North American Turbocoupe Organization

Manual driving instructions?
unclefalter Offline
Okay I know I'm really lame here but I just want to get this straight... is there any kind of guide to what the optimal shift points for the TC are? I spent 14 years driving automatics, and the one manual I drove before that was a 6cyl so it had enough torque to deal with higher gears at lower speeds.

What speed ranges do you use 5th gear in? 4th, etc? What RPM do you generally want to stay around? For example, when I am doing about 40-45mph, I tend to stay in 3rd gear because I find the car struggles in 4th. Is this correct/normal? If I go 'too high' a gear in certain speeds, the car vibrates like crazy.

I just want to get an idea from experienced manual drivers, especially with this car and it's small engine, so that I can try to improve fuel economy and not cause problems or premature wear on the tranny.

Thanks for being so patient with a well meaning but somewhat retarded TC driver. [Image: smile.gif]
88 TC 5spd - Black/Raven

strn365 Offline
Junior Member
you never want the car to go below 1500 rpm and try to accel that is lugging the motor and can lead to very bad results when i am screwing around town my shift points are all around 4000 rpm and if you drop below 1500 rpm the car will vibrate very badly and will destroy your motor just make sure you stay above 1500 every driver finds his or her own points to shift at it is all up to you
1986 with 88 comp. 87 front
end walbro adjustable fp homemade boost control cold air intake all autometer gauges

SteveX82 Offline
Posting Freak
It'll come naturally as you get used to the way the car feels, so don't expect shift points to boil down to an exact "science".

For what it's worth with my setup, I usually shift out of first around 15mph, 2nd at 25mph, 3rd at 40, 4th at 45-50. 5th gear is really only useful above 50. On the other hand, I hear that Glenn consistently shifts at 6000rpm.

It seems that, aside from stalling after a stop, people have the most trouble figuring out when to downshift as opposed to when to upshift. If you feel the car "vibrating" at all like you mentioned, just go down a gear [Image: smile.gif]

Estoril blue 1987 TC 5spd, 146k miles, a237, Bailey BOV, spec stg3 clutch, spearco FMIC, t3/t4 50 trim / stage III .63, 3" exhaust, eec-tuner, lm1 wb, 55pph injectors
Best 1/4 mile: 12.89 @ 106mph on 25psi, 1.78 60'
Estoril blue 1987 TC 5spd, 148k mi, a237, Bailey BOV, spec stg3 clutch, spearco FMIC, 50 trim t3/t4, 3" exhaust, Bamafuel, LM1, 55pph
Best 1/4 mile: 12.31 @ 110mph on 25psi

martin0660 Offline
Posting Freak
Quote:Originally posted by SteveX82:
I hear that Glenn consistently shifts at 6000rpm.

I thought thats what the rev limiter was for, to tell you its almost time to shift [Image: smile.gif]

Actually My shift point are pretty close to Steves. I suspect it is a little easier to learn by keeping the rpm up a little better. When I taugh my wife to frive mine, as long as she didnt let the RPM go below ~2800, she was pretty smooth. As soon as she started trying to upshift more, she got clunky. She picked it up....sort of [Image: smile.gif]

Bob Myers

unclefalter Offline
That's interesting.. I didn't know low RPM could harm the engine. So it's normal to be cruising along at 2500-3000 RPM? I thought the point of 5th gear was to keep RPM low?

I find when I shift with RPM that high the car tends to do it's 'bounce' thing more than low. I'm pretty sure my TPS is not working properly, and I had thought because it was 'sticking' and keeping the RPM high after i let off the gas to shift that I should wait and let RPM come down a bit before dropping into the next gear.

Did Tbirds ever have the 'shift now' light? My Dad had a few manual cars over the years and one of them did.. I had thought for the longest time it was his TC that had it..
88 TC 5spd - Black/Raven

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