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Old 05-15-2013, 08:51 PM   #1
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Some odd manual driving questions

So I've had my tj for a few months now. Its my first manual and I've got the hang of it... most of the time. Well it seems like it depends on the day. Some days I can drive it very smoothly and others not so much. Sometimes I get so frustrated that it gets worse. But my biggest frustration is I still seem to have a problem with the transition between gas and no gas. As I slow down slowly by letting out the gas ever so slightly it reaches a point where it transitions from accelerating to engine braking. If I do this REALLLY slow its smooth enough that its not noticeable but its really hard to get it right all the time. The slight but definitely noticeable jerk that happens if I don't get it just right is slightly annoying. Is this just a jeep thing or just my jeep edit: or my poor driving skills?

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Old 05-15-2013, 09:05 PM   #2
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At what rpm are you letting up on the gas? And what gear are you in? Sounds like you need an experienced driver to review your manual trans driving skills to see what's going on.

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Old 05-15-2013, 09:18 PM   #3
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At different rpms and at whatever gear that I'm at. But the jerk is most obvious in second. And yes I do, but most(all) people that I know that drive sticks drive rice burners. I've been thinking this is just another jeep/manual thing I would get the hang of in time, but I'm beginning to second guess that. Also I leaned solo by reading and watching vids. I try to always stay in gear and never coast to get better but this transition thing is a bit annoying.

Just to clear up when I say slow down I don't mean just slowing down to a stop or to downshift although a lot of time thats the case. Say the car in front of me slowed down a bit and I'm far enough behind that I don't need to brake but just let off the gas slightly but unless I'm very conscious of where the skinny pedal is it jerks a bit.
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Old 05-15-2013, 09:31 PM   #4
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I'm not sure if this is the very best way to do it, but if I need to slow down a bit I just push the clutch and pop into neutral
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Old 05-15-2013, 09:31 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by PaulisTJ View Post
At different rpms and at whatever gear that I'm at. But the jerk is most obvious in second. And yes I do, but most(all) people that I know that drive sticks drive rice burners. I've been thinking this is just another jeep/manual thing I would get the hang of in time, but I'm begging to second guess that. Also I leaned solo by reading and watching vids. I try to always stay in gear and never coast to get better but this transition thing is a bit annoying.

Just to clear up when I say slow down I don't mean just slowing down to a stop or to downshift although a lot of time thats the case. Say the car in front of me slowed down a bit and I'm far enough behind that I don't need to brake but just let off the gas slightly but unless I'm very conscious of where the skinny pedal is it jerks a bit.
From your description, it sounds to me that maybe when that happens, you are in a lower gear than you should be at the time. Normally I stay between about 1800 and 2500 rpms, around town and use whatever gear keeps me in that range.
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Old 05-15-2013, 09:38 PM   #6
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I'm not sure if this is the very best way to do it, but if I need to slow down a bit I just push the clutch and pop into neutral
Thats coasting. I realize there are widely differing opinions on this matter but I just chose not to, simply to improve my shifting. Also say I'm coasting then when I need to accelerate I'd need to clutch in and rev match which is a lot more work than letting off the gas a bit even if its slightly under the rpm range I should be at. Is this a no no? Like I said I'm self taught so I'm open to criticism.
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Old 05-15-2013, 09:40 PM   #7
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Sounds like a jeep thing. I've never really paid attention to it, but chalk it up to the vehicle being light. No matter how I shift my jeep it bucks and bounces. Just how it is.
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Old 05-15-2013, 09:46 PM   #8
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From your description, it sounds to me that maybe when that happens, you are in a lower gear than you should be at the time. Normally I stay between about 1800 and 2500 rpms, around town and use whatever gear keeps me in that range.
I understand how you could think that but usually the jerk happens most when the rpms are on the higher range. The jerk is less evident if I do this around the rpm range when I should downshift. I apologize for the poor explanation its a bit hard to put it into words.

