Help select clutch BHW FHN

Yetii

Veteran Member
Joined
Oct 6, 2021
Location
New York
TDI
2005 TDi Passat
For technical accuracy. The clutch I put in is what Frans calls the "Sachs racing clutch". It's part of Sachs Performance line. 999715.999961 clutch, 883082.999715 pressure plate and 2294.000.453 DMF. He also offers a less expensive Sachs clutch.
I told Frans I wanted a clutch that would handle at least stage 2 power. He suggested this clutch and flywheel kit P/N: 2290 601 032 009 Now I read plenty of people who have no problems with a 228mm clutch but I read a lot more that do. So that’s why I’m doing a stage 1 and not 2 to preserve the clutch. But I do see that most people who had problems used the SMF Valeo clutch kit and seem to have better results with the LuK and Sachs DMF clutch kits. Like I said I spoke with sachs and they confirmed that clutch should handle about 300ft-lb and that’s their conservative numbers. I do know that I will probably have to replace the clutch sooner than I would with a bigger clutch kit but for right now the amount of money I’ve spent so far in the car including purchase price is so low that I wouldn’t be mad in 3-5 years having to upgrade to a bigger clutch.
 

MEgearhead

Veteran Member
Joined
Aug 6, 2016
Location
Virginia
TDI
B5.5, 4L, 4G
Totally understand! I went back through the info from Frans, and just wanted to add the part numbers for future reference.

Just in case you are new to vnt turbo diesels, don't baby it to much. They do tend to like some spirited driving. When I first bought mine I treated it like it was an old tractor. Then the limp mode started. It was very intermittent. Was tipped off to this great resource. After an Italian tune-up and periodic thrashing on it, it never came back until I blew out a boost hose which was obvious and an easy fix. Have fun once, twice, and even three times in a while. I think nearly any clutch will hold more than the tires/open diff can in first or second.
 

Yetii

Veteran Member
Joined
Oct 6, 2021
Location
New York
TDI
2005 TDi Passat
Totally understand! I went back through the info from Frans, and just wanted to add the part numbers for future reference.

Just in case you are new to vnt turbo diesels, don't baby it to much. They do tend to like some spirited driving. When I first bought mine I treated it like it was an old tractor. Then the limp mode started. It was very intermittent. Was tipped off to this great resource. After an Italian tune-up and periodic thrashing on it, it never came back until I blew out a boost hose which was obvious and an easy fix. Have fun once, twice, and even three times in a while. I think nearly any clutch will hold more than the tires/open diff can in first or second.
Sounds like my 335i haha. If you don’t do some spirited driving it will tend to build moisture up. With increased moisture in the oil it tends to blow by more which increases carbon buildup on the intake or if you have a oil catch can it will lose oil faster. Also makes the oil look milky like a bad head gasket but I’ve had the oil tested and there is no anti freeze in it.
 

Jason TDI

Member
Joined
Dec 13, 2017
Location
Cincinnati, Ohio
TDI
2005 Passat Wagon GLS
Matt Whitbread recommended his new Southbend Stage 1 organic kit to replace my slipping FX250. My car’s only modification from stock is a Stage 2 tune installed when I converted it to the manual transmission. Matt was great to work with and shipped the kit to me promptly. I just had the clutch installed and I really like it already. I have only put a few miles on it, but it is much smoother than the FX250 ever was and it is completely quiet when idling in neutral with the clutch engaged. The FX250 had a rather loud idle rattle from day one.

The FX250 was slipping under heavy acceleration because the hybrid buttons were worn down significantly and even wore grooves into the pressure plate near the I.D. The organic side still looks fine. I only had about 43k miles on the Clutch Masters clutch which is completely unacceptable.
 

themightyquinn

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 7, 2005
TDI
1999 New Beetle Black
I've been holding off posting because I wasn't sure it would work, but wanted to throw this out there for people to consider before splashing out on other options. I'm still not sure as I didn't finish everything today, but my new flywheel and clutch are bolted up, and I should finish the last bits of the clutch and transmission replacement tomorrow and see whether it actually disengages, drives, and all that good stuff.

