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Manual transmission driving tips

post #1 of 63
Thread Starter 
Ok, I've been driving a manual for most of my driving life, but I believe I do not know all the tricks to optimize my driving experience nor do I know everything there is to know about what can be done with a manual, even some of the more rudimentary ones.

Questions:

1. Can one take the transmission out of gear (from gear x to neutral) without disengaging the clutch (ie, stepping down on the clutch pedal)? What does it do to the transmission.
2. For making a turn (where one has to slow down first), how does one manage the gearing? Coast in neutral into the turn, then engage appropriate gear once the smallest radius of the turn has been passed?
3. I always use the brakes to slow down, and rarely downshift. Best practice for slowing down and stopping?
4. To optimize fuel efficiency, I always want to be in the highest gear possible in order to be at the lowest RPM?
5. 2 hands or 1 hand on the wheel? Or 1 hand on the shifter at all times?
6. Near redline shifting, who's good enough to it, and has there ever been an occasion where you did it?
post #2 of 63
Coming from a country where everyone drives manually, your post just makes me want to laugh so hard, I'd expel my colon. You've been driving manual all your life hey

1) You can, but its very stupid, your transmission wont last a year. Why would you want to keep the engine power and gearbox connected when you change gears?

2) LMAO. You should never coast in neutral. You'd learn this in your first lesson here! Its far easier to skid and lose control when not in gear. If you slow down enough to warrant a change of gear, make the change a fraction before you turn into the corner, and accelerate out. Change up when you're going straight again or near. Police are taught to enter a corner slower under control, hit the apex and accelerate out. The alternative is to enter locking the brakes, flinging the wheel, fluffing the change and losing control.

3) Yes that what brakes are for, its possible to downshift to slow, but this just adds wear on the engine. Alot of older people still do this, but it isn't taught anymore. Brake pads are cheap, engines are not. You only need to change gear, if your revs would drop so low that your car would chug when applying throttle, again if your trying to drive like a wanker, you'd try to keep the revs high, so you'd change down a fraction before turning in.

4) Yay!

5) 2 hands on the wheel.

6) whats difficult about it? sometimes I do it - when its safe to do so. It just involves changing up later than you normally do, keep it smooth and quick to try to keep the revs high, but you still have to lift the throttle, or else you'll do more than redline it when you release the clutch.
post #3 of 63
1) Use the clutch. Motorcycles can get away with it because the gears are so close together, but it puts stress on the transmission. Parts don't last as long.

2) I always downshift for turns. When Racing, you want to be in the right gear when you EXIT the turn. Never coast in neutral. No, no, no! Hit the apex at the end of the turn if you're good enough.

3) Use the breaks. That's what they're there for. Downshifting doesn't do much to slow the car down. (It's more for show)

4) The best fuel efficiency man not be the lowest RPM. If your car is struggling in 5th gear, you need to step on the gas harder to get going. Every engine is different, so test it for the best gas/acceleration combo. Mine is around 2500 - 3000 RPM. (944 Porsche ) If I'm just coasting down the freeway, I'll be in 5th gear, but if I need to do anything (merge, pass, or if it gets crowded) I'll downshift to 4th. 5th gear in a porsche at such slow speeds as a freeway is like holding your underwear out the window of a sailboat. It don't do much.

5) 2 HANDS ON THE WHEEL! What's more important, shifting to the next gear, of dodging that cow on the road.

6) Yea. I was passing a car. Actually, my car red-lines at 6500 RPM, but peak horse power drops off at around 5500 RPM. Past peak horse power, you are just wasting time and gas. My car actually has a built-in shut off at 6500 RPM that will kill the ignition to prevent you from over-reving. I bought a "special" computer chip that boosted it to 6800 RPM. But yea, I do it all the time but only in low gears.
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post #4 of 63
Quote:
Originally posted by THT
3. I always use the brakes to slow down, and rarely downshift. Best practice for slowing down and stopping?

