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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
OK let me start first by apologizing if i'm in the wrong place and invite any mod to move this thread if necessary. Also, please let it be known I have tried hours and hours of research and practice, I even just got home after about a 2 hour drive and the only reason I stopped was because I was so frustrated.

For comparison I drove a 2000 civic coupe for about a year, it was easier to drive than this car. Needless to say I am disappointed. The car is fun don't get me wrong, but for the life of me I CANNOT get the takeoff right on this car.

Before the typical suggestions, no I am not launching the car and the motor is not hitting the firewall; no I do not have the AC on and the idle is too low; no I do not think it has to do with the assist spring or clutch engagement.

Now to the issue, I can not get a solid takeoff without SOME type of jerk, buck, kickback, whatever youd like to call it. Now I do not mean the car is violently jerking back and forth, as it would with maybe a first time driver. However, it is enough to feel. Now what I think the issue is, is the little throttle blip when letting the clutch out. This seems to be some form of anti-stall for first time standard drivers, and it drives me absolutely bat****.

The blip itself is not what gives me the jerk, kick, whatever, at least most of the time. But it does throw off my "blend" of clutch to gas if thats what you would call it. It almost forces me to rev to 12-1500 RPMs to avoid the blip so that - I - am in control of the takeoff and not this bs computer assisted junk.

Without going into detail with all the things I've tried, and believe me I've tried just about anything you can find on this form, can someone tell me that they have had the same experience and what fixed it? The only thing I can find somewhat relevant to the issue I am having is what STRATIFIED describes as takeoff assist. However I don't know if what I am describing is this said takeoff assist, therefore I cannot say if taking it off would help/harm.

Any help would be appreciated, please and thanks in advance.
 

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There are several things that can cause this. It is pretty hard to determine what is causing the issue without seeing a video of what you are talking about. It could be something you are doing in your release of the clutch and application of the throttle causing it or it could be some issue with the (fly by wire) throttle system.


1st gear is very low in this car, and when driving in a parking lot at just above idle, with very slight application of the accelerator pedal my car sometime surges also. Sometimes to the point I have to take my foot off the pedal, then re apply the throttle slightly.

I would suggest having a tech take a drive with you to help determine if the issue is something in your driving technique or an issue with the fly by wire system.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
I am almost positive it is not a surge due to adding to much gas, because it almost seems like the slower I take off the more noticeable it is. It definitely feels like something with the clutch, but at the same time I can almost feel its not the clutch itself. Like i said in the honda, without the little throttle blip bs, I controlled the throttle to clutch ratio. With this car, I feel like I am forced to work with the computers automatic blip it adds when the clutch is let up and I hate it. I just want to be able to smoothly blend the clutch and gas by myself with no computer assist, anti stall, take off assist, etc.

Edit: Also, I really feel like this would all be smoothed out by deleting the throttle blip and maybe even getting a clutch with a LWFW set up (not just particularly for this but also the 1-2 shift). However I cannot say with certainty that I know any company or specific tuner who has found this take off assist in the software and been able to turn it off.
 

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More then likely it is nothing you are doing to cause the issue because you sound like you are experienced at driving a manual trans car. I would still have a tech take a ride with you so you can demonstrate to them what you are experiencing and see what they think is causing it. Another option is see if you can shoot a video of what you are experiencing and post it here so we can better evaluate the issue.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I will have to post a video, but no do not let me fool you I am definitely no expert at driving stick, but I am not an amateur. Like I said I had no problems with the civic. Do you give the car gas before you start letting the clutch out? In the civic I kind of did both at the same time, but I've been trying to watch videos and it seems like more people than less give the car gas before even lifting off the clutch at all. If you wouldnt mind could you give me a quick rundown on how you personally take off with no bucking ?
 

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I will have to post a video, but no do not let me fool you I am definitely no expert at driving stick, but I am not an amateur. Like I said I had no problems with the civic. Do you give the car gas before you start letting the clutch out? In the civic I kind of did both at the same time, but I've been trying to watch videos and it seems like more people than less give the car gas before even lifting off the clutch at all. If you wouldnt mind could you give me a quick rundown on how you personally take off with no bucking ?
Clutch pedal on floor, car idling. 1st apply slight throttle (1000-1200 rpm). Slowly release clutch and when the car starts to roll I apply a little more throttle and slowly release the clutch the rest of the way. Releasing the clutch too fast will cause the car to jerk.

