This project started when my buddy, who I now call the Miata Whisperer sat in the car for 30 seconds and declared my shifter operation felt rough, so I had to investigate.
This project gave me an opportunity to remove the shifter extension the car came with (Weight Savings: 5.7oz).
With the extension and knob off, I moved the center console, which is held on by 5 screws. I then had to remove the upper boot.
This revealed the lower boot, which you can see in the top photo. It was badly torn.
The shifter "cup" is supposed to be filled with 3 oz of gear oil, and it was bone dry. I didn't have any on hand, and I figured it had been fine like that for a long time, so I didn't add any.
The shifter looked a little rough when it came out.
So I took out the trusty brass brush. Here it is half done.
And now it's completely done, with the new boot installed. That lower plastic bushing is actually cracked, so I should probably replace it soon.
And here it is all buttoned up, with the original Nardi wood shift knob.
I'm not kidding when I say this; I was thinking about the shifter in bed that night and I got really paranoid about the lack of oil in it, so I went out the next morning and bought the recommended gear oil, pulled everything apart again and added the oil. Fun.