Hi there, welcome to my blog.

What's this all about? Well, that's a question I'm probably not even qualified to answer. I guess it started off because I had nothing better to do, but turns out that I kind of like it. So when I'm not working for The Man I like to take pictures, make videos and write about whatever else might seem like a good idea at the time.

From dragon boating to mountain biking, to road trips and travels overseas - this is me trying to enjoy life. Clock out at 5, eat, drink and don't forget to smile a lot.

The Time Machine


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Monday, April 26

The internet taught me to drive stick: Slowing down and stopping.

So the purpose of this stuff I guess is because I don't really know the best way to approach some of the new techniques associated with manual. I hear a lot of different things but I don't really know whats right, wrong, safe or dangerous. I'm in no position to tell anyone what's right or whats wrong yet but this is the way I see it. People often say, you just feel it when you drive manual so I can't tell you exactly what RPM I shift or launch at....I'm not exactly there yet.

So for sure I think one of the hardest parts about driving manual is getting moving smoothly from a stop. I'll have to admit that I've probably stalled a shitload of about dozen times or so moving from a stop at lights, stop signs and especially reversing out.

Let me tell you that stalling on a left turn is not cool whatsoever - there's definitely a lot more going on than when driving stick.

Once you get actually do get going you know you'll have to eventually stop, hopefully not into the car ahead or behind you. But how do you approach that? The way I see it there's a few ways to do it:

  • No need to brake too much - keep down shifting to lower gears to slow down the car with the engine, but potentially trick the driver behind you (especially at night) since they can't tell that you're actually braking (no lights!). Ghost rider styles?
  • Do it easy - Shift to neutral, get off the clutch and brake using your...brake. Is this coasting?
  • No need to shift - Brake in current gear until you're about to come to a complete stop, then clutch in and down shift just before coming to the stop at around 5kph. Stalling danger?

But what if you gotta cancel the stop and get going again, for example in stop and go traffic or if a light switches green right as you're just about to stop. What offers the best/smoothest transition?

Once stopped there's also a couple of different ways to handle that:
  • Sit in neutral then shift when you're ready to go.
  • Sit in 1st and work your left calf muscle.
  • Sit in neutral but then when you see the opposite light go orange then shift to 1st and get ready.

But what if all hell breaks loose and for some reason shit happens behind you/you get hit, will you be thrown into the intersection and t-boned because you weren't in gear? What if your foot gets too tired and it slips/stalls cause you were holding it in 1st too long? You didn't have time to move because you had to shift it in gear?

Admittedly, at the moment I'm doing whats easiest, but you get what I'm trying to say...hopefully. Right now I think the most important thing is just staying calm...and not dying.


Jeff said...

when you're coming to a stop, i find the best way is to downshift through each gear while you're braking, but don't pop the clutch out with every shift. that way, you'll be in the correct gear if you need to scoot away real quick (eg. light changes to green), and you reduce wear on your clutch.