I know we have a couple of shifter threads going now, but I wanted to start a new thread specific to my shifter installation and the fun that was had last night.
First, as others have said, I would like to meet the genius that designed this set up. Can you say PITA? Definitely not like the BMWs and Audis I've done in the past. Well, let's start by saying that I used wheel ramps and jack stands, and it took longer than two hours - probably closer to 4 hours including breaks and cleanup. In retrospect I probably should have used four jack stands. I will also say that I am no SAE certified mechanic, just some guy with instructions, some common sense and basic hand tools - enough stuff to be dangerous.
I decided to start with the inside stuff. Removing the boot, foam insulation, and the nuts & bolts inside the car was pretty straightforward, but did they have to use locktite on the two bolts that are hardest to reach? Looking at my stock shifter, it already had rust on it??? One tidbit that might help marginally if you must use wheel ramps, don't remove these bolts before you lower the drive shaft, as the shifter mechanism really gets in the way of that top bolt. If you can't turn your rear wheels, like me, then it does get in the way.
Next crawling under the car, after a break of course - American Chopper, I Robot bike was on. Ok, back to work, having just installed my exhaust a couple of weeks ago, removal was pretty simple, but heavy.
I did not remove the entire driveshaft just lowered and moved it out of the way. I did rest it rather close to the bottom of the car on a jackstand, being mindful of the 8 degree rule. Like I said, the top bolt on the drive shaft was the most difficult just because I had a tough time getting a wrench on the nut and bolt.
Removal of the transimission mount and lowering the transmission was next. I had a tough time figuring out how low I could/should go with the transmission. I used a floor jack and put some foam between the strut bar and the engine cover. I lowered the floor jack and watched the engine at the same time. It took a few trys to get it lowered enough, and even then I think I had some room.
Now on to the shifter removal. The clip on right fork of the shifter is easy, relatively speaking. For me the one on the left was trouble. As Martin said, I decided to remove the solenoid for additional access - I didn't think my hands were that big. The one in the middle was easy once I could actually see it. I ended having to lower the transmission even more to actually get the entire shifter assembly out - more trial and error.
Installing the Katech into the shifter assembly was not too bad. I used plenty of Mobil 1 grease when I put it back together to aid in a smooth operation. I did manage to tear the rubber boot that goes around the bottom of the shifter slightly getting it over the bottom of the Katech - not a big issue, I hope. I installed the urethane bushings that I got from Martin - Thanks Martin. That took a bit just to get the metal around the urethane, but it was accomplished.
I won't bore you with the installation, as this has already dragged on, and it basically just the reverse.
In summary the shifter feels great in the car - nice short, crisp shifts. I do have one concern and that is the amount of noise associated with it. I suppose it is normal, but I don't really know for sure. Anyone who has the Katech or other short shifters please chime in. But all in all, I would say it is definitely worth it. One word of caution, if you don't like to work on cars - get dirty and what not, or in general, you're just not sure, then take it to a shop with a lift, and pay someone $100 to do it for you.
Good luck and please feel free to make any comments - positive or negative. Also, I would appreciate any feedback on the noise issue.