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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Just picked up a 2000.
It's my first time driving a manual and I'm having difficulties. Is there any tips or tricks to use while driving this car? ty :)

(I've watched multiple videos and drove in an empty parking lot for a bit)
just looking for some tips to make my journey on driving this car easier
 

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good luck to you friend. i learned myself driving thur my neighborhood. I hate to say this but i rode the clutch a little bit till i found the engagement point. then i was good and then learning up hill battles were the worst! LOL
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
good luck to you friend. i learned myself driving thur my neighborhood. I hate to say this but i rode the clutch a little bit till i found the engagement point. then i was good and then learning up hill battles were the worst! LOL
I don't understand when to switch gears...i understand the whole point of driving a manual is to switch gears when YOU want but my car always ends up vibrating a lot
 

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LOL. I had this very same question from my 18yr old son about 2 weeks ago. Not sure I had a good answer for him, but I'll try again.

You switch gears (up-shifting) anywhere between about 3000 and red-line, depending on what you doing at the moment (how fast you are trying to accelerate/want to go), Learning to drive, I would suggest for now you shift at 3000. As you don't need to go any faster and at 3000 there is some allowance for the slowness of a beginner's shift.

Down-shifting is a whole other story, that can come latter in your learning.

Now. Tell me more about the vibrating..... is the car Bucking? (think horse trying to throw you off). This is probably because you shifted too early (RPM's below 2000 when you engage the clutch in the new gear) or were too slow with the clutch (allowing the RPM/car to slow down too much during the shift). Also, bucking tends to happen when starting in 1st and this is learning the engagement point.

The way I taught that to my oldest son was by not allowing him to use the gas pedal. in a parking lot, ease out the clutch and try to get the car rolling without any gas. You'll buck alot and stall alot until you learn what it feels like. At the point where the car starts moving is where you add gas. Some cars that is a fine point others are more forgiving, but once you learn the "Feel" you'll be good in any car ;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
LOL. I had this very same question from my 18yr old son about 2 weeks ago. Not sure I had a good answer for him, but I'll try again.

You switch gears (up-shifting) anywhere between about 3000 and red-line, depending on what you doing at the moment (how fast you are trying to accelerate/want to go), Learning to drive, I would suggest for now you shift at 3000. As you don't need to go any faster and at 3000 there is some allowance for the slowness of a beginner's shift.

Down-shifting is a whole other story, that can come latter in your learning.

Now. Tell me more about the vibrating..... is the car Bucking? (think horse trying to throw you off). This is probably because you shifted too early (RPM's below 2000 when you engage the clutch in the new gear) or were too slow with the clutch (allowing the RPM/car to slow down too much during the shift). Also, bucking tends to happen when starting in 1st and this is learning the engagement point.

The way I taught that to my oldest son was by not allowing him to use the gas pedal. in a parking lot, ease out the clutch and try to get the car rolling without any gas. You'll buck alot and stall alot until you learn what it feels like. At the point where the car starts moving is where you add gas. Some cars that is a fine point others are more forgiving, but once you learn the "Feel" you'll be good in any car ;)
Thank you for your reply, I have some more questions if you dont mind
So does the mph not matter when shifting gears?

At 3000 rpm you switch to any gear you want? --> I'm not sure what rpm means or when the rpm changes. And yes it does feel like trying to throw me off and sometimes just vibrating a little but to the point where its noticeable while I'm driving.

Also lets say you see a red light ahead and would like to slow down to stop. What would be the best way to do that?
Do you hold clutch and brake? Do you downshift? Do you put gear to neutral?
 

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RPM is engine speed. It is proportional to vehicle speed, and the gear determines the ratio. Watch as you accelerate. The speedo and tach will move up together.

When the engine RPM is higher than you want it, shift to a higher gear. When the RPM is lower than you want it, shift to a lower gear. If the RPM is too low, the engine will lurch and stall. That is called lugging. Start by moving one gear at at time until you figure it out. With some experience you will have an idea of which gear you will want.

Higher RPM gives the car more power and throttle response. It will make the car feel darty. It also gives more noise and uses more fuel. Lower RPM is good for smooth cruising. It is quiet and efficient, but won't support sudden moves.
 

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At 3000 rpm you switch to any gear you want? NO, you switch up to the NEXT gear, i.e., 3rd to 4th 2nd to 3rd. Once case you would "Skip" gears, and as a beginner, I'd say, you're not ready for this yet ;) would be hitting 1st, 2nd and maybe 3rd, really hard (heavy acceleration/high RPM's in each gear and you find that you are at the speed limit, then you can go straight to 5th and cruise.

