How-To: T-5 & T-45 Shifter Install


Dirtbike Aficionado
Shifter install write up using American Muscle’s T-5/T-45 Short Throw Sport Shifter

Tools needed:

4mm Allen
6mm Allen
Sockets: 8mm, 10mm, 13mm, 14mm
Long screwdriver
Razor blade
Universal joint (not necessary)
Electric impact (not necessary)

Start by taking off your shift knob. If you don’t know how to do that, stop now. Get help.

Take off the shifter bezel, and disconnect the power plug. The bezel will come off with a little force.

Using the 10mm socket, take off the two bolts holding the stock handle.

Using the 8mm socket, (and a universal joint if you have one) take off four bolts holding the rubber boot thing. These bolts are extremely tight and frustrating to get out. Ford deemed it necessary to use thread locker on these, for whatever reason. An electric impact and a universal joint makes this task much simpler. This thing is difficult to get out. Take your time and it will come out with the right angle.

Now its time to take the shifter off. Take the rubber boot off around the shifter. Use the 13mm socket and take off the four bolts on the shifter base. Use the long screwdriver to gently pry on the base of the shifter against the body hole. There’s no need to be Hulk Hogan here, just pry enough to break the silicone seal. It will pull right out once the seal is broken.

These edges are sharp.

You’ll need to clean the silicone off the transmission base. The edges are extremely sharp. Use the razor blade to carefully remove the old silicone. Try not to get any silicone in the housing. Clean it out if you do. Now is a good time to test fit the shifter. Just make sure it will sit down flush on the base. Using a little brake cleaner, clean the surface off before you put on the new silicone (or shifter gasket, or both). A lot isn’t necessary, just make sure there is a sufficient amount to make a good seal around the entire base.

Time to install the new shifter for good. Mine came with studs, and uses a 4mm Allen to tighten. You don’t have to force these tight, as the shifter will hold the whole assembly together. Just make sure they are tight enough to stay put. Put the new shifter in, making sure the little cup is in the pivot socket. If you don’t transfer this cup over (if it came out in the first place) it will cause the shifting to be sloppy. Using the 14mm socket, tighten the shifter nuts down in sequence, like you would with lug nuts. Tighten each a little at a time so you don’t bind it up. Make sure you can shift through all the gears before moving on.

With a little work, this boot will fit. Don't put this on until the shifter stops are adjusted.

Now adjust the shifter stops. The shifter has adjustable stops to limit the travel of the shifter. Put the handle on temporarily. Put it in gear, and adjust the stops so there is a small gap. Do not adjust it so it touches, it may cause the transmission to pop out of gear unexpectedly. Use the 6mm Allen to hold the stud, and a wrench to tighten the stop nut. Make sure to do both the front and back stops. Again, go through all the gears and make sure there is a small gap (1/16”) for every gear. Take the handle off now.

You want 1/16" on both sides of the shift stop.

Now you can put the rubber shifter boot back on. I put the smaller boot on around the shifter. It isn’t made to go on the new shifter, but it will fit with some coaxing. I figured this would cut down on noise. Start at step 4 and work your way backwards.

I chose the lowest setting for handle height. It makes for some really short shifts, but with a billet shift ring the handle contacts the ring. It is recommended that you wait 24 hours for the silicone to set up, but like any new mod, you gotta take it out for a test drive. Go out and enjoy it!

It really is as low as it looks.

You can see the lever length difference between the stock shifter (left) and the new shifter (right).


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GT geek
One thing I would add, instead of prying up the shifter with a screwdriver you can instead simply bolt the handle back on. This will give you more then enough leverage to get the shifter free.