I emailed Matt a while back to see if he would make the few minor changes to his flywheel design to accommodate an Audi B7 RS4 clutch, I even offered to give him a new clutch sent directly to him to aid in mockup and I never heard back. In his defense he's a busy guy, and when I did ultimately decide to go it on my own with his flywheel, he messaged me after the order to offer a switch for a discounted one with a few blemishes. I appreciate that. It is disappointing though as I really do think this is the ultimate BHW clutch setup and with just a few tweaks to his CNC program would have been the definitive choice for B5 TDI swaps all for just a touch more $ than the off the shelf 228mm 1.8T kits.

Pros:
1. it's cheap. $165 at RockAuto. Even with the required modification it still came in well below the cost of any of the Clutchmaster/Spec options and if, god forbid, I ever needed to replace the clutch it'll only cost around half of even a new Stage 1 setup.
2. it's strong and streetable. VAG thought it was strong, reliable, and mild-mannered enough for a 320 ft/lbs luxury sports sedan, and it's been shown to reliably hold north of 400 ft/lbs in various modded B5 S4s.

Cons:
1. You need (or at least I used one) the 5mm block/trans spacer
2. If using the Whitbread flywheel you currently need to modify it; TTV makes a B7 RS4 flywheel that makes it completely bolt up, but it's only 16lbs in the heaviest option.

The mods are pretty straight forward (fingers-crossed it works, but it should, and if not it'll just be a matter of another little bit of machining). The obstacles to overcome are:
1. Machine pockets on the flywheel rim to provide clearance for 3 springs on the pressure plate
2. Solve the 10mm flywheel -> 6mm PP dowel compatibility issue (I chose to drill the PP)
3. Shim the PP 2mm off of the flywheel (I used 2mm precision shims from McMaster)

Overall the total cost was $40 for the pocket machining, and another $40 to rebalance the FW/PP. The B5 S4 guys have pioneered these mods and they have largely chosen to machine down/replace the stock dowels to 6mm citing concerns about introducing PP imbalance, but I chose to drill and there were no issues PP balance either individually or as a rotating unit.


 
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Adam44

New member
Joined
Jan 3, 2022
Location
BC, Canada
TDI
2002 jetta, 2005 passat
Im in the process of 5 speed swapping my passat and I can't Beleive how expensive clutches are. The southbend and whitbread options are too expensive for me.

My initial plan was to modify a g60 flywheel and use a VR6 clutch, but then I remembered reading about a clutch shop that had really good prices on 240sx forums about 10 years ago. After some digging I found the posts on the 240sx forums and I also found a bunch of posts about them on Cummins forums.

It's an oldschool shop, they don't have a website and I couldn't find an email address so I gave them a call. the owner said that he could set me up with a single mass flywheel for $225 USD, and and a clutch that will hold 410ft/lbs for $175. They can put a clutch together for any power level.

400 USD for a clutch and flywheel is by far the best deal I could find. Shipping and duty brought the total cost up to about $800 CAD, but it's still way cheaper than southbend or a whitbread setup.

I wanted to test it before posting on here but I'm away for work until October so I won't be able to finish my swap for a while.

If anybody is interested, the shop is called tennesse clutch and supply, it's in Nashville, you can find their number online. It was a special order from the supplier so it took a couple days to confirm prices and availability but everything looks good so far.

I'll start my own thread with pictures and part numbers later this week.
 
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PickleRick

Veteran Member
Joined
Nov 29, 2017
Location
Greenville sc
TDI
05 GLS BHW sedan 5 speed conversion. BHW Carver SantaCruz in progress
Im in the process of 5 speed swapping my passat and I can't Beleive how expensive clutches are. The southbend and whitbread options are too expensive for me.

My initial plan was to modify a g60 flywheel and use a VR6 clutch, but then I remembered reading about a clutch shop that had really good prices on 240sx forums about 10 years ago. After some digging I found the posts on the 240sx forums and I also found a bunch of posts about them on Cummins forums.

It's an oldschool shop, they don't have a website and I couldn't find an email address so I gave them a call. the owner said that he could set me up with a single mass flywheel for $225 USD, and and a clutch that will hold 410ft/lbs for $175. They can put a clutch together for any power level.

400 USD for a clutch and flywheel is by far the best deal I could find. Shipping and duty brought the total cost up to about $800 CAD, but it's still way cheaper than southbend or a whitbread setup.

I wanted to test it before posting on here but I'll away for work until October so I won't be able to finish my swap for a while.

If anybody is interested, the shop is called tennesse clutch and supply, it's in Nashville, you can find their number online. It was a special order from the supplier so it took a couple days to confirm prices and availability but everything looks good so far.