On a side note could this have anything to do with my throttle body? I have no clue when it was cleaned last. My logic is the gunk might somehow be related but I'm not very car savvy. I'm learning tho
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Old 05-15-2013, 09:50 PM   #9
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Sounds like a jeep thing. I've never really paid attention to it, but chalk it up to the vehicle being light. No matter how I shift my jeep it bucks and bounces. Just how it is.
You might be right, just looking to see if this happens to other jeepers. Most of my buddies drive sedans and ricers and such.So I have to way to compare by driving other tj or yjs.
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Old 05-15-2013, 09:54 PM   #10
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Thats coasting. I realize there are widely differing opinions on this matter but I just chose not to, simply to improve my shifting. Also say I'm coasting then I need to accelerate I'd need to clutch in and rev match which is a lot more work than letting off the gas a bit even if its slightly under the rpm range I should be at. Is this a no no? Like I said I'm self taught so I'm open to criticism.
first things first, what RPM are you shifting at? i usually shift at around 2K and try to cruise at 1.5K, (i have an 06 with the 6 speed tranny) If you are much over 2K when you engage the clutch it will engine brake quite a bit.

keeping it in gear while slowing isn't going to improve your shifting. although putting it in neutral then back into gear will help your shifting immensely. you will learn at what speeds require what gears and along with that what gears to what speed to what RPM you will be at. ex, 6th gear, 60 mph, im at 2K RPM

If you need to RPM match when going from neutral back into a gear you are going to to low of a gear. go one or two gears higher and see how that feels. you should be able to put into that gear and let out on the clutch, depending on what gear your in the engine will bog, (to high of a gear) or it will engine brake and send your RPMs soaring (to low of a gear)

With that being said depending on the mechanical state of your jeep could be causing you some issues as well. if the slave cylinder is excessively worn it may not be completely separating the friction plate from the flywheel hence why you get "excessive" engine braking even when the clutch is in.

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On a side note could this have anything to do with my throttle body? I have no clue when it was cleaned last. My logic is the gunk might somehow be related but I'm not very car savvy. I'm learning tho
No the throttle body will have nothing to do with the jeep being jerky when shifting. asking questions is how you learn. simple as that.
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Old 05-15-2013, 09:56 PM   #11
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I've driven manuals all my life. Everything from the 48 Chevy pickup I learned on, to 18 wheelers. My Jeep drives the same as anything else I've driven. The only difference being it's a little slower to shift than some.
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Old 05-15-2013, 10:16 PM   #12
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Imo just drive the thing, get more miles under your belt. Learn the jeep... What it likes, what it doesnt like. If people say their jeep bucks n snorts everytime they shift they need more practice. Theres a sweet spot every time you shift, if your there it will be smooth and with no hiccups provided your two feet are doing their part. I wont own an auto. Everything ive ever had has been a three pedal vehicle and everyone has been different. I can shift my jeep smooth as silk, hardly making the nose, and i also blip the throttle when i down shift ( habit) but it never fails me. Learn the jeep, learn to shift. You will be fine.
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Old 05-15-2013, 10:35 PM   #13
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first things first, what RPM are you shifting at? i usually shift at around 2K and try to cruise at 1.5K, (i have an 06 with the 6 speed tranny) If you are much over 2K when you engage the clutch it will engine brake quite a bit.

keeping it in gear while slowing isn't going to improve your shifting. although putting it in neutral then back into gear will help your shifting immensely. you will learn at what speeds require what gears and along with that what gears to what speed to what RPM you will be at. ex, 6th gear, 60 mph, im at 2K RPM

If you need to RPM match when going from neutral back into a gear you are going to to low of a gear. go one or two gears higher and see how that feels. you should be able to put into that gear and let out on the clutch, depending on what gear your in the engine will bog, (to high of a gear) or it will engine brake and send your RPMs soaring (to low of a gear)

With that being said depending on the mechanical state of your jeep could be causing you some issues as well. if the slave cylinder is excessively worn it may not be completely separating the friction plate from the flywheel hence why you get "excessive" engine braking even when the clutch is in.



