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  #1  
Old 01-31-2001, 10:07 PM
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My car's original rubber shift knob is all cracked and looks like a dried out lake bed. I have seen Zebrano shift knobs here and there. I was wondering on how to go about swapping the old one out. Is this a DIYer? I know that the console will probably have to come out, but beyond that what needs to be done?
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  #2  
Old 02-01-2001, 01:12 AM
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I'm looking to do the same on my 1982 300D (auto transmission.) To change the shift knob, you have to remove the wood console, unscrew the locknut, and replace the shifter linkage with a new piece from the dealer. Next, you attach your new shift knob to the new shifter linkage. A friend of mine did it another way, and I'm planning to do it this way too. Use a hedge clipper (or another tool of choice) to chop off as much rubber from the shift knob as you can. Then it'll be pretty easy to remove whatever remaining rubber there is on the metal shaft. Now you're ready to install your new shift knob!
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Old 02-07-2001, 11:30 PM
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Rick, did you replace your shift knob using this method? How'd it go?
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  #4  
Old 02-08-2001, 09:47 AM
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No I haven't changed it out yet. Right now I am sort of lining up my "things to do in the Spring" list. Why would I have to replace any linkage. I figured you would unbolt the old shifter rod/lever and bolt in the new one. Also why do I have to chop away the old rubber knob? Thanks though for the instructions.
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  #5  
Old 02-09-2001, 12:16 AM
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On newer Mercedes you can unscrew something below the shift knob. This makes it a whole lot easier to change the knob. On the older cars (such as the 116's and the 123's) the rubber shift knob is fused to the metal linkage. You can try twisting the knob, but you'll accomplish nothing. As I mentioned earlier, the "real" way to change the knob is to buy an entirely new metal shaft with the knob already attached. What my friend did (after chopping away the stock knob and removing all the rubber from the shaft) was purchase a VERY nice wood / leather shift knob from a new E class and glued it in. It looks GREAT. Good luck.
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Old 02-09-2001, 09:41 AM
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They make 2 different kinds. One bots or screws to your existing shifter shaft and therefore you must chop away old shifter. Most aftermarkets have the shaft built in so you remove old shaft and install new shaft with nice wood knob already on it. I looked briefly at doing this and it seems that if you can get out the plastic shift plate, you'll be able to remove it.
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Old 02-09-2001, 07:46 PM
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Yeah, it's the type with metal shafts already attached to them that I was talking about. I can't remember off hand where I saw them available. I think it might have been Performance Products. So with these types all I need to do is unbolt the shaft where it attaches to the selector box?
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  #8  
Old 03-21-2002, 01:00 AM
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I've been wondering about the same thing. i think my new shift knob is in the mail. I missed it because it snowed and rained soo hard on the first day of spring here (so i was basically stuck here and there.)

so all I have to do is take the console out, take the plastic cover out, and unscrew the nut right? I don't think I can unscrew the shaft, can I? Because I tried twisting the knob (in hope of unscrewing the shaft, but it did not work).

I was also thinking about that idea of choppin off the rubber knob and buy a nice leather/wood shift knob off a new E-Class or something and glue it in (or even figure out a different way). I know that some guys have done this in Indonesia.
At least if I screw it up, I'll have the wooden one with its shaft already installed... rather than having to drive it with a metal shaft only...

Maybe I might be able to make a thread for a shift knob by borrowing something from the Engineering Manufacturing department... (if they'd let me)
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Old 03-21-2002, 01:25 AM
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It is actually much easier, yet more difficult than all have posted (if that makes any sense).

Yes, you have to remove the wood console panel, however the process is for whichever chassis you have. Next you have to be able to access the lock nut for the shifter, the only way to do that is by splitting the shiftgate assembly. The shiftgate assembly is held to the tunnel by four 12mm (I think, might be 10's) bolts.

Using a 1/4" drive ratchet with 6" extension and a socket, remove the four bolts. I suggest using 1/4" drive as one bolt is slightly recessed under the edge of the shiftgate and with 1/4" drive you have easy access. Upon pulling the last bolt the shiftgate assemble will split in two, with the top half trying to turn 90 degrees on you. Lift the top half slightly and you have access to the 17mm lock nut. Loosen slightly and unscrew the shiftknob and rod. Assembly is the reverse.

It might be easier to disconnect the shift rod to the tranny at the bellcrank and completely remove the shiftgate assembly from the car. Only a few extra seconds to do. Under the car, follow the shift rod from the tranny to the bellcrank, undo one clip and slip the rod from the bellcrank. Now the whole unit will come out of the car after removing the four bolts. A great time to replace the hard to reach shift rod bushing too.

Hope this helps
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  #10  
Old 03-21-2002, 08:48 PM
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Allright, what is this shift knob for?


Is it for the W123? I tried and it looks completely different and it wouldn't fit.
The W123's has a straight shaft...
this one has bent shaft.
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  #11  
Old 03-22-2002, 02:25 AM
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With that bend in it, it looks an awful lot like a 126 shifter.
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