Introduction: How to Drive Stick (The Basics)

Picture of How to Drive Stick (The Basics)

How to Dive a Manual Car

Imagine that your friends got a new car and they’re letting you drive it for the first time. Sitting in the car you notice a odd new shifter and a extra third pedal. Where are the familiar letters, D, R, N, and P? Embarrassed, you have to say “I can’t drive a manual” and exit the car. If only someone had told me how to drive a manual you could have been saved this embarrassment.

-Equipment-

Before we start we will need to clarify a few things.

· The gear shifter will be different than an automatic. Instead of the usual Drive, Park, and other commands you’ll see the shifter is labeled with numbers for the gears and a letter R for reverse. The gears as they go up are intended for higher speeds different power, this is totally based on the car and will require some tinkering.

· The far left pedal is called the clutch and is used in the process of shifting gears with the gear shifter. (For example look to the top of the article.)

· The far right pedal is called the gas pedal or acceleration.

· The middle pedal is the break.

· While not entirely new, the tachometer (the RPM gauge) plays an important role in driving a manual vehicle. (For example look to the top of the article.)

Step 1:

Before starting the car press the break and clutch peddles down stimulatingly with your feet and move the shifter into the middle position. This center position is called idle or neutral.

Step 2:

Turn the car on by holding the clutch and break peddles down together and turn the key while in the ignition.

Step 3:

Once the engine is started and you are idling in neutral you are ready to get moving. Like an automatic transmission vehicle, the first thing step is to engage the brake and release the parking brake.

Step 4:

Next, with the brake still engaged, press the clutch all the way in and shift into first gear, pushing to the left and up on the shifter.

Step 5:

After the shifter is in place, release the brake, and easily release the clutch while giving the vehicle some gas. I found this the most difficult when I first started learning. This will require tinkering while first learning to drive any new car. Every cars transmission is a frustrating snowflake.

Step 6:

If the vehicle does not receive enough gas, the vehicle jumps forward in a terrible shake and the engine comes to a stop; the vehicle has stalled. When the vehicle stalls, simply come to a stop, and restart the engine; remembering to engage the clutch and take the vehicle out of gear before starting.

Step 7:

If the vehicle is given too much gas, the vehicle engine will rev high and the tires will chirp; the vehicle has done a burnout. (It’s pretty sweet I know, but it will wear out your tires. Also people might judge you a little.) Getting the right combination of gas and clutch takes some practice and may leave you frustrated, remember to practice.

Step 8:

If you are on an incline give the car more gas because it will require more power, If you are on a decline you won’t need as much gas. If the car is heavy with people or cargo you’ll need more gas as well.

Step 9:

When the car is moving you can shift gears by letting go of the gas and engaging the clutch. Slide the gear shifter out of the gear back into the neutral position. Then while holding the clutch slide the shifter into the next highest gear. This is normally done when the car’s RPM meter is over the 3 mark and between the 4. Repeat the process of gear shifting till at the required speed.

Step 10:

When the car is moving you can shift gears by letting go of the gas and engaging the clutch. Slide the gear shifter out of the gear back into the neutral position. Then while holding the clutch slide the shifter into the next highest gear. This is normally done when the car’s RPM meter is over the 3 mark and between the 4. Repeat the process of gear shifting till at the required speed.

Comments

seamster (author)2016-10-25

Thanks for sharing. Everyone should learn how to drive a manual transmission vehicle! :)

UlrikC (author)seamster2016-10-25

In some countries you actually learn this as one of the most basic lessons when getting your drivers license. For example in Denmark, the only way to get your license you have to take lessons from an authorizered driving teacher, who is by law required to use a car with manual transmission (and an extra set of pedals for the teacher to interfere); and the first couple of lessons is specifically focused on the most basic elements of driving and get routine, and additionally to learn and train such manouvers as parralel parking.

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