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  1. Chris Henrich

    Chris Henrich Newbie

    The two plastic halves fell out of shifter. Need some help please!! It will not go into reverse
  2. JASONCHAD

    JASONCHAD Trabi Meister Forum Donor

    Do you have a picture of what you are talking about?
  3. Chris Henrich

    Chris Henrich Newbie

    hey jason can I call you ?? We talked the other day I had my car up for sale on CL
    you can text or call me at 832-265-9397
  4. Chris Henrich

    Chris Henrich Newbie

  5. Chris Henrich

    Chris Henrich Newbie

    its on a column shifter and all gears work except reverse!!
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2014
  6. Wartburg353W

    Wartburg353W Loyal Comrade

    You need to unscrew the plastic cover on the column. It's a top and a bottom plastic cover with a screw going down vertically through the top. It screws into the metal bracket holding the shift column to the steering column and also holds the ignition switch. That metal bracket is also made of a top and bottom piece that screw together with the vertical screw and come together to clamp the columns. That, or something else has come loose in there that has allowed that bushing to fall out. It should become obvious once you undo that screw and take off the cover. It won't go in reverse because the linkage is so far out of adjustment. If you can't figure it out, take a picture once you have the cover off.
  7. Chris Henrich

    Chris Henrich Newbie

    Hey thanks... I will post pictures after I finish this horrible gig this morning, but that's a whole another story !!
    So here is what happened ... I pulled shifter out for reverse and the plastic clams fell right out!! I've got the cover of the steering column right now. I order new plastic clam halves and o-ring. I put them in and all shifts fine 1st to 4th, but as soon as I go for reverse they pull right back out. Thanks so much for your info!! May I ask where did you get two 353's??? They look super clean..
  8. Wartburg353W

    Wartburg353W Loyal Comrade

    OK that should not come out and certainly you should not be able to put it back in unless something is broken or missing. The shift lever is attached to the top of the shift column with a press-pin so it will swivel. This traps the assembly within a housing that the lever comes out through, with the 2-halved plastic grommet thing trapped in there to keep it steady in the housing like a bearing. It can't come out of there except from behind the housing, and then only if the shift lever has come off the shift column. Really need to see this with my own eyes. Here are pictures of an assembled shift column/lever.
    shifter2.jpg shifter1.jpg
  9. Chris Henrich

    Chris Henrich Newbie

  10. Chris Henrich

    Chris Henrich Newbie

    Thanks again for your time... I gotta get her fixed parking lady being rude about it!!
  11. Wartburg353W

    Wartburg353W Loyal Comrade

    That should not come out nearly that far. So inside that housing the lever must be disconnected from the column. Unscrew the two piece metal bracket that is holding the shift column to the steering column and look at the joint from behind, as in my 1st picture. There should be a pin running through two "eyes" on the end of the shift lever, and then a spring and a retainer clip in there so the lever will spring back after you pull it out for reverse. I'm guess the pin has fallen out or broken or one or both of the "eyes" is broken off. Did you have trouble shifting before this happened?
  12. Chris Henrich

    Chris Henrich Newbie

    No I had no trouble shifting before... The pin nor the eyes or broken. I pushed the plastic halves in from the front. Maybe I'm installing them wrong. How are you suppose to install them?? The spring and everything on shifter is complete and pulls in and out correctly.
    When it happened I pulled shifter out for reverse and half of the clam hit the floor board.
    Again thanks so much for you wartburg knowledge!!
  13. Wartburg353W

    Wartburg353W Loyal Comrade

    Yeah that place on the shift lever where the plastic halves mounts should not move in and out at all. The lever is supposed to pull through it and retract back into it. The only way you should be able to change them is from inside the housing with the lever detached. Here's an expanded view of the column:
    shiftexploded.jpg
    That yolk labeled 41 is what is broken then.
  14. Wartburg353W

    Wartburg353W Loyal Comrade

  15. Chris Henrich

    Chris Henrich Newbie

    Thanks sir... Let me ask a few more.
    First one how do you get it back together with the plastic parts inserted from back side?
    Second do I need to remove that pin and if so how?? I can't seem to move it at all!! I can get my shifter out by prying it over the pin...
    Again thank you so much!! I'm so shocked to find out I'm not alone in the wartburg land!! Five years or so of aloneness gets a man down!!
  16. Wartburg353W

    Wartburg353W Loyal Comrade

    It's pressed in on a big vice machine until the ends of the pin are squashed. To get it out you have to grind it, chisel it, hammer it, anything it takes to drive it out. Then to replace it you either have to take it to a shop that can press a new pin through it or figure out some other way of pinning it together. Of course, you could hunt down a complete used shift lever/column somewhere, then you just have to disconnect it at the end under the hood and feed the new assembly down through the firewall. That is what I would do- I know, easier said than done from over here in the states. But there are guys on here with good connections in Hungary. Or someone on the German Wartburg forum might be willing to help.

    My cars are from Hungary. I lived there for 3 years and was able to shop around and buy nice one-owner examples. I had them tuned up and put through the national safety and emissions inspections while there. When they arrived here to Virginia, I had all paperwork in hand to register them, but the DMV had to alter its database in Richmond before it was physically possible to title a car "Wartburg"!

    How did you come by yours then? You've had it five years?

    Jeff
  17. Chris Henrich

    Chris Henrich Newbie

    Hey Jeff I bought the car from Peter ... I know is on here sometimes .
    Ok here are my new questions ??
    Is taking pin out the only way to get the bushings back in the shifter??
    Next how do you discount it from firewall?? Do I need to get the #26 bolt/pin out? Because loose didn't do it.
    I'm getting beat down by this thing. I can get shifter of column no problem, but can't figure out how to get bushings back in and shifter together!! Ahhhhhhhhbb
    Do you want another wartburg??? Will trade for vw or guitar!!!
    Thanks again I'm not normally this challenged!!!
    Thank you, Chris
  18. Wartburg353W

    Wartburg353W Loyal Comrade

    I guess what I'm trying to say is it won't do you any good to keep putting the bushings back in until you replace at the very least the Gabel that is broken. And to do that you have to drive the pin out, take it apart and put it back together with a new Gabel, then the bushings will stay put. If you don't want to mess around with the press pin then you need the whole column. And to replace that, yes you need to get the finger #25 off the end of it and draw it up through the firewall. Taking out the bolt #26 is necessary but the finger part #25 is on there really tight so it will take some coercion to get it off even then. I'll also send you a private message.
    Jeff

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