Quote:
Originally posted by powermacG6 3) Yes that what brakes are for, its possible to downshift to slow, but this just adds wear on the engine. Alot of older people still do this, but it isn't taught anymore. Brake pads are cheap, engines are not. You only need to change gear, if your revs would drop so low that your car would chug when applying throttle, again if your trying to drive like a wanker, you'd try to keep the revs high, so you'd change down a fraction before turning in.

Quote:
Originally posted by Ebby 3) Use the breaks. That's what they're there for. Downshifting doesn't do much to slow the car down. (It's more for show).

I always downshift to slow down (using my brakes as well). It just feels like I have more control over the car combining those two methods instead of just honking on the brakes all the time. By contrast-- the first thing I notice when driving automatics is how often I have to use the brakes. I always thought one of the chief virtues of a manual transmission was the level of control it affords. For instance, instead of free-wheeling down a hill in an automatic and applying the breaks, you can simply put a manual transmission into a lower gear to slow down. As long as the decline isn't too long and/or steep-- and as long as the engine isn't over-burdened-- and as long as you use your brakes occasionally to combat those problems-- why not?

Stopping is a similar deal. If I'm on a fast, four lane boulevard and approaching a stop-light, I wouldn't just apply the brakes in 5th gear all the way until stopping. That's just *asking* for the car to automatically engage the ABS. I prefer the downshift-brake solution for far more gradual and controlled stops. Thoughts?




(Black Beauty, huh? I've had it for about a year, and it's honestly a joy to drive.)
post #5 of 63
re ShawnJ

True, if youre stopping completely from 5th you probably need to downshift to 3rd at about 20-25mph. Id then pull the clutch in at about 5-10mph. I thought he was asking specifically about cornering. That depends on your intended driving style, If you're racing you'll probably want to keep the revs above 4000 at all the time, so you'll shift gears quite often, but normal driving, there just is no need if your car will pull away happily.

Using the engine to assist braking only reduces the life of the engine as Ive already said, I use it to control speed down steep hills, but other than that, why knacker the engine or the clutch? Brake pads are cheap!


The real answer depends on what driving style you are trying to achieve. IS THT asking about normal driving or racing?
post #6 of 63
My guess is that the additional wear of engine braking would be negligible (as long as you aren't flogging the daylights out of it in downshifting it). It can't be any worse than hard accelerating using the engine (which it should be designed to withstand).

The upside to engine braking is you get to circulate engine coolant (and cooling oil, to boot) through the engine more forcefully as you approach your stop- gets that water pump speed up. That plus the engine being in a low heat generation mode as you decelerate (assuming you are completely off the throttle), is a terrific way to assist the engine in blowing off latent, excess heat from the system. The benefits of this are apparent when you consider you could either "recycle" some of your kinetic energy (as you decelerate) to purge engine heat vs. letting your engine stew in that heat at idle while you sit at the stoplight.

It's really a matter of personal taste either way, but I just wanted to express that there are actually good reasons on either side.
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post #7 of 63
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally posted by powermacG6
1) You can, but its very stupid, your transmission wont last a year. Why would you want to keep the engine power and gearbox connected when you change gears?

Not change gears. It was a question about putting the transmission into neutral without using the clutch.

Quote:
2) LMAO. You should never coast in neutral.

I do it here depending on the situation, if there is no one in front of me, I coast into the turn or stop and change into gear or apply the brakes at the moment I need to.

Quote:
5) 2 hands on the wheel.

Heh, I've used my cell phone on my right hand, and driven and changed gears with the right before.

Driving with both hands on the wheel will definitely take some time to form as a habit.

Quote:
6) whats difficult about it? sometimes I do it - when its safe to do so. It just involves changing up later than you normally do, keep it smooth and quick to try to keep the revs high, but you still have to lift the throttle, or else you'll do more than redline it when you release the clutch.

I've never even come close to redlining my car yet. And haven't found the need to accelerate that hard yet.

