View Full Version : Top shift conversion for a Lark 8

Jeff T.
09-10-2006, 03:51 PM
Has anyone put a top shift unit on a passenger transmission. I have a T-86 out of a 63 wagoneer (long tailshaft) that I would like to convert to floor shift operation. My T-86 also has the narrowing of the case opening toward the front of the transmission case rather than one big rectangle. When I converted a truck T-86 to top shift operation I used a shift unit that I bought at a local jeep supplier (similar to the T-90) but the truck case opening was a rectangle.

Anyone have any ideas on what would work?

I see in the parts book that the 63-64 taxicab used a topshift unit rather that a column shift. I chased part numbers in the Sasco database and found a lot of valid part numbers but I guess I will have to call Sasco about complete assemblies

Again if any of the transmission experts have an idea on the right shift unit to get or know the whereabouts of any dead taxicabs...

Hey a three on the floor is a little more fun than a three on the tree:)

Jeff T

"I'm getting nowhere as fast as I can"
The Replacements.

09-10-2006, 04:00 PM
if this is a non-OD trans, I would imagine that there is some kind of Hurst shifter that would work. If it *is* OD, you may have to do some custom bracketry if you want to go that route.

good luck,


55 Commander Starlight

09-10-2006, 08:33 PM
I recently sold just such a conversion to Ted Harbit who needed it for a friend's Stude. There's some mod that's done to the forks inside the tranny but I don't recall exactly what they are.

Miscreant at large.

1957 Transtar 1/2ton
1960 Larkvertible V8
1958 Provincial wagon
1953 Commander coupe
1957 President 2-dr
1955 President State
1951 Champion Biz cpe
1963 Daytona project FS

09-10-2006, 09:25 PM
Here's what I did on a T86-1D for my M5 truck. There are pictures of the fork modifications.
It started as a side-shift OD transmission with 6-bolt cover. I used the floor shifter form the old standard 3-speed. A Jeep shifter may work on newer T86 transmissions.

[img=left]http://www.studegarage.com/images/gary_ash_m5_sm.jpg[/img=left] Gary Ash
Dartmouth, Mass.
'48 M5
'65 Wagonaire Commander
'63 Wagonaire Standard
web site at http://www.studegarage.com

09-11-2006, 06:21 AM
I went through this last year. My '62 Champ had an old Hurst shifter on it. The thing was sloppy to the max. In fact, I found myself stuck on the side of the road several times trying to unstick the transmission from between 1st and 2nd. I finally started carrying a really large 14" screwdriver. I would use this and a tire iron to pry the shifting brackets into neutral position.

I looked into finding the taxi conversion. Called SDI SASCO and half dozen other people. None of them had one.[8] It was suggested to me to look into a junked taxi or forget it. So I forgot it. I fixed the broken shifting tube in my Champ and now it's fine.:D All I have to do is get it running again...[:I]

Lotsa Larks!
K.I.S.S. Keep It Simple Studebaker!
Ron Smith