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18 TA 392
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Discussion Starter #1
Hi guys
I recently purchased and installed a Barton shifter. There are plenty of posts about these shifters that gave great ratings about it. I will be honest I do not care for this shifter at all, in fact I think its trash. Due to the heavy centering spring it always wants to align the shifter in-between 3-4 gear. This works great when shifting from 2-3 because the spring pushes it in direct alignment with the gear. The problem is when trying to down shift from 3-2 or up shift 4-5 the spring requires an excessive amount of force to align it with the far left and right gears. Apparently there is a way to remove the centering springs but I have contacted Barton a few time via email to get the instructions to preform it and they have not gotten back to me. I’m hoping that someone on the site would be able to post or send me the instructions. The shifter does have a nice tight feel to it however with the heavy centering spring it seems to me this would be great if you were quarter mile racing the car so it would be impossible to miss the 2-3-4 shift but due to the difficulty getting into the 1-2 and 5-6 gate that for street use or autocross track use it is horrible and you are very likely to miss shifting to the far right and left gears.

On a side note the Barton does give you the adjustment to position the shifter forward or aft when installing it ,has anyone had any problems with the shifter handle bolts attaching the shifter shaft to the yoke loosing up or moving by hard shifting the vehicle. I have a friend with one in his mustang and he told me a number of time when shifting hard the handle would eventually loosen up. Is it different with the challenger set up?
Thanks
Dennis
 

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Perhaps an exercise regimen is in order... ;) I'm 67yrs old with , according to the MRI, zero cartilage in my rt shoulder and I love my Barton shifter. It's a workout, but it's an awesome bit of engineering.
 

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Ive driven a car with the barton and dont care for it either. Have driven hurst also. Will stick with the stock for now til i buy a direct shifter for it instead of the rear mount crap.
 

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2015 Dodge Challenger SRT
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562 Posts
Hi guys
I recently purchased and installed a Barton shifter. There are plenty of posts about these shifters that gave great ratings about it. I will be honest I do not care for this shifter at all, in fact I think its trash. Due to the heavy centering spring it always wants to align the shifter in-between 3-4 gear. This works great when shifting from 2-3 because the spring pushes it in direct alignment with the gear. The problem is when trying to down shift from 3-2 or up shift 4-5 the spring requires an excessive amount of force to align it with the far left and right gears. Apparently there is a way to remove the centering springs but I have contacted Barton a few time via email to get the instructions to preform it and they have not gotten back to me. I’m hoping that someone on the site would be able to post or send me the instructions. The shifter does have a nice tight feel to it however with the heavy centering spring it seems to me this would be great if you were quarter mile racing the car so it would be impossible to miss the 2-3-4 shift but due to the difficulty getting into the 1-2 and 5-6 gate that for street use or autocross track use it is horrible and you are very likely to miss shifting to the far right and left gears.

On a side note the Barton does give you the adjustment to position the shifter forward or aft when installing it ,has anyone had any problems with the shifter handle bolts attaching the shifter shaft to the yoke loosing up or moving by hard shifting the vehicle. I have a friend with one in his mustang and he told me a number of time when shifting hard the handle would eventually loosen up. Is it different with the challenger set up?
Thanks
Dennis
Dennis ... When I first installed my Barton in May 2018 I felt the exact same as you do. At the time my Challenger was my daily driver so I occasionally spent considerable time in traffic. In fact, after about four or five days I contacted Barton about returning the shifter and returning to stock .... even though I'd missed a gear a couple of times with the stock shifter.

I decided to give it a couple more weeks -- in part because it would be a couple of weeks before I would have time to do the swap. During that time the centering spring seemed to loosen up a bit and it was much more drivable. And, during that time I made a trip to The Tail of The Dragon where I found the Barton to truly be in its element.

Then in December of 2018, Santa brought me a Speed Dawg shift knob. The extra weight of the Speed Dawg seemed to, at least to some degree, counter the strength of the Barton centering spring.

So ... between an adjustment period on my part, the spring easing up with a little use, and a Speed Dawg shift knob, I'm pretty happy with my Barton.

Though I would like to drive someone's car with a Hurst shifter to see if it's sort of halfway between stock and the Barton.