7) How do people drive in stop-and-go traffic with their manuals?
post #8 of 63
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally posted by Ebby
2) I always downshift for turns. When Racing, you want to be in the right gear when you EXIT the turn. Never coast in neutral. No, no, no! Hit the apex at the end of the turn if you're good enough.

I'll try this for awhile. And I'm not talking about racing. Just everyday normal driving in the big city.

Quote:
4) The best fuel efficiency man not be the lowest RPM. If your car is struggling in 5th gear, you need to step on the gas harder to get going. Every engine is different, so test it for the best gas/acceleration combo.

Yeah, I'll need to do some testing. Actually, I can probably figure it out if I can find detailed torque and power curves for my car.

Quote:
5) 2 HANDS ON THE WHEEL! What's more important, shifting to the next gear, of dodging that cow on the road.

Even when you go from zero to highway speed in the shortest amount of time?

8. What happens when you leave the car in gear, foot off the accelerator and let it slow down?
post #9 of 63
1 revisited) Dont do it. Always disengage the clutch before moving the stick, even if its just to neutral, if you care about your transmission. But we've generally agreed you shouldn't be in neutral anyway. Sometime i do this however if I forget to disengage the gear after Ive turned the car off. Try not to leave it in gear, because when you start up again you might get a shock, especially if youve parked next to a wall! However, its good to leave it in a low gear, if youve parked on a steep slope.

7) This can be a real pain. Something I somtimes do is accelerate, pop it in neutral and coast along, dont worry about losing control at speeds less than 15mph in a straight line. Something else, get it in 2nd pretty quick, foot off the throttle, let the car drive itself under tickover, my car does this fine, some might not. This is good when you dont need to stop, but just crawl along. What you dont want to be doing is accelerating to 30mph in 1st gear and braking over and over. This will get your engine hot, and it near impossible to do smoothly.

I do dispair at people who use thier cell phones in their car. People die this way, especially the innocent ones. Dont watch TV, jerk off or try to read a map.
post #10 of 63
Probably the best way to evaluate what gear you should be in for the speed you are targeting with best fuel economy is to simply take note of your gas pedal position. Essentially, more throttle will lead to more consumption (not too many other ways around that ). The right gear will be the one where you are using the least amount of throttle to maintain your speed. Too low a gear, and you will be pressing the throttle to keep the engine speed up so you don't slow down. Too high a gear, and you will be using more throttle then normal to keep your speed up or you will be lugging the engine altogether (a marked increase in roughness in the engine).

I think the specific fuel consumption min usually corresponds to the rpm of torque max. In most engines (specifically gasoline style), you still wouldn't want to hang the rpms there (usually in the 3000-5000 range) while cruising. If you can achieve the same speed with a taller gear and less throttle setting, that will still be the point of min fuel consumption. The torque peak thing really only suggests where the engine will be strongest for a given unit of fuel, and furthermore does not account for engine windage losses of holding an elevated rpm. If your goal is to cruise with minimal throttle use, the windage losses at elevated rpms is enough to really throw stuff off, torque peak or not.
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post #11 of 63
I'll add my 2 cents:

For the most part, I use the brakes to slow the car and not the engine. I only engine brake on the freeway to slowly bleed off speed. Normally when I step on the brakes in city driving, I step on the clutch. A lot of the time I end up going over steep canyon roads, and brake pads are a lot cheaper than a new clutch.

As for coasting in neutral, I do it a lot- in very proscribed situations. I just did it on my way home this evening; traffic was backed up on Laurel Canyon, and the street is steep enough that in stop-and-go traffic, I didn't bother to engage a gear until I hit Sunset Boulevard.

Powermac, expel your colon? What an image!