You can practice this by going to a vacant lot or open area. Apply throttle to 1000-1200 rpm and slowly release the clutch without giving it any more throttle. Practice holding steady RPM at 1000-1200 and releasing the clutch smoothly. After getting that down you will easily be able to give it throttle and let the clutch out as you give it more throttle and take off. It just take practice cause these fly by wire cars have a very sensitive throttle pedal. With practice you will become more smooth.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
Clutch pedal on floor, car idling. 1st apply slight throttle (1000-1200 rpm). When the car starts to roll I release the clutch slowly and apply more throttle at the same time.

You can practice this by going to a vacant lot or open area. Apply throttle to 1000-1200 rpm and slowly release the clutch without giving it any more throttle. With practice you will become more smooth.
Ok now I know exactly what youre describing, but what happens is, that take off assist I keep talking about seems to blip the throttle by itself when it starts dropping from me letting the clutch out before I can start adding gas.

So basically this is how it happens, rev up, start letting clutch out, go to give more gas to compensate, but throttle already blipped, now im playing a balancing game against the take off assist, and if I let off the gas to almost restart myself, and push the clutch in again, it will blip again lol. Does this make sense?

EDIT: If it is hard to understand what I mean with this take off assist stuff, try letting your clutch out and watching the RPMs, once you get to about the friction point where you would be idling the RPMs blip to just over 1000, maybe 1100
 

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Ok now I know exactly what youre describing, but what happens is, that take off assist I keep talking about seems to blip the throttle by itself when it starts dropping from me letting the clutch out before I can start adding gas.

So basically this is how it happens, rev up, start letting clutch out, go to give more gas to compensate, but throttle already blipped, now im playing a balancing game against the take off assist, and if I let off the gas to almost restart myself, and push the clutch in again, it will blip again lol. Does this make sense?

EDIT: If it is hard to understand what I mean with this take off assist stuff, try letting your clutch out and watching the RPMs, once you get to about the friction point where you would be idling the RPMs blip to just over 1000, maybe 1100
Makes total sense. Post up a video, so we can further evaluate.

You are on the stock tune correct? Reason I ask is this car from the factory had an idle shuddering issue when the A/C was on. When you would roll up a few feet in 1st gear and then let off the throttle and pull in the clutch, when the A/C was on the car would shudder like it was going to stall. Ford applied a fix, an adjustment to the firmware and the throttle assist you speak of I believe is to help resolve the shuddering issue.

I am running a different tune and my car does not do the throttle assist you are talking about, but it does shudder and almost stall on occasion when I have the A/C on and pull in the clutch and let off the throttle in 1st gear.
 

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Takeoff in 1st on this car is hard if you learned to drive on a manual car with no throttle assist. Even before my ST I drove a 2012 Focus SE manual and I stalled the ST a couple times test driving it. The throttle assist catches you off guard and I found myself lurching alot. Now when I take off I don't give it alot of throttle initially and then kinda roll into it after that. Requires some technique development.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Makes total sense. Post up a video, so we can further evaluate.

You are on the stock tune correct? Reason I ask is this car from the factory had an idle shuddering issue when the A/C was on. When you would roll up a few feet in 1st gear and then let off the throttle and pull in the clutch, when the A/C was on the car would shudder like it was going to stall. Ford applied a fix, an adjustment to the firmware and the throttle assist you speak of I believe is to help resolve the shuddering issue.

I am running a different tune and my car does not do the throttle assist you are talking about, but it does shudder and almost stall on occasion when I have the A/C on and pull in the clutch and let off the throttle in 1st gear.
Yes stock tune, and I know the issue you are talking about it is not the same, its not a shudder coming to a stop. Its almost as no matter which technique I use or how slow I let off the clutch on takeoff, I still get the slightest jerk before or right after totally releasing the clutch. Sometimes it is so minimal you may think I just hit the tiniest pothole in the road, but I feel it and it bothers me. I could drive the civic and you wouldnt even know it was a stick shift.
 

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Two things. I occasionally stutter after 60,000 miles but it is the exception.

1) Are you using 93 octane. I ran 87 for a long time, than found that 93 seems smoother. I think the ECU after adjusting to 93, just responds better.

