Floor Shift Instalation
Changing from the column shift to a 96 Impala floor shift is a popular swap and adds to the sportiness of the car. Here are a few tips to help make the change.
When finding a donor set up be sure it is complete, as many of the parts are no longer produced. You'll need the floor plate, 96 floor console, shifter mechanism, shift cable, shift knob, trans bracket and trans lever.
You'll need to cut out the carpet. Set the console in place and mark and area smaller than the console but large enough for the floor bracket. This is also a good time to remove the column shifting arm by removing the pin at the base of the lever. Removal of the lever will disengage the column lock and allow the floor shifter to move the column internals.
Then you will need to locate the floor plate exactly where the original plate on a 96 Impala was located or the cable may not fit correctly. Here is a picture of a factory floorplate to use as guide. The new one can be held down with stainless steel screws.
The hole for the cable in the floor can be made with a 1 7/8 hole saw bought at any hardware store. The size is important to keep the rubber boot in place.
Attaching the two trans lever brackets will allow the internals from the steering column to work for things like the back up lights, shift interupt, and neutral start. The two levers are filed to 1/2 thickness and then welded together.
Once the floor bracket is set, the shifter and cable are run and once the trans lever bracket is made, it is time to attached the trans bracket to the transmission and attached the cable to the trans lever.
Now it's time to check the movement of the shifter and all safety features like the neutral start and shift interupt. If all is good to go, instal the console and shifter handle.
For those of you who wish to add that finishing touch you can grind off the old column stub where the lever, fill and paint with SEM matching paint
Completed floor shift coversion. This to me gave the car the feeling I was looking for.
It was well worth all the effort and cost. The entire project took only an afternnon and is not difficult but you need to take things slow. Measure twice, cut once.