RPM, Revolutions Per Minute, is the speed at which the engine is turning and that measurement is displayed on the Tach (tachometer)



"Also lets say you see a red light ahead and would like to slow down to stop. What would be the best way to do that?
Do you hold clutch and brake? Do you downshift? Do you put gear to neutral? "

YES, lol. I really didn't want to get into this... yet. OH well, here's a shot at it. Holding the clutch, or putting it in neutral, and braking is perfectly fine.

downshifting, uses the engine to slow the car down and saves on brake wear, and is more fun! and is something you will learn naturally through driving. The big thing is when you do this DO NOT red line the engine!

Say you are crusing at 45 in 5th.... Downshifting to 4th will not do much, this is a case where you might downshift directly to 3rd..... However, going directly to 2nd, or missing 3rd and hitting 1st would not be a good thing as it will take you instantly to the red-line, not good!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
RPM is engine speed. It is proportional to vehicle speed, and the gear determines the ratio. Watch as you accelerate. The speedo and tach will move up together.

When the engine RPM is higher than you want it, shift to a higher gear. When the RPM is lower than you want it, shift to a lower gear. If the RPM is too low, the engine will lurch and stall. That is called lugging. Start by moving one gear at at time until you figure it out. With some experience you will have an idea of which gear you will want.

Higher RPM gives the car more power and throttle response. It will make the car feel darty. It also gives more noise and uses more fuel. Lower RPM is good for smooth cruising. It is quiet and efficient, but won't support sudden moves.
Thank you for clearing the rpm part for me.
So let's say I start the car from 1st gear. I should wait for it to hit 3000 rpm to switch to second?
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
At 3000 rpm you switch to any gear you want? NO, you switch up to the NEXT gear, i.e., 3rd to 4th 2nd to 3rd. Once case you would "Skip" gears, and as a beginner, I'd say, you're not ready for this yet ;) would be hitting 1st, 2nd and maybe 3rd, really hard (heavy acceleration/high RPM's in each gear and you find that you are at the speed limit, then you can go straight to 5th and cruise.

RPM, Revolutions Per Minute, is the speed at which the engine is turning and that measurement is displayed on the Tach (tachometer)



"Also lets say you see a red light ahead and would like to slow down to stop. What would be the best way to do that?
Do you hold clutch and brake? Do you downshift? Do you put gear to neutral? "

YES, lol. I really didn't want to get into this... yet. OH well, here's a shot at it. Holding the clutch, or putting it in neutral, and braking is perfectly fine.

downshifting, uses the engine to slow the car down and saves on brake wear, and is more fun! and is something you will learn naturally through driving. The big thing is when you do this DO NOT red line the engine!

Say you are crusing at 45 in 5th.... Downshifting to 4th will not do much, this is a case where you might downshift directly to 3rd..... However, going directly to 2nd, or missing 3rd and hitting 1st would not be a good thing as it will take you instantly to the red-line, not good!
Thank you for your detailed response, I'm learning lots!
I have one more question...so I start off with 1st, get to 3k rpm and switch to second. Do I leave the stick at 2nd or to neutral?
 

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Starting:
+1 on learning to start the car on level ground with only the clutch. Once you feel very comfortable doing that, get used to moving your right foot on the throttle to maintain a given number of rpms (say 1500 or so). The rpms dip as the clutch engages...being able to hold a desired number is the key to hill starts. You can also use the handbrake but in all honesty the cables tend to get stretched over time & lose their function so as a beginner I wouldn't learn to rely on that.

Shifting/Gear Selection:
You can shift from any gear into any gear at any time....this doesn't mean you should. RPM = revolutions per minute (engine speed). Most cars idle around 1k rpm...if this number falls too low the car will stall. This can be achieved several different ways, either not engaging the clutch properly when starting or being in too high of a gear at a crawl speed can do it as well.

Speed matters when shifting in the sense that it determines the rpm for a given gear, otherwise speed itself does not matter....they put that big tach front & center for a reason. Shift at any rpm you desire (I used to shift around 3k - 3500rpm for daily driving. The gear you are going into should keep the rpms at a decent number...when learning a good number to aim for is 2k rpm or higher. You will quickly learn what speed correlates to what rpm in each gear & this lets you know what gear you can go into. For example, at 25mph you can shift from 2nd --> 4th gear & be fine, but if you tried going into 5th gear your rpms would be too low & you would be lugging the engine. You can go below 2k rpm, but it's a good habit to get used to staying above it when you shift so that you have [a little] more ability to maneuver the car if needed. I used to drive down the main street at night so there was no traffic & just constantly shift between gears to learn how to upshift, downshift, & rev match.

