Discussion in 'SN95 4.6L Mustang Tech' started by MustangJunkie, Apr 2, 2004.

  1. Hi guys and gals. As you can tell I'm a rookie on this forum. It's such a great forum by the way--so many car experts on here! I got a new '04 all-black GT premium convertible a couple weeks ago with upgraded rims (5-spoke bright wheels), upgraded interior, and of course manual tranny. I've been wanting a Mustang for many years and it seemed that now was the right time to purchase one with all the incentives available and the slightly-below-invoice price i was being given. Last year I had decided to wait for the '05 model after seeing pictures of the concept car but changed my mind once I saw the production model (not that I don't like it, I simply prefer the current look). My Stang was $26.7k off the lot, tax, tags, etc included. I couldn't be more happy with or more proud of this car. I LOVE MY CAR! I actually miss it when I'm not driving it! Is that normal?? :D

    Besides being a rookie on this forum I'm also a rookie on the stick. I had driven stick before but I am by no means an expert. I'm a bit of a perfectionist and I want to make sure that I'm doing this right. My biggest problem thus far has been shifting SMOOTHLY into 1st gear. Sometimes it's really smooth and sometimes not so smooth and sometimes it's just crap (car would "hiccup"). Consistency is so hard to come by. Anyway, to my questions.

    For normal driving, what is the best RPM range to engage the clutch for 1st gear? 1.0 - 1.5k RPM seems ok. But tonight I was experimenting and found that around 700 - 1000 RPM is also "doable" if I gas it and engage the clutch just right. What has been your experience? What about clutch wear? Are there any rules regarding how to minimize clutch wear?

    Also, why does the car "hiccup" sometimes? I've been told that that occurs when the clutch is engaged too quickly. Can anyone explain this? It boggles me immensely why the engine would behave this way when the clutch has already been engaged.

    My brother (who owns a 2002 Trans Am WS6) keeps telling me that I have to simply drive a lot to get used to it. Frankly, I don't want to be burning up my clutch unknowingly while I'm "getting used to it". :shrug:

    I know I have more questions but can't think of them right now. I'm sure I'll remember as I read the replies. Thanks!
  2. practice a lot, thats what i had to do.
  3. I'm probably 10 years younger than you, but for the last 10 months since I've purchased the stang and started learning about cars, I have learned a lot.

    I have 03 vert exactly like yours (purchased May 2003, the car just hit 4000 miles recently). So I know exactly how you feel :D

    I have never driven a stick before when I got my car. I have couple of practice once in a while in my dad's escort (now my beater).

    The reason why the car hiccup when you shift and engage gear is because your flywheel is already spinning on a certain rpm when you engage the clutch (which is spinning slower than the fly wheel) to synchronize with it. This cause the fly wheel to bog down due to the extra load of the clutch added to it. This cause the flywheel to lost some of the energy suddenly to do work on the engaged clutch resulting in "bucking"

    To avoid this, you slowly engage the clutch (by letting your foot out to a certain point where you will add a little gas to synchronize the flywheel with the clutch to smooth the rolling movement of both the clutch and the flywheel as a whole. Finally, let the clutch go out all the way and keep the foot on the gas pedal.

    Riding the clutch is a no-no. This is when you're driving around and not pressing the clutch all the way in (ie. half way). This will burn the clutch because it does not engage fully with the gear that you are in. This will maximize the wear and tear of the clutch rapidly. So it's either pressing the clutch all the way in or all the way out.

    There are also many other method of driving 5-speed (ie, heel-toe technique) I spent considerably amount of time understanding them, and I add more entertainment to my driving skill.

    I hope I didn't confuse you. It's my first "technical" write up afterall. Correct me if I'm wrong. I'm still learning as well. :)

    Oh ya.. the "search" button will help a lot. I used it a lot today learning about LCA and UCA and other suspension stuff that I will be purchasing shortly :nice:
  4. I don't know why the title of the thread came out the way it did. :shrug:

    Anyway, bump.