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#3306444 - 05/29/11 05:35 PM Re: teaching daughter stick... [Re: Magnum]  
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Maybe in the old days of non-locking converters and no overdrive, but a modern electronically-controlled automatic with a similar overdrive ratio will get fuel mileage so close to that of a manual that for all intents & purposes they're equal. Moreover, driving style will have a much bigger effect on mileage with a manual than with an automatic. If you drive by the shift light you'll get the best mileage (obviously, don't shift into 5th at 30mph while climbing a grade even if the light comes on then.)


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#3306451 - 05/29/11 05:42 PM Re: teaching daughter stick... [Re: KaiserB]  
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What KaiserB said!

Having driven auto and manual, I prefer a manual gearbox every time (apart from the porridge-stirring one on the Peugeot courtesy thing my wife has while her Audi is fixed).

Manual gives better economy and a nicer driving experience. Auto gives more relaxation and a better passenger experience. A bad driver with a manual shift can be a nightmare to ride with!

Cheers!

#3306605 - 05/29/11 09:38 PM Re: teaching daughter stick... [Re: Magnum]  
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I learned to drive manual transmission in the Canadian Military, in a Deuce and 1/2. I still prefer manual, my pickup is manual trans 4x4 fun to drive especially in the winter.
It's all about feeling that "friction point" when the clutch grabs, and giving gas. it has to be a smooth transition, too fast and you stall.


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#3306657 - 05/29/11 10:53 PM Re: teaching daughter stick... [Re: Magnum]  
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I have driven manual for 20 years but have just recently bought my first automatic. It's a nice drive but I prefer the control I feel I have with a manual. In NZ on the East Coast where I live there are a lot of hills to traverse if you want to do any long distance travel. That's where I miss my manual.


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#3307108 - 05/30/11 04:41 PM Re: teaching daughter stick... [Re: coasty]  
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Originally Posted By: coasty
My dad had an Opel cadet, 4 cylinder with a 4 speed tranny, back in the 1960's when I was learning, and being in the mountains, you had to learn clutching on hills right off, and holding on hills without the brake was handy. It took a bit of practice to move from left foot on the clutch, right on the brake, to right on the gas, while letting out the clutch just to the point of engagement, so you don't roll back.


That's another difference between European and American cars. What's with the American-style parking brake? All the cars I've driven here have a great big lever between the gearstick and the driver's seat which, when pulled upwards, applies the brakes in a very definite way. Hill starts are straightforward because you're controlling your brakes with your left hand (in a right-hand-drive car), the clutch with your left foot, and the throttle with the right foot. Elaborate dance moves unnecessary! But it seems American-style cars use some crazy handle that you pull out of the dashboard that doesn't have much effect on whatever the wheels are deciding to do...

Daftest parking brake was in the Mercedes Vito. Right-hand-drive. The parking brake was applied with a pedal left of the clutch, and released with a handle on the dashboard right of the steering wheel. So you can't apply the parking brake while pressing the clutch. So you must put the car into neutral before you can put the parking brake on. This is very dangerous when stopping in traffic because if the car behind hits you while the car's in neutral and with only the footbrake on, the driver will recoil backwards and release the footbrake and your car then cannons into the car in front. Which is your liability.

Then again, the pneumatic parking brakes on the buses I drove for three years, which could take several seconds to release if they weren't correctly maintained (and they never were), made traffic lights with a short green period quite frustrating to pass...

Originally Posted By: NH2112
Maybe in the old days of non-locking converters and no overdrive, but a modern electronically-controlled automatic with a similar overdrive ratio will get fuel mileage so close to that of a manual that for all intents & purposes they're equal. Moreover, driving style will have a much bigger effect on mileage with a manual than with an automatic. If you drive by the shift light you'll get the best mileage (obviously, don't shift into 5th at 30mph while climbing a grade even if the light comes on then.)


Another cultural difference - no car I've driven has had a gear-change light!


Dozer
#3307138 - 05/30/11 05:20 PM Re: teaching daughter stick... [Re: Dozer]  
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Originally Posted By: Dozer


That's another difference between European and American cars. What's with the American-style parking brake? All the cars I've driven here have a great big lever between the gearstick and the driver's seat which, when pulled upwards, applies the brakes in a very definite way. Hill starts are straightforward because you're controlling your brakes with your left hand (in a right-hand-drive car), the clutch with your left foot, and the throttle with the right foot. Elaborate dance moves unnecessary! But it seems American-style cars use some crazy handle that you pull out of the dashboard that doesn't have much effect on whatever the wheels are deciding to do...