Red Lights:
There are 2 different ways to go about these. While slowing down you could just shift into neutral & hit the brakes. I would advise against this practice for 2 major reasons...1 - it will become a habit that you do at every light regardless of situation. 2 - if you ever have someone behind you that is distracted/impaired & doesn't hit their brakes slowing from a significant speed you will have a major accident because you have no means to escape. This holds much more true on a motorcycle but still a good practice. You can keep the car in gear until you slow to a speed that gives you ~1500 rpms. Then hold the clutch, put the shifter in a lower gear (keep holding clutch & don't release) & check your rearview mirror. At this point traffic behind you has either also slowed appropriately & you put the car in neutral as you stop....or it hasn't and you basically clutch dump out an escape path (you must know your escape path is clear prior to realizing you need one. I've had to do this more than once due to a drunk driver, poor tires in the rain, a person texting, & someone that didn't realize they needed extra stopping distance when towing. YMMV there. Once at a full stop keep the car in neutral & foot on the brake. Dont ride the clutch to hold rock the car as some ppl tend to do, unless you love doing clutch jobs.

I bought my first spyder after "learning" to drive stick on a highly modified turbo car for 2 hrs. After melting the bumper shooting flames on a misshift I decided that was enough practice. Bought the Spyder in Connecticut & drove it back to NYC without a hitch.

Confucius once said "Driving is the only way to learn how to drive"
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Starting:
+1 on learning to start the car on level ground with only the clutch. Once you feel very comfortable doing that, get used to moving your right foot on the throttle to maintain a given number of rpms (say 1500 or so). The rpms dip as the clutch engages...being able to hold a desired number is the key to hill starts. You can also use the handbrake but in all honesty the cables tend to get stretched over time & lose their function so as a beginner I wouldn't learn to rely on that.

Shifting/Gear Selection:
You can shift from any gear into any gear at any time....this doesn't mean you should. RPM = revolutions per minute (engine speed). Most cars idle around 1k rpm...if this number falls too low the car will stall. This can be achieved several different ways, either not engaging the clutch properly when starting or being in too high of a gear at a crawl speed can do it as well.

Speed matters when shifting in the sense that it determines the rpm for a given gear, otherwise speed itself does not matter....they put that big tach front & center for a reason. Shift at any rpm you desire (I used to shift around 3k - 3500rpm for daily driving. The gear you are going into should keep the rpms at a decent number...when learning a good number to aim for is 2k rpm or higher. You will quickly learn what speed correlates to what rpm in each gear & this lets you know what gear you can go into. For example, at 25mph you can shift from 2nd --> 4th gear & be fine, but if you tried going into 5th gear your rpms would be too low & you would be lugging the engine. You can go below 2k rpm, but it's a good habit to get used to staying above it when you shift so that you have [a little] more ability to maneuver the car if needed. I used to drive down the main street at night so there was no traffic & just constantly shift between gears to learn how to upshift, downshift, & rev match.

Red Lights:
There are 2 different ways to go about these. While slowing down you could just shift into neutral & hit the brakes. I would advise against this practice for 2 major reasons...1 - it will become a habit that you do at every light regardless of situation. 2 - if you ever have someone behind you that is distracted/impaired & doesn't hit their brakes slowing from a significant speed you will have a major accident because you have no means to escape. This holds much more true on a motorcycle but still a good practice. You can keep the car in gear until you slow to a speed that gives you ~1500 rpms. Then hold the clutch, put the shifter in a lower gear (keep holding clutch & don't release) & check your rearview mirror. At this point traffic behind you has either also slowed appropriately & you put the car in neutral as you stop....or it hasn't and you basically clutch dump out an escape path (you must know your escape path is clear prior to realizing you need one. I've had to do this more than once due to a drunk driver, poor tires in the rain, a person texting, & someone that didn't realize they needed extra stopping distance when towing. YMMV there. Once at a full stop keep the car in neutral & foot on the brake. Dont ride the clutch to hold rock the car as some ppl tend to do, unless you love doing clutch jobs.

I bought my first spyder after "learning" to drive stick on a highly modified turbo car for 2 hrs. After melting the bumper shooting flames on a misshift I decided that was enough practice. Bought the Spyder in Connecticut & drove it back to NYC without a hitch.

