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Old 08-10-2010, 08:45 PM
 
Location: Eastern Washington
8,825 posts, read 23,242,151 times
Reputation: 4817

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OP, if you have a cable operated clutch, it probably is adjusted too tight.

If it's hydraulic, you may have a clutch master cylinder port plugged, I forget what it's called, but when you start to depress the clutch or brake pedal, you will see a little squirt of fluid upwards from this port before it is closed off by the piston. This port allows more fluid into the system to compensate for wear of clutch or disc brake systems. If it's plugged, on a brake system you get dragging brakes, on a clutch it may essentially cause it to be "auto-adjusted" too tight.

Hope that makes sense, maybe someone will post up the correct name of this.

If you take the lid off the clutch or combined master cylinder reservoir, and have someone push the clutch pedal (gently, slowly) you should see the upwelling if the port is not clogged.

To add to 88's discussion, most cars have an "over-center" effect when the clutch is adjusted right, so the pedal gets a bit softer when it's down all the way.

BTW, that feature is a sop to people who are too lazy to shift into neutral when sitting at a light. IMHO you should shift into neutral if you will be idling more than just a few seconds.
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Old 08-10-2010, 10:00 PM
 
Location: NYC & NJ
747 posts, read 1,427,520 times
Reputation: 308
Quote:
Originally Posted by NJGOAT View Post
He's referring to letting off the gas pedal. There are certain points where the engines RPM is in sync with the transmission gears and driveline. At those points you can take the car out of gear and catch the next gear without causing any damage. Synchronizers in the transmission do this for you when you shift normally. Just do a quick search for "clutchless shifting" and you can see how it's done. Each car is different based on the ratios in the trans and it takes practice to do it right. It is also much easier to do on older, simpler more worn transmissions. I personally wouldn't recommend doing it as a matter of course but it can be a neat trick.
I wouldn't it recommend it either. It's a bit like hotwiring your car instead of turning the ignition key
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Old 08-10-2010, 10:14 PM
 
Location: Midwest
1,185 posts, read 1,574,469 times
Reputation: 670
Unless it's a big truck, push it all the way in.
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Old 08-10-2010, 11:43 PM
 
Location: Victoria TX
38,755 posts, read 39,152,929 times
Reputation: 28891
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chadro77 View Post
Unless it's a big truck, push it all the way in.
Shouldn't be necessary to push all the way in. My wife is very short, and the clutch needed to be pushed down to enable the starter. She could not push it down far enough to start the car, even in a little Sentra, without considerable contortions of her body (we had to have the starter enabling switch adjusted so she could even start the car comfortably). It would be virtually impossible for her to drive the car, if she needed to push the clutch all the way down for every gear change.

There is plenty of excess play. Put it down as far as your leg comfortably extends.
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Old 08-10-2010, 11:49 PM
 
1,065 posts, read 1,746,612 times
Reputation: 769
I press it all the way down.

I'm not in a hurry.
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Old 08-11-2010, 08:22 AM
 
Location: Pikesville, MD
4,925 posts, read 5,501,443 times
Reputation: 4472
The clutch pedal only has to disengage the clutch face from the flywheel. And unless your clutch comes in contact with the flywheel and starts to grab right off the bottom of the pedal travel (and 99% do not and should not), then you only HAVE to push it as far as it takes to disengage (which is right after the grab point when you're letting the lutch out). Push the pedal all the way down, do not touch the throttle. Let the clutch up slowly, and where it starts to "grab" (i.e. the engine rpms start to drop and/or the car starts to move) is the point where the pedal HAS to go in order to be disengaged. Pushing the pedal farther than that isn't really doing anything for you, other than maybe making the movement easier on your leg, depending on how long your leg is and your seating position.
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Old 08-11-2010, 11:56 AM
 
Location: So. of Rosarito, Baja, Mexico
5,291 posts, read 10,364,793 times
Reputation: 4032
The clutch pedal adjustment determines at what point a person can shift gears w/o any grinding. It is not always necessary to press completely to the floor between gears.

You first try to put into 1st gear while slowly pressing down on the clutch pedal and at a point the trans goes into gear is how far the pedal has to be pressed down...not always to the floorboard. If a person has to press to the floor and still gets a grinding sound then the pedal needs to be adjusted...simple procedure for a mechanic.

I would always adjust my customers car taking into consideration if a wife or daughters with high heels drove the car. Those with the high heels always were grinding the gears and complained to the husband/father and of course he came to me. The point of clutch engagement off the floor had to be considered/raised...thus how far it was needed to be pressed down to enable shifting.

Steve
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Old 08-11-2010, 06:06 PM
 
354 posts, read 320,972 times
Reputation: 160
Quote:
Originally Posted by Merc63 View Post
The clutch pedal only has to disengage the clutch face from the flywheel. And unless your clutch comes in contact with the flywheel and starts to grab right off the bottom of the pedal travel (and 99% do not and should not), then you only HAVE to push it as far as it takes to disengage (which is right after the grab point when you're letting the lutch out). Push the pedal all the way down, do not touch the throttle. Let the clutch up slowly, and where it starts to "grab" (i.e. the engine rpms start to drop and/or the car starts to move) is the point where the pedal HAS to go in order to be disengaged. Pushing the pedal farther than that isn't really doing anything for you, other than maybe making the movement easier on your leg, depending on how long your leg is and your seating position.
Ditto.
When the clutch disengages you've gone far enough.
The only real reason to push it to the floor is then you "know" you've pushed it far enough and don't have to worry about grinding gears.
If the gears ain't grinding, your fine.
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