OT: Shifting Manual Tranny Without Clutching! - Mercedes-Benz Forum
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post #1 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-09-2011, 12:14 AM Thread Starter
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OT: Shifting Manual Tranny Without Clutching!

I'm posting this here because you folks seem to have much more xperience than most other forums, so here we go.

Don't know how many of you drive manual tranny cars, but I love them and hope all cars were manuals. Anyway, on Christmas day and after, it snowed here and I got stuck in the snow on my way to store driving my VW Beetle FWD. On my left, a ML320 was also stuck and I watched ad the "inexperienced" owner tried to pull his ML out of the snow. Tried to help him but he seemed to be one of those "smart" MB owners, so I focused on my Beetle. My daughter (a college freshman who drove the Beetle several times before heading to college) was in car with me. So I asked her to put in reverse while I tried to push car from front. I watched in horror as she shifted into reverse without clutching - and it went in!!!!! Boy was I worried about whatever damage had happened. So I asked her what she did - said she forgot that the clutch was needed and she heard a "grinding" noise as the gear was engaging!!!!!!!!! I'm thinking $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$ for repairs. That was just after X-Mas. So far, vehicle is performing like nothing ever happened. I do plan to do a complete tranny oil change soon though.

Any comments on what I may have missed in this scenario? Seemed like at the low RPM with vehicle stuck, the synchros didn't have any issues engaging gears.

BTW, was never able to get unstuck by pushing because loss of traction was not due to tires, but amount of snow that was under car. A neighbor with tractor clearing snow from his driveway was able to drag us free from snow. ML 320 was freed by a tow truck later.

Went home and took my ML500 through same route and no problems at all. Gotta love this truck!

1996 Z32 TT
A 18Hp lawn mower
370Z - I want one!

Last edited by Darkmann; 01-09-2011 at 12:23 AM.
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post #2 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-09-2011, 05:03 AM
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As a long-time driver, well versed in manual transmissions, there's something you can do called 'slip-shifting', in which you match engine speed with shifting and you can shift without depressing the clutch.

It's not for performance driving, it's suited more for cruising, and then, not all the time. It's harder to make it work on a downshift than an upshift. And some transmissions are easier to slip-shift than others.

The key is not letting the gears grind. Properly done, slip-shifting will NOT grind the gears.
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post #3 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-09-2011, 06:55 AM
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Talking Hey buddy...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Darkmann View Post
...Don't know how many of you drive manual tranny cars, but I love them and hope all cars were manuals....


Try driving a manual in a traffic-congested city like mine for 2 hours, to and from work, each day and then let's talk...
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post #4 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-09-2011, 07:14 AM
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Yep, could do same with my old toyota celica's. (can't remember if forward or reverse). I would not worry about damage. i would not change tranny fluid schedule.

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post #5 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-09-2011, 09:22 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks fellas. I know what you mean FAR, I used to drive in Lagos. Nigeria!

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post #6 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-09-2011, 10:11 AM
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Talking

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Thanks fellas. I know what you mean FAR, I used to drive in Lagos. Nigeria!
Oh my goodness!

YES, you certainly KNOW what I mean!
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post #7 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-09-2011, 07:46 PM
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Hey Darkmann:
My work truck for 18 years was an 85 S-10 Blazer 5 speed manual that I put 350K miles on. I learned to slip shift it so well that the only time I used the clutch was when I started or stopped if I so chose to do so.
For now I love my 05 ML 500SE automatic 5 speed. Guess I'm getting old!
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post #8 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-09-2011, 09:01 PM
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When I used to run in open wheel FF series we used Hewland gearbox and they have
no synchros at all. They are just more weight and more parts to break. Thus the heel toe
method and blipping the throttle with your heel to get the shaft speeds the same speed
to shift without grinding gears. I do it to my Tremec gearbox all the time in the Cobra
just for fun. It always is a hoot when the change the rear end gear ratio to get used
to the different rpms when shifting without the clutch.
It saved me a tow a long time ago when I snapped a clutch cable. I just slip shifted it
home and changed the cable.
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post #9 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-09-2011, 10:03 PM
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On the false grid before a race, and the guy beside me [a close competitor for the series lead] has lost his clutch in quali. I'm feeling like its going to be an easy win. Well, I knew he was good, but he was actually better than that. Never heard him miss a shift the whole race, and we were close enough most of the time that I could hear him.

As Noodles says, its all about rev matching and it becomes second nature once you've done it for a while. Synchro gearboxes will slide nicely into the next gear up or down when the revs are matched.
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post #10 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-10-2011, 08:33 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by APKhaos View Post
...
As Noodles says, its all about rev matching and it becomes second nature once you've done it for a while. Synchro gearboxes will slide nicely into the next gear up or down when the revs are matched.
That's nice. Never learnt rev matching but would love to. Any volunteer teachers?

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