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How to properly use sportshift?

 
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Old 10-17-2011, 03:01 PM
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How to properly use sportshift?

Hi everyone,

So I've been driving the lude around for a few weeks now and I don't mind the automatic transmission, but I don't particularly like the fact that I've got no control.
So I've decided to start using the sportshift, I just don't know how to use it properly without stressing the transmission too much. Also, please take into account that my transmission was rebuilt at Honda about a year ago (15k miles ago).

So, for example, it's on first, I rev up to 3k, let go off the gas, then shift to 2nd, rev up to 3-4k, let go off the gas, shift to 3rd, etc. When I feel the transmission shift, I step on the gas again and the transition between gears feels a lot smoother than letting the ECU do the shifting for you. It's that automatic "pull" people are talking about that I'm not particularly fond of. The pull just feels like it places more strain on the shifting mechanism.

So my questions basically are, would using sportshift mess up the transmission or should I keep it auto for the time being? If I ever have any problems, I'm going 5sp, but I do the best with what I've got for now, so just looking to baby it a little... should I completely let go off the gas between shifts or gas it a little to maintain rpms when going up gears?
Also, when downshifting, I feel the "drag" (I might just be downshifting early) so do I just need to get a better feel for the rpms/speed between downshifts? Or should I just wait for the transmission to downshift for me? Is downshifting from 2nd ever necessary (unless I'm stopped)?

Thanks for all the help in advance.

Sz
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Old 10-17-2011, 04:31 PM
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Re: How to properly use sportshift?

When using that feature I Usually stay on the gas, but Using the "SportShift" as you say, I believe does take away from the life of your trans. my car has 173xxx miles no rebuilt trans and it shifts fine auto or in Triptonic but idk, everybody has their own opinions
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Old 10-17-2011, 04:49 PM
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Re: How to properly use sportshift?

you have no clutch you dont need to take the foot off gas
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Old 10-17-2011, 05:19 PM
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Re: How to properly use sportshift?

using the sportshift, in theory, shoudn't take any life away from the tranny. but being a honda, you never know. in theory the way it works, it just bypasses/overrides the ecu. the valves which route the tranny fluid are still working exactly the same, you just choose when the valves open and close. the internal automatic clutches also work the same. again this is all in theory. now if you're jerking back and forth from gear to gear, yes, that could potentially cause harm/excessive wear.

if you're feeling the drag from downshifting, yes you're downshifting to early for just practical driving. you can let it downshift on its own. i use to manually downshift with it a lot because i hated how it wouldn't go into first unless i was pretty much at a complete stop. it felt like it would take forever to get moving again. a good rule of thumb is to downshift from 4th to 3rd between 21-25 (the computer does it at 21). go into 2nd at or around 10-12. and first at 3-4mph. the way the computer does it, it more or less skips 2nd and goes straight to first when you stop. which can be really aggravating because if you're doing like 3-4mph you're actually still in 3rd if you're in automatic mode. and it takes the tranny what i think is a very long time to downshift to first. if it even wants to do it at all. sometimes it will drop to 2nd for me, and as i said, it feels like it takes for ever to get moving again.
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Old 10-17-2011, 06:43 PM
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Re: How to properly use sportshift?

I always wondered why it skiped 2nd when slowing to a almost stop or well, very helpful
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Old 10-17-2011, 07:07 PM
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Re: How to properly use sportshift?

Not sure on the proper way to use the auto-shifter, but just want to add; I'm the 2nd owner on my Lude. I bought from a middle aged man who claims he never even touched the auto-shift, I probably used it for a week until I started reading all the horror stories of people's automatics and never touched it since. It took 174,000 miles for my automatic to die and from what I understand, that's pretty much a miracle number for autos. on our cars. A buddy of mine bought his automatic brand new in 2001, and has used his auto-shifter every single day since he drove it off the lot, and now at around 110,000 miles his auto. trans is dead.

I can't prove that there's a direct correlation between our cars, but my advice: just let the ECU control your shifting. Unless you've got a 5speed swap planned in your near future, I'd say it's not worth risking at all.
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Old 10-17-2011, 07:34 PM
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Re: How to properly use sportshift?

usually when you are taking a corner say turning onto another street its good to go into second and accelerate out
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Old 10-17-2011, 08:47 PM
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Re: How to properly use sportshift?

In my younger days, I'd hook a turn, brake/ride clutch and launch in 2nd. But depends on how much you break. Then again, that was my mustang days 18yrs ago.

