April 19th, 2003 : Gennie Shifter & Hand Brake Installation
The shifter that was in the truck when I got it was too low to the floor (I had to bend way down to grab it) and it was tired and ugly looking to boot. So I decided to put a 23-inch Gennie shifter in ... and also, if you look real close at the "Before" picture, you'll see there was an emergency brake pedal near the door ... it was in sad shape - in fact, it didn't operate at all, so I decided to remove it and install a side-mounted hand brake next to the shifter.
With the Gennie shifter and hand brake installed, I needed to do some sheet metal work on the floor - covering up old holes ... including a hole that was over the brake fluid reservoir, under my feet on the driver side. Also, since the transmission is so close to the floor, I had to build a 2-inch-high "console" in order to properly mount the boot for the shifter (see pics below) - I'm learning very quickly that one project always leads to a zillion others.
Under the mat on the driver side, I fashioned a hinged door for easy access to my brake fluid reservoir ...
And under the mat on the passenger side, I glued jute to custom fit the battery compartment door ...
Finally, I used 1-inch x 2-inch pine and 1/2-inch plywood to make a "mini console" that raises the boot high enough to install - also, if I wind up putting bucket seats in, I'll probably add onto this piece and build a serious console.
Later ... I removed the old AC unit, the heater, and the old carpet from the firewall and installed a new AC/Heat unit that gave me a lot more room in the cab.
Next ... I'll be looking for a new seats to install ... and then the carpeting will go in - followed by a total interior package; I'll be making my own panels for the ceiling, doors, kick panels and behind-the-seat panels, out of two colors of naugahyde.