Scion tC Forums banner

1 - 20 of 50 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,302 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Ok so get this: yesterday I'm on my way home from work in my brand spankin new tC (5spd), and I haven't driven stick in over 10 years (pop used to let me drive when I was like, 10 or 11 back in Russia) so I'm obviously a little rusty. So I've been taking it nice and easy, especially in first gear that's the most troublesome for me. I let out the clutch reeeeaaally slowly till I get to the point at which the car begins to move a little, then I give it a little gas and off I go.

So I'm sitting at a red light on a populated street, when I begin my grandma shifting when the light turns green, some a$$hole behind me honks, so I get nervous and stall out. He honks again, so now I'm panicking, so I started the car again, revved the gas, dropped the clutch and peeled out for a good two seconds in front of some old ladies waiting at a bus stop, then I sped off.....A few seconds later I laughed at myself and how stupid that whole thing was. Even though it's been my third day driving, on my way to work I stalled out twice today, both times when starting up in first gear. For some reason I just have a hard time shifting smoothly, even in the rest of the gears.

Ok, to sum it up, I need help on shifting with the 5spd. Please offer me all your shifting hints and tips, believe me, I need em.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,694 Posts
And I thought I was an exception with crappy learning curve


Here's how it was with me: First week I was somewhat fine - not very smooth, occasional stalling, then one night I went to my office parking lot and drove around for almost 2 hours, mostly 1st gear starts, and uphill starts. You could smell my clutch 2 miles away. I sucked. I was frustrated, I was thinking about what big mistake I made getting a 5-speed. I called my buddy and he said that yes, I suck and I should have gotten an auto. I told him to go screw himself and went home.

Then in a day or two I understood what I was doing wrong - I wasn't giving it enough gas, thus all the stalling. So it's "more gas" and "less panicing" - these are main things. 3rd main thing is practice. I sucked till about 1200 miles or so. Now I'm at 1800, I still think I suck, but I suck way less, and I'm not as nervous. I also noticed if I don't look at the car behind me when doing uphill start I do much much better (again "panic" thing).

Smooth shifts are a thing of practice - you need to start feeling the right RPMs for the smoothest shifts. If you are trying to accelerate fast it will be much harder to get smooth shifts - granny mode is much easier. I was in granny driving mode for the first month. Only now (almost two months later) I am starting to really enjoy my car, and dude - when you get to that point you will love yourself to death because it's 10x the pleasure of steering an auto.

So keep practicing, don't listen to people that say that it only takes a week to get used to 5-speed (maybe it does when you change cars, but not when it's your first 5-speed). Give it another month or so, practice on parking lots, or malls with a bunch of stop signs, find a little hill for uphill start practice, and be patient.

Yeah, and a month from now let me know how you are doing.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,302 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
haha, cool, thanks for the support guys. You know I always appreciate it. I'm actually going upstate today, so I'm gonna practice on some hilly roads, it'll be cool. I feel like I've been getting better and better, but I occasionally stall out, which is not that big a deal, I guess. I just don't wanna ruin the clutch or the ignission by constantly starting the car. But yeah, thanks for your tips they're really helpful. I'm gonna try em out on my way home today. You guys rock. It's also good to know that I'm not the only one that has had problems driving stick.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,694 Posts
Yeah, another tip - don't think about the clutch wear for now - you worry about it too much and you will stall more. Just let it burn, you will get better quick and stop smelling it very soon. It's a brand new clutch - needs to wear in anyway


When I drove my buddy's 5-speed matrix with 40K on it I drove much much smoother because clutch was worn in I guess.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,302 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
cool, thats awesome to know. Hey, wanna chat?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
116 Posts
Reminds me of my 1st sports car. Got it on Friday and had to drive through Kansas City traffic the very next day...never having driven a stick before. Try practicing in an empty parking lot. And a word about going uphill from a stop... put on your handbrake...start giving it gas and letting out the clutch, then ease off the handbrake. Sounds crazy and takes a little practice, but it will save your clutch. And...ignore everybody else. Most of them don't even know how to drive a stick.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
116 Posts
whosthatrussian, maybe its just me, but this is a slightly trickier clutch than any other one that I have driven. Maybe its because my last two cars were integras but this one doesn't seem to shift quite as easily especially when I shift carefully. I have also found that the more aggressive I am with shifting the smoother the car shifts. Either way, just keep practicing, it will get better.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,302 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
Originally posted by nrhanson@Sep 3 2004, 08:26 AM
whosthatrussian, maybe its just me, but this is a slightly trickier clutch than any other one that I have driven. Maybe its because my last two cars were integras but this one doesn't seem to shift quite as easily especially when I shift carefully. I have also found that the more aggressive I am with shifting the smoother the car shifts. Either way, just keep practicing, it will get better.
yeah, I noticed that when I'm shifting more agressively, it's easier, and the car doesn't jerk as much. I'm sure I'll get used to it as the time goes by.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
793 Posts
Yep, definitely practice whenever you can.

