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Shift Cable Replacement

Aug 29, 2010
Oday 272 LE Island Heights, NJ
Has anyone ever attempted to replace their transmission shift cable? I have a 1987 O'Day 272LE with a Edson pedestal.
Jan 27, 2008
ODay 35 Beaufort, NC
Yes. I encountered a few troubles along the way but eventually worked it out. First you remove your compass. Then disconnect the cables from the shift lever and throttle lever. Then there is a clamp, on the pedestal about half way up is a nut you remove, then push the threaded part through the hole into the inside of the pedestal. Disconnect the cables from your motor. Remove the housing that holds the shift levers. There are long screws that hold it to the pedestal base. This is where I had trouble. Screws wouldn't budge. Slotted screws, steel, into an aluminum hole is a corrosion problem. I used a bunch of PB Blaster and let it sit. I eventually got all but two screws out, those wouldn't budge. Out came the oscillating tool and I cut the head off the screws. The housing then slid off and the shanks of the screws I cut off were now exposed. More PB Blaster directly on the joint. Vice grips on the screw shanks and working it back and forth eventually broke them free and I finally got them to release and unscrew. Off to the hardware store for replacements. Instead of slotted screws I used hex head bolts and coated the threads liberally with anti seize compound when I reassembled. Next you need to loosen your steering cables at the quadrant to free up the chain over the sprocket to give you room to snake the cables and clamp up. Loosen the clamp, remove the cable, buy a new one of the same size and put it all back together. A couple hour job turned into a couple days because of those seized screws and letting the PB Blaster work its' magic. Using hex head bolts will provide a much better system to use a socket wrench instead of a slotted screwdriver. An alternative would be socket head cap screws so you could use an allen wrench. Slotted screws are prone to stripping and the screwdriver slips out of the slot when you try to apply torque, worst possible selection for this application.