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#1 07-09-09 18:30:42

bellydancer
Member
Registered: 06-09-09
Posts: 43

speed and gear

Hi, I am new to driving and have been taught to drive by ADI at 3rd gear for 30miles an hour.
Friend saw me doing that at a stretch of 30/hr road. It was quite empty and I was doing a consistent 30/hr , so I remained at 3rd gear.
He got me to change gears (3rd to 4th, 4th to 2nd, 1st to 3rd etc) every 20 seconds (speed was maintained at 30/hr) and that was making me feel stressed as I was worried about stalling as well in addition to all that extra gear changing....

Why would I need to change gears when speed has not changed ?
Friend said it was to make efficient use of petrol  :? but the more he explained, the more confused I got  sad

Can someone please explain to me if he is right or not?
This is doing my head in !!

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07-09-09 18:30:42

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Re: speed and gear



#2 07-09-09 20:13:57

FRANKS
Verified Member
From: WALES
Registered: 05-06-06
Posts: 530

Re: speed and gear

Sorry a bit confused by what your friend is doing with you.

Firstly, talk to you ADI about it.

I teach to use 3rd or 4th in a 30 zone depending on hazards, road (gradients etc). Saying to use 3rd for 30 zones and 4th for 40 zones, etc is to black and white, use common sense. if the carwill do 30mph in 4th then use it, and yes it will save you fuel.


Try always to be honest in everthing you do.
Be an 'HONEST BUSINESS PERSON'
Gain respect in ever thing you do

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#3 08-09-09 04:36:40

ExAdiNigel
Member
From: Plymouth, Devon
Registered: 13-12-04
Posts: 4,739

Re: speed and gear

I wonder if that was more as an exercise because chnaging the gears like that when your speed hasn't changed isn't going to do anything good to your fuel consumption.  Most cars will take 4th fairly happily at 30mph, though in some it may make it difficult to remain at 30 so there are times when 3rd may be more prudent.

When you are accelerating from stationary do you go through the gears sequentially (ie 1st to 2nd to 3rd to 4th)?  Or do you miss some gears out?   In my Jetta I will often go from 1st to 2nd and then 4th, missing 3rd out completely, perhaps this is what your friend was working towards?

Nigel


National Standards Cycling Instructor, Ex Adi

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#4 08-09-09 06:57:10

collywobs
Verified Member
From: Tonbridge Kent
Registered: 07-08-06
Posts: 479
Website

Re: speed and gear

My car is diesel and it's definitely easier to regulate speed in a 30mph zone using 3rd gear. It will take 4th gear at 30mph but you have to be so light on the gas otherwise you soon find the speed of the car has crept up to 35mph!

I think it's ok to block change gears at higher speed. For example, if you were travelling at 40mph in 3rd gear you could change straight to 5th gear on an appropriate road.

Frequent, unnecessary gear changing will waste fuel and increase wear & tear on both engine & gearbox.


Colin Kentish
Grade 6 DSA Approved Driving Instructor (car)
www.colinkentish.co.uk

Dream as if you'll live for ever
Live as if you'll die today

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#5 08-09-09 08:14:41

mazmw
Member
Registered: 07-04-09
Posts: 24

Re: speed and gear

Now i am confused, my instructor has taught me not to block change up gears he says this can damage the car but it is ok to block change down gears, he as also taught me to stay in 3rd at 30.  I am starting to doubt if i am cut out for this driving lark.

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#6 08-09-09 08:40:39

bobbycat
Verified Member
From: chesterfield
Registered: 14-03-07
Posts: 216

Re: speed and gear

It really does depend on the car that you drive.  I generally find in my 1.4 diesel that 3rd gear at 30mph works best but im some wide open roads then 4th is perfectly ok.  As far as block changing up is concerned, why not?  I always teach 3rd to 5th if you are building your speed up quickly on say a slip road or dual carriageway. 

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#7 08-09-09 09:10:59

dog
Verified Member
Registered: 29-10-06
Posts: 813

Re: speed and gear

If it's flat I use 6th at 30mph. Only use 5th or 4th or 3rd if it starts going uphill or I need quick acceleration.

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#8 08-09-09 09:12:22

dog
Verified Member
Registered: 29-10-06
Posts: 813

Re: speed and gear

I also normally go from 3rd to 6th when joining/leaving dual carriageway and it has never done any damage to my car or gearbox

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#9 09-09-09 05:24:40

ExAdiNigel
Member
From: Plymouth, Devon
Registered: 13-12-04
Posts: 4,739

Re: speed and gear

Now i am confused, my instructor has taught me not to block change up gears he says this can damage the car

Sorry, but your instructor is talking out of his rear end when he says this.  It certainly doesn't damage the car if you block change up the gears.

That said, there is no compulsion to do so.  If you find it easier to change up (or down) sequentially then that is OK.

but it is ok to block change down gears, he as also taught me to stay in 3rd at 30.  I am starting to doubt if i am cut out for this driving lark.

Again, staying in 3rd at 30 is OK.  You wont be failed for doing so.  In the long run, you may waste a little fuel, but even that would be marginal.

Everyone drives differently.  Instructors teach/coach differently too.  Some prefer to give fairly rigid rules for a learner to follow which can help the learner pick up the necessary skills quicker but some prefer to make the pupil think more for themselves - this helps the pupil to be more independent and more capable of dealing with some of the more unusual situations that can be found on the roads.

