Car transmissions - Standard or automatic?

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Profile James Sotherden
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Message 1551584 - Posted: 2 Aug 2014, 21:31:22 UTC - in response to Message 1551473.  

Of course when trying to teach your stubborn son (I have no idea where he gets it from) to drive, its a whole other kettle of fish. :/

That last time I drove a stick, it was when a lady friend/co-worker's 21-yo son wanted to buy his own car. He found a used pick-up, in decent shape, that he could afford.

Only issue, it was a stick, and he had never driven one, nor she. So I drove it home for them - yes, it was rough at the start, but I was shifting pretty smooth by the time we got home. Then spent 4 weeks of evenings and Saturdays trying to teach him to drive it. He has dislexia and learning disabilities (and an AA in Landscape Architecture), and no matter what we tried, he could not stop looking down at his left foot every time he shifted gears. Finally gave up and traded it for a slightly newer model with an automatic. He's still driving it 11 years later.

The first time I drove an automatic it was one of the ones with a double wide brake pedal. I had just been driving the jeep with a massive return spring on the clutch (Press lightly on the brake, STOMP on the clutch). Now do that with a double wide brake pedal on a car with touchy brakes (scrape the front bumper on the ground).


LOL. I too know about that first hand. But Ive done the reverse and hit the brakes with out pushing the clutch in. Can you say instant stall:)
[/quote]

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Message 1551622 - Posted: 2 Aug 2014, 22:46:32 UTC - in response to Message 1551293.  

I drove a stick once on a trip with a friend, his car. It would take some practice, but makes no sense at all in Los Angeles traffic.


Makes perfect sense. I spent 35 years of driving that traffic with a manual transmission. It gives you something to do while you are waiting to get to your destination.

A lot of something to do if you drive in LA.
http://scorecard.inrix.com/scorecard/worstcorridors.asp
While the #1 in the USA went to New York, #2, 3, 7, 8, 9, 11, 13 are all LA. (that's half of the top 15 nationally!) While a stick might be fun for a week or two in this traffic after a couple of months it would be a PITA. Besides a stick makes it harder to eat breakfast, shave, do your makeup, update your status, surf the traffic report on the web, send a few texts and maybe call the boss to tell him you will be late again in your hour of delay time. Not to hijack, just there are reasons for an automatic.
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Message 1551624 - Posted: 2 Aug 2014, 22:47:10 UTC - in response to Message 1551592.  
Last modified: 2 Aug 2014, 22:51:36 UTC

The difficult one is what they teach on the Class 1 police drivers course. That is when in a pursuit and you come to a hill, you do what is called a power change to try to get in front. It basically consists of keeping the accelerator pressed down, then downshifting a gear via the clutch as quickly as physically possible. If you judge it right the momentary increase in engine revs will match the extra required for the lower gear, giving you extra acceleration.

I can only get it right 1 in 4 times, so I don't often try it.

Sound like a great way to tear up a transmission or blow an engine. Over here the police department often orders special engines that have extra output in order to gain the advantage. That works most of the time but some people do have faster cars than the law. The policy is now changing to back off and let the helicopter follow them at a safer speed.

The older transmissions lacked synchromesh and as the result the clutch side of the transmission had to be turning at the right rate of speed to shift without grinding. My brother's first pickup had such a transmission and he reached the point where he could shift without using the clutch and without grinding the gears. i was never able to work that old transmission that well but then I never had all that much practice on that transmission.
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Message 1551644 - Posted: 2 Aug 2014, 23:22:53 UTC - in response to Message 1551622.  

Besides a stick makes it harder to eat breakfast, shave, do your makeup, update your status, surf the traffic report on the web, send a few texts and maybe call the boss to tell him you will be late again in your hour of delay time. Not to hijack, just there are reasons for an automatic.


Well, I know Google, and others are working on the type of car that will make even an automatic seem anachronistic.
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Message 1551646 - Posted: 2 Aug 2014, 23:29:10 UTC - in response to Message 1551624.  

The difficult one is what they teach on the Class 1 police drivers course. That is when in a pursuit and you come to a hill, you do what is called a power change to try to get in front. It basically consists of keeping the accelerator pressed down, then downshifting a gear via the clutch as quickly as physically possible. If you judge it right the momentary increase in engine revs will match the extra required for the lower gear, giving you extra acceleration.

