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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Before:

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I had the chance to test drive the NC shift knob earlier today. My throws are more confident, less effort and most noticeably...the downshifts from 5th to 4rth and from 3rd to 2nd, are more assuring (the stock knob seems "unsure" in feel when I engine brake, esp from sliding the shifter from 5th to 4rth notch...a feeling somewhat that it might go to 2nd). Essentially, throws overall are way smoother. Also, this solid aluminum/leather NC shift knob is more elegant and sportier in looks and feel in your hand (the buttery smooth semi-matte black leather blends very well to the leather steering wheel, etc and does not look "out of place" vs other shift knobs). It is also as I estimate, substantially 4-5X heavier than the cheaply light, hollow bodied, plastic stock shift knob.

Quality well Made in Japan (for $95, shipped to my door)..somewhat pricey for a shift knob, but well worth it. I am quite happy with this OEM mod. :)
 

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I'll be damned if I can find it -- got a part number? :)

And does the top come off to access the retaining clip or bolt, or is it like the VWs where you have to pull the boot and snip a clamp?
 

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Stop making me miss my MTX - That knob works perfectly with our car.
 

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How tall is it compared to the stock 6 knob? I'd love to shorten the throw about 1/2 inch. Also how does the weight compare (take them to a grocery store and put them on a produce scale haha)?

I've thought about cutting down the threads on the shift lever, and modifying the boot to be able push everything lower...but this could be a much better alternative, although 95$ isn't cheap.
 

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I wish someone made an overlay or something in a 5 speed pattern. I tried an MS6 knob in my gen 1 (pretty much the same knob) and it was much better shifting than stock.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Found it... :)

N125-V8-170F, and geesh -- the dang thing just UNSCREWS?! Much easier than my VeeDub....
Yeah. I noticed the Japanese shift knobs are (still) straightforward to replace and install. Just screw on and off. I remember my old man's W124, W123s and W115 Benz'es were the same (from that era of 4sp manuals, at least) in replacing shift knobs. Ditto for Mitsus (for Japanese cars, he was partial to the brand during it's heyday in the old country, decades back when Japanese RWD ruled the day).

Well, my Passat was a Tip, so...But if I decided to get a stick then, for sure the stock knob was long gone.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I wish someone made an overlay or something in a 5 speed pattern. I tried an MS6 knob in my gen 1 (pretty much the same knob) and it was much better shifting than stock.
The 5sp pattern is available. The part # is N124-V8-170F.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
How tall is it compared to the stock 6 knob? I'd love to shorten the throw about 1/2 inch. Also how does the weight compare (take them to a grocery store and put them on a produce scale haha)?

I've thought about cutting down the threads on the shift lever, and modifying the boot to be able push everything lower...but this could be a much better alternative, although 95$ isn't cheap.
As in one of the above pics, this NC alum/leather compared to the stock is about 1in shorter. It is noticeably heavier..frankly I was very surprised when I opened the box, thinking aluminum (as light). But I was wrong. I have a digital glass scale to measure...but didn't occur to me to actually weigh it, as I was giddy on putting it on. :D

Also, one needs to adjust the shift boot appropriately. Mazda was keen on giving enough slack to the shift boot (for adjustments)...I find it mod friendly (for a clean install look). The have the foresight, for the 6MT knob "modders" in us.

Btw, this was my original aim...

..the ultra rare Series II RX-8 6MT knob. If I'm not mistaken, this costs between $150-$200s (if you're lucky to find one).​
 

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I checked over the weekend if I could drop the stock knob and I cannot, since the boot only can go down a very small amount without some major reworking of the shift lever, so I just twisted down the stock knob as far as it possibly will go.