Confucius once said "Driving is the only way to learn how to drive"
Appreciate you clearing everything up :)
  1. The lower the gear, the easier it is for the rpm to go up
  2. Should shift to the next gear around 3k-3.5k rpm
  3. Once practiced starting by only using the clutch, add lightly pressing gas at the sametime
So once you switch to the next gear, do you leave it there or switch stick to neutral?
What is the difference between going neutral by using the clutch and going neutral by using the stick?
 

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The clutch overrides the gear shifter, meaning that if you depress the clutch (and hold it) the car is in neutral no matter what you with with the gear shifter, aka the engine & transmission are disengaged. The one exception is DO NOT shift into reverse while moving forward or vice versa. Holding the clutch pedal puts strain on transmission components (throw out bearing) so that is why you formally put the gear shifter into neutral, release the clutch pedal, & hold the brake when coming to a red light. The point of holding the clutch down & putting the car into a lower gear while approaching a red light or traffic jam is to be able to move instantly by dropping the clutch & hitting the gas if you see someone behind you isn't stopping. Once you see they are stopping as well you shift into neutral & let the clutch out.

As you shift a few things occur:
1. You get to a speed/rpm where you decide to shift...for this example let's say you just started moving & are at 20 mph @ 4000 rpm in 1st gear. The engine & transmission are fully connected & spinning at the same rate

2. You take your foot off the gas, then depress & hold the clutch pedal-->transmission disengages from engine & rpms begin to drop (engine speed) while the transmission continues to spin at the speed the car is rolling

3. You move the gear shifter into 2nd gear. Initially your foot is still depressing the clutch pedal so the engine & transmission are still disengaged from each other.

4. You know that at 20 mph 2nd gear will be at 3500 rpms (this is an example) so you wait for the rpms to drop to just above 3500. You then let out the clutch smoothly, allowing the engine speed & transmission speed to match each other as the clutch fully engages. Synchronizers in the transmission prevent the grinding of gears but you still try to rev match your shift as smoothly as possible to avoid unnecessary wear/damage to the transmission because you want to be a good driver, also you're poor & can't afford a new clutch every 75k miles (ok maybe that last part was referring to myself).

5. You hit the gas & the car accelerates once again...in these cars lower rpm = less power even more so than many other cars so if you need power (highway merge) then shift at high rpms, if your going to a stop sign feel free to shift at lower rpms for better fuel economy.
 

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I suggest you keep things very simple for the next bit of time while you become comfortable.

Always shift one gear at a time either up or down. Keep your shift point around 3,000 rpm, the center gauge on the main cluster. Only worry about speed in regard to the limit where you are driving.

Put the trans in neutral when braking for a stop. The brake lights tell the person behind what you are doing.

Use your parking brake to help learn how to start moving when stopped up hill.

There are a great many things you can do with a manual trans which you can learn after you have accomplished the basics.

I purchased my first car, it was a manual and I didn't have a clue, well I had some idea but zero experience and learned in a short period of time. Practice does make permanent. Practice properly
 

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I want to warn you about two things that you do not want to do:
1. Shift into reverse while you are driving.
2. Shifting down when you are at high RPM. Normally, when you reach high RPM, you shift up.
Those are the two things that can really damage your car. If you are not sure, shift into neutral or push the clutch in and think it out.
 

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I think others covered the bulk of it. All great information! Just another note about hill starts. Id recommend getting use to where the clutch pedal starts engaging by engaging 1st gear on a flat area. On a hill you can let the clutch pedal out to the point it starts engaging before releasing the brake and it will give you a little more time without rolling... just dont linger here too long and try to get moving with purpose.

I say just keep practicing, pay attention to your shift, respect the car, and driving the MR2 will become second nature.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
I think others covered the bulk of it. All great information! Just another note about hill starts. Id recommend getting use to where the clutch pedal starts engaging by engaging 1st gear on a flat area. On a hill you can let the clutch pedal out to the point it starts engaging before releasing the brake and it will give you a little more time without rolling... just dont linger here too long and try to get moving with purpose.

I say just keep practicing, pay attention to your shift, respect the car, and driving the MR2 will become second nature.
hi so i just practiced driving today and I have some problems.
The car still shakes sometimes when I'm driving on first gear below 3k rpm and sometimes when i go too slow it ends up shutting the entire car.
Another problem is that when i go to reverse, i find the bite point and as im moving back my car vibrates like crazy
 
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