On the shifter positioning bolts ... A heavy-handed Dodge mechanic did manage to break mine loose while my car was in for a warranty issue. I hadn't used any Loctite since I was still deciding if I liked the position. So, when I put everything back together, I used some blue Loctite and haven't had any issues since.
 

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Ive driven a car with the barton and dont care for it either. Have driven hurst also. Will stick with the stock for now til i buy a direct shifter for it instead of the rear mount crap.
Interesting, who makes a direct shifter for these transmissions?
 

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Sikky make the one im going to get. 10". Heres a pic. Its for swaps but the length is correct. Took measurements when i had a trans out for syncros.
s-l400 (2).jpg
 

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18 TA 392
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Discussion Starter #8
Wizard
Thank you for the insight. I was thinking if I removed the springs and thought it was too loose I could always reinstall them. It just seem too much of a wrestling match to access the 1-2 and 5-6 gears, I would be really happy if I could get sprigs 50% lighter. If I cant find the spring removal instructions I will give it a little time to break in before reinstalling the stock one. I find it interesting that the Hurst felt in-between the two shifters. If I cant get the Barton to work for me maybe I should try the Hurst. Has anyone else used both that could give an opinion on the two?
I was always told not to use blue Loctite with steel bolt going into aluminum threads. I have heard you could strip the threads on removal of the bolt in the future? It that just BS?
Thanks for the help guys
 

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2015 Dodge Challenger SRT
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Wizard
Thank you for the insight. I was thinking if I removed the springs and thought it was too loose I could always reinstall them. It just seem too much of a wrestling match to access the 1-2 and 5-6 gears, I would be really happy if I could get sprigs 50% lighter. If I cant find the spring removal instructions I will give it a little time to break in before reinstalling the stock one. I find it interesting that the Hurst felt in-between the two shifters. If I cant get the Barton to work for me maybe I should try the Hurst. Has anyone else used both that could give an opinion on the two?
I was always told not to use blue Loctite with steel bolt going into aluminum threads. I have heard you could strip the threads on removal of the bolt in the future? It that just BS?
Thanks for the help guys
For clarity... I was saying I’d like to drive one with the Hurst tp see IF it is halfway.

I stupidly didn’t give the metal/aluminum combo any consideration. Though I did use just a dab.


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
 

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Wizard
Thank you for the insight. I was thinking if I removed the springs and thought it was too loose I could always reinstall them. It just seem too much of a wrestling match to access the 1-2 and 5-6 gears, I would be really happy if I could get sprigs 50% lighter. If I cant find the spring removal instructions I will give it a little time to break in before reinstalling the stock one. I find it interesting that the Hurst felt in-between the two shifters. If I cant get the Barton to work for me maybe I should try the Hurst. Has anyone else used both that could give an opinion on the two?
I was always told not to use blue Loctite with steel bolt going into aluminum threads. I have heard you could strip the threads on removal of the bolt in the future? It that just BS?
Thanks for the help guys
I would just use a good torque wrench, tighten to spec, criss cross pattern, check torque again in 1 week no loctite needed
 

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Wizard
Thank you for the insight. I was thinking if I removed the springs and thought it was too loose I could always reinstall them. It just seem too much of a wrestling match to access the 1-2 and 5-6 gears, I would be really happy if I could get sprigs 50% lighter. If I cant find the spring removal instructions I will give it a little time to break in before reinstalling the stock one. I find it interesting that the Hurst felt in-between the two shifters. If I cant get the Barton to work for me maybe I should try the Hurst. Has anyone else used both that could give an opinion on the two?
I was always told not to use blue Loctite with steel bolt going into aluminum threads. I have heard you could strip the threads on removal of the bolt in the future? It that just BS?
Thanks for the help guys
I think this is what you are looking for.

Barton Spring Modification
 

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2014 Shaker Boosted 392 Stroker M6
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I'm just as pleased as punch with my Barton, and I'm over 70 years old...
 

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I have had OEM, Hurst and Barton on my 2012 R/T Classic (currently using the Barton). I also found the Barton to be harder to get used to, although part of the issue was the MOPAR short throw shifter I was using. I just recently changed back to the OEM stick on the Barton shifter mechanism and that solved all the issues with the relatively heavy centering force of the Barton. An extra inch or so of leverage made all the difference in the world.
 

