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Old 01-27-2009, 03:41 PM   #1
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Help me save my new clutch :D

So I have a new clutch and I feel I am pretty good with driving stick now.
But since it is new, and since I did pay quite a bit for it, I want to keep it as long as possible. So, since I'm sure many here are quite experienced at driving stick maybe I can get some pointers .

First off, launching. I usually give it a bit of gas and hold the clutch at the biting point for about 1-2 seconds before I let go. Is this correct? Should I add more gas and come off the clutch pedal gradually without stopping?

Next is upshifting, my shifts are usually smooth and I tend to shortshift up at 3-4k RPMs. Sometimes though I get a jerk in the shifts, is this bad? Should I rather let the clutch out slower, perhaps holding at the biting point longer?

Lastly, hard starts. What is the ideal RPM for a Boxster for a hard launch (I realize it depends on tires, but an estimate would be nice). Do I come up off the clutch pedal fast? Smoothly? Slowly?

Thanks for the help everyone .

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Old 01-27-2009, 06:31 PM   #2
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I just release the clutch in a smooth motion that's coordinated with the gas pedal. As I feel it start to bite, I add more power. One pedel goes down as the other comes up. Porsche clutches should last around 100K miles of "normal" driving, what ever that is. That is 2x for most cluthes, so just enjoy the car.

I upshift in the high 3-4K range as well.

Practice makes perfect. Enjoy.
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Old 01-27-2009, 07:02 PM   #3
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My tip for a nice long clutch life is to only engage it when you plan to change gears.

So, when you're at a light, put it in neutral. When the light turns green, clutch in, put it in first, and let the clutch out smoothly as you depress the gas pedal.

When you are coasting off the freeway, put it in neutral and brake gently. Downshifting is hard on a clutch, even when you rev-match. Brake pads are far cheaper to replace too.

Hope this helps!
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Old 01-27-2009, 08:06 PM   #4
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Thanks, I tend to go into neutral whenever I possibly can. As for get the car started, I tend to hold at the biting point instead of a smooth release. If I try to do a gradual release of the pedal my starts are jerky and not very comforting for the passenger :P.
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Old 01-27-2009, 08:53 PM   #5
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As everyone said, try to be as smooth as you can and use it only when needed. be smart about it. Even if you can do it, don't hold your car on a hill with clutch / gas.

But on the other hand, dont be afraid to use the clutch, or slip it a little once in a while. Its what its designed to do. Sometimes saving a bit of clutch is not worth the damage to the tranny. We all know whats more expensive here.

Have fun practicing!
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Old 01-28-2009, 06:49 AM   #6
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Agreed with all points. Don't hold the clutch at the biting point, unless you are just trying to get to know it and the throttle relationship on release. Get to know it, and then quit doing that. When downshifting, bump the throttle before engaging to lower gear. Learn good car control by always being in gear unless stopping ie: don't coast through a turn - instead be in gear, usually second, as you enter into the turn. If you find yourself holding the clutch in for a period of time ie: stopping, turning - quit doing that too. Take notice of it and then decide your better behavior which might be engaging to a lower gear or moving to neutral - whatever gets you to let the clutch out. As also noted, smoothness comes with getting to know how much throttle to add as you engage the clutch. Be quick and smooth. Being too slow to let it out can make your transition jumpy.

Have fun!

Last edited by FTD; 01-28-2009 at 09:50 AM.
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Old 01-28-2009, 08:29 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lordblood
Thanks, I tend to go into neutral whenever I possibly can. As for get the car started, I tend to hold at the biting point instead of a smooth release. If I try to do a gradual release of the pedal my starts are jerky and not very comforting for the passenger :P.
Jerking when releasing your clutch simply means you're not providing the motor with enough fuel. Give it more gas and that should go away.
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Old 01-28-2009, 11:13 AM   #8
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I've been in a manual for sometime now, but something I've always noticed and wondered about was that, when reversing, I almost, basically never let the clutch out, is that normal? I'm assuming so because if I start to let go it will become jerky...
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Old 01-28-2009, 11:35 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lordblood
Thanks, I tend to go into neutral whenever I possibly can. As for get the car started, I tend to hold at the biting point instead of a smooth release. If I try to do a gradual release of the pedal my starts are jerky and not very comforting for the passenger :P.
Whenever I teach someone to drive a stick, I always start by having them learn to let out the clutch smoothly without giving it any gas at all. This way they get a feel for how the clutch works and where in the travel range it actually starts to grab. Then they work on giving it a little gas and letting the clutch out a little faster until they find the right combination that isn't jerky and doesn't have the motor over-revving. I have had great success with this method, you might try it in a level parking lot.
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Old 01-28-2009, 12:21 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nineteen89
I've been in a manual for sometime now, but something I've always noticed and wondered about was that, when reversing, I almost, basically never let the clutch out, is that normal? I'm assuming so because if I start to let go it will become jerky...
I am guessing it depends on how far back you need to travel. A few feet? Then sure, I may not let it out. More than a few feet - I don't hold the clutch.
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Old 01-28-2009, 06:27 PM   #11
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When I reverse or do little progress in traffic I hold it at the biting point as there isn't enough time to let it out and then back in. As for turning, I go into 2nd gear before turning.

So it's better to run the clutch out rather than the transmission, being smooth is key, righto!

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