As far as the hand brake thing...I can't really say I agree with that. Yes, it will help keep you from rolling back...but it's also just one more thing to try and get use to when you're trying to learn how to add a pedal and a shifter into the mix.

Personally, using the brake only made it harder for me.

Who knows though...practice in a lot and see if you like it. At least maybe it's something you can do for now...until you get better at the shifting, and then maybe you'll decide not to stick with it.

:shrug:

Either way, GOOD LUCK!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
116 Posts
I know the handbrake is one more thing in the mix, but for a beginner on a steep hill at a stop, as soon as they take their foot off the brake, the car will start to roll backwards. Its not as hard as it sounds and I highly recommend it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
282 Posts
All this is bringing back memories! Way back when i first started driving a stick and I try to remember to give myself a bit more gas when in first gear on a hill, i always end up peeling out...lol cuz i gave it way too much.
Another advice, when on a hill, give a bit more gas than you usually would on level street that way you dont roll back. you wont make the same mistake i did! i rolled back into someone and thankfully they understood that i was a new 5sp driver, ever since then on i always remember to give it a bit more gas on an uphill.

hope this helps!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
290 Posts
I love driving stick and have only owned sticks, just stab the gas a bit while letting the clutch out it will get you moving quicker!!! The only problem that I have to get used to is the throttle by wire, when I drive my honda (throttle cable) i drive fine, but at first this car makes it feel like I dont get off the gas soon enough when pressing the clutch. You have to actually get off the gas a millisecond before pushing in the clutch, you cant do it at the same time. That is annoying.. but I am getting used to it (my wife drives it everyday so she is used to it)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
167 Posts
it took me almost 2 months to perfect the control of the my tc's clutch... what i'd do is make sure that i press the clutch all the way down touching the floor when shifting, everytime, any gear, fast or slow... i hold the shiftknob firmly, i don't tap it to gear and i don't release the clutch until i'm sure it's placed properly... so then i'd release it SLOWLY and once i feel a kind friction in it... i counterbalance with the gas... i don't know about the other guys but i've established myself a sweet spot in the rpm... very smooth between 2500 to 3000 (on normal driving), no jerks... when i downshift, (almost typed downSHIT) i follow the manual booklet, 15-25-40-45 interval... for example if i'd downshift to 2nd when turning... i take a very quick glance at the speedometer and make sure it's below 15 mph before i do it.. don't make a habit of watching the gauges though, it's really much more rewarding when you learn to use ear, feeling and instinct...
and then finally when i became not so conscious about it... that's when i knew that i've started to become better... it's a similar approach as with musical instruments... you have to really practice a lot to earn the right rhythm and groove...
and once you do, when you and you're tc finally worked each other out (vvt-i technology) you'd love your tC way more than how you do now... you'd discover that it's really very quick, smooth, and sleek (silky when wet, joke) and finally appreciate what you've done in this car-buying chapter of your life...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,119 Posts
You really gotta feel it. Its just a matter of time. Its kinda like riding a bike... you fall and fall and fall.... then one day you just ride and you're off.... it will just click. Finess and time is all it takes. Just listen to the engine, and feel the car. Don't worry about anyone behind you either. Thats what my dad used to always say. Just worry about whats in front of you. Good luck man. You'll get it!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,651 Posts
Originally posted by J&J flinTc@Sep 3 2004, 09:48 PM
The only problem that I have to get used to is the throttle by wire, when I drive my honda (throttle cable) i drive fine, but at first this car makes it feel like I dont get off the gas soon enough when pressing the clutch. You have to actually get off the gas a millisecond before pushing in the clutch, you cant do it at the same time.
I'm experiencing the same thing. I get a "blip" of the throttle and the revs jump a bit when I'm shifting. I find myself having to be very deliberate about getting off the gas before putting the clutch in. Definitely not the same timing of cars I've driven before.
 
1 - 20 of 50 Posts
Top