Daftest parking brake was in the Mercedes Vito. Right-hand-drive. The parking brake was applied with a pedal left of the clutch, and released with a handle on the dashboard right of the steering wheel. So you can't apply the parking brake while pressing the clutch. So you must put the car into neutral before you can put the parking brake on. This is very dangerous when stopping in traffic because if the car behind hits you while the car's in neutral and with only the footbrake on, the driver will recoil backwards and release the footbrake and your car then cannons into the car in front. Which is your liability.


Why not simply put the car in neutral and hold the car stationary with your right foot on the service brake pedal, then work the pedals in the normal manner when it's time to go?

Most larger American cars and trucks have the parking brake pedal to the left of the clutch as well, with the release either being a T-handle under the dash or a 2nd push on the pedal. My Jeep had the park brake handle between the driver's seat and gearshift, but that's just for parking. To me it seems more troublesome to have to bring a hand into the equation, instead of just quickly moving your right foot from the service brake pedal to the accelerator while letting the clutch out. That's always been the way I've done it even on the steepest hills, and I can count the number of times I've stalled or rolled backwards in the past 25 years on the fingers of 1 hand. The only time I did it differently was while out 4-wheelin' in my Jeep, when I'd just start the engine in 1st gear if I stalled on a hill (Jeeps have a fuse you can remove that bypasses the clutch pedal switch, to let you start in gear.)

Originally Posted By: Dozer
Then again, the pneumatic parking brakes on the buses I drove for three years, which could take several seconds to release if they weren't correctly maintained (and they never were), made traffic lights with a short green period quite frustrating to pass...


That's why you watch the crossing thoroughfare's light and release the brake, shift into gear, and make yourself ready to roll when the crossing light turns yellow.

Originally Posted By: Dozer
Another cultural difference - no car I've driven has had a gear-change light!


I think it's more to do with computerized engine & powertrain controls letting you know when you're operating outside the engine's optimal area WRT fuel economy, based on throttle position, vehicle speed, and engine RPM. Shift lights didn't show up till the first feedback carburetors came on the scene in the early 80s.

Last edited by NH2112; 05/30/11 05:23 PM.

Phil

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#3307338 - 05/30/11 11:16 PM Re: teaching daughter stick... [Re: NH2112]  
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Originally Posted By: NH2112
Why not simply put the car in neutral and hold the car stationary with your right foot on the service brake pedal, then work the pedals in the normal manner when it's time to go?

Because if someone hits the back of your car in that state, the impact will relax your pressure on the brake pedal and your car will shoot forward.

Quote:
That's why you watch the crossing thoroughfare's light and release the brake, shift into gear, and make yourself ready to roll when the crossing light turns yellow.

Unfortunately the bus company had specifically prohibited this. Releasing the handbrake before it was safe to move == black mark from undercover driving inspectors. Happily there were no covert driving inspectors!


Dozer
#3307385 - 05/31/11 12:38 AM Re: teaching daughter stick... [Re: Dozer]  
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Originally Posted By: Dozer
Originally Posted By: NH2112
Why not simply put the car in neutral and hold the car stationary with your right foot on the service brake pedal, then work the pedals in the normal manner when it's time to go?

Because if someone hits the back of your car in that state, the impact will relax your pressure on the brake pedal and your car will shoot forward.


I guess that makes sense. I've been hit from the back while sitting at a stop sign in my truck, though, with the truck in gear, right foot on the brake pedal, and left foot ready to lift off the clutch as a car went in front of me on the crossing road, and my right foot stayed in place. My left foot came off the clutch pedal and stalled the engine, though.

Over here, you're very unlikely to be ticketed if being hit from the back by someone else pushes you forward into the back of another car. There's really just no way to prevent it. You could leave 50 feet between your car and the one in front of you, and if a large truck hits you you'll probably still hit the one in front of you even with the parking brake on.


Phil

"Live free or die: Death is not the worst of evils."
#3307519 - 05/31/11 07:21 AM Re: teaching daughter stick... [Re: Magnum]  
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ah 3 on the tree... biggrin old_simmer

#3307533 - 05/31/11 07:59 AM Re: teaching daughter stick... [Re: kail]  
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Originally Posted By: kail
ah 3 on the tree... biggrin old_simmer

I know about em but it has been 30 years since I last used one...