I'm actually glad that most Americans drive automatics. I'd hate to add actually shifting to the roster of things I see my fellow Angelenos doing while "driving": dialing the phone, reading the paper, applying make-up, juggling the latte.........
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post #12 of 63
Just getting your car moving from a standstill constitutes a lot more wear on the clutch than engaging mild engine braking (where everything is pretty much moving already). Nevermind all the wear that is induced if you happen to be powershifting and using jackrabbit starts... Suffice to say, wear via engine braking is going to be a minor effect in comparison to the duties that it is actually expected to handle.
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post #13 of 63
Quote:
Originally posted by tmp
dialing the phone, reading the paper, applying make-up, juggling the latte.........

.......changing playlists........
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post #14 of 63
Um, guys, ever miss a shift and hear that awful *CRUNCH* sound?
post #15 of 63
Quote:
Originally posted by ShawnJ
Um, guys, ever miss a shift and hear that awful *CRUNCH* sound?

Occasionally it reminds me that I'm driving....
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post #16 of 63
I'm passing on somethings i have learned from my uncle, who is a Police force driving instructor (i.e. a bit bloody good)

1. Can one take the transmission out of gear (from gear x to neutral) without disengaging the clutch (ie, stepping down on the clutch pedal)? What does it do to the transmission.
Yes - I do it quite often. The trick is to match the revs. If the revs are steady (not going down, or up), a gentle pull on the shift should take it out of gear. The same with putting it back into gear, but more risky.

2. For making a turn (where one has to slow down first), how does one manage the gearing? Coast in neutral into the turn, then engage appropriate gear once the smallest radius of the turn has been passed?

No - engage the appropriate gear before getting to teh turn. Assess this in advance.

3. I always use the brakes to slow down, and rarely downshift. Best practice for slowing down and stopping?

Yes, use the breaks this puts less stress on the engine. Most (All?) modern engines have engine breaking, these days, so in a sense, you can use both to the best efficiency.

4. To optimize fuel efficiency, I always want to be in the highest gear possible in order to be at the lowest RPM?

Yes, and no. If you are in too high a gear, and the engine doesn't have enough torque, then it will be burning more fuel in order to pull. You can only judge this yourself.

5. 2 hands or 1 hand on the wheel? Or 1 hand on the shifter at all times?

If you're not changing gear, both on the wheel
post #17 of 63
Quote:
Originally posted by THT

1. Can one take the transmission out of gear (from gear x to neutral) without disengaging the clutch (ie, stepping down on the clutch pedal)? What does it do to the transmission.
2. For making a turn (where one has to slow down first), how does one manage the gearing? Coast in neutral into the turn, then engage appropriate gear once the smallest radius of the turn has been passed?
3. I always use the brakes to slow down, and rarely downshift. Best practice for slowing down and stopping?
4. To optimize fuel efficiency, I always want to be in the highest gear possible in order to be at the lowest RPM?
5. 2 hands or 1 hand on the wheel? Or 1 hand on the shifter at all times?
6. Near redline shifting, who's good enough to it, and has there ever been an occasion where you did it?

It appears that many of these questions have been answered already, but I'd like to point out one general misconception. When you mis-shift and you hear the grinding, you're not actually grinding the gear, but rather you're grinding the synchros. Still not a good thing, but synchros are easier to replace than gears. FWIW, synchros exist so that you don't have to double clutch. That is, to downshift, you don't have to clutch, neural, clutch, gear, all the while matching your RPMs.

Near redline shifting: Get close to redline. stomp on the clutch at the same time as shifting, and watch your RPMs. If you do it right, you'll chirp the tires and get a burst of speed when shifting gears. It completely eliminates the lag you get when shifting in a manual. It takes a lot of practice and feel to get right.

Going around a turn: brake, turn, downshift, accelerate out of turn. You can do this in one motion, aka the "heel-toe." That means you hold the RPMs up with your heel, and brake with your toe. That way you get the most explosive acceleration out of the turn. For guys with big feet, this can be hard, and you might want to invest in some wider pedals so you can you the edges of your foot instead of the heel and toe.
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post #18 of 63
Quote:
Originally posted by Splinemodel
Going around a turn: brake, turn, downshift, accelerate out of turn. You can do this in one motion, aka the "heel-toe." That means you hold the RPMs up with your heel, and brake with your toe. That way you get the most explosive acceleration out of the turn. For guys with big feet, this can be hard, and you might want to invest in some wider pedals so you can you the edges of your foot instead of the heel and toe.

