So after replacing the OEM Buick Grand National shifter, I missed having the cool shifter handle that I purchased many many years ago (from TR Custom Parts).
You see, that neat black billet handle (with a turbo 6 engraved logo) attached to the factory shifter stalk by simply slipping it on, then it secured down via 2 screws (effectively jamming it in place).
Well, the aftermarket shifter has threads on its stalk, so adapting that cool shifter handle onto it meant getting a bit crafty with it.
Threads needed to be grafted into the handle so it could be secured onto the shifter stalk.
Luckily for me, I have skilled friends that can make things happen that I can’t do (thanks Kyle!).
1/2″ x 20 threads (the proper size for the B&M stalk) were inserted into the existing shifter hole in the handle, via a bigger drilled hole, then a heli-coil.
Next, I wanted to embed a momentary switch (for a line lock unit) into the drivers side end of the handle.
The handle as it originally comes, has a long black button on the side, to push in when shifting gears.
That needs to be removed (along with the spring that’s in there), and a bigger (centered) hole needs to be drilled.
Then another smaller hole needs to be drilled (on the bottom side) so the line lock button cord can exit out of the handle.
Some Buick Regal owners might opt to just use a button mounted on the steering wheel for this purpose, or place a switch in the ashtray compartment, or set it up on the floor (and use your left foot to activate), however, I really liked the idea of a line lock button ON the shifter, for aesthetics, and because there’s a manual valve body in the trans, meaning constant manual shifts (and my hand is there already), so this placement idea seemed to be the optimal solution.
A Jegs line lock button was acquired, and a hole drilled into the side of the shifter handle.
The button was a very tight fit, which worked out well to hold it in (we thought we might glue it in initially, but didn’t end up needing to).
The wire end of the switch comes out an additional (new) hole that was drilled in the bottom of the handle near the mounting hole (where the heli coil is).
That makes it nice and tidy, since the wire then gets wrapped down the stalk, then goes down under the console (via the plastic slider piece next to the stalk that’s on top of the console).
The incoming current flows in the switch then out to a warning light on the dash, as well as to the connections for the line lock solenoid.
It turned out awesome!
It looks awesome in this Turbo Regal, everything works the way it should, and I’m pleased that I am able to again use this cool shifter handle!
– billet aluminum shifter handle ($80 years ago, I think)
– momentary button ($70, jegs)
– heli-coil kit ($10 ebay)
– drill bit ($5 ebay)
– amber led light (2pack, $5 ebay)
[note: the prices on these line lock (or trans brake, NOS, etc.) buttons have gone thru the roof, we bought that button back when it was about $40! You can buy a hurst handle with a switch like this for about the same price as the switch alone!]