Driving a stick.

Discussion in 'Politics' started by spect8or, May 18, 2004.

  1. I bought a car a few days ago, a manual. I had to. This is Europe and virtually everyone drives a manual. Similarly to how almost everyone in the US and Australia drives an automatic. (Why do people do "manual" to themselves? It's like, to paraphrase Seinfeld, the Chinese persistance with the chopsticks after being shown the fork.)

    Anyway, I now have to learn to drive the freaking thing. Man, is this an exercise in frustration or what! Right now I suck pretty badly. It's kinda perplexing to see 18 year old airhead chicks wizzing around while I can barely go forward two meters without stalling the damn thing; am I ever going to get it right? Could I really be that uncoordinated?
  2. dude, i am about to give you THE SOLUTION. i had to learn just a few years ago myself. while you're learning, imo, the worst is when you are stopped on a hill with cars behind you, and you don't want to roll back and bump into them while you're shifting gears. haha

    anyway, THIS IS WHAT YOU MUST KNOW: think of the gas and clutch LIKE A SCALE THAT MUST BE BALANCED. don't just jerkily go from one to the other. ease on/off them together like a scale. so if you are 90% clutch, think 10% gas. then move to 70% clutch, 30% gas. that's what did it for me. good luck.
  3. LRD


    Have you ever slapped it from 5th into 3rd to overtake and heard the revs go and felt the acceleration? That's why.
  4. ***(Why do people do "manual" to themselves? It's like, to paraphrase Seinfeld, the Chinese persistance with the chopsticks after being shown the fork.)***

    The car is cheaper, burns less fuel, and acceleration is much better compared to the exact same engine in an automatic....but yeah, manual is a major pain in the ass.
  5. Its easy, all you need is experience.

    Get your map out, and plan as many trips of around 100 miles or so, each way, as you can every week.

    Stay off the freeway system during your trips, use the old highway routs, that run through small towns and such, and just go.

    When you get to your destination, stop and eat breakfast/lunch, look around town, and then come on home.

    After a few trips, you'll become an expert, and be abel to chirp the tires at will,and stop/start on any hill.

  6. This reminds me of a funny story.

    When I was 18, I first learned how to drive a stick. My dad had two cars, and one was a Ford Escort (naturally, he didn't trust me with his Mustang).

    Well, my girlfriend at the time was with me, and I had never really driven a stick at all before this time. We had to go somewhere, and for some reason we needed to take my dad's Escort.

    Well, I remember playing a lot of nintendo, so that helped a bit. I was doing really fine on the way out of our neighborhood because it is mostly downhill and one would have to try really hard to stall going downhill.

    I got to my first traffic light, which naturally was on a steep incline with traffic behind me. Seqeunce of events:

    a) Light turns green.

    b) My girlfriend says, "go!"

    c) I let go of the break.

    d) Car stalls.

    e) Horns start going off behind me

    f) Girlfriend, "GO!!!!"

    g) Start car with clutch in, let go of clutch without giving gas properly.

    h) Car stalls, starts drifting back

    i) Car behind me starts honking madly.

    j) Girlfriend, "JESUS CHRIST JUST GO!"

    k) Start car, start screaming expletives, floor gas with clutch in, engine revs like it is about to explode, screw it -- let off clutch, tires kick in and burn into the concrete, car jolts forwards.

    l) Girlfriend, "DON'T GO SO FAST!!!"
  7. Practice, practice, practice. It's the only way. On hills, practice using your parking brake. You will eventually get a 'feel' for your car and know exactly when to release the brake. Personally, I would never buy an automatic car.
  8. GGSAE


    You'll get the hang of it, try to focus on keeping the rpm under 3000. This serves as a good memory test to build on. I work part-time as a bellmen, and have probably driven 500 different sticks in my day. I need to use the pedals conservatively because each clutch/gearbox is different.
  9. Depends on the kind of car.

    Sports cars should have a stick. Luxury cars automatic.

    Spec8or, like you have been told, making the adjustment isn't difficult. In a very short time, you will not even be aware you are shifting. Have faith in this. It becomes very "automatic" to shift a car very quickly.

    Once you get the hang of it, it does make you more "connected" to the car. If the car is a fun car to drive, a stick makes it more so. You see relatively few automatic Porsches, and no automatic Ferraris. (Although you do now see a lot of exotic cars with no clutches....but technically they are manual transmissions....with computer operated hydrolic clutches... the next big thing. Formula cars are now using this kind of system).

    Relax and enjoy. You will look back at your frustration now with a grin in a week. Can you juggle? Swim? Ride a bicycle? Same kind of thing....once you have it, you have it forever. Do you think about what you need to do to stay balanced on a bicycle? You did when you were five those first minutes the training wheels came off. You never gave it a thought since...correct?

  10. Wait, you mean you're supposed to take those off?? :confused:
    #10     May 18, 2004