I think you've absolutely found the best option available.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 · (Edited)
@solar365, thanks. Having a short shifter was also on my mind as well. This NC knob, though is shorter than the stock knob..the install height, if I'm not mistaken is nearly the same if not a tad lower than stock. The "neck" area of the stock knob exceeds (that pushes the shift boot down) that of the NCs'. In fact, I have to pull the boot up and adjust the foldings to look "neat". It's a good thing the shift boot has a lot of slack. The flexibility for adjustments is desirable for a shift knob mod. :)
 

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@solar365, thanks. Having a short shifter was also on my mind as well. This NC knob, though is shorter than the stock knob..the install height, if I'm not mistaken is nearly the same if not a tad lower than stock. The "neck" area of the stock knob exceeds (that pushes the shift boot down) that of the NCs'. In fact, I have to pull the boot up and adjust the findings to look "neat". It's a good thing the shift boot has a lot of slack. The flexibility for adjustments is desirable for a shift knob mod. :)
Oh, so to get the full potential of the drop you would need to still cut off some of the threads of the lever. Not a big deal with a dremel working inside a gallon ziplock bag. (I did it with a hacksaw on an older car for the mom polished competition knob) and it tended to catch and really yank the lever around so much I was worried I was damaging the bushings, so I won't take that approach again.)
 

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Speaking of bushings, I wonder how much upgraded ones would change the feel of ours, especially with a weighted knob. I do love the action of the stock shifter, but it could be a bit more crisp.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Speaking of bushings, I wonder how much upgraded ones would change the feel of ours, especially with a weighted knob. I do love the action of the stock shifter, but it could be a bit more crisp.
Ah, the bushings...you beat me to it, Brandon. I was thinking of mentioning that mod as well earlier today.

JBR has these, albeit for the 2014 Sky-Activ M3 (I highly doubt it if these are any different to our M6 6MT shift assembly...you know, parts sharing). To replace the soft, rubber bushings for that responsive, improved shifts.

It's only $25/free shipping to your door.

"Details: JBR Solid Shifter Bushings replace the stock Mazda rubber grommets that hold the shifter cage to the floor board. The JBR Solid Shifter Bushings create more responsive shifts in your Mazda. Having solid spacers removes the sloppy feeling and greatly improves shifting accuracy and your driving experience.

Includes:Solid Shifter Base Bushings
NO CEL Guarantee
Installation instructions are available in our support section
Shipping is free in the US & our Hassle Free Lifetime Warranty is included"



Solid Shifter Bushings Mazda 3 2014+ [SKY-MZ3-SSB] - $25.00 : James Barone Racing, Custom Fabrication

Now if we have or anyone in the know to DIY dismantle the console to reach the shift assembly..we're golden. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Oh, so to get the full potential of the drop you would need to still cut off some of the threads of the lever. Not a big deal with a dremel working inside a gallon ziplock bag. (I did it with a hacksaw on an older car for the mom polished competition knob) and it tended to catch and really yank the lever around so much I was worried I was damaging the bushings, so I won't take that approach again.)
solar365, I am anticipating a short shift kit for our GJ 6MT. Sooner or later, it will pop out/come to market (have that strong feeling). It is only a matter of time. Btw, see the bushing swaps above...that is a start.

With that said, I prefer an well engineered/designed short shift kit..than me doing some "shade tree mechanic" improvisations (i.e. sawing off the shifter). I'm pretty sure regrets will surely follow (for me at least).
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Guys, I noticed too that the "crunching" from 1st-2nd is nearly non-existent now, with this weighted NC knob. I tried to so some quick shifting without pausing (split sec in neutral) and I did not feel any crunchy sensation at all. Granted I did a few of those shifts when slowing down towards the garage earlier (it could be due to a hot syn transmission fluid)..however, I will do more observations on NC knob, by tomorrow.

But one thing is for sure..shifting is now effortless and smooth, as compared to the hollow, plastic light stock knob. Now, I just merely "flick" the shift knob using my index and middle finger with less force to slide it to the appropriate gear notch..and it goes in, the right and smooth way. The more I use this heavy alum/leather knob..the more I feel I made the right choice spending (the pricey) $95 dead presidents. :D
 
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