I'll start my own thread with pictures and part numbers later this week.
How heavy is the flywheel
 

Adam44

New member
Joined
Jan 3, 2022
Location
BC, Canada
TDI
2002 jetta, 2005 passat
228mm. Unfortunately I wasn't able to test it before leaving for work because it was delayed by 6 weeks.

I'll follow up after I finish my swap but that won't be until October. I figured someone else might be willing to take a chance in the mean time
 

PickleRick

Veteran Member
Joined
Nov 29, 2017
Location
Greenville sc
TDI
05 GLS BHW sedan 5 speed conversion. BHW Carver SantaCruz in progress
I've never had an organic clutch before. This K70403-VW-OCE clutch is silky smooth. Some 375 ft lbs rated. It's a half organic half ceramic. I've put maybe 5 to 10 miles on it but since I had the fx300 POS clutch masters on the same flywheel, same car, same tune I'll give my initial run review.

The south bend is very light on the clutch pedal, likely similar to the clutch masters. What it lacks is the clutch masters brutal chatter. The clutch masters had zero give and felt like you were going to rip out a CV axle if you weren't careful or choke down. This clutch is smoother than the 228mm "endurance" treated valeo stock 1.8t clutch I used at this point. That treated clutch was always very very grippy but not awful. The clutch masters wasn't terrible once broken in but I wouldn't ever trust valet parking with that clutch and I always warned the alignment or tire shops of it before they took the keys. The clutch masters break in was a very trying 2000 to 2500 miles.


This clutch is so smooth it feels like a stock clutch so far. The real test will be how it does in the next 80k/4 years. I will update once broken in but at this point it feels like Matt did a great job getting clutch masters on his flywheel.
 

Yetii

Veteran Member
Joined
Oct 6, 2021
Location
New York
TDI
2005 TDi Passat
I've never had an organic clutch before. This K70403-VW-OCE clutch is silky smooth. Some 375 ft lbs rated. It's a half organic half ceramic. I've put maybe 5 to 10 miles on it but since I had the fx300 POS clutch masters on the same flywheel, same car, same tune I'll give my initial run review.

The south bend is very light on the clutch pedal, likely similar to the clutch masters. What it lacks is the clutch masters brutal chatter. The clutch masters had zero give and felt like you were going to rip out a CV axle if you weren't careful or choke down. This clutch is smoother than the 228mm "endurance" treated valeo stock 1.8t clutch I used at this point. That treated clutch was always very very grippy but not awful. The clutch masters wasn't terrible once broken in but I wouldn't ever trust valet parking with that clutch and I always warned the alignment or tire shops of it before they took the keys. The clutch masters break in was a very trying 2000 to 2500 miles.


This clutch is so smooth it feels like a stock clutch so far. The real test will be how it does in the next 80k/4 years. I will update once broken in but at this point it feels like Matt did a great job getting clutch masters on his flywheel.
Glad to hear. Seems like you’ve been through the ringer with clutchs. Let’s hope this is the last one you’ll need for a while haha. You’ve dropped the tranny 3 times already just for clutch changes.
 

PickleRick

Veteran Member
Joined
Nov 29, 2017
Location
Greenville sc
TDI
05 GLS BHW sedan 5 speed conversion. BHW Carver SantaCruz in progress
The 228 single mass 1.8t I just removed had been in there since aug/Sept of 2019. The valeo flywheel and clutch kit was about 250 and another 250ish for south bend to work it.

It was less than half the cost of the 1000 to 1200 I spent on the clutch masters crap that got less than a year. Keep in mind I'm running the same auto zone axles today at 272k that installed used from the 98 donor v6 Passat back in 2018/2019. My vehicle is a daily driver and most of my drive time is with my kid in the car. It doesn't get beaten on or abused.

For the price I can't complain on how long the 228 lasted.
 

Yetii

Veteran Member
Joined
Oct 6, 2021
Location
New York
TDI
2005 TDi Passat
The 228 single mass 1.8t I just removed had been in there since aug/Sept of 2019. The valeo flywheel and clutch kit was about 250 and another 250ish for south bend to work it.

It was less than half the cost of the 1000 to 1200 I spent on the clutch masters crap that got less than a year. Keep in mind I'm running the same auto zone axles today at 272k that installed used from the 98 donor v6 Passat back in 2018/2019. My vehicle is a daily driver and most of my drive time is with my kid in the car. It doesn't get beaten on or abused.

