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12/03/2012

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WHAT DOES THE CLUTCH DO?

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Clutch Control


What does the clutch do?

This page is not the definitive article on the workings of the clutch. It is merely a simple explanation. It is not meant to be a technical guide

  • It slows the car down
  • (NO That's what the brake pedal does)
  • It allows you to change gear
  • (YES)
  • It makes you go faster
  • (NO That's what the accelerator pedal does)
  • It stops the car
  • (NO That's what the brake pedal does)
  • It creates movement
  • (YES It 's the link between the engine and the road wheels)
  • It breaks the link between the engine and the road wheels when it is pushed down
  • (YES It breaks the link between the engine and the road wheels)
  • It makes you stall
  • (Yes If you release the clutch pedal too quickly)
  • It stops you stalling
  • (YES If you push the clutch pedal down at the correct moment

Confused?

In it's simplest form the clutch creates the link between the engine and the road wheels
  • As your left foot slowly brings the clutch pedal up the clutch plates meet (this is the biting point)
  • The engine is now ready to turn the road wheels

Now the tricky bit:

  • You need to slowly bring the clutch pedal higher so that the clutch plates connect smoothly and the engine will now turn the road wheels
  • You need the car in 1st gear though!

Ooops! It stalled!


(Why?)
  • If you move the clutch suddenly once the biting point has been reached the clutch plates will connect too quickly and make the engine stop
  • Ooops! It did a kangaroo start!
  • If you move the clutch pedal suddenly once the biting point has been reached the clutch plates will meet and bounce apart and then try and meet each other again and bounce apart...
  • ...like a stone skimming over a pond

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