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Premium Member
12 Premium 5-speed
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4,733 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
To go along with the http://www.subaruforester.org/vbulletin/f76/what-your-first-car-65826/ thread...

Mine was a full-size Dodge panel van, about a 1983 or so (I learned in 1985-86).

I don't know if the person who taught me had faith in my budding ability, a death wish, or simply knew of a surefire way to teach someone. We just went backward and forward, maybe 40 feet each way, on a lightly sloped gravel parking lot with a very steep, long, and unprotected (no barrier) downhill slope behind us. The fear of causing him, his van, and myself serious bodily injury was enough to keep me really focused on what he was saying. :icon_eek:

(And please, no AT bashing - lots of folks prefer that option and it doesn't make them any better or worse drivers or enthusiasts.)
 

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2007 Mitsubishi Pajero 5spd Automatic
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3,594 Posts
I don't know if this counts but the car I drove up in had a manual so that was no option. But then everyone here learns to drive a stick when taking the license. No AT school cars.
 

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The Modfather
2016 BRZ Limited - Manual 6 Speed Manual
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8,095 Posts
Besides my 72 Honda 50 I got for my 11th BD which had a clutch the first car was a truck. My dads retired work truck was a 1964 Chevy C10 with a 3 on the tree or a column shifter. He gave it to me for my first on the road vehicle. I had it a few months before hitting some black ice then a big tree :( I think I got my drivers license in 78 or 79 I forget.

as an aside I was teaching my 13YO son a few weeks ago how to drive a stick in the Miata a week before it got a new clutch. He did okay too, he was asking if he could try more after I got the clutch. Not sure about that though...
 

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Premium Member
2017 VW Golf SportWagen 5MT
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10,887 Posts
Lada 2105, I was 7 or 8 years old. It was my dad's, like this one:



Then, drove my uncle's 2103, one like this:



My dad also had a Niva when I was 13-14, I drove it off-road when we went hunting/fishing:



Russian cars FTW :icon_biggrin:

Stan
 

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2012 Subaru Outback Prem 6-Speed Manual
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130 Posts
not sure of the year as it was my buddy's vette... 80s something chevette - lol.

joel
 

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10 XT 4EAT
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887 Posts
For me it was an 84 Honda Prelude. Wonky cable clutch for the win. You sure had to have some leg strength and "the touch" to drive it smooth. Not many people were able to drive it, but it sure developed your technique. I have had people compliment me on my smoothness, even after not having driven stick in 5 years (although that was mainly salesmen when i was car hunting, so maybe a grain of salt for the compliment :p).
 

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2007 Forester 2.5x SE
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893 Posts
I learned, when I was 14 years old, on this...



and this...



The Kubota Farm Tractor has a terrible clutch to learn on. The "Sweet spot" (engaging point) is only like 1/8" wide, even though the Clutch petal travel is about 18". That and I was towing three loaded articulating Trailers (the trailers had 4 wheel steering) at a time. That and the fact that it red lines at about 2000 RPM and had 16 forward gears (8 Reverse speeds). On the other hand, the hand throttle was nice and top speed of about 25 MPH. Not many people learn on a 16 speed...
 

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177 Posts
I learned, when I was 14 years old, on this...




The Kubota Farm Tractor has a terrible clutch to learn on. The "Sweet spot" (engaging point) is only like 1/8" wide, even though the Clutch petal travel is about 18". That and I was towing three loaded articulating Trailers (the trailers had 4 wheel steering) at a time. That and the fact that it red lines at about 2000 RPM and had 16 forward gears (8 Reverse speeds). On the other hand, the hand throttle was nice and top speed of about 25 MPH. Not many people learn on a 16 speed...
Are you serious? On that fork lifter?

I learned how to drive manual in... I don't know how to drive manual yet. :< The first time and last time I TRIED to drive a manual shift car was in a 2005 Toyota Corolla 4 years ago (almost 5 years ago). It was in a pre-construction area where the roads and sidewalks were paved. No houses, yet. Lots of turns and stops. Jeez it was hard. First gear is always the hardest, or so my dad said with a frustrated tone. :crazy: I didn't have a permit back then so he was worried I didn't know how to drive. :biggrin: I knew how to drive way before that. But I still don't know how to drive manual. I would never want to drive manual in the snow anyways though. But it'd be nice for emergencies just in case that's the only car around.

Everyone says it's easy once you get past learning how to shift for first gear. At least I didn't have to start on a hill every time. :biggrin: I need to learn some day.
 

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2007 Forester 2.5x SE
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893 Posts
Are you serious? On that fork lifter?
Well not that one in particular, but very similar. It was a Toyota about that age/size. It was actually a joy to drive the Forklift compared with driving the Tractor. I learned on the Job. The Forklift had a very nice Clutch, but had have to learn to coast forward in with the Clutch in while revving the engine to drive the Hydraulics bringing the Forks up or down. It does get kind of tricky to get your forward Coasting speed timed with Holding the Clutch and Stepping on the Gas to bring the Forks up in time to slip the forks in to the pallet, because you can't step on the Brake at the same time (I only have two feet).

And if you start or stop too fast you'd spill the load. Same with driving the Tractor. You had to learn to be smooth very quickly.
 

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Smooshed FOTY 2011
2005 Lifted 2.5 XT 5-Speed MT Dual-Range
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5,813 Posts
Learned to drive a stick on my neighbors 1993 Honda Prelude VTEC. She never drove it other than to work, so it was in pristine condition. On the weekends, she let me (being in high school at the time) take it out every weekend as long as I washed and waxed it for her to use during the week. She would even pay me for the detailing and fill up the tank. That was the life. Got many tickets in that damn car too, all worth it. :biggrin:

 

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1999 Forester Manual
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30 Posts
Late '40's Ford 8N tractor when I was ~12 years old. Great way to learn how to use a clutch because you take the accelerator pedal factor out of the equation. Engine speed was controlled by a lever on the dash- set it and forget it. You had to stop to change gears but you could start out in any of the four foward speeds. Great stuff, I miss that old thing!
 

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2000 Forester
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263 Posts
First manual was a 1978 Pontiac Firebird Formula, pushing 400hp and a 4sp. at around 15, slightly difficult first one.


Then I considered buying a 1980 Honda Civic with a 5sp. Barely any clutch needed for 1st and non for the rest. Was a bit too expensive tho.


And finally, during my trip to New Zealand this past spring, I had to quickly remember how to drive a manual, as we were renting this VW 2.0 Diesel 5sp for a week. Pretty sure I destroyed the clutch on those steep mountain roads! Actually one of the most fun vehicle's I've ever driven! This one was ours, I called her "Nimble"
 
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