Wheels


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#3307598 - 05/31/11 10:52 AM Re: teaching daughter stick... [Re: wheelsup_cavu]  
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A manual transmission makes you a better driver as you have to be aware of what is going on around you.

Almost wrecked the brothers Vette because I had a momentary lapse, forgetting it was an automatic (had a Triumph GT6+ at the time). Yup hit the clutch, err brake, and moved the console stick while going into a turn. Locked up the rear end and went sideways just missing the curb and the pole just beyond. Young reflects saved the day. wink

American cars, at least back in the day, were heavy. Could always tell if someone drove a manual as the left leg was always bigger than the right leg. smile

The best time to learn a manual is in the winter when there is some snow on the ground > less likely to stall. Or on dirt if there is no snow. wink


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#3307881 - 05/31/11 06:59 PM Re: teaching daughter stick... [Re: Magnum]  
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I love stick shifts. With the exception of one car I owned (and hated), they have all been sticks. I hate automatics. I hate not having full control of the transmission, especially in the winter time. It was because I was driving a stick that I was able to avoid some pretty bad accidents because I was able to throw the car into neutral and maneuver on momentum and judgment re-applying power only when it was safe to do so. And, of course, the fuel economy rocks.

The fastest I ever taught anyone how to drive a stick was in 15 minutes.

I took them to a parking lot where they had all the space in the world to learn about the friction point. Then they got used to getting it going, shifting, etc. Thing is, there is no stress of say, other traffic pressuring you to get going, or stalling at a critical moment where you have to get the car going immediately (such as in the middle of an intersection with another car coming).

So, I have what is like a Bones' Stick Simulator. Inspired from the scene in "Glory" (and later "The Last Samurai") where the student has to do what appears to be an easy task but now the instructor is stressing them out by a threat of being shot and or the unnerving sound of a gun. In my version, I put the student on a steep driveway in neutral and have the parking break engaged. When I say, they have to put it in gear and release the brake and if their friction point skills are good enough, they should be able to catch the car before she rolls back and hold it in position until they can hit the brake and throw the car back into neutral. If not, they will either roll backwards freely (very unnerving!) or they will stall the car and roll back freely.

If they stall I am on them right away yelling "Start the car! Start it! A car is coming and it's gonna hit you! You have to move this car go go go!" and if they don't, well, then we just "died." They learn REAL quick under those conditions and have no trouble driving a stick after that. When they do stall in real life, they know exactly how to recover before anyone even notices.

Of course, they still have PTSD to deal with, but hey...comes with the territory haha.

v6,
boNes


"Also, I would prefer a back seater over the extra gas any day. I would have 80 pounds of flesh to eat and a pair of glasses to start a fire." --F/A-18 Hornet pilot
#3307905 - 05/31/11 07:28 PM Re: teaching daughter stick... [Re: Flyboy]  
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Originally Posted By: Flyboy
Originally Posted By: Vertigo1
... whereas most americans tend to view it as a chore and the car is an appliance for getting from point A to point B.


Which is why you have Cruise Control! tanksalot


...which I have never had a chance to use in Southern California, as traffic tends to bunch up, slow down, speed up, and come to a grinding halt at extremely random intervals.

Of the four cars I've owned, three have been manuals, and I can't see myself ever willingly going back to driving an automatic. Even living in overcrowded areas with bumper to bumper traffic, having to play the pedals helps keep me focused and alert to how the drivers around me are going to try and kill me next.

I think the scariest trend I've seen thus far have been the commercials for the new M-B E-Class that has the sensors that alert the driver if they drift over the center line- once again proof that most drivers over here seem to be too preoccupied with everything BUT driving when they're behind the wheel.


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#3307911 - 05/31/11 07:36 PM Re: teaching daughter stick... [Re: Magnum]  
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It's fascinating to me how different people's attitudes can be when it comes to driving a car. smile

As for me, I view driving as strictly a practical activity that I do to get from point A to point B so I see no need in adding any extra work to it by having to worry about changing gears and using a clutch.


“Whoever fights monsters should see to it that in the process he does not become a monster. And if you gaze long enough into an abyss, the abyss will gaze back into you.”
#3308059 - 05/31/11 10:44 PM Re: teaching daughter stick... [Re: Magnum]  
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Yeah, my vehicles are tools to get a job done. None of my pick-ups are 'toys'. I've got a Polaris Ranger I use on the ranch as well. It is also a tool to accomplish jobs with. Checking/building/repairing fence, spraying weeds and brush, checking water troughs, putting out mineral. In spring, summer, and fall I'm on it more than I'm in a pick-up.