No the throttle body will have nothing to do with the jeep being jerky when shifting. asking questions is how you learn. simple as that.
Thanks for your tips. I usually shift at slightly higher rpms for a smooth up shift. If i'm accelerating faster than usual I up shift around 2300~2500. This might be because I run 31's on stock(3.73) I try to cruisce around >1800.
So help me out here. Say I'm cruising at ~30mph on 3rd and I put it into n and I've slowed down to say 10~15mph for a corner or something. I would need to blip the gas to rev up and let the clutch out and "catch" it while the rpms drop and gas it accordingly. I don't think i can just put it into 2nd without giving gas since the engine would idle at neutral. Is this the wrong way of rev matching? or down shifting.
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Old 05-15-2013, 10:41 PM   #14
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I've driven manuals all my life. Everything from the 48 Chevy pickup I learned on, to 18 wheelers. My Jeep drives the same as anything else I've driven. The only difference being it's a little slower to shift than some.
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Imo just drive the thing, get more miles under your belt. Learn the jeep... What it likes, what it doesnt like. If people say their jeep bucks n snorts everytime they shift they need more practice. Theres a sweet spot every time you shift, if your there it will be smooth and with no hiccups provided your two feet are doing their part. I wont own an auto. Everything ive ever had has been a three pedal vehicle and everyone has been different. I can shift my jeep smooth as silk, hardly making the nose, and i also blip the throttle when i down shift ( habit) but it never fails me. Learn the jeep, learn to shift. You will be fine.
You guys are right. I agree that I need more miles under me. But I think this jerking thing isn't a shifting issue as this will happen at whatever rpm and gear it just depends on how slow or fast I let off the gas.

Also another thing I just want to clear up just in case this jerk that I keep going on about isn't something like something where the whole jeep buckles back and forth its more of a tug... if that helps.
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Old 05-15-2013, 10:47 PM   #15
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I think the jerk you're referring to when you let off of the pedal is probably normal driveline slack. All manuals I've ever owned do that when you let off of the gas.
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Old 05-15-2013, 10:53 PM   #16
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Once you get the hang of it you'll never go back to driving an automatic. Took 5 months for my diesel to come in, but it was worth it for the manual tranny
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Old 05-15-2013, 11:06 PM   #17
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Like you said, it just takes time. When I got my TJ, it has been about 8 years since I had driven anything but an automatic. Even though I'm a seasoned manual driver, it took a little bit for me to get the feel of driving the Jeep. Every vehicle is different. You'll learn it.
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Old 05-15-2013, 11:14 PM   #18
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I'm thinking your rear control arm bushings are worn. the slop is causing the jerking.
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Old 05-15-2013, 11:46 PM   #19
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My TJ (5 speed) does this too when let off the gas in lower gears (usually 2 and 3). I am usually between 1500 and 2000 rpm when it occurs. I was also wondering if something was wrong?

It has been a while but I used to drive manuals a lot when I was younger. Mostly ford and chevy trucks, but I don't recall ever feeling that jerk before when I let off the gas pedal. It literally feels like you just gave the brake pedal a quick little jab.

