Th350 Shift linkage issues

Bigboydanny43

New Member
Aug 7, 2022
3
Hi first time poster here.

I have a ‘70 z28 with a th350 and an original horseshoe shifter but I suddenly started having some issues.

The shifter was always either stuck between gears (it would click into place thinking it was in parking, but would actually be in neutral) and etc.

I took the car to a garage and had the linkage fixed twice, but it came loose both times.

The rotating thing on the steering collumn that is connected to the shifter via linkage (what is this called???) suddenly developed a lot of play and I need to physically help it rotate as I shift through the gears with the shifter.

How would I got about fixing this? What do I need to do? It’s really pissing me off at this point.
 

Twisted_Metal

Administrator
Staff member
Lifetime Gold Member
Feb 26, 2004
31,445
Bloomington, MN
Welcome to NastyZ28! :D

What part is coming loose?

There is a bushing on the arm attached to the steering column which gets worn.
Replacing that could help with some of the "slop".

Sounds like the garage doesn't know how to properly adjust the back drive and cable system. :screwup:

Here's an exploded view of the parts to this linkage.

1659918603748.png
 

langss

New Member
Jan 18, 2008
28
West Hills California
I'm going to go out on a limb here and suggest you try "Lubrication". Try WD40 just to start as its cheap and as a solvent, it can clean as well as temporary lube moving parts....If the problem goes away....Now you need to come back and properly lube everything that you shot with the WD.....All the Pivot Points as well as the Cable would be where I would start.
 

xten

Veteran Member
Sep 24, 2014
4,835
Pittsburgh, Pa.
I'm going to go waaaay out on a limb and say it's a bad ground. I've had this problem, and Kid just had it on his 68 Camaro that he put a horseshoe shifter in. When he put his motor back in, he didn't connect one of the grounds. Path of least resistance was the shifter cable. It starts as getting stiff, and gets worse. Eventually welds the cable to the sheathing from heat.
 

Kevin McKeown

Moderator
Lifetime Gold Member
Mar 25, 1999
1,410
Satellite Beach, FL USA
I've had this problem on my 71 SS396 with a turbo400 and my 78 Trans Am with a turbo350. In both cases, I hit something on the road that bent the rod. And then when the transmission was in park, the indicator still said it was in gear, and I couldn't get the key out of the ignition. Simple fix was to replace the bent rod, or if possible, bend it back to close to original.
 

langss

New Member
Jan 18, 2008
28
West Hills California
I'm going to go waaaay out on a limb and say it's a bad ground. I've had this problem, and Kid just had it on his 68 Camaro that he put a horseshoe shifter in. When he put his motor back in, he didn't connect one of the grounds. Path of least resistance was the shifter cable. It starts as getting stiff, and gets worse. Eventually welds the cable to the sheathing from heat.
Now that is a good one... I have seen U-Joints come apart from being the path to ground, But actually welding the cable that's one to remember.....Never thought of that...that will burn the WD40 so look for smoke....
 

Rosster

Veteran Member
Gold Member
Mar 1, 2020
940
Are you certain it’s a th350? As th400 was the only automatic offered in 70 z28s. I’d think the adjustment procedure might be different (but not sure). Does it have an elecrical kickdown switch by the gas pedal?
 

NCCAMARO

Member
Lifetime Gold Member
Feb 18, 2009
76
Hendersonville, NC
I'm going to go waaaay out on a limb and say it's a bad ground. I've had this problem, and Kid just had it on his 68 Camaro that he put a horseshoe shifter in. When he put his motor back in, he didn't connect one of the grounds. Path of least resistance was the shifter cable. It starts as getting stiff, and gets worse. Eventually welds the cable to the sheathing from heat.
Had this same scenario on a 1977 LT, cable welded itself due to a bad ground.
 
Last edited:

Bigboydanny43

New Member
Aug 7, 2022
3
There is a bushing on the arm attached to the steering column which gets worn.
Replacing that could help with some of the "slop".

Hey thanks for the welcome everyone.

Where exactly is the bushing? I can’t see it in the diagram. I’m still kinda lost. I don’t think the thing welded itself since it still shifts with help.

I’ve included a picture of what has “play”. It is normal rotational play though, instead of the lateral play you’d expect with a bad bushing on a shaft which is what confuses me. It’s almost as if the cable has slack somewhere or something but I’m not even sure how that happened since the thing is not a daily driver.

Also they’re bringing twisted metal back next year as a show
 

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