Professional drivers never shift IN a turn. If you are racing, it can break the tires loose and put you in a spin. I downshift, break, turn, hit apex, then accelerate.
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post #19 of 63
Quote:
Originally posted by THT
7) How do people drive in stop-and-go traffic with their manuals?


I've only been driving manual for about 2 months, so I don't know if what I do is the best, but basically I'm in 1st most of the time, pressing in the clutch and holding it in while I do the brakes. that's for moderately bad traffic, if it's really stalled, then I will slip into neutral so that I don't need to be pressing down the clutch all the time.


I'm a little surprised to hear some people's thoughts on neutral, I remember in drivers training on the test I think they said that neutral is illegal, yet, almost every manual driver I know takes advantage of it in some way or another.

I know I utilize it quite a bit, but my car is slow and old, so it's probably less of a deal than if I was driving a top end BMW or something.
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post #20 of 63
I think of myself as a "new" driver (3 years, maybe 10000km/year). I've recently developed an interest in car technology, exactly this sort of questions, and racing techniques as well. I've sat down for a few hours reading about transmissions at http://www.howstuffworks.com . Another good place on the web is Autozine Technical School (google that).

Engine braking:
In *normal traffic* as THT asked, most of the time you should be engine braking. This because most modern cars have fuel injection, and they can cut all fuel under engine braking. This is a tremendous saving in gas, in urban traffic you can get +20% to your mpg. (This straight from driver's ed.) I don't mean you should do drastic downshifts to brake fast, I mean you should lift off the gas, and downshift only when the car has slowed to very low revs. If you do this, engine wear is negligible and there is no downside to engine braking. If you have to stop fast, you use the brakes. This also means that if you want to use the engine brake to the max, you have to look far in traffic, and anticipate the need for braking, so you have time and space to engine brake. In normal traffic, you are not any slower for this, because it's traffic lights and other cars who really set how fast you can go. You might actually be faster hanging back like this - consider traffic light that is red. If you rush to the lights and stop, you are not getting through any sooner. Now, if you instead start engine braking far as soon as you see the red light, you might still have substantial speed left when the light changes, and you get to go faster and save gas at the same time.
post #21 of 63
... here's a learning experience for you...

While coasting in gear (letting the engine slow you down ... known as compression braking), put a little pressure on the stick towards neutral... it won't go with only a little pressure.
Now gradually apply some throttle (still holding pressure on the stick).
As your throttle input begins to match your engine/transmission RPM, the stick will push to neutral as easily as if the clutch pedal were depressed.

(this will work in reverse too... while accelerating, you can pull the stick to neutral at some point as you let OFF the gas)

If you are REALLY GOOD, you can re-engage the transmission without using the clutch by matching the engine RPM and the transmission input shaft RPM... this will take lots of practice The clutch was created to make shifting EASIER... not to make it POSSIBLE. well... it's needed to get started from a stationary condition, I suppose.

And it doesn't create any undue stress on the transmission... In fact, if you don't use the clutch, you'll never need to replace the pressure plates or throw-out bearing ... parts that normally wear out.


And compression braking won't harm an engine that is properly "tuned". And any recent computer controlled engine is always properly tuned.


As for the "technique" questions ... are you driving to work or are you racing ???
Go take one of the race-driving classes that are available ... not only is it TONS of fun, but you'll learn a LOT about performance driving techniques.
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post #22 of 63
Quote:
Originally posted by KingOfSomewhereHot

If you are REALLY GOOD, you can re-engage the transmission without using the clutch by matching the engine RPM and the transmission input shaft RPM... this will take lots of practice The clutch was created to make shifting EASIER... not to make it POSSIBLE. well... it's needed to get started from a stationary condition, I suppose.

