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Old 12-24-2007, 09:48 PM   #1
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Unhappy Bought my new FOCUS... FIRST manual car too HELP

Hi Guys,

I picked up a Black Focus 08 two yesterday. First time I drive a manual. PICS














I have a problem getting the car rolling on first without it stalling or burning rubber. Which of course damages the flywheel/transmission.

I want to avoid any transmission damage so I joined to ask, how many RPMS until you let the clutch go on 1st to start driving?

Do you let the clutch go slowly or you let it go at once (I assume slowly)?

Thanks!


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Old 12-24-2007, 10:01 PM   #2
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First off, welcome to FF and Merry Christmas... i like the gauges in your car.

anyways.. what you need to do is practice letting out the clutch veeerryy slooowly and hardly giving it anygas at all. since it's your first time driving stick it might take you a couple days of practice, but soon you'll notice that you can get your car rolling without even touching the gas if you have a light touch on the clutch.
you can also pump the gas pedal to get the revs just a few 100 rpms higher than idle, then drop the clutch slowly.

if your car stalls, you dropped the clutch too fast. if you burn rubber, you gave it too much gas..
it's a sort of balance between one and the other. you'll find it. good luck
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Old 12-24-2007, 10:04 PM   #3
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I have always listen to the engine (rode dirtbikes a lot when younger). I guess some where around 500-1,000 RPMs. Just let the clutch out slowly and if you start to "stumble" to a stall, push the clutch back in. Just NEVER keep your left foot RESTING on the clutch pedal. If you don't do this, then you really shouldn't be "hurting" the tranny. My $0.02.
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Old 12-24-2007, 10:43 PM   #4
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Yup, just release the clutch slowly, give it a LITTLE gas, and keep practicing, after a while you won't even have to pay attention to it, you'll get the feel for it

But, actually, you are the first person I've seen with the '08, do you have the cool voice activated stereo thing? If so, how do you like it? It looks pretty sweet on the commercials.
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Old 12-24-2007, 10:48 PM   #5
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or, you can set the E-brake, romp on the gas, dump the clutch, and watch the smoke roll... that's fun too
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Old 12-24-2007, 11:38 PM   #6
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It was basically said above by _pr and inandout, but I'd suggest - if you have the space and place (and FLAT at that) - to practice launching the car with NO gas at all. Just ease off the clutch super slowly, as described above, and - voila! - soon the car is rolling along in first gear, no stalling or nuthin'.

Next trick then is to smoothly give it gas so as not to lurch.

THEN you can practice launching via the simultaneous clutch/gas dance.

You'll learn to love stick like crazy.

Congrats on the car, BTW - I for one far prefer it to the last generation ('05 to '07) sedan, inside and out.
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Old 12-25-2007, 08:09 AM   #7
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Congrats
Manuals are fun... Ill never go back
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Old 12-25-2007, 08:32 AM   #8
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Sweet! SYNC!

Like everyone before me has said, its all about balance when launching. Id say try less gas when getting going too, youll get it in a day or two though.
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Old 12-25-2007, 09:00 AM   #9
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SEEK AND DESTROY!!!!!

OK, someone else already mentioned it. When I taught my wife how to work a clutch, I made her practice this simple trick to help her figure out where the clutch engages on the pedal.

Simply sit with the car in idle and in first gear- clutch engaged, then slowly pick up the clutch pedal until the rpm's drop. Push the clutch in, and do it again. If you stall or lurch the car- you're picking up too quickly on the clutch- SLOW DOWN. Eventually you'll figure out where the spot is that the clutch begins to completely disengage and the friction disc and flywheel are coming together. Practice locating this spot until you can hit it every time without stalling . This is the point where you'll give the car a tiny bit of gas to accelerate. It's also a good point to know for when you have to take off on a hill from a dead stop. If you're really good you can hold a car on the hill for a second without stalling, without giving it gas, just holding the clutch at this point where it won't drift backwards. It will cause some clutch burn if you hold it there for a long time- like 10 minutes- but it won't damage anything for the short time- and it will save you from embarrassing screw ups like stalling or sliding back into the car behind you.

Once you find the point, practice taking off giving the car as little gas as possible. Once you can do that- go find an incline and practice taking off from a dead stop on an incline in a parking lot or driveway somewhere. You will need to practice this so you don't have an unexpected problem in traffic. One day you will stall in traffic and be totally embarrassed- we've all done that more than once. It just happens sometimes.

NEVER leave your foot on the clutch pedal while driving. That will cause the clutch to be slightly engaged and cause the friction disc to wear out as well as damage the flywheel.

Another thing that's good to practice is finding gears without looking at the shifter. You'll want to know how to go from 5th to 3rd, but I'd practice by giving myself crazy gear changes that nobody would do to test my skills like 1st to 5th, or vice versa, or 2nd to 4th- yadda yadda yadda. You get the point.

Best of luck!!


BTW.... what's wrong with burning tires?
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Old 12-25-2007, 11:29 AM   #10
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I got my eye on you dude .

Nice christmas present, to focus fanatics, make yourself @ home
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