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Old 05-20-2010, 02:47 PM   #1
Shinster
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Manual Driving

The GTI is my first manual car and I just had a few questions I wanted to ask you guys...

While driving, I noticed I can't shift into first gear until my car slows down to a near stop. (not that I ever would, but just curious) Normal?

The car seems to have a hiccup during the first-second shift which makes it difficult for me to drive 'smoothly'. Also normal?

My friends tell me it's best not to press the accelerator until my foot is completely off the clutch but it seems like there is a lot of 'dead space' on the pedal so I usually am 1/3 down on the accelerator before my foot is off the clutch (especially when I'm accelerating from a stand-still). Is that alright or am I unnecessarily burning the clutch?

Thanks in advance!
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Old 05-20-2010, 04:16 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shinster View Post
The GTI is my first manual car and I just had a few questions I wanted to ask you guys...

While driving, I noticed I can't shift into first gear until my car slows down to a near stop. (not that I ever would, but just curious) Normal?
Yes. This is a safety feature so that you don't accidentally shift into 1st gear at a high speed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shinster View Post
The car seems to have a hiccup during the first-second shift which makes it difficult for me to drive 'smoothly'. Also normal?
This is because of what your friends are telling you below.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shinster View Post
My friends tell me it's best not to press the accelerator until my foot is completely off the clutch but it seems like there is a lot of 'dead space' on the pedal so I usually am 1/3 down on the accelerator before my foot is off the clutch (especially when I'm accelerating from a stand-still). Is that alright or am I unnecessarily burning the clutch?

Thanks in advance!
Usually, in order to get a smooth shift you have to give the car some gas as you're letting the clutch out. At higher speeds this won't matter as much. At lower speeds, if you don't give it some gas your shifts will be jerky. You'll get the hang of it!
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Last edited by honkbruno; 05-20-2010 at 04:22 PM.
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Old 05-20-2010, 04:23 PM   #3
ChicityGTI
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make sure your revs are at the same place in neutral where they will be when you shift into the next gear and your shifts will be as smooth as butter.
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Old 05-20-2010, 04:33 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by honkbruno View Post
Usually, in order to get a smooth shift you have to give the car some gas as you're letting the clutch out. At higher speeds this won't matter as much. At lower speeds, if you don't give it some gas your shifts will be jerky. You'll get the hang of it!
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make sure your revs are at the same place in neutral where they will be when you shift into the next gear and your shifts will be as smooth as butter.
^^ Word.

Just give the gas a tiny little tap between (1st - 2nd) and (2nd - 3rd) to keep the revs up and your shifts will be smoother.

Somedays the car will be a bit more jerky some days she will be smooth as butter. These girls can be a bit temperamental sometimes.
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Old 05-20-2010, 04:39 PM   #5
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Usually, in order to get a smooth shift you have to give the car some gas as you're letting the clutch out. At higher speeds this won't matter as much.
Let me clarify. At higher speeds in the higher gears this won't matter as much. If you redline it in 2nd gear and shift to 3rd without giving it any gas it will be jerky. Redline it in 3rd and shift to 4th without giving it any gas, less jerky. 4th to 5th, even less jerky, etc.
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Old 05-20-2010, 04:47 PM   #6
Shinster
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Quote:
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Just give the gas a tiny little tap between (1st - 2nd) and (2nd - 3rd) to keep the revs up and your shifts will be smoother.
So should this tiny tap be when my clutch is still all the way down, or when it's partially engaged? I've been trying to feather the accelerator while partially engaged but now i'm worried that i'm killing my clutch...

Thanks for the answers!
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Old 05-20-2010, 05:27 PM   #7
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Quote:
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So should this tiny tap be when my clutch is still all the way down, or when it's partially engaged? I've been trying to feather the accelerator while partially engaged but now i'm worried that i'm killing my clutch...

Thanks for the answers!
Just as you begin to release the clutch you should also be giving it some gas. It's not really a tap because you need to hold the gas down.

Think about what you do to get the car started in 1st gear and do it for the other gears too and you should be okay.
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Old 05-21-2010, 07:09 AM   #8
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What I did before even going on the road with my first ever manual car. I found a nice flat emoty area, parking lot, and then I pressed the clutch in and then slowly released pressure to where I felt the friction point; that is when the cars begins to rumble a little and start to move. Then I would add gas and contine releasing smoothly on the clutch. It'll take some time to get the hang of it.

As the man said to the boy who asked how to get to carnegie hall, "practice practice practice."
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Old 05-21-2010, 09:22 AM   #9
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If she gets too jerky, just give her a little slap
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Old 05-21-2010, 01:02 PM   #10
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This is almost like teaching someone how to kiss... you have the basics, the rest just comes with practice
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Old 05-25-2010, 02:09 PM   #11
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also just a TIP for manuals: when when you slow down for a stop sign/light/turn. leave it in gear and let off the clutch until you reach around 1k RPM or when the appropriate gear needed for a turn.

the reason being, is that when in gear while slowing down, you dont use any gas to do so. over the span of a tank this will save you on gas. its small mounts, but it adds up.

while stopped at light, leave it in first gear, unless the wait is long.

just a few friendly tips.
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Old 05-25-2010, 03:34 PM   #12
Shinster
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Thanks guys! I feel my driving skills increasing already
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Old 05-25-2010, 04:10 PM   #13
And2TheRepublic
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youll also notice the difference once the car breaks in. she'll roar a little louder. honestly, after driving a while. the car will get used to you and you used to it. kinda like a sync up on avatar..lol
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Old 05-26-2010, 09:54 AM   #14
dimitry
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It's my first manual as well. Took me a while to get 1st->2nd transition down. It's still jerky when I'm not paying attention or accelerating fast (I noticed with fast shifting, you sort of just have to expect some amount of jerk).

But yeah, just takes time.
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