Not to hijack the thread, but what is and average mileage lifetime of the 97-97 ludes auto tranny? I'd 5spd swap mine, but my driving habits are different than before. I need to make do with what I have.
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Old 10-17-2011, 11:43 PM
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Re: How to properly use sportshift?

Thanks to everyone for their feedback!

"SportShift" is the term used by Honda and Subaru. "Tiptronic" is the term used by some European car manufacturers and is trademarked by Porsche.
Manumatic - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

And dso, it seems like the transmission will go out eventually... at any time. Mine was rebuilt at 95k miles and now she's got 114k. They're notorious for that, just make sure you keep the ATF clean and, well... don't abuse the SportShift. I think that 110k miles is still real good if you hammered the SS the whole time. Guessin' sometimes she just needs a good pounding.

Pretty cool leaving work today, saw the owner of the only other prelude out in that parking lot. And I work at a huge manufacturing plant. Gotta love how our ludes are so rare, we've gotta take care of our dying breed!
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Old 10-17-2011, 11:57 PM
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Re: How to properly use sportshift?

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Originally Posted by dso617 View Post
Not to hijack the thread, but what is and average mileage lifetime of the 97-97 ludes auto tranny? I'd 5spd swap mine, but my driving habits are different than before. I need to make do with what I have.
no one has really tabulated all the resluts and came up with an average. and technically, you can't come up with an average life span since there are some still perfectly alive. the ones i saw that were dying abnormally fast were anywhere between 50-90k. and as wargames said, no one can really prove if there is any direct correlation between using the sportshift and the life of your tranny. all we can say is, in theory it doesn't. you can pretty much safely say, if you're over 100k and haven't had any problems, you don't have one of the bad ones.
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Old 10-18-2011, 12:23 AM
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Re: How to properly use sportshift?

so i got a 5 speed should i be worrying about my tranny i am at 144 800 miles i am the 3rd owner of my orange lude lol sorry for the nube question just want to kno
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Old 10-18-2011, 01:25 AM
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Re: How to properly use sportshift?

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so i got a 5 speed should i be worrying about my tranny i am at 144 800 miles i am the 3rd owner of my orange lude lol sorry for the nube question just want to kno
Well, you're going to be subjected to any typical 5speed issues that any other car has, but typically Honda's manual transmission are pretty solid. What we're talking about her pertains to the automatic models and nothing you'd really need to worry about. Your case though will depend on your own driving habits as well as the habits of previous owners.
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Old 10-18-2011, 01:26 AM
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Re: How to properly use sportshift?

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Originally Posted by stockluder View Post
so i got a 5 speed should i be worrying about my tranny i am at 144 800 miles i am the 3rd owner of my orange lude lol sorry for the nube question just want to kno
The failing tranny's are auto's not 5 speeds. Though I have seen 5 speeds fail but rare.
You don't need to worry.
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Old 10-18-2011, 01:29 AM
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Re: How to properly use sportshift?

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The failing tranny's are auto's not 5 speeds. Though I have seen 5 speeds fail but rare.
You don't need to worry.


thank you this site has proven to be very helpful i hope once i learn more i can help noobs like me in the future
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Old 10-18-2011, 06:56 AM
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Re: How to properly use sportshift?

I always back off the loud pedal when shifting, but that's only because the loud muffler I run makes it sound like an actual manual *facepalm*

I also like to rev-match on downshifts. Heel-toeing the brake pedal is tough when the response time is different almost every time you shift.
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Old 10-18-2011, 10:03 AM
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Re: How to properly use sportshift?

I got mine about a year ago. It was about 6 months in and the trans was shot. (was really shot when I got it but I squeezed another 10,000 miles out of it) After the rebuild I have been beating on it. I have a year warranty. If its gonna fail on me its gonna be replaced for free. If it last a year with no symptoms we me driving in ss about 60% of the time I have little to worry about. If it fails after that a 5spd swap is next. But I do only hit vtec about once a week. Having a 99-01 helps a bit as the internal changes had been made to help the issue.
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Old 10-18-2011, 10:37 AM
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Re: How to properly use sportshift?

auto ludes FTL!

yeah when i race people (in mexico that is) i use the sport shift feature. to get good jump off the line i usually put it in nuetral, and rev to about 3.5k rpm then throw it in first and gun it. shift at 7.2k rpm into to 2nd gear and so on.. 4th gear sucks so bad though.

i dont recommend slamming it into first from neutral though. its not good for the tranny. im on my second tranny due to this reason. next tranny shall be a 5pd swap. ;)

edit: i know this isnt really about racing though, just saying how i use this feature.
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Old 10-18-2011, 12:20 PM
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Re: How to properly use sportshift?