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#3308100 - 06/01/11 12:05 AM Re: teaching daughter stick... [Re: vocatx]  
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I've been looking at the new Ford Mustangs and considering an upgrade. I have a 2010 V6 automatic, bought slightly used, and from my experience I don't think a manual transmission would be very comfortable for me in that particular car. I'm tall so if I don't move the seat all the way back my knees will brush the bottom of the dashboard; unfortunately, the steering wheel has a short column that does not telescope, only tilts. The result is that I drive with my arms almost fully extended. I think that if I had to work the clutch and the shifter as well, I'd have to sit either hunched forward or partially sideways. (Also, I already have some trouble seeing the guage cluster through the steering wheel so using the tachometer might also be problematic.)

I've driven pick-ups, dump trucks, semis and tractors and even a few cars with manual transmission (including a couple column shifters) so I'm not 'afraid' of driving a stick. I used to enjoy the long throw of the old floor-mounted stick in F-250 pick-ups when I was younger. But for convenience's sake I prefer an automatic. My typical driving is either 1) stop and go in city traffic; or 2) hundreds if not thousands of miles on the Interstate within a very compressed time period.

Anyhow, the EPA rating on the current V6 Mustang models actually give slightly better MPG with an automatic transmission than with manual. The GT model's rating is opposite with about 1-2 MPG better using a manual transmission. Individual driving habits and conditions might give far different results, of course.

My local Ford dealership seems to only like to put manual transmission Mustangs on the lot. Perhaps it is because they are priced several hundred dollars less than automatics. Perhaps they are more appealing to the 'sports car' crowd.


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#3308328 - 06/01/11 10:47 AM Re: teaching daughter stick... [Re: PanzerMeyer]  
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Originally Posted By: PanzerMeyer
It's fascinating to me how different people's attitudes can be when it comes to driving a car. smile

As for me, I view driving as strictly a practical activity that I do to get from point A to point B so I see no need in adding any extra work to it by having to worry about changing gears and using a clutch.


Extra work? After almost 40 years of driving standards I don't even notice clutching and changing gears. In fact, as with the Vette incident, I have to watch myself that I don't shift gears in the automatic I now drive.


There was only 16 squadrons of RAF fighters that used 100 octane during the BoB.
The Fw190A could not fly with the outer cannon removed.
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#3308442 - 06/01/11 03:02 PM Re: teaching daughter stick... [Re: Magnum]  
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#3308751 - 06/01/11 09:30 PM Re: teaching daughter stick... [Re: Stormtrooper]  
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Originally Posted By: DaveSHQ


Same here - deuce-and-a-half (M35A2), 5-ton (M54), jeep (M151), and even these old S-boxes:




Actually, I'd like to have one now just for S & Gs! LOL


Phil

"Live free or die: Death is not the worst of evils."
#3309998 - 06/03/11 12:43 PM Re: teaching daughter stick... [Re: Magnum]  
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The "manual gets better mileage" thing is a myth that depends upon the skill of the driver. Around here I can always tell a manual driver by how the car rocks back and forth as they accelerate! I'd say less than half the people driving manuals SHOULD be.
I was able to drive my first 2 manual cars as smoothly as an auto, but when I inherited my mother's old automatic in college I was ecstatic. Finally no more foot-dancing and hand spastic rotations in traffic!

There is no "joy of driving" in Florida. The roads are flat besides overpasses, and those are all built so the trucks can drive them easily. I never downshifted for braking, I just stuck it in neutral. Corners are almost always 90 degrees at a light or stop sign. Turns are made at 15 mph tops. On the big roads you might have a "kink" of 10-15 degrees, but you won't feel the car change direction it's so slight.
There is no snow or ice to worry about, just water on the road, and that doesn't matter.
Unless you're driving at 3 AM, there's never less than 10 cars around you at a distance of maybe 20-30 ft, all of whom are on their damn cellphones (because they drive automatics), so unless you're a masochist you get an automatic to reduce the stress of driving in pretty much the only way you can.

Maybe if a nuke was dropped here there would be few enough cars on the road to make it enjoyable, but as I posted a few weeks back, we've seen an increase in population of 3 million people in the last decade and we have no new highways, just a few that were widened here and there. All the same roads now carrying a LOT more people.

Those of you who talk about how you have fun driving?
I hate you.


The Jedi Master


The anteater is wearing the bagel because he's a reindeer princess. -- my 4 yr old daughter
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