For the price I can't complain on how long the 228 lasted.
For the price you can’t be. I got my sachs DMF setup for around $400 with the shipping. If I get similar life out of it compared to your treated Valeo clutch. I’d be happy. I’d probably upgrade to whitebreads stage 2 or 3.

I personally wasn’t gonna go his route because he used clutch masters and they always seem to have problems. It’s not because of his flywheel, they have problems across many platforms. Glad to see him use southbend now. Great company.
 

PickleRick

Veteran Member
Joined
Nov 29, 2017
Location
Greenville sc
TDI
05 GLS BHW sedan 5 speed conversion. BHW Carver SantaCruz in progress
I was looking at the dmf 228 set up and was considering it but when I saw Matt went with south bend I wanted to give it a shot. I felt bad for Matt that the clutch masters was a pile of crap and really hurt his product. As far as I know I'm the first in this forum to post about buying it. I really trashed clutch masters on here (deservingly) so I felt obligated to try to test the southbend kit and report. Costs a little more but I'm supporting fellow American small business and I really like Matt and his flywheel. Matt did all my ECU tunes, my clutch line and egr block off plates. All top notch with no issues and quick shipping. Every interaction I've had with south bend for purchases or tech questions has been great. I'll be taking the VW on a 1 hr trip today and will have the 500 mile break in within 2 weeks. I commute some 30 miles round trip a day for work so it adds up quickly. I'm currently looking for a clean wagon body to buy to toss my power train in as I plan on keeping this set up for a long time.
 

Doobie666

Member
Joined
Nov 17, 2021
Location
Remington,VA
TDI
2004 Passat Avant, 2015 Q7 TDI
I’m on my 2nd clutch masters fx250 and whitebread kit. 1st one I got 76,188 miles on it. This one I’m 30k miles in so will be planning on a new clutch shortly. Which kit are you getting with southbend from whitebread? Was thinking about trying something different cuz I also have a really nasty chatter at idle..quiets down when clutch is pressed… but I may give one of his new kits another chance..
 

PickleRick

Veteran Member
Joined
Nov 29, 2017
Location
Greenville sc
TDI
05 GLS BHW sedan 5 speed conversion. BHW Carver SantaCruz in progress
I got the stage 2 ceramic/organic. I'm at 170 miles on break in and she's stock smooth.
 

PickleRick

Veteran Member
Joined
Nov 29, 2017
Location
Greenville sc
TDI
05 GLS BHW sedan 5 speed conversion. BHW Carver SantaCruz in progress
I've had loud idle since the egr delete, BS delete, 5 speed conversion. No noticable difference to me between smf 1.8t or Matt's flywheel. Feels identical to my 4 runner with same set matched with yota 3.4 flywheel and 2.5 inch straight pipe mandrel bent exhaust. Idle is quiet for a diesel but off idle it's a Kubota

I'm using solid rubber 22re motor mounts in the 4 runner. No snub mount.

I like Matt's flywheel for the 240mm, I don't think it absorbs vibes like a dual mass, then again I've never driven or ridden in a vehicle with a dmf
 

Doobie666

Member
Joined
Nov 17, 2021
Location
Remington,VA
TDI
2004 Passat Avant, 2015 Q7 TDI
Yeah I have those mods too and a frank06 cam may be normal 🤷🏻‍♂️ I can deal with it just really quiets down when clutch is pressed.. I’m excited to try with southbend clutch I hope it’s better! Can’t wait to hear how it holds up.
 

PickleRick

Veteran Member
Joined
Nov 29, 2017
Location
Greenville sc
TDI
05 GLS BHW sedan 5 speed conversion. BHW Carver SantaCruz in progress
The only issue I had with the southbend set up is it didn't come with a new throw out bearing. If diesel wasn't 4.50 a gallon I would have ordered one. Being that mine is only about 4 years old I rolled with it. I had to drive my 7.3 daily for about 2 weeks while the VW was down and it was killing me. If I had to wait for a throw out bearing I might have never financially recovered.

I've not noticed a change in sound between clutch engaged vs disengage but then again I usually have the radio on. It may be there and I never noticed. I'll double check. My dash vibrates at idle but even gasser Passats complain of that.