When he was teaching me to drive stick, my brother demonstrated this, just to show off. But of course, it's probably a lot easier to do in the jeep than a fancy super car.
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post #23 of 63
Not that I'm a torque converter whore or anything, but for most people, what's the damned point of owning a car manual/standard transmission? Hell, even drivers in motorsports like F1 don't have to deal with clutches anymore. And the Pi dashes on most of those cars tell you precisely when to shift as well.
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post #24 of 63
Manual transmissions are more efficient than automatic and you have more control of the car. (You tell it when to shift and such.) That gives you an advantage when racing against automatics if you know how to use it. Race cars have special transmissions that force one gear out while at the same time pushing another in, avoiding the clutch altogether to save time. They do still have racing clutches for first gear. The lights recommend when to shift but the driver still has complete control over when the shift occurs. But those transmissions don't last long at all. There are a few cars that also use this technology, but they are really expensive.
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post #25 of 63
Quote:
Originally posted by Eugene
Not that I'm a torque converter whore or anything, but for most people, what's the damned point of owning a car manual/standard transmission? Hell, even drivers in motorsports like F1 don't have to deal with clutches anymore. And the Pi dashes on most of those cars tell you precisely when to shift as well.

personally, I have a lot more fun driving manual, it feels like I'm driving the car, not the other way around. but that said, I also like just vegging on an automatic trans. Additionally, I think it's valuable skill to have, if you can drive manual well, you can drive automatic by proxy, but if you can only drive auto, then manual can be difficult to learn.
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post #26 of 63
Quote:
Originally posted by Ebby
Manual transmissions are more efficient than automatic and you have more control of the car. (You tell it when to shift and such.) That gives you an advantage when racing against automatics if you know how to use it. Race cars have special transmissions that force one gear out while at the same time pushing another in, avoiding the clutch altogether to save time. They do still have racing clutches for first gear. The lights recommend when to shift but the driver still has complete control over when the shift occurs. But those transmissions don't last long at all. There are a few cars that also use this technology, but they are really expensive.

1) A modern torque converter is basically as efficient as standard tranny. this is especially true for the average car owner.

2a) If human control is so great, why were many F1 teams using fully automatic transmissions two years ago?

2b) In F1, everything surrounding a shift (except during starts and pit stops as you said) is computer controlled. The driver doesn't have to do anything but tug on the shift paddle or lever. The driver doesn't have to do so much as to lift off the gas as you would in your road car.
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post #27 of 63
Quote:
Originally posted by Eugene
1) A modern torque converter is basically as efficient as standard tranny. this is especially true for the average car owner.

I think that big difference is that a lot of the time you'll see a car that comes in a 4 speed auto (sometimes 5) and a 6 speed manual. The Pontiac GTO, for example, has a 6 speed manual, and the manual gets a lot better highway mileage.
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post #28 of 63
Quote:
Originally posted by KingOfSomewhereHot
If you are REALLY GOOD, you can re-engage the transmission without using the clutch by matching the engine RPM and the transmission input shaft RPM... this will take lots of practice The clutch was created to make shifting EASIER... not to make it POSSIBLE. well... it's needed to get started from a stationary condition, I suppose.

And it doesn't create any undue stress on the transmission... In fact, if you don't use the clutch, you'll never need to replace the pressure plates or throw-out bearing ... parts that normally wear out.

Yeah, right.. \ but even the best driver will screw up eventually, and all the wear that occurs is on parts that are not designed to take it, and are expensive to replace.

A really competent *race* driver will know how to drive without the clutch, but for every one else including amateur racers, it simply isn't necessary. Sure, I've tried it as well when I was figuring out how gearboxes work, but this is not something people should do a lot. It's best tried at very low speed to minimize the wear.

