Thursday, July 8, 2010

Shift turret boot and insulator

When your shifter insulator boot (the big one) is this badly deteriorated, you can see your Miata's driveshaft if you take out the center console. Heat from the exhaust likes to warm up your drinks and/or electronic devices in the cup holders in the summer; cold air keeps cabin temperatures down in the winter. You also get to enjoy the fine smell of exhaust if you have a leak.

About a week ago, I replaced that and the transmission shift turret boot (the small one) on my lunch break. 4 screws gets the console off, and it's all 10mm bolts from there. A short extension helps.

Getting the insulator off is trivial; removing the small boot from the shifter is a little trickier. It's pretty small, and fits very nicely into a recess on the shifter. I cut it off with wire cutters that are on my little multi-tool.

After filling up the turret with fresh gear oil (it was empty, of course) I spent some time trying to figure out how to get the shifter apart to get the new small boot on. I consulted the interwebz, and found out the shifter doesn't come apart. It's just like sex: lubricate, and slip the shaft in the hole. I'll let you guess which is more satisfying.

Put your 10mm bolts back in, screw the console back on, and go back to work.

On my ride home, I noticed a quieter cab and a distinct lack of Disconcertingly Warm Cell Phone And iPod Syndrome. Which is nice, considering heat probably isn't their best friend, and spending money isn't my most favoritest thing to do.

Speaking of spending money, these were real cheap through Mazdaspeed. About half to one-third the price, if memory serves, of what these go for on Good-Win Racing and elsewhere they're available. In fact, I think those places charge about as much, perhaps even more than dealer retail. Since these aren't aftermarket parts, you're probably better off just getting them at your local Mazda dealer and saving the shipping cost (if you don't have a Mazdaspeed membership, that is).

Good luck, and happy wrenching!

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