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    My instructor likes me to put the handbrakes on whenever we stop but I find that when I do that and then hold the clutch to go off or to find the biting point then i either stall or it takes ages whilst the traffics already moving off... and I do this just by holding the clutch not the gas.

    Should I hold down clutch, gear 1 and apply gas then put handbrake down and drive? I find it difficult.
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    (Original post by GeorgeAndLennie)
    Should I hold down clutch, gear 1 and apply gas then put handbrake down and drive? I find it difficult.
    Nope. I can pretty much guarantee you will either roll back on a hill, stall or both that way.

    Here is how I have taught it for the last 20 odd years with great success.

    With the hand brake on. Put it into gear 1.
    Set some gas then keep your right foot absolutely still. It helps to keep your heel on the floor.
    Slowly bring the clutch up to the biting point. (We all call it the biting point but it is more of a very small biting zone about the thickness of a couple of pound coins). It is much much easier to keep the clutch at the biting point if your left heel is on the floor. As you get to the biting point you will hear the engine note drop very slightly. Now bring the clutch up a tiny tiny bit more so that the front of the car lifts up a little.
    Now the front wheels are trying to pull the car forward but the back wheels are trying to hold you back because of the handbrake.
    The only thing holding you back now is the handbrake.
    When safe simply release the handbrake - keeping both feet absolutely still until the car is up to walking speed, then you can relax and bring the clutch the rest of the way up and accelerate away as normal.

    Ok. So that all sounds a bit long winded when you are at the traffic lights with a dozen angry motorists behind you. But remember they want you to move off promptly rather than particularly quickly. So first practice the technique at the side of the road somewhere quiet. With practice you will get quicker at finding the biting point. But don't try to find it more quickly - just get quicker by practicing the technique. It works a treat for up hill starts too. But you will need to give it a bit more gas and a bit more bite the steeper the hill.

    If the car tries to creep forward when you are finding the biting point pull the handbrake on more firmly to hold it back.

    Obviously if you sit at the traffic lights with the clutch at the biting point the whole time you can over heat the clutch and get a nasty smell of burning. So keep it in gear handbrake on and the clutch right down until the lights turn amber. Now find the biting point, just enough so that the front of the car lifts up. When the lights go green - and if it is safe to move off. Release the handbrake - keeping both feet absolutely still until the car is up to walking speed. It will move off promptly and reliably.

    So you are allowing the car to move off by releasing the handbrake rather than trying to make it go by bringing the clutch up. This way you can move off promptly and reliably exactly when you want to at the first available safe opportunity every time.

    Try it and let us know how you get on.
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    (Original post by myDrivingInstr)
    Nope. I can pretty much guarantee you will either roll back on a hill, stall or both that way.

    Here is how I have taught it for the last 20 odd years with great success.

    With the hand brake on. Put it into gear 1.
    Set some gas then keep your right foot absolutely still. It helps to keep your heel on the floor.
    Slowly bring the clutch up to the biting point. (We all call it the biting point but it is more of a very small biting zone about the thickness of a couple of pound coins). It is much much easier to keep the clutch at the biting point if your left heel is on the floor. As you get to the biting point you will hear the engine note drop very slightly. Now bring the clutch up a tiny tiny bit more so that the front of the car lifts up a little.
    Now the front wheels are trying to pull the car forward but the back wheels are trying to hold you back because of the handbrake.
    The only thing holding you back now is the handbrake.
    When safe simply release the handbrake - keeping both feet absolutely still until the car is up to walking speed, then you can relax and bring the clutch the rest of the way up and accelerate away as normal.

    Ok. So that all sounds a bit long winded when you are at the traffic lights with a dozen angry motorists behind you. But remember they want you to move off promptly rather than particularly quickly. So first practice the technique at the side of the road somewhere quiet. With practice you will get quicker at finding the biting point. But don't try to find it more quickly - just get quicker by practicing the technique. It works a treat for up hill starts too. But you will need to give it a bit more gas and a bit more bite the steeper the hill.

    If the car tries to creep forward when you are finding the biting point pull the handbrake on more firmly to hold it back.

    Obviously if you sit at the traffic lights with the clutch at the biting point the whole time you can over heat the clutch and get a nasty smell of burning. So keep it in gear handbrake on and the clutch right down until the lights turn amber. Now find the biting point, just enough so that the front of the car lifts up. When the lights go green - and if it is safe to move off. Release the handbrake - keeping both feet absolutely still until the car is up to walking speed. It will move off promptly and reliably.

    So you are allowing the car to move off by releasing the handbrake rather than trying to make it go by bringing the clutch up. This way you can move off promptly and reliably exactly when you want to at the first available safe opportunity every time.

    Try it and let us know how you get on.
    I love you! That's what I meant in the post you quoted but I explained it weirldly, it seems much easier now!!
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    (Original post by myDrivingInstr)
    Nope. I can pretty much guarantee you will either roll back on a hill, stall or both that way.

    Here is how I have taught it for the last 20 odd years with great success.

    ...
    Can I also ask you one more question because I'd want to know before my lesson next week.

    Say for example; I'm going 20mph on a road and I have to slow down a bit but the traffic is continously moving still so I don't have to come to a complete standstill whilst holding up the handbrake etc.

