Post # 1
We own two cars- mine is ok and automatic, FH’s is awesome but stick shift. He will let me drive it fairly often if I learn to drive stick. I took a few lessons from a friend in her car back in August and got up to driving in residential areas. I haven’t done it much since, partially since FH’s schedule is horrendous, and partially because I am terrified. Thus, I feel like a beginner again. FH and I both have this coming week off, so I know it would be a great time to learn.
What tips do you have? Thanks!
Post # 3
I learned it last year. It takes a little while to get used to how quickly to let go of the clutch and how much to push the gas. Start in an open parking lot at night so you don’t have to worry about stalling with other cars.
Post # 4
Take off your shoes or wear really thin soled flats. It’ll help you “feel” when to shift.
ETA: I learned back in the day when spice girl shoes were “in”, so maybe they just meant don’t wear those.
But, if you can get use of an early 90’s car, especially a Toyota their systems are a lot more forgiving. I taught all my friends on my ’94 Tercel, and it was really easy, and harder to stall.
Post # 5
I’m terrified of it too. I did drive it ok when I was in germany, go figure … but I stalled at a light going up hill, and that did me in. I think we are going to buy an old jeep to tool around in and SO says that it will be easier to learn on that. I hope so!!
Post # 6
Oh yeah avoid hills for at least a month if possible! I had a panic attack when I stalled on a hill! I still get a little anxious but I just gun the accelorator so it’s fine.
Post # 7
I learned on a stick. My first two cars were stick until I go sooooo sick of traffic in a stick. Dont be afraid, just do it. Ride the clutch if you are afraid of grinding the gears.
Post # 8
I wish! I learned to drive on a stick and that’s all I ever drove until my car broke down for good last year and I had to buy a new one. I bought an automatic because my fiance can’t drive manual. But I really miss it. He’s already told me that my next car can be a stick 🙂
Post # 9
Newer cars have a “dummy light” that tells you when to shift. If you’re not used to driving a stick, that can be helpful until you get the feel of it.
Remember not to let the clutch out too fast, you’ll hop the car. And give it enough gas that you don’t stall.
The best thing is practice, practice, practice. Have the car stopped, accelterate and shift up through all the gears until you’re at the last gear (usualy 5th), then stop again. Repeat over and over and over.
Post # 10
Oh, and don’t wear flip-flops (if you do, take them off to drive). They can get wedged under the clutch and you can’t release the clutch properly!
Post # 11
More gas, less clutch. A man yelled this at me out the window once. I had my VW stuck on a hill, and he yelled that out, and driving a stick has been cake ever since.
Post # 12
I second what ILikePink said. You can always add more gas and it won’t mess anything up. It’ll be loud, so don’t let it startle you, haha. Also, it’s just starting from a stop that is the most difficult to do, so if you just work on that, you’ll be fine. After a while, you can just “feel” what gear you need to be in. No worries!
Post # 13
I do I do! I love it honestly. I feel like I’m more in control of the car.
As for tips…practice makes perfect. The hardest part is starting to move when you are stopped at a light or whatever. And with people behind you it can get stressful and then you move your feet to quickly and stall out. Just take your time, press in the clutch, shift into first gear, and then slowly pull your left foot off the clutch as you ease into the gas with your right…and then you’re off!!
Post # 14
I use to be a drag racer back in the day.. not the street kind, but on the track. When I first learned, I drove barefoot to get a feel for the clutch. When I wasnt driving, I would be in the passenger shifting the gears for my friend. He would say clutch, press down on it, and I would shift gears for him. Seeing his leg press down and me shifting sync’d in my brain and so when it was my turn, i did the same thing. Clutch, shift, and pressed on the accelerator while simultaneously releasing the clutch. i practiced moving my feet in bed in that motion. It took only 3 days to learn and I was set. The hardest part is just feeling the clutch out.. sometimes it’s too sensitive and you jerk on first gear, sometimes it may not be as sensitive.. that’s why i just went barefoot or with thin sandals. It was much easier after that.
Post # 15
@guitargirl: my car is an automatic and Mr. Tattoo’s car is a jag that is stick shift. He taught me in the parking lot. It’s still hard sometimes. But like someone else mentioned: more gas less clutch!
Post # 16
I HATE driving a stick shift! My dad taught me to drive on a stick shift and I feel like it traumatized me lol. Technically I “can” drive a stick, but I hate thinking about shifting when I’m driving. I figure that driving is hard enough will all the idiots on the road, I dont need to be part of them 😀