Nigel


National Standards Cycling Instructor, Ex Adi

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#10 11-09-09 06:08:54

ADI Education
Verified Member
From: Lincolnshire
Registered: 31-08-09
Posts: 351
Website

Re: speed and gear

Hi
I think you are all missing the point here :?
The gear that you select should not only match the road speed of the vehicle but the prevailing circumstances e.g. on a long straight stretch of 30mph road with few potential hazards then you should be selecting the highest possible gear to maintain a constant 30mph speed (even cruise control if you have it). Depending on the characteristics of the vehicle (engine capacity diesel/ petrol etc)this could be 3rd/4th/5th gear. If the circumstances change however, then selecting a lower more suitable gear to enable you to use acceleration sense to plan your approach in and out of potential or actual hazards wouls be more appropriate.
So to sum up use the correct gear to match the road speed,  traffic conditions and the vehicles capabilities.Easy really
As for block changing up the box, whats the problem???? if it is appropriate for the situation why put in an extra gear change?   


I am a former Police Driving Instructor and Ex DSA ADI examiner. My qualifications include: BTEC Level 4 Police Driving Skills, BTEC Level 3 in Teaching Advanced driving, NVQ A1 Assessors awrard, DIAmond advanced test, RoSPA gold, Cardington A. I am a grade 6 DSA Instructor, fleet trained and a Class 1 Police Driver. www.janeclarkedrivinginstructortraining.co.uk

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#11 11-09-09 06:29:04

ExAdiNigel
Member
From: Plymouth, Devon
Registered: 13-12-04
Posts: 4,739

Re: speed and gear

....I think you are all missing the point here :?....

Was I really?

Don't be so !!!!!!!! patronising!

Nigel


National Standards Cycling Instructor, Ex Adi

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#12 11-09-09 07:54:30

ADI Education
Verified Member
From: Lincolnshire
Registered: 31-08-09
Posts: 351
Website

Re: speed and gear

Nigel
reply not aimed at you specifically and was meant to be !!!!!!!!!!!informative not !!!!!!!!!!patronising why so defensive????????


I am a former Police Driving Instructor and Ex DSA ADI examiner. My qualifications include: BTEC Level 4 Police Driving Skills, BTEC Level 3 in Teaching Advanced driving, NVQ A1 Assessors awrard, DIAmond advanced test, RoSPA gold, Cardington A. I am a grade 6 DSA Instructor, fleet trained and a Class 1 Police Driver. www.janeclarkedrivinginstructortraining.co.uk

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#13 11-09-09 18:19:10

ExAdiNigel
Member
From: Plymouth, Devon
Registered: 13-12-04
Posts: 4,739

Re: speed and gear

Simply because you aimed it at EVERYONE who had contributed - you used a phrase that said we were ALL missing the point!

Why so defensive?  If I am attacked my natural response is to defend!  I try not to attack, I think it is the wroing way of going about it!

While we're at it, I don't think the other contributors were missing the point either!  In fact you have fairly well summed up what the other trainers had already said - yet you think we were missing the point?

Nigel


National Standards Cycling Instructor, Ex Adi

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#14 11-09-09 18:42:41

The Saint
Verified Member
From: Languedoc
Registered: 09-07-07
Posts: 370

Re: speed and gear

ADI Education....

Nigel has contributed to this thread in a positive way. To tell everyone that they are missing the point will obviously make all contributors to this thread feel uncomfortable. Everyone has their own views and that is what this forum is about.

Please understand that these views are given freely and in good faith.

When you come out with a statement that generalises to that degree I can understand Nigel's post.





Did you think you didn't have to choose it?
That I alone could win or lose it?
In all the places we were hiding love
What was it we were thinking of?

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#15 12-09-09 08:42:08

KevB
Verified Member
From: Amesbury
Registered: 06-06-08
Posts: 1,725
Website

Re: speed and gear

Meanwhile, back in "Answer the question Land"...........

Gear selection is all about being in the highest gear relevent to the current speed and any anticipated speed changes that are soon to be made.

Most cars will cruise along in 4th gear at 30mph with very little gas, and can go down as low as 25mph provided the gas is squeezed very gently when you want to return to 30mph. The acceleration and deceleration will be mild and gentle, and the engine will require the least amount of fuel, thus saving you money and is environmentally friendly. So you can hug a tree with a wad of notes in your pocket.

However, if you anticipate having to lower speed within the next 300 metres or so, perhaps due to pedestrian activity or heavier traffic conditions, traffic lights, junctions, having to move around parked vehicles etc, then selecting or remaining in 3rd gear will allow speed changes simply by using changes in gas pedal to a greater degree than being in 4th would allow. This would put less strain on the engine, require less brake use and allow you to control your car to a lower speed than being in 4th could.

bottom line is, if you think you may have to reduce your speed down to 25mph or lower in the short term, use 3rd. If you think you can maintain speeds between 25-30 over 300 metres or more, than use 4th.

or put another way, if road conditions permit you to maintain speeds above 25mph in the distance you can see to be clear, use 4th, otherwise use 3rd.

The above has already been said in various ways by most contributors to the thread already, but I thought i put it in a way that I explain it to my pupils in the hope of getting this thread back on track. smile

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