

    Have a good one,
    weelliott, Dec 2, 2008
  9. weelliott

    mulder Guest

    On your '95 the spring is external. On later models it was moved
    inside the trans.
    mulder, Dec 7, 2008
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