2) Ignore the tach. Concentrate on your foot/pedal coordination. Except for the occasional stutter, usually when I think about it, I just bump and go.
 

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Been driving stick since I'm 17. Now I'm 50, this car is pretty easy to drive.

Practice makes perfect I guess? Just keep at it. When you don't have to think to yourself "Okay, clutch in, into 1st, now clutch out, gas" as seperate steps, then you'll be good enough and I'll bet that your takeoffs will be much smoother.
 

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Oh no no no I think I know what you're talking about. Everyone seems to think you're just not used to the car, but it's the computer doing the throttle blip that messes you up. It gets me as well sometimes. Try going up a decent incline, like a driveway. And don't use your throttle, just your clutch. You'll notice as you go up the hill, the car shudders and almost dies, and then the computer blips it up for you so you get going again. Now, try to go up the hill slowly, like you're parking in SF. And there's a certain threshold with the clutch where the ECU will blip. And that blipping point is right around where you want to let out the clutch.

So what happens is when you're trying to go slow, on a normal car, you go let off clutch, add gas slowly, let off clutch some more.. and boom you take off. On this car it's let off clutch, go to add throttle, clutch moves past this magic point, ECU blips, you throttle, and you rocket forward. Is that right OP? I'm new to manual, but this was catching me off guard as well.

As for the solution... first, I think you get more used to the blip and you know when it's coming. So when I park, I usually park without the throttle and use my clutch foot exclusively. Then it's a matter of using the clutch and getting the ECU to throttle for you. Which isn't orthodox, but I'm just trying to say that eventually the ECU blip becomes part of your throttle technique.

Secondly, and maybe most importantly, you need to get a feel for the clutch. Take out the clutch spring, if you want, replace it with the dorman throttle spring from autozone/amazon. This will get rid of the vagueness of your clutch so you can feel exactly what the ECU is trying to do. It is annoying, and driving this car slow is a never entirely smooth, but it got a lot better for me just by learning the clutch/ECU throttle interaction. Link to spring if needed: https://www.amazon.com/Dorman-59207-Throttle-Return-Spring/dp/B001HZKGCE
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Oh no no no I think I know what you're talking about. Everyone seems to think you're just not used to the car, but it's the computer doing the throttle blip that messes you up. It gets me as well sometimes. Try going up a decent incline, like a driveway. And don't use your throttle, just your clutch. You'll notice as you go up the hill, the car shudders and almost dies, and then the computer blips it up for you so you get going again. Now, try to go up the hill slowly, like you're parking in SF. And there's a certain threshold with the clutch where the ECU will blip. And that blipping point is right around where you want to let out the clutch.

So what happens is when you're trying to go slow, on a normal car, you go let off clutch, add gas slowly, let off clutch some more.. and boom you take off. On this car it's let off clutch, go to add throttle, clutch moves past this magic point, ECU blips, you throttle, and you rocket forward. Is that right OP? I'm new to manual, but this was catching me off guard as well.

As for the solution... first, I think you get more used to the blip and you know when it's coming. So when I park, I usually park without the throttle and use my clutch foot exclusively. Then it's a matter of using the clutch and getting the ECU to throttle for you. Which isn't orthodox, but I'm just trying to say that eventually the ECU blip becomes part of your throttle technique.

Secondly, and maybe most importantly, you need to get a feel for the clutch. Take out the clutch spring, if you want, replace it with the dorman throttle spring from autozone/amazon. This will get rid of the vagueness of your clutch so you can feel exactly what the ECU is trying to do. It is annoying, and driving this car slow is a never entirely smooth, but it got a lot better for me just by learning the clutch/ECU throttle interaction. Link to spring if needed: https://www.amazon.com/Dorman-59207-Throttle-Return-Spring/dp/B001HZKGCE
You almost have the nail right on the head. The only part I can say is different is I dont really launch, as I try combating the blip. The only way I've found to beat this is to rev it out to 1600-2000 RPMs and let the clutch out ever so slowly. The best way I can describe what I am feeling is the point where the clutch has finally completely connected, and there is the SLIGHTEST buck, most of the time. The worse the takeoff the harder the buck obviously, but I cannot get a 100% smooth takeoff without absolutely riding the clutch to the point where I feel like i am ruining it.

