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Old 03-31-2021, 12:03 PM
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TheBandit TheBandit is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Ventura County CA
Posts: 4,654
Originally Posted by Graham08 View Post
Thanks for posting this up, Clint! I've been following along on Instagram, but it's nice to see the additional photos and commentary. That is so cool that Silver Sport had a template to at least get you close on the floor opening. That had to save a ton of head scratching and incremental trimming to get to the final opening.
Thanks for reading along! I can go into a lot more depth here and I agree it's much better to have the explanations and string of photos than just a single photo with a short caption! The template was very helpful because it gave me confidence that I'd have the right cut and I spent almost no time iterating.

Continuing with the update....

One thing I noticed when my transmission parts arrived is that the transmission crossmember was a different design than what I had seen Silver Sport use on another Nova. I called and confirmed they had recently implemented a more universal/adjustable version. Unfortunately this new version was not a good fit - the mounting area of the crossmember was several inches lower than their original design and blocked exhaust routing.

A quick phone call and Silver Sport offered to rush ship a new crossmember using their older application-specific design. This gained a few inches of clearance which was plenty for my 3" exhaust routing.

Next, I installed the STX short throw shifter. This included a bronze bushing to replace the factory plastic one in the shift rail. I used Loctite bearing retainer to keep it in place.

At this point I decided to reinstall my driver's seat and mock up shift lever options. Knob position and lever length affect driver's arm position, reach, and throw, so I think this is an important thing to get right for the specific car, driver, and seat position. For mockup, I used vice grips, some flat bar, a long bolt, and a shift knob. This allowed me to shift through all the gears and choose what worked best for me. It's worth noting I am 6' tall with a 32in inseam.

The 8in levers were comfortable, but the length and longer throw made it feel more like a semi truck compared with the throw and height of the 6in levers. In spite of the shifter being 3" further back with the Magnum-F trans, I still found the straight levers resulted in extended reach in forward shifter positions. With the laid back levers, my elbow was just slightly bent for comfort and overall I preferred the 6in laid back shifter over the other options. So I shopped around for a lever and found I really liked the Hurst billet levers that were released last year.

I highly recommend mocking up parts like this or trying other people's cars, because it makes a bigger difference than I previously realized. Fitting the car to my personal ergonomic needs has made it a lot more enjoyable. That was true when I lowered my seat height, adjusted my shoulder harness tether length, and now with the shifter position. The car is a joy to drive.

Ongoing 70 Nova build:

Last edited by TheBandit; 03-31-2021 at 02:40 PM.
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