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Old 08-30-2018, 11:42 AM   #1
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Struggling with the shifter

I have a 2000 S with 95,000 miles on it. I've only had it about a year or so and have always felt the shifter was difficult to operate. It's a struggle to get it into gear when it's cold and it's never smooth shifting between gears no matter what the temperature is or how long I've been driving. It's mostly in the lower gears, but somewhat in 5 & 6 as well. The clutch and rear main seal were replaced shortly after I bought it and I just had the shifter cables examined by an independent Porsche mechanic to make sure they weren't binding. They said they were fine, but it might be the synchros needing replacement.

Before I dive into that repair I'd like some input on whether or not that seems like a logical repair or if there might be something else that might be the issue. I've read about transmission mounts and cable mounts gone bad and just wanted some opinions on what might be going on. I'd really like to enjoy driving and know the shift can be improved.

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Old 08-30-2018, 12:59 PM   #2
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Hello JDL,

Like the saying goes: Before having brain surgery, try an aspirin...

Seriously, perhaps maybe a good idea to flush your gearbox and refill it with the Porsche gearbox oil, you may be able to get smother shifting again.

Good luck!
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Old 08-30-2018, 01:00 PM   #3
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The first thing I would do is change the transaxle fluid. The Actual Porsche brand one works the best. It is kinda expensive, but worth every penny. Who knows how long or what brand is in there now.
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Old 08-30-2018, 09:09 PM   #4
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+1 on what Gilles and Tommy said. Use the real Porsche stuff it is 100% worth the price you have to pay.
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Old 08-30-2018, 11:11 PM   #5
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Three things in order- 1: as mentioned, trans fluid Porsche brand. 2: 997 shifter 3: motor mount, if not done prior, for sure it’s toast with that many miles. Bonus, maybe trans mounts (unlikely)

If second gear is grinding, and/or popping out when cold your second gear syncros are on the way out. If you just get occasional pop out of 2nd when cold, with no grinding, the Gbox detent fix can solve that issue for a time.
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Old 08-31-2018, 06:15 AM   #6
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Before doing any of that I would check whether you have the standard shifter or a short shift.
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Old 08-31-2018, 09:04 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by JDL30 View Post
...It's a struggle to get it into gear when it's cold and it's never smooth shifting between gears no matter what the temperature is or how long I've been driving. It's mostly in the lower gears, but somewhat in 5 & 6 as well.
Your issues at both ends of shifter articulation range (low gears and then 5/6) point to something more mechanically related to shifter, linkage or cables; not necessarily anything w/in transmission.

Start w/ easiest first...

First, pull up your shifter boot and look for any foreign objects impeding the levers or cables. Coins are notorious for slipping out of ashtray and getting wedged in the console.

Then, ensure your shifter is correctly aligned. If PO put in a short shift or even a 9x7 shifter, they easily might have bumped the connectors a couple threads at shifter housing. You can check the alignment as the second step (w/ the green Porsche tool). Adjusting will require removal of the rear center console (as would retrieval of most foreign objects stuck in there unless your a practicing OB/GYN - LOL).

If both above are good, I would then be checking the cables for proper seating at the transmission, in the clips, and alignment guides.

From there, check the motor and transmission mount.

Good luck
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Old 08-31-2018, 09:29 AM   #8
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A 997 shifter is not going to fix his problem...
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Old 08-31-2018, 09:01 PM   #9
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Another thing to check is whether the shifter cables have been covered with axle grease from a split boot. That makes the shifting stiff.
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Old 09-01-2018, 01:14 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by edc View Post
Before doing any of that I would check whether you have the standard shifter or a short shift.
The first thing I thought of. Sounds like the symptoms of one of those $39 EBay short shifters that's worn out to me. Not sure how to tell tho.
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Old 09-01-2018, 10:08 PM   #11
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A 997 shifter is not going to fix his problem...
If his current shifter is worn out, it just might...
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Old 09-02-2018, 01:49 AM   #12
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Why would it be worn out? It might be a bit sloppy with more but it won't be so knackered to be next to useless.
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Old 09-02-2018, 09:58 PM   #13
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Why would it be worn out? It might be a bit sloppy with more but it won't be so knackered to be next to useless.
Sure it could. The ball connectors can be cracked and sloppy, the pivots could be shot, etc. More than likely though, it is a combination of things that are simply worn out for whatever reason. He didn’t say it didn’t shift, he said it wasn’t smooth. The 997 shifter is a better overall shifter than the stock 986 shifter, and if it needs to be replaced, that is the better option.
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Old 09-05-2018, 11:41 AM   #14
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Thanks to all for the suggestions. All these are things that I've thought of, but having them lined up like this is a great help. As a note, the shifter is the original one in the car, not a 997 and it never pops out of gear its just extremely difficult at times.
I did have a previous shop look at the shift cables and they said they were OK. I'm not sure how deep they delved into the issues, but I'm bringing it in next week for a fluid change and will have them check the cables, mounts, etc and see if they see anything.
Thanks again and I'll keep you posted what they tell me next week.
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Old 09-05-2018, 02:22 PM   #15
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When was your clutch bled last?
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Old 09-07-2018, 10:24 AM   #16
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+1 on what Gilles and Tommy said. Use the real Porsche stuff it is 100% worth the price you have to pay.
Where is the best place to buy the stuff online? I put Motul 600 in mine and it's rather stiff/not smooth.
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Old 09-07-2018, 01:24 PM   #17
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Where is the best place to buy the stuff online? I put Motul 600 in mine and it's rather stiff/not smooth.
I assume you're talking about putting the motul 600 in the clutch, not in the trans, right?
They are telling you to use the porsche brand lube in the trans. Not in the clutch.

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Old 09-07-2018, 01:56 PM   #18
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Where is the best place to buy the stuff online? I put Motul 600 in mine and it's rather stiff/not smooth.
I'm in Canada so I bought the stuff at the dealer. Not cheap. But there is nothing cheap on line once you factor in currency exchange, shipping, and possible duties.
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Old 09-09-2018, 05:45 AM   #19
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Paul, I just had the clutch replaced last year. Less than 1000 miles on it so I think itís safe to assume thatís not the issue, but you never know. It goes on tomorrow so Iíll double check that as well.
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Old 09-18-2018, 11:18 AM   #20
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shifter update

so the Porsche dealer had my car for a few days last week (and gave me a Macan loaner!). They worked backward from the pedal, disassembled the slave cylinder and found no issues. They think the clutch is going bad. Since it was just done last year by an independent and is under warranty I brought it back to them last Thursday. They're currently taking it apart, but when I spoke to them on Friday they thought it might be some synchros that have worn out. I guess that's likely, but would they all go out at the same time? Seems to me they wouldn't, but I'm not sure. I'll call them again today to get another update. In the meantime I'm researching a new Macan! What a car!!

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