Knobmeister Shift Knob. click on thumbnail for low contrast, poorly photographed image
In a rev-happy car like a Miata, you spend a lot of time shifting. The shift knob, therefore becomes a very important part of the "feel" of the car.
Having swapped out the original factory weighted knob for the Moss wood unit, the first thing I noticed was the lack of weight to the Moss knob. The black factory knob has a surprisingly heavy weight to it.
The wood was beautiful, and matched the brake handle, but it was too high and light for my linking.
I came across the Knobmeister's site, and decided that what I needed was his weighted wooden knob.
Moss's catalog labels their wood kits as rosewood. So I emailed Joe Portas (The Knobmeister) and ordered his small knob in rosewood to be engraved with a Buffett like parrot that looked like this.. Kinda goes with the shark don't it? :-) Several artwork revisions later, my knob appeared. The quality was flawless. The was just one teensy little problem. The wood was RED. I mean gawdawful, ugly, doesn't match anything red.
I emailed Joe, and he patiently explained that I got what I ordered. Hmmm. I sent him my Moss knob, and explained that that was what I wanted. Joe contacted me and explained that the Moss knob is actually Mahogany. OK, so I don't know oak from maple, and I had Joe crank out another in mahogany this time. Several weeks later the mahogany knob shows, and it matches the brake handle, and the steering wheel.
I now have a knob that feels fantastic, has a really nice weight to it, and looks like it belong there. I am happy. I tell Joe I am happy. I tell everyone I run into that this is what they need.
Then.... The clutch needed replaced. As you can tell from these pages, I am not afraid to do some things myself. The clutch, however was over my head. I should have pulled the knob from the car before taking it in for the clutch, but I figured since the guy I was using came highly recommended from all the BMW driving guys that I work with, that I'm safe. I was wrong. In addition to trashing the front air dam, the Teutonic simian that did the clutch, destroyed my knob. (The clutch itself was great by the way, he just trashed a lot of stuff going in and coming out, but that's another page) I'm back to square one. Joe, while doing beautiful work, is not an overnight turnaround kind of guy. So I'm frustrated because .this knob now looks like hell, and I am, well shall we say fussy about my car.
Finally, a couple of months later, the Parrot Knob Mark III arrives and is pictured here. It is beautiful. It feels like a shift knob is supposed to feel. It adds at least 15 horsepower to the car. :-)
And anytime this car need serviced by anyone other than me, that knob is staying home, away from danger.
If you are looking for the ultimate knob, I suggest you contact the Knobmeister. Tell him the parrot guy sent you.
Thanks Joe, it was an odyssey, but worth it in the end.