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Its a matter of getting used to:
  • a new shifter with poly bushings - they're very tight.
  • a centering spring
things are really tight the first 400 - 500 miles. It takes that much usage and when they break in, the effort fees smoother

As far as the 1/2 and 5/6 gates, you'll pull it toward you or push it away for those gates.

It will become a natural feel - the stock shifter has very compliant bushings so it doesn't really direct the user toward anything, although it centers to 3/4 gate but not with a very positive feel

use blue locktite - there's a lot of aluminum parts that use steel bolts so this is a non-issue. Haven't seen any alternatives to steel fasteners that offer the strength.
 

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18 TA 392
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Discussion Starter #15
Greg
Thank you, this is exactly what I was looking for this is what Barton sent me after asking a number of times “The shifter will have to be removed. There is a ring on the bottom of the shifter, that is holding up the rubber dust boot. Remove that ring. There are two large set screws under the rubber boot, remove those set screws and the two springs and spring pads will come out. put the set screws back in, as well as the dust boot retaining ring.” I’m just as disappointed in there customer service as their shifter. You would think there would be a link on their website with a detailed description as the one in the link above ,or even this brief instruction at the least. I wish Dodge put as much R&D in the challenger shifter as the viper. The one in my viper is perfect

I understand some of you people like this shifter, unless you are having a difficult time hitting the 2-3-4 shift I would think the centering spring is useless. If it went such a bad trade off going from 3-2 or 4-5 it would be a fine shifter. I decided to give the shifter a firm shift (and I’m not talking a whole lot more than it takes to shift it) and I was able to change the forward-back shifter position, after my next couple shift the handle was so loose I had to hold the shaft at the leather boot to get it home. I talked to a friend of mine that is a full time mechanic on high end vehicles and he told me blue lock tight if more than a single drop is used from a steel bolt to and aluminum threaded block it can easily strip the threads trying to adjust the bolt after it has set up ,he recommended purple Loctite on aluminum and brass threads.

I am going to try the spring removal and I will post the results
Thanks for the help
Dennis
 

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I wish Dodge put as much R&D in the challenger shifter as the viper. The one in my viper is perfect
Different tail shaft housings between what a Viper transmission and Challenger application.

The Viper bolts onto the top of the transmission, while the Challenger uses a remote shift mount. It has to do with the vehicle layout and where the transmission is oriented relative to the driver's position
 

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Hawk TA, the Barton guys are good guys but yeah, they aren't the best at getting back to you, especially via email or their contact form on the website. I have had better luck calling and usually get Dave Sr. answering the phone within a couple tries. Also, I don't believe there is any issue with the blue loctite on the aluminum threads and steel bolt. The purple is for pretty small items and I don't believe would have the strength to help at all with those bolts. Best of luck with whatever you decide.

Greg
 

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18 TA 392
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Discussion Starter #19
I’m sure the guys at Barton are good guys its just frustrating that a simple adjustment of there equipment takes such an effort to obtain. I was searching around the internet last night and also found this info on the Hellcat forum
Barton Shifter Spring Force Modifcation
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Update- I remove the shifter and took out the left and right centering spring.(very easy process under 5 minutes once is out of the car ) There still must be an additional spring on each side because it still centers the shifter but now with 50% less force. It is a substantial difference. Now the shifter feels great, very precise and you do not feel like you are arm wrestling the spring when moving over to the 1-2 or 5-6 gears. I can not figure out why they would install additional springs to make it that stiff.

There is a small allen head set screw that is on the shifter flat shaft mounting location that will help prevent the shifter from moving out of position when shifting forward and back. I did make a slight modification to it, when I located the perfect position I marked the location with a sharp metal pin scraper thru the set screw hole . I then drilled a small hole in the flat shifter handle where it seats . Now the set screw seats slightly in that hole making it impossible to dislodge its location. It might be a little over the top but it will never move from that position .

Here are two more tips:
  1. I did not see this in any of the installation videos- The two forward pins that mount the transmission forks(the ones with the lock clips) . The passenger side one is very easy to access from under the car. When trying form above there is very limited access and the lock is a ***** to work from above.
  2. Place a rag or towel on top of the area to prevent any of the nuts or screws from falling between the metal floor pan and the carpet. I lost one nut down there and it took longer to find it than it did to install the shifter ☹
Hope this may help anyone that was unhappy about the springs
Dennis
 
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