M1008 shift indicator

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I was headed to the DMV of all places to renew my license which was to expire that day. Truck started up perfectly as usual, then I went to put it in drive and I heard the lovely sound of a screw making its way down the inside of the stearing column and the shift indicator failing to move. Panic ensued until I realised that I didn't need to see what gear it was in since I new by feel. I then proceeded to the DMV and everything worked out ok.
OK, so much for the drama, now comes the the question. What is the sequence of steps to fix the issue so I don't end up dismanteling more than I need to?
Thanks and I hope the first part was at least entertaining.
 

Barrman

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Unplug all of your battery cables. The leads on the back of the volt meter will touch metal otherwise and blow the fuse at the bottom of the fuse panel.

Pull your headlight switch out, reach under to find the release button on the switch itself to remove the pull handle. Or, try and get the gauge bezel out by squeezing it over the headlight handle.

I like to pull the metal plate under the steering column off and use a 15 mm socket to drop the column down about an inch by loosening both of the column support nuts.

Undo all of the long screws holding the bezel to the dash pad and metal.

Watch your fan switch lever as you work the bezel out.

Now, you can see the metal clip of the indicator attached to the steering column that rotates with the gear lever. Follow the wire to the indicator itself. The wire is supposed to be in a groove on the passenger side of the column. That groove is probably what broke off on you. A sheet metal screw put in there might or might not work for an attempt, a week or a life time.

If it doesn't, you need to pull the entire gauge cluster and get a new one. Which they don't make anymore by the way. Everything you find used is going to be 28 plus year old brittle plastic.
 

cucvrus

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Easier. Just pull the 10 amp fuse in the bottom center of fuse box. And you can fix the broken clip/support with a shoulder type screw. The type they used on fuel cap tethers. I will send you a screw. The fine tuning of the shift indicator is the part that requires patience. But if the cable and the indicator needle are still in tact you have won 1/2 the battle. Remove the shift indictor assembly after the bezel & lens and get that indicator slide cleaned and greased. Grease it so it moves smooth and easy. I posted pictures of the screw cable pivot some where before. But if you do not have to do NOT remove the cluster housing. You can do all the servicing from the front side. But the shoulder screw will act as the guide for the cable the same way the cluster did. And if you wear that shoulder screw out. You do a lot more driving then I ever did. 1 down fall. You will need to drill an 1/8" hole in the steel instrument panel where no one will ever see it. Good Luck. I will try and get some pictures for you if needed.
 

doghead

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Could you post a picture of the screw you use?
 

cucvrus

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DSCF6086.jpgThis is the Ford fuel cap tether screw that I have used lately to replace the broken cluster guide. DSCF6087.jpgI have used the GM interior trim screw also. The problem I had with that is the built in washer spins and the cable can get caught between the washer and the screw The shoulder screw has worked flawlessly. If you want one I can send you one. I have a limited supply. I was in final assembly 25 years ago and saved every fastener I could get my hands on. I like hardware and fasteners.
 

cucvrus

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That works also. But the issue we were discussing in the guide tab on the cluster housing. That breaks and the only way to replace the OEM guide is a complete cluster housing. They are long since discontinued and I am not sure aftermarket replacement have the fit and function. I never used one. I have been fortunate enough to find idiot light civilian models. But they are thin and few now.
 

cucvrus

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just put a little dab of grease on that shoulder screw. Do you want me to send you a screw? At one time the tiny shift cable was sold as a seperate part thru GM. I have one somewhere here. I bought some really dumb stuff when the Chevrolet dealer was at 451 Jonestown Road and I live at 523 Jonestown Road. They went out of business when GM broke down in 2008. Well Good Luck. Easy fix. Never see it anyway and it will outlast the vehicle.
 
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Yes.....mine I think has a broken wire, so I needed a new unit.....

That works also. But the issue we were discussing in the guide tab on the cluster housing. That breaks and the only way to replace the OEM guide is a complete cluster housing. They are long since discontinued and I am not sure aftermarket replacement have the fit and function. I never used one. I have been fortunate enough to find idiot light civilian models. But they are thin and few now.
 
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