I can only get it right 1 in 4 times, so I don't often try it.

Sound like a great way to tear up a transmission or blow an engine. Over here the police department often orders special engines that have extra output in order to gain the advantage. That works most of the time but some people do have faster cars than the law. The policy is now changing to back off and let the helicopter follow them at a safer speed.

The older transmissions lacked synchromesh and as the result the clutch side of the transmission had to be turning at the right rate of speed to shift without grinding. My brother's first pickup had such a transmission and he reached the point where he could shift without using the clutch and without grinding the gears. i was never able to work that old transmission that well but then I never had all that much practice on that transmission.

That's also why police have radios and yep, helicopters, either they get in front of you and/or they can't be shaken, the chasee will run out of gasoline/diesel soon enough, it's all a matter of range and the chasers can call in other assets(mutual aid), the chasee can't.
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Message 1551775 - Posted: 3 Aug 2014, 9:06:30 UTC

Didn't those Daimler Darts look like someone grabbed parts from a half dozen different other cars and then tried to fit them together? (talk about totally mismatching body work)

As for the old crash gearboxes, they are great and I reckon that all drivers should be able to operate them before being issued a driver's license.

I've owned 13 vehicles myself of which all but 4 were manuals and don't ask me about what vehicles I've ever driven as I've probably forgotten at least a third of them (if not half), but it will be in the hundreds.

Cheers.
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Message 1551802 - Posted: 3 Aug 2014, 11:29:15 UTC

That pic Chris is right at its best angle for sure. ;-)

Cheers.
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Message 1551848 - Posted: 3 Aug 2014, 14:08:53 UTC

I vote:
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Message 1551905 - Posted: 3 Aug 2014, 17:15:55 UTC - in response to Message 1551901.  

Ferrari or auto?

Probably a hybrid.
Aren't there some high end automatics that allow you to put them into a manual mode and shift them as desired?
"Freedom is just Chaos, with better lighting." Alan Dean Foster

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Message 1551928 - Posted: 3 Aug 2014, 18:56:48 UTC - in response to Message 1551905.  

Ferrari or auto?

Probably a hybrid.
Aren't there some high end automatics that allow you to put them into a manual mode and shift them as desired?

It has the Ferrari logo on it in the upper left. I don't know any more than that.
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Message 1551944 - Posted: 3 Aug 2014, 20:02:18 UTC
Last modified: 3 Aug 2014, 20:53:51 UTC

Current: 94 Mazda Miata 5sp man
: 05 Subaru RS wagon 5sd man
Past 85 VW GTI 5sp man
78 Audi Fox 4sp man
77 VW Rabbit 4sp man
73 Audi Fox 4sp man
70 VW Beatle 4sp man
64 Alfa Veloce Spyder 4sp man
61 Saab 3sp man
53 Chrysler New Yorker 4 sp semi auto. What a tank but it did have a hemi V8 and it lasted thru my college years.
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Message 1551949 - Posted: 3 Aug 2014, 20:16:50 UTC

One of the things I do at my job is park cars, and I've seen some odd ones that seem to offer a sort of manual option even though they are primarily automatics. I don't understand this, and I don't recall there being a clutch, but maybe there was.

On another note, I had a hard time backing in a VW once before I figured out you have to push down on the stick, first. ;~}
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Message 1551951 - Posted: 3 Aug 2014, 20:29:15 UTC - in response to Message 1551949.  

One of the things I do at my job is park cars, and I've seen some odd ones that seem to offer a sort of manual option even though they are primarily automatics. I don't understand this, and I don't recall there being a clutch, but maybe there was.

On another note, I had a hard time backing in a VW once before I figured out you have to push down on the stick, first. ;~}

I drove a VW a few times and that one messed me up as well. As for the manual automatic, with most automatics you can hold them on one gear. This is useful on ice if you want to start in second instead of first to maintain traction or if you are using the cruse control for braking on a long down hill run. Some transmissions have a shifter that is faster so you can use it for racing by selecting the gear you desire. When you are done playing, you can return to full automatic. I think the clutch is part of the joy of a manual but that's just my opinion.
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Message 1552124 - Posted: 4 Aug 2014, 7:10:47 UTC

Learned on a manual, courtesy of the RAF, whilst having a motor-cycle. One of the things I got to drive, was an Alvis Salamander Fire Tender...6WD 4WS with a 6(?) speed, pre-select, split range box (high and low ratio....plus forward and reverse selection! The Stalwart was born from these....and we all know how good they are, 'off road'! Currently drive mainly an auto, because Honda, for some insane reason, decided that in the UK, we would only get the Legend (3.2 and on) with an auto, rather than have a choice as per everywhere else!

