Pops off? My '93 model needed a damn good pull to replace recently (the
stitching had come apart after years of abuse - prior to me buying the car I
might add), and I was warned by the BMW dealer parts desk to be careful as
often replacing gear knobs would result in elbows being hurt when hitting
the windscreen at speed :P
Suffice to say I didn't hurt myself, although it was a close call.
I'm not sure how they attached the knob on your '93, but on my '97 it's a
set of four plastic "fingers" in the knob that engage a slot around the top
of the metal shift post. About 1.5 of the "fingers" are worn or broken on
mine (like you, before buying the car), so the grip is a little tenuos.
It's not a problem during normal driving, but if I'm driving angry and take
it out on the post during a shift, I often find my self in neutral and
holding the shift knob. I can pull it off pretty easily if I want to.
One of those annoying-but-not-cripplingly-so defects that cars (my cars,
anyway) accumulate with time.
The old ones were a friction fit and bloody hard to get off. You had to
be committed and have belief in the person/book who told you it just
pulled off, honest. No way they would have fallen off. Such is progress.
Yeah, friction fit it is (with a little bar and recess which pair up to
prevent the knob spinning on top of the stick). Originally I thought it was
glued or screwed on, it just wouldn't shift, but the dealer insisted it
pulled and he was right. The new knobs come with a screw in the top but have
nothing to do with attachment to the stick (looks like the screw holds the
internal sleeve that fits onto the stick).
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