I hit a bump and head metal clunking ok on the way home yesterday. I got worried I forgot to tighten something. Then I remembered I was carrying a set of 52 inch xmark blades in the back seat.
 

d24tdi

Veteran Member
Joined
Jan 6, 2019
Location
MT
TDI
96 B4V
Bumping this thread for updates. There were some interesting new combinations being discussed in the last couple months:
- Whitbread 30lb SMF with new South Bend clutch options
- Whitbread 30lb SMF customized for B7 RS4 clutch and PP, installed with 5mm BH spacer
- Sachs Racing SRE 228mm DMF/clutch setup

@PickleRick after a few more miles on the South Bend/Whitbread Stg 2 setup, any further thoughts? Still smooth on engagement and easy to drive and holding the power no problems?

Those with the other setups mentioned above (Sachs SRE 228mm/DMF, Whitbread/RS4), any other updates on your outcomes as well?

My DUK trans is here now so I am almost to the point of being ready to replace trans and clutch in my B5.5. For the sake of simplicity and best chancet at long life/reliability, I have all but decided to use Whitbread's setup. Keeping the stock starter is important to me and between that factor, the SMF vs DMF factor, and the biggest possible clutch size, this seems like the way to go for getting a setup that is least likely to need further attention in the next 100k plus miles. It's great that Matt has developed this solution for our cars and I want to support that as well.

The main thing I am still trying to decide is whether to go with his Stage 1 or Stage 2 Southbend clutch disc. My biggest desire is to have easy driveability and long life, and I think either one would hold the power from my fairly mild tune. So at this point I guess I am leaning towards the Stage 1. But if the Stage 2 is stronger without any real sacrifice in smoothness or pedal feel, then maybe that would be the way to go.
 
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Yetii

Veteran Member
Joined
Oct 6, 2021
Location
New York
TDI
2005 TDi Passat
I would like to add that I am about 1200 miles on my clutch setup and so far so smooth. It grabs nice and the pedal feels very light. When I bled the clutch line I thought I did it wrong considering how low the clutch engaged. Well after breaking in the clutch it feels fantastic and same with the pedal Feel.
 

PickleRick

Veteran Member
Joined
Nov 29, 2017
Location
Greenville sc
TDI
05 GLS BHW sedan 5 speed conversion. BHW Carver SantaCruz in progress
I have about 2000 miles or so on my witbread ceramic and organic disk. She's still smooth and zero slip issues. Clutch feels stock. The real test will be making it 98,000 more miles.


Before I chose stage 2 and talked to South bend. I told them I wanted longitivity. I don't mind a grippy clutch. This was what they recommended.
 
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d0u8l3m

Veteran Member
Joined
Jun 16, 2014
Location
Connecticut
TDI
B5.5 Passat
I finally dusted off the cobwebs and mold off the ole girl and still swear by my setup (Whitbread SMF and b5 rs4 clutch). Pair it up with the short shifter from JHM and the car is an absolute blast to drive.
 

Yetii

Veteran Member
Joined
Oct 6, 2021
Location
New York
TDI
2005 TDi Passat
I finally dusted off the cobwebs and mold off the ole girl and still swear by my setup (Whitbread SMF and b5 rs4 clutch). Pair it up with the short shifter from JHM and the car is an absolute blast to drive.
I would love to use my short throw shifter that I bought almost 4 months ago and still haven’t gotten due to back order. Which when buying directly through jhm it never said on the webpage or checkout that it was back ordered. It was marked as in stock. I was notified a day after my order was made that it was originally a month back ordered (only one part they needed. They originally sent the other parts for an EXTRA shipping payment .) Well the day came and passed with no update on the one part (the actual shifter! I bought the trio package so the linkage and bushing are installed) You would think in between that month you would have been notified from your supplier that it was going to be delayed. You would think they would reach out and tell me it was going to be delayed longer. Instead I had to email then call a few times to even get a new date. Every time I would call to ask for updates the people are very rude. For three weeks they had no update on new estimated delivery date from the supplier but yet they have been in daily contact with supplier. It’s Still 3 weeks out from them receiving the part which then needs to be repackaged and sent to me which could take up to 72hrs for them to process. And that was the last given update.
 