I hate automatic transmissions with a passion, as it takes away control from the driver and if I could afford to do it, I would convert my '91 Legend to a manual, in an instant! Thankfully, my sanity is preserved via my little Rover 216 Coupe (yes, Honda powered and hopefully turbo-charged by this time next year), which I do heel-and-toe in, as I have done, in almost all my 'manuals'. Even the much maligned Daimler Sovereign, which I could only fault on fuel consumption (compared to most other cars on the road at the time!) had a manual box with 'over-drive'.

Car history;
Alfa Romeo Alfasud Sprint 1.7
Alfa Romeo GTV6
Daimler Sovereign 4.2
Honda Accord (3dr) X 2 (1602cc and 1829cc)
Honda Legend (4dr) x 3 (2659cc X 2 and 3206cc X 1...all still owned or in use)
Honda Legend (3dr) X 1 (3206cc under 'restoring to road use')
Lancia Montecarlo Series 2 (still owned with brother-in-law)
Rover 3.0 Mk2 (P5)
Rover 216 Coupe...in use.
Rover 800 Coupe (turbo....frightening!)
Toyota Celica Supra 2.8 'Mk2'(Lotus Spec...owners will know which one is meant)
Don't take life too seriously, as you'll never come out of it alive!
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Profile James Sotherden
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Message 1552131 - Posted: 4 Aug 2014, 7:55:34 UTC

We can argue untll the cows come home. I loved driving a standard. But my knees Refuse it. So call me a whimp. I dont care. Its not you driving with my knees.
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Message 1552177 - Posted: 4 Aug 2014, 12:53:14 UTC - in response to Message 1551928.  

Ferrari or auto?

Probably a hybrid.
Aren't there some high end automatics that allow you to put them into a manual mode and shift them as desired?

It has the Ferrari logo on it in the upper left. I don't know any more than that.


It's a manual transmission, Ferrari 6 speed.
Ferrari has a tradition of putting a grate on the stick to make sure you hit the gears just right. It can be a pain, no room for error.
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Message 1552181 - Posted: 4 Aug 2014, 13:03:47 UTC - in response to Message 1552131.  

We can argue untll the cows come home. I loved driving a standard. But my knees Refuse it. So call me a whimp. I dont care. Its not you driving with my knees.

I would never call you a wimp for that! My brother started out on manuals and then drove a mix until his legs went out. Before he passed away, all the vehicles in his fleet were automatics including the 700 horse power hotrod he was working on and we are finishing for him. I may not drive that hotrod very much, not because of the transmission but because of the engine.
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Message 1552227 - Posted: 4 Aug 2014, 14:48:32 UTC - in response to Message 1552226.  

Ferrari has a tradition of putting a grate on the stick to make sure you hit the gears just right. It can be a pain, no room for error.

If you are driving a Ferrari in the first place then it deserves to be driven properly!

I still like the American horse, the Mustang...
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Message 1552468 - Posted: 5 Aug 2014, 3:48:16 UTC

All the rentals and loaners I've had recently, a Suburban, 2 Equinoxes, and now a Traverse, have rocker switches on the side of the selector that are marked +/-. This lets you have manual control of the automatic. I tried it once, but I didn't see any advantage in doing it that way.

The US (Illinois, at least) has no restrictions about being trained on manuals to be allowed to drive them.
David
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Waiting for a message from a small furry creature from Alpha Centauri.

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Message 1552514 - Posted: 5 Aug 2014, 5:44:13 UTC - in response to Message 1552468.  

My Audi is the same. And even Ferrari has done away with real sifters. The new ones have paddles. The eletromechanical systems can change gears in 100 milliseconds.
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Message boards : Cafe SETI : Car transmissions - Standard or automatic?


 
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