I have thought about the spring, but was worried about the pedal sag I have read about, is that the spring to replace the stock one, or just bring the pedal back up? Have you done it? Does it help?
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Been driving stick since I'm 17. Now I'm 50, this car is pretty easy to drive.

Practice makes perfect I guess? Just keep at it. When you don't have to think to yourself "Okay, clutch in, into 1st, now clutch out, gas" as seperate steps, then you'll be good enough and I'll bet that your takeoffs will be much smoother.
As stated before I drove my civic coupe for about a year with no such issues that I am currently having, takeoffs were smooth as well as downshifts, corners, etc.
 

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100% Let me go take some pictures for you. They say pedal sag is nothing to worry about, but I was paranoid too and added my extra spring. I've done it. Almost the same as no spring. It takes out that kick you feel right at the bite point. And that kick might be what makes the ECU throttling worse, because right as the throttle is added, the clutch kicks out at you a little and engages harder.
 

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I have thought about the spring, but was worried about the pedal sag I have read about, is that the spring to replace the stock one, or just bring the pedal back up? Have you done it? Does it help?
So basically, taking out the stock spring removes that kick you get right at the bite point. To take it out, depress your clutch all the way and then just wriggle that yellow piece of plastic out. Now, go to Autozone and buy the throttle spring from dorman. Take the long skinny silver one and put it where I have it in the picture. One end connects to where the top of the clutch spring contacted, the other end hooks into a hole in the horizontal metal bar. That spring adds a little to the effort to clutch in, not by much, but it also makes sure your clutch returns to the top every single time. I don't know if it's bad to have the clutch sag, most people say it's fine, but I like the peace of mind.

You can also see my delrin pedal spacer in the picture. :in love:

xcttWnw.jpg
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
So basically, taking out the stock spring removes that kick you get right at the bite point. To take it out, depress your clutch all the way and then just wriggle that yellow piece of plastic out. Now, go to Autozone and buy the throttle spring from dorman. Take the long skinny silver one and put it where I have it in the picture. One end connects to where the top of the clutch spring contacted, the other end hooks into a hole in the horizontal metal bar. That spring adds a little to the effort to clutch in, not by much, but it also makes sure your clutch returns to the top every single time. I don't know if it's bad to have the clutch sag, most people say it's fine, but I like the peace of mind.

You can also see my delrin pedal spacer in the picture. :in love:

View attachment 200106
And this helps you with said problem? Have you ever tried replacing the clutch spring with a weaker one instead? And does this make the pedal hard to depress? I seem to remember the civic having a spring behind the clutch but also definitely not as strong as the one on the ST
 

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And this helps you with said problem? Have you ever tried replacing the clutch spring with a weaker one instead? And does this make the pedal hard to depress? I seem to remember the civic having a spring behind the clutch but also definitely not as strong as the one on the ST
Ya. So the biggest issue with our clutch spring is that it's on a pivot. So it pushes the clutch out, but once the clutch is depressed to around half way, the spring changes directions and helps you clutch in. The problem is when you're letting your clutch out, at first the spring is pushing the clutch down, and then once you let it out to that halfway point, the spring changes and snaps to pushing your foot out. Makes it hard to tell what the clutch is doing because the spring is so non-linear. So by taking it out, you can feel your clutch much much better. 100% worth it. And then, for me, by being able to feel the clutch, I can control that throttling issue quite easily. I think that's why half the people here are saying there's no such issue, because you get used to it and even use it to help you park or crawl in traffic. Go check out your clutch spring. It's that yellow piece under your clutch. Press it with your hand, watch the spring pivot around, it'll make sense when you can't use your whole foot weight on it.

So that's why I took the whole spring out. Replacing it is difficult because a lot of people break that plastic part trying to replace, and it's like a $50 part because you cannot buy the spring, you have to buy the entire clutch. So I left mine stock just in case I wanted to redo it. And replacing it means you still have that non-linear issue. The way mine is set up lets your clutch become more linear and predictable. Like I said, try using your hand on the clutch. It's a lot more apparent then.
 

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theres a giant thread here about the clutch assist spring. some do it, some advise against it. clutch may sink a bit without the spring in place. some people have gotten into their cars in the morning with the pedal on the floor.
 
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