Eugene: the F1's have *manual* transmissions. They do not have a torque converter. Take a look at Ferrari Enzo: no clutch, no stick, but it's a 6-speed manual.
post #29 of 63
F1 cars have paddle shifters. They aren't manual transmissions as most people know them, and I'm not exactly sure how manual they are at all. I don't think they have torque converters, though.

as far as shifting without clutching, in order to do it you'll need to modify your transmission, since most of the ones I know of have synchromeshing and various other ways to keep you from messing things up. (such as shifting into 1st at 60mph.)
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post #30 of 63
Quote:
Originally posted by Splinemodel
F1 cars have paddle shifters. They aren't manual transmissions as most people know them, and I'm not exactly sure how manual they are at all. I don't think they have torque converters, though.

The term is "sequential manual". Found in F1's, Ferraris, some BMW's, and some Audis .

HTH.
post #31 of 63
didn't read everything but. on the braking into corners. YOu should learn to Heel-toe. YOu want to match revs to the gear so that your not lugging the engine or using the clutch to speed up the engine. Put your heel on the brake and toe the accelerator to where your engine woudl be if it was in the gear you are going to select then let the clutch out. You know you've done it right when you can't feel a change in power.
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post #32 of 63
Quote:
Originally posted by Sondjata
didn't read everything but. on the braking into corners. YOu should learn to Heel-toe. YOu want to match revs to the gear so that your not lugging the engine or using the clutch to speed up the engine. Put your heel on the brake and toe the accelerator to where your engine woudl be if it was in the gear you are going to select then let the clutch out. You know you've done it right when you can't feel a change in power.

No. NO. Read what I wrote about engine braking.
post #33 of 63
Quote:
Originally posted by Gon
No. NO. Read what I wrote about engine braking.

I said nothing about using the engine to brake. I said to match revs. When I enter a turn I use the brakes not the engine. I match the revs to the gear I'm going into which is not involved in any braking action at all. I rarely use the engine for braking. I have a 88 BMW 325i with nearly 200,000 miles on it on the original engine. How you think it got so old?
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As sure as the Bible is missing books
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But this ain't really about Hussein
Regime change
Crashing Airplanes
or buildings falling in flames
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post #34 of 63
Quote:
Originally posted by Sondjata
I said nothing about using the engine to brake. I said to match revs. When I enter a turn I use the brakes not the engine. I match the revs to the gear I'm going into which is not involved in any braking action at all. I rarely use the engine for braking. I have a 88 BMW 325i with nearly 200,000 miles on it on the original engine. How you think it got so old?

Yes, you said to match revs and to use the brakes. This is equal to "do not engine brake", so you did say something about engine braking.

Now, with a car as old as yours, it might make sense not to engine brake even if it has fuel injection. I double clutch on every downchange ('81 Volvo with a carburetor, 320000+ km). But with a '90 or newer car, in normal traffic, the only place where it makes sense to heel-toe is when you downshift to make a pass. On approach to corner you have time and space to let revs drop and engine brake, so you should do exactly this. Good driving in traffic is different from good driving on a track.

PS: Good car. I'd like a '90 318iS as my next.
post #35 of 63
Thread Starter 
Ok, from the Ferrari club FAQ about heel-toe downshifts:

"The sequence for a proper heel-toe downshift is as follows:[list=1][*] Apply the brake with the ball of your right foot.[*] Depress the clutch pedal with your left foot.[*] Place your hand on the gear lever.[*] Rotate your right foot counter-clockwise by pushing your heel away from you, then "blip" the throttle with the right edge of your right foot by rolling your foot down and to the right, while still applying even pressure to the brake pedal.[*] At the same [time] as the throttle blip, move the gear selector into the lower gear.[*] Release the clutch pedal quickly."[/list=1]

From another website, the description is as follows:

" Heel toe is a misnomer. It can be done in many ways, depending on the pedals in the car, and the anatomy of the driver. Although it can be, it is not usually done with the heel and toe. The process is commonly done by placing the ball of the foot on the right side of the brake pedal, and while holding consistent brake pressure, the side of the foot rolls onto the throttle, blipping the throttle. Depending on your anatomy, and the pedals, it can be done any way that allows the brakes to be used while the throttle is blipped."

