Help me drive a stick
post-197743
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andrzejpw

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Well, our 96 Jetta came today.
5 speed.
I think I'll add another smile


Anyway, any tips on driving this? I'm just starting out driving a stick. First time ever. Didn't stall the engine, but I'm a bit confused: how slowly do you let the clutch out? Is it sort of like:

Brake, clutch

Shift to first.

Slowly let out clutch

When it engages, slowly add throttle
As you add throttle, slowly come off clutch

Now, from 1st to 2nd, to 3rd, etc, Clutch in, gear, and the same thing, only faster?
 
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post-197749
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dougli

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Sounds like you have the basic understanding. As you let the clutch out, you're trying to give it enough gas to keep the engine from stalling, but not so much that the engine revs excessively. At the same time you're letting out the clutch just fast enough to accomplish the same thing. So you're really controlling engine sound and forward motion with both the clutch pedal and the accellerator pedal. It's an art, and every manual transmission feels a lttle different. You are mating a rotating component (the engine) with a stationary one (the transmission). Like all matings, it's best done gently but firmly. The key is practice, practice, and more practice, until it becomes second nature.
 
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post-197796
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Tuberoller

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Dude,I just got my Daughter a 2002 Ford Focus SVT.She just revs the engine to the moon and dumps the clutch.She has'nt worn the clucth out yet but the left front tire is nearly bald and the right tire ain't far behind.You sound like you have the fundementals down.You must now practice.
 
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post-197804
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Joe Bloggs

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Yea, except after you got the car rolling you don't have to add throttle before dropping the clutch on the next gear... although if you manage to match the rev. rates of the engine and the gear it makes the gearshift more smooth... this seems to be more important for downshifting than up?
 
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post-197822
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Pepsione1

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Just remember not to hesitate to give gas while you release the clutch. But not the other way around, don't give too much gas and then dump the clutch (unless you want new tires soon).
 
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JMT

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It is really all about feel. You understand the concept, now it's a matter of going out and getting used to feeling the point where the clutch engages and how much gas to give it.

BTW, if you don't stall it while attempting to make a turn with a bunch of impatient a**holes behind you, then you aren't a true manual transmission driver.
 
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post-197835
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daycart1

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post-197837
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Joe Bloggs

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Quote:

BTW, if you don't stall it while attempting to make a turn with a bunch of impatient a**holes behind you, then you aren't a true manual transmission driver.


LOL


Just learning myself, going to take a midterm driving test next Tue.


BTW, in left-sided HK, after passing the rigorous exams, you get an international licence that allows you to drive anywhere in the world, including right-sided USA. Be very afraid.
 
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post-197864
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neil

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After you master the left handed gear shifting there in HK, lets try your hand at the right handed gear shifting here in the states. And I have a '94 Jetta waiting (as well as a cam-corder to share with everyone else here @ Head-Fi).


The biggest intimidation you'll find with a manual trans (for newbies) is starting while on an uphill. So, you're stopped on an upward hill, and there's a car behind you. Of course, your brakes and clutch are engaged. The traffic light turns green. You have to depress your brake, hit your gas and let out your clutch. Fears: 1) rolling back too far, hitting car behind you, because you didn't let out clutch in time; 2) stalling out because you didn't [a] give it enough gas; you let go of the clutch too fast.

I just recommend you head out to practice when there aren't any other cars around. It is about feel and indeed, all manual transmissions feel different. The clutches are different -- for example, sports cars are a lot less forgiving. The gear shifts are different -- not just the gear locations on the stick movement pattern, but the actual feel -- again, the VW stick shift is forgiving, but say, a medium to high performance sports car just clicks into each gear (feels like a video game shifter).

I agree with the practice, practice, practice advice.
 
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post-197884
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Joe Bloggs

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The instructor always teaches me to pull the handbrake when you've stopped uphill
 
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post-197917
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a1leyez0nm3

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its all about feel. dont make it complicated!!!


for the first time, just get on a flat road, stop the car, put the clutch in, and try to start out VERY SLOWLY WITHOUT TOUCHING THE GAS PEDAL. i think this gives you the best feel of the clutch, and when it engages.. the gas revolves around the clutch and the clutch around the gas, in that you can dump the clutch, but you have to have the rpms up and dump the gas. if you have low rpms.. eeeeassssy on the clutch. feather it out. just feel it, get the groove. but remember: dont make it complicated, just shift, just drive
. use the gas and the clutch at the same time, using different amounts, so that your rpms stay the same when using the clutch, at first.


just my 2 cents
 
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andrzejpw

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Lol, although the urge may me high to just drop the clutch on that jetta, I won't do it. . . yet.
 
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post-198063
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Joe, that's a good way for beginners to get started, and I know a lot of experienced drivers who still use the hand brake (we call it the parking brake here) when they're stopped facing uphill on a steep hill.

Most people don't ever really become experts at driving a stick uphill. They just don't get enough practice. I've been driving a stick for about 16 years legally (a lot longer than that if you include underage driving
), but it wasn't until I did a lot of driving in San Francisco that I became an expert in uphill stick
 
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blueocp

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A good thing to learn andrew, is figuring out the place on the clutch were it *just* engages the tranny. The car will start to move very slowly forward without any gas. If u let it go any further you stall. When you learn that spot on your car, it will make shifting so much smoother. Keep practicing letting the clutch go to that specific spot. Many people start out without learning that, and either learn to find it eventually without knowing, or they just dump the clutch.
 
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post-198197
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a1leyez0nm3

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Quote:

Originally posted by blueocp
The car will start to move very slowly forward without any gas. If u let it go any further you stall. .




no it wont stall if you let it out slowly enough on a flat surface.
 
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