My lude's also got the tranny warranty expiring in 4 months. Too bad it wasn't transferable to me from the previous owner.


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auto ludes FTL!

yeah when i race people (in mexico that is) i use the sport shift feature. to get good jump off the line i usually put it in nuetral, and rev to about 3.5k rpm then throw it in first and gun it. shift at 7.2k rpm into to 2nd gear and so on.. 4th gear sucks so bad though.

i dont recommend slamming it into first from neutral though. its not good for the tranny. im on my second tranny due to this reason. next tranny shall be a 5pd swap. ;)

edit: i know this isnt really about racing though, just saying how i use this feature.
Neutral revving into 1st sounds like an excellent way to destroy the tranny... not really lookin' to do that just yet. You're shifting at 7.2k rpm? Careful, don't wanna blow your engine. Is that even when you peak torque? Just because you're redlining doesn't mean you're peaking torque. For shifting, I would look at the peak torque tables or generate your own and go from there. Also, make sure you ss shift slightly before your intended rpm since the auto tranny lags a little.

My thoughts.
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Old 10-18-2011, 01:02 PM
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Re: How to properly use sportshift?

no you don't shift at peak torque. at least not in the preludes. peak torque is 5250rpm iirc. from every rpm there on after all the way up to 7200, the torque is higher then the highest part before 5250 rpm. if that makes sense.
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Old 10-18-2011, 07:43 PM
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Re: How to properly use sportshift?

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no you don't shift at peak torque. at least not in the preludes. peak torque is 5250rpm iirc. from every rpm there on after all the way up to 7200, the torque is higher then the highest part before 5250 rpm. if that makes sense.
I looked into it and you're correct in that it is better to shift at higher RPM's (as far as acceleration is concerned). This is not, however, because you get more torque out of the engine. What you're trying to do is to maintain the RPM's high enough so that when you upshift, you don't drop out of VTEC, hence maintaining the added performance.
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Old 10-18-2011, 08:18 PM
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Re: How to properly use sportshift?

I was surprised to see that SHDriver hasnt been on this thread talking about how much lower the cars are and making some uneducated conclusion that the ride height has something to do with the trannys... ...just sayin.
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Old 10-19-2011, 12:10 AM
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Re: How to properly use sportshift?

that's because he's been banned
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Old 10-19-2011, 12:47 AM
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Re: How to properly use sportshift?

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now if you're jerking back and forth from gear to gear, yes, that could potentially cause harm/excessive wear.
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yeah when i race people (in mexico that is)
hahahahah both of these statements made me laugh
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Old 10-19-2011, 12:56 AM
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Re: How to properly use sportshift?

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that's because he's been banned
like permanently banned?? or just from this thread???
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Old 10-19-2011, 12:48 PM
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Re: How to properly use sportshift?

well you can't ban someone from viewing a thread. as far as i know. so that only leaves really one other option.
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Old 10-19-2011, 05:16 PM
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Re: How to properly use sportshift?

i personally dont know anything about banning, im just a forum read and common poster. However, i dont wanna thread jack... ....so back to Sportshift. I have never used one personally, but while riding in cars that ppl use them, ive never seen them let off the gas while shifting.
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Old 10-19-2011, 06:49 PM
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Re: How to properly use sportshift?

You dont have to let off the gas, im pretty sure
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Old 10-19-2011, 07:15 PM
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Re: How to properly use sportshift?

lol, i dont plan on owning an auto netime soon to find out. i like my 5 spd, and my next girl WILL know how to drive a manual, im tired of trying to teach them
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Old 10-19-2011, 07:34 PM
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Re: How to properly use sportshift?

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Originally Posted by Lazarky View Post
You dont have to let off the gas, im pretty sure
Yup, You just drive it like you would any other automatic.Personally id baby the automatic on it though they never seem to last like other honda parts. Always keep those fingers crossed the automatic tranny holds out, theyre pretty notoriuos for going ca-poot. Start saving future money for a 5spd swap ^^
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Old 10-20-2011, 01:03 AM
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Re: How to properly use sportshift?

I've had people tell me not to use but I do agree that it seems to make for a smoother shift, I use it now and then I'm bored haha. I'm on 285 000 original engine/tranny.
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