Ok, I love smoother shifting, so I'll give this a shot sometime.

9) How does one make upshifts smoother?
post #36 of 63
Quote:
Originally posted by THT
9) How does one make upshifts smoother?

Same way than downshifting, except you don't blip the throttle. *Be* smooth. Here's some analogies that might help or not.

Think about the clutch pedal (and other pedals as well!) as a sponge. Squeeze it, don't press it.

If you have ever shot a firearm, this is very much like trigger control. You don't pull a trigger, you squeeze it.

(especially when letting a pedal up) Try curling your toes back.

When you're engaging the clutch, stay off the gas.

Before you start to disengage the clutch, make sure you have backed off the gas.
post #37 of 63
Quote:
Originally posted by Gon
But with a '90 or newer car, in normal traffic, the only place where it makes sense to heel-toe is when you downshift to make a pass. On approach to corner you have time and space to let revs drop and engine brake, so you should do exactly this. Good driving in traffic is different from good driving on a track.

PS: Good car. I'd like a '90 318iS as my next.

Yeah I have Fuel Injection, And there are other times other than passing when you can use the techniques. For example on my way to work there is an exit that leads to a 180 loop and merge onto another highway. The exit speed is 25MPH and I regularly take it at 55-60 MPH, but need to slow into the loop and then speed out of it. I use the above mentioned heel-toe in such a situation
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George Bush is missing sense
and violence breeds more violence
But this ain't really about Hussein
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George Bush is missing sense
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But this ain't really about Hussein
Regime change
Crashing Airplanes
or buildings falling in flames
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post #38 of 63
1. yes you can do that, nothing else then that will really happen, don't try to push it back in gear without the clutch though!
2. slow down to the speed you make the turn, then make the turn ! easy huh? ps in neutral, the oilpressure on the brake system might become less and less, thereofor the brakes will be less effective iaw no total controll over the car anymore ! Just don't do that! hehe
3. brakes are cheaper, as said before, but i use both... it feels nicer....
4. Fuel Effiency = +/- 2500rpm
5. 2 hands, never hold the shift if you are not going to use it. Same for your left foot, keep it off the clutch if you are not going to use it soon...
6. Red line? No problem, easy, nothing odd about it....
post #39 of 63
Quote:
Originally posted by sparhawk
1. yes you can do that, nothing else then that will really happen, don't try to push it back in gear without the clutch though!
2. slow down to the speed you make the turn, then make the turn ! easy huh? ps in neutral, the oilpressure on the brake system might become less and less, thereofor the brakes will be less effective iaw no total controll over the car anymore ! Just don't do that! hehe
3. brakes are cheaper, as said before, but i use both... it feels nicer....
4. Fuel Effiency = +/- 2500rpm
5. 2 hands, never hold the shift if you are not going to use it. Same for your left foot, keep it off the clutch if you are not going to use it soon...
6. Red line? No problem, easy, nothing odd about it....

ehh don't believe the hype on the two hand things. One can drive a vehicle just fine with one hand and there's nothing wrong with having your hand aon the gear shift. the problem is putting weight on it. If the situation calls for two hands then use 'em both but this "two hand or you're an idiot idea is idiotic." Besides, you're supposed to be able to knock your hands off the steeing wheel without changing the direction of the vehicle. The white knuckle types scare me.
As sure as the Bible is missing books
George Bush is missing sense
and violence breeds more violence
But this ain't really about Hussein
Regime change
Crashing Airplanes
or buildings falling in flames
Reply
As sure as the Bible is missing books
George Bush is missing sense
and violence breeds more violence
But this ain't really about Hussein
Regime change
Crashing Airplanes
or buildings falling in flames
Reply
post #40 of 63
OK. What about the perennial Car Talk question: When coming to a stop, do you take it out of gear and ride the brakes or do you leave it in gear/use the brakes?

What about "coasting" (coming down a big hill--I live on a mountain--and taking it out of gear)?

Cheers
Scott
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