d0u8l3m

Veteran Member
Joined
Jun 16, 2014
Location
Connecticut
TDI
B5.5 Passat
I would love to use my short throw shifter that I bought almost 4 months ago and still haven’t gotten due to back order. Which when buying directly through jhm it never said on the webpage or checkout that it was back ordered. It was marked as in stock. I was notified a day after my order was made that it was originally a month back ordered (only one part they needed. They originally sent the other parts for an EXTRA shipping payment .) Well the day came and passed with no update on the one part (the actual shifter! I bought the trio package so the linkage and bushing are installed) You would think in between that month you would have been notified from your supplier that it was going to be delayed. You would think they would reach out and tell me it was going to be delayed longer. Instead I had to email then call a few times to even get a new date. Every time I would call to ask for updates the people are very rude. For three weeks they had no update on new estimated delivery date from the supplier but yet they have been in daily contact with supplier. It’s Still 3 weeks out from them receiving the part which then needs to be repackaged and sent to me which could take up to 72hrs for them to process. And that was the last given update.
That's definitely annoying I had a very different experience, ordered the trio package and got it pretty quickly. Considering how much I procrastinated after getting it, I didn't need it that fast lol

I think the world is just in a state of shock right now supply chain wise, and smaller retailers are getting screwed. Doesn't give them an excuse for poor communication but yeah I can't even get enduro joints for a custom suspension build from Barnes, even basic parts are hard to come by.

At least when you do get it installed you'll have something to look forward to, it's a great upgrade.
 

themightyquinn

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 7, 2005
TDI
1999 New Beetle Black
Those with the other setups mentioned above (Sachs SRE 228mm/DMF, Whitbread/RS4), any other updates on your outcomes as well?
I finally dusted off the cobwebs and mold off the ole girl and still swear by my setup (Whitbread SMF and b5 rs4 clutch). Pair it up with the short shifter from JHM and the car is an absolute blast to drive.
Yeah, I think the RS4 clutch is the way to go. The B7 has some advantages -- lower cost, metal SAC mechanism, increased torque holding capacity, but the B5 is a basically bolt on setup and should still be more than potent enough for anything Stage 1/2 BHW. Thank you again for the info, it was the help I needed to figure out via the distributive property if the B7 clutch was also an option.

I'm at 4K on the new clutch. Very happy with it, absolutely no slipping. It's got a sharp engagement point (at least relative to the Subaru I'd been driving) so it took me a few days to get to the point where I wasn't jumping off the line every time I started off (I think the idle on my tune might be a little high too), but after that (or maybe it's broken in some) everything is nice and smooth.
Couldn't be happier really. Definitely a viable option at a very solid price point.

Just parked it for a few days as I think there's something up with the linkage. It's been harder to grab reverse the last week or two, and yesterday it just disappeared. I'm able to adjust the linkage so I can get it with a ton of lateral force, but then I lose 1st and 2nd. My experience with short shifters hasn't really been great, they always feel kind of notchy to me, but (as the JHM setup isn't in the cards) I ordered an eBay one with adjustable ratios and I'm hoping that the lowest reduction paired with a new ball socket will get me back to shifting through all gears. The stock throw is kind of long, so who knows...maybe I'll enjoy things a bit shorter after all.
 

MEgearhead

Veteran Member
Joined
Aug 6, 2016
Location
Virginia
TDI
B5.5, 4L, 4G
I ordered an eBay one with adjustable ratios and I'm hoping that the lowest reduction paired with a new ball socket will get me back to shifting through all gears.
The following is based on a 5sp. Since the shift mechanism is slightly different for the 6sp it may not be applicable.

I used an eBay short shifter with a new ball bushing that Frans supplied. With a little work and various o-rings you can tighten it up considerably. One between the ball and the shaft (the eBay shifter ball is a little loose on the shaft). Two or three around the ball bushing inside the rubber grommet before you put it in the shifter mechanism (others have used a zip-tie). And, two inside the red rubber bushing where it bolts to the transmission case. I have it set on the shortest throw ratio and love it. But, It did not seem to shorten the side to side up much which seems to be what you are after. That's a function of how the mechanism works (angular motion vs. linear motion). PM me if you want details of what I did. Or, I can start a new thread on it.

I don't really understand the notchiness comments on the late model 5sp longitudinal shifters. All the gates and detents are in the transmission. The shifter is free to move throughout it's entire range of motion. As long as it is reasonably adjusted and has sufficient travel it has no effect on "notchiness". However, I also don't manhandle the shifter. With the right pressure they almost automatically go into the intended gear, and right quickly at that. Maybe it's because I learned on a pickup with a severely worn 3 on the tree where notchiness was an understatement, and shifts between gates were search and rescue missions.

Have you checked the stabilizer rod adjustment?
 
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