Maybe it is just a jeep thing, but I am pretty used to shifting in this thing now and it just doesn't feel normal to me.
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Old 05-16-2013, 12:53 AM   #20
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My TJ does the same "tug" I assume all manuals do it. Anytime I slow down its easier to push in the clutch and go to neutral.
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Old 05-16-2013, 12:56 AM   #21
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Yeah I usually just go neutral anyway unless it's a really steep hill. Just one of those odd feelings I was curious about
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Old 05-16-2013, 01:01 AM   #22
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Agreed with going into neutral. If you're still jerking around you've got other issues.
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Old 05-16-2013, 01:22 AM   #23
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It seems like this might just be another jeep thing... Ok so to continue my noobieness what is the best way to put it back into gear from neutral? Like I described above I usually blip the gas and "catch" the clutch as the rpm drops. Are there other more efficient ways?
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Old 05-16-2013, 01:53 AM   #24
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Jeeps drive like a tractor. It's not necessary to blip the gas from neutral when decreasing speed. Even when increasing speed you should be able to drop into gear before applying gas (while rolling). They're not as precise as a sports car.
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Old 05-16-2013, 01:56 AM   #25
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Don't put it into neutral to coast. But In the event that I am in neutral at speed, ill just put it in a gear where the engine rpms will nearly match the trans. For example, if I'm doing 30 ill put it in 4th where the trans is spinning close to 1000rpms. That's just an example, so don't do too much math lol

But I tried to get it to jerk when leaving off the gas and I could only get it to slightly shake while in 4th or 5th gear and coasting around 1500... Jeep thing...

But don't go crazy over these things. These vehicles can handle the abuse we give them offroad and keep asking for more. If your going to blow clutches out fast, just ask someone to get in with you. If they say you suck at driving it, then it's time to reevaluate things lol
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Old 05-16-2013, 01:58 AM   #26
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It seems like this might just be another jeep thing... Ok so to continue my noobieness what is the best way to put it back into gear from neutral? Like I described above I usually blip the gas and "catch" the clutch as the rpm drops. Are there other more efficient ways?
Yes, from neutral, say youre going 30 mph. I know in my jeep, I run 30 mph in third gear at i think 1500 rpm. So, from neutral, I put the clutch in, put it in third and release the clutch. This is if im just cruising in a neighborhood or whatever.

If I need to accelerate from 30 mph, im going to want to shift into 2nd.
So again from neutral, put the clutch in, move shifter to second, and release clutch. Now in second i will run probably around 2k rpm, so when i release the clutch the rpms are going to rev up to catch up, causing the engine braking feel you described earlier in the post. So youre going to want to feather the gas as if you were starting from a dead stop in first, and do the whole clutch-gas balancing. It will take a little bit of practice
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Old 05-16-2013, 01:59 AM   #27
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jeeps drive like a tractor. It's not necessary to blip the gas from neutral when decreasing speed. Even when increasing speed you should be able to drop into gear before applying gas (while rolling). They're not as precise as a sports car.
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Old 05-16-2013, 02:11 AM   #28
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Wouldn't worry about it too much mine does the same thing, I've learned it's just what the jeep likes to do. I've driven stick since I got my license and refuse to buy anything automatic. A manual jeep is its own beast I've driven manual Hondas, celicas, f250s, genesis, and a few Volkswagens they all drive a little different but the jeep is the most unique. Just enjoy it. When i first started out i was terrible, The more you drive it the more you will get the hang of it.
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Old 05-16-2013, 02:16 AM   #29
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Wouldn't worry about it too much mine does the same thing, I've learned it's just what the jeep likes to do. I've driven stick since I got my license and refuse to buy anything automatic. A manual jeep is its own beast I've driven manual Hondas, celicas, f250s, genesis, and a few Volkswagens they all drive a little different but the jeep is the most unique. Just enjoy it. When i first started out i was terrible, The more you drive it the more you will get the hang of it.
X2 I don't know how to drive an automatic. Ill buy em sometimes but with no intention to keep them.

X2 on jeeps being a whole nother experience

You know you can drive it good when you can up shift and downshift without making your passengers head bobble forward and back!
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Old 05-16-2013, 04:51 AM   #30
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I think the jerk you're referring to when you let off of the pedal is probably normal driveline slack. All manuals I've ever owned do that when you let off of the gas.
I agree with this. It's also a high torque vehicle with lighter weight so (in my opinion) you will feel more of the on/off throttle. If you think the jeep is bad try chopping the throttle at high rpm on a high torque motorcycle.

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