    Could I just slowly and firmly tap the break for it to slow down and carry on and if I do need to stop, break then clutch all the way down.
    Or even if I want to turn slowly or even slow down. I still use the clutch? if that makes sense.
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    In queues of traffic a good game is to see how long you can go without actually stopping.

    The trick is not to avoid stopping but avoid arriving where you will be forced to stop - leaving plenty of space between you and the vehicle in front. Let the vehicle in front move away more quickly so the gap between you opens up. When it brakes you have plenty of space to slow down into again. If you get it right the car in front might be on the move again before you have to stop.

    The main way to control the speed is with the gas. More gas to speed up. Lift gently off the gas to slow down. If it is not slowing down quickly enough gently brake, gradually increasing the pressure on the brake until you are comfortably stopping a couple of car lengths short of where you actually want to stop. Then you can ease off the brake and allow the car to run out of momentum exactly where you want it to. So by the time you have stopped you are hardly moving

    I'm a big fan of lifting completely off the gas early. Modern cars sense that the wheels are driving the engine rather than vice versa and shut off the flow of fuel until it is needed to keep the engine running or you accelerate again.

    You only need to put the clutch down to change gear or prevent a stall. Some instructors insist that you should never coast - that is allow the car to roll with clutch fully down. That is not strictly true because there are situations where coasting is positively helpful. You should avoid coasting unnecessarily. You do not need to coast if there is a lower gear in which you could be driving. But what happens if you are in 1st and your car wants to go faster than the car in front? Answer - coast. With the clutch down you can allow the car to go incredibly slowly, smoothly and without stalling. If the car slows down a little too much gently bring the clutch up to keep it moving.

    Nice thing to know. Most modern cars will chug along quite happily in first gear with your feet off the pedals (not too far off mind - you might need them again in a hurry). Diesels are brilliant for this they even do it in 2nd and up hill!

    Correct choice of gear is important. If it feels like you are trying to hold the car back all the time you are in too high a gear. It should feel like you are urging the car forward not fighting to hold it back.

    Rough guide
    0 - 10 mph 1st gear
    10 - 20mph 2nd gear
    20 - 30mph 3rd gear
    30+ 4th gear
    50+ 5th gear
    When using 5th accelerate up to 50, 60, 70mph which ever speed you will be cruising at - then select 5th.

    Ok so lets go to your example of driving along a road. Let's say it's a 30 limit but the flow of traffic is varying between 10 and 30 or even occasionally stopping.

    You are doing about 20 -25 probably in 3rd gear the traffic ahead is slowing possibly to a full stop.

    Scenario 1
    The car in front is slowing to a stop with the rest of the traffic.
    Get the your speed down to walking speed by the time you are 2 - 3 car lengths behind the car in front.
    If the car in front is now stationary keep braking, select 1st and keep your foot on the clutch try not to arrive at the best place to stop, where you can still see tarmac between you, but don't go past it.
    If the car in front starts to move away with the rest of the traffic come off the brake, ease up on the clutch and follow.

    Scenario 2
    Car in front did stop but is accelerating away with the rest of the traffic by the time you have slowed to about walking speed 2 - 3 car lengths back.
    Select 2nd gear and follow. (If the rest of the traffic is moving off but the car in front of you isn't - you are still in scenario 1. It may have broken down or stalled)

    Turning left into a side road.
    Get the speed down to walking speed by the time you are 2 - 3 car lengths away from where you need to start turning.
    If it is a not particularly sharp housing estate sort of a corner and it is clear to proceed select 2nd gear bring the clutch up and allow the car to trickle into the road with your foot of the gas. Straighten up and gently accelerate away again.

    If it is a very sharp corner keep slowing, select 1st, depending on just how sharp it is you might need to coast to be able to go slow enough but quite often 1st with clutch up and you foot off the gas will be slow enough for the steering to be easy.

    So to sum up coasting is only really acceptable when it is the only way to get the car slow enough in 1st (or reverse for that matter).

    Hope that makes sense.

    (Pedants out there may have noticed that I have suggested selecting 2nd gear at 'walking speed' which in reality is about 3mph. Whereas in the rough guide I suggest that 2nd gear should be engaged at 10mph. Over the years I have discovered that if I ask a pupil to drive at 'walking speed' they drive at lot nearer 10mph than 3mph. In these situations I want them to be looking out the window rather than at the speedometer. So 'walking speed' gets the result I want rather than being pedantically correct)
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    im shiit at clutch control. always stall -.-
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    (Original post by shawtyb)
    im shiit at clutch control. always stall -.-
    Me too! I jjst had a lesson 2 hours ago and we were on the road.. Turning right or left on junctions. .ffs went either too slow or stalled or didnt break enough and it was so annoying plus confusing
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    (Original post by GeorgeAndLennie)
    Me too! I jjst had a lesson 2 hours ago and we were on the road.. Turning right or left on junctions. .ffs went either too slow or stalled or didnt break enough and it was so annoying plus confusing
    it drives me crazy. havent had any lessons in a few years now, its just too expensive
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    (Original post by shawtyb)
    it drives me crazy. havent had any lessons in a few years now, its just too expensive
    This is my.4th lesson basically. Its too difficult to change and then gears going fast and slow to control clutch :'(
 
 
 
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