How to: Driving a Manual/Stick-shift Vehicle
Have you ever wanted to learn how to drive ‘stick’; or maybe, the car you saved up for only comes with a manual transmission? Perhaps you rather look more ‘slick’ and have more experience by driving a manual rather than a plain old automatic? Driving a manual vehicle is not very difficult if you follow these steps: getting used to using the clutch-pedal and the gearbox, beginning to drive, and learning to shift while driving. When first learning how to drive a standard (Manual) vehicle, you need to become accustomed to using the three foot- pedals, instead of using only two like you normally would when driving an automatic vehicle. The three pedals, from left to right, consist of the clutch, the brake, and the gas pedals. Aside from using only two of the pedals (Gas/Brake) when driving an automatic vehicle which shifts gears for you; the clutch pedal is used to engage/disengage the engine from the transmission. The clutch’s function is to regulate the engines torque and transfer it to the transmission. When you depress the clutch pedal, you are typically disconnecting the wheels from the engine. A clutch allows the driver to smoothly engage the vehicle’s spinning engine to a non-spinning transmission by controlling the slippage between them. When learning to drive a manual-transmission vehicle, remember that you only use your left foot for the clutch pedal; as your right foot is used for only the gas and brake pedals.
Now that you understand the basic concepts of how a manual transmission works, the next step is to start the vehicle, in order to start the engine of a manual-transmission vehicle you must depress the clutch all the way, make sure the gearbox is in the neutral position, then twist the car key into the ‘start’ position to start the engine like you would in an automatic vehicle. After you have started-up the vehicle, you may release your foot...