Manual Transmission questions - Jeep Compass Forum
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post #1 of 15 Old 03-06-2018, 12:03 AM Thread Starter
nda
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Manual Transmission questions

Hey guys,

I have a 2017 Sport with a manual and I have a few of questions for those of you who have put some miles on manual compasses:

- There's a distinct clunk in the first two gears when letting the clutch out and the throttle isn't exactly the right place to maintain speed. It makes me think that there might be a looseness in engine or transmission mounting and the engine torque is moving something a bit so it bangs into something. Does anybody else experience this? I worry about things banging into each other and cracking over time.

- The fuel/throttle calibration is really rough. Small, smooth changes in the throttle position can lead to jerky changes in speed, particularly when letting off the throttle. There is a distinct, jerky fuel cutoff when engine breaking in gear with no throttle. Does this get smoother in time? Has jeep released updated fuel/throttle programming since the model's been released?

Otherwise, I'm really enjoying my first jeep!

Thanks!
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post #2 of 15 Old 03-06-2018, 12:46 AM
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In 1st and 2nd gear it's really important to rev match when up shifting. Just let the clutch out slower, or wait for the rpms to drop at least 1k before you lift off the clutch. I have taken to not even letting the clutch out all the way in 1st, and then from 1/2 way riding the clutch around 10-15mph re-depressing it to shift to 2nd. This seems to reduce the jerking that passengers get with the loss of deceleration around 15 mph when you take off the accelerator.

I too notice the throttle is VERY touch in 1st 2nd and at around 3k rpm in 3rd gear. If you just pull your foot off the gas real quick you feel that clunk as the throttle closes. The more you drive the more of a smooth feel you will get and you won't pull your foot off so quickly. I notice in 3rd also at 3k rpm that if I pull off the gas too quick I get a jerk. So i just stopped doing this, and release the gas more smoothly.

I think the jerkiness does "go away with time" but it's more of your muscle memory and YOU getting more accustomed to driving this transmission than any changes in the car.
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post #3 of 15 Old 03-06-2018, 01:39 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the response. Its definitely my fault for being lazy and not easing out the clutch slow enough in 2nd to avoid the clunk but I'm a bit relieved to hear you know what I'm talking about It's not an issue with my car.

I'll try slipping the clutch more in first. This is my first manual car, slipping the clutch is a huge part of motorcycling smoothly but I am under the impression you shouldn't drive that way Am I off base? Should I use my jeep's clutch like my bike's?
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post #4 of 15 Old 03-06-2018, 02:25 AM
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well there are two ways to do it. Figure when you shift from 1st to 2nd, lets say you're at 3k rpm. For that speed 2nd gear needs to be going around 2k rpm. So either you can press in the clutch, let off the accelerator, and wait for the needle to drop and dump the clutch all at once, and hope you "time" it right so that you land right at the correct RPM. The other way is you can ease off the clutch over 2-3 seconds, and in this time the RPMs will be dropping.

Also same goes for downshifting (but backwards?). When you go from higher gear to lower gear, the revs need to be higher. So from 3rd to 2nd you need to be going sometimes 1.5 -2k higher RPM. So to "match" those when you downshift as clutch is pressed in, instead of letting off the gas, give it a blip and then let off clutch. This will match the revs to the lower gear since it will need to be going faster at the same speed.

There are many good videos about rev matching in manual transmission car. You can spend hours on youtube watching all different various techniques.

Clutch will wear when you have it slip. But IMO i think that dumping the clutch to early, or having the synchros pick up the slack by not rev matching will put more wear on the transmission than releasing the clutch slowly and reducing the jerkiness to a minimum. I like the feel of a nice smooth clutch release when you can really feel it engage all the way down. I don't know how to compare to your bike, but if you are hearing the clunk or feeling jerk then you are probably putting a lot of stress on the transmission.

A few things I advise specific to Jeep Compass manual transmission:, in the Uconnect system you can enable the parking brake to automatically engage when you turn the engine off. THis is nice feature since when you come to a stop you just have to hit the off button and get out, the brake takes care of itself.

Also if you see your manual, in the manual transmission as long as you have the seatbelt buckled, when you put it in gear (1st or reverse) if the electronic parking brake is engaged, after you give it a bit of gas (let of clutch slightly) the electronic parking brake will automatically disengage. So you don't actually have to manipulate the EPB at all if you also use above option. When doing this method you do not need to hit the brake for the EPB to disengage, just gas and let off clutch. SOmetiems I will engage EPB when I come to a long light on a hill, and when I need to go I just start off in 1st and the EPB disengage by itself. Using the EPB somewhat like an extended hill assist, but it gives your feet a rest for a bit.

2nd thing is you have Hill assist. SO when on an up-hill you can take your foot off the brake and it will hold you for about 1.5 seconds, while you clutch in and start gassing in 1st. This will also work if you reverse up a hill. This helps that you don't need to feather on the clutch/gas to keep yourself from rolling backword. If you find that your hill assist is not enabled, you can check this feature, it is not in the Uconnect but in the steering column options. I think under "safety" but I could be wrong. These are found using the dashboard cluster and the steering wheel directionpad.

3rd, I and others have commented that reverse gear is a bit high. I don't ever release fully off the clutch, especially in parking lots. Either you will stall or ram into cars. I ride the clutch 1/2 way until I'm backed up enough then into 1st gear.

edit here is link for video I liked (has camera on feet too)

'18 Compass 4x4 Sport 6-speed manual

Last edited by joninpa; 03-06-2018 at 02:58 AM.
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post #5 of 15 Old 03-07-2018, 07:36 PM
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Please be careful using the auto feature on the electronic parking brake if you live somewhere cold. After having a parking break freez in place many years ago, I never leave the parking brake on when below freezing. Leaving the car in gear and turning the wheels properly (if parked at a curb) is more than secure enough.
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post #6 of 15 Old 03-07-2018, 08:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt Esteve
Please be careful using the auto feature on the electronic parking brake if you live somewhere cold. After having a parking break freez in place many years ago, I never leave the parking brake on when below freezing.
My experience with parking brakes is that they are use-em-or-lose-em devices. If you do not exercise the parking brake, the odds that it will seize up the one time you do use it become higher and higher. A parking brake that sees regular use stays "limber" and resists build up of corrosion that leads to the brake sticking on.

I have used my parking brake all winter with no issues, but of course its a brand new vehicle so their damn well better not be any issues this early am I right? But still no issues even when its -30 F my parking brake has engaged and released no problem every time. This Compass rocks around too much after parking it to not use the parking brake most of the time, even with the automatic transmission. Basically it just doesn't "look cool" to park and have the buggy rocking back and forth, sloshing the fuel around in the tank and overall seems much nicer to come to a solid stop and have that wrrrrrrt lock-in-place sound, I like that much better and I have no concerns my brake is ever going to stick in the first five years, even with the road salt here.
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post #7 of 15 Old 03-07-2018, 08:57 PM
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Also and I could be very wrong but electronic parking brakes aren't using the same type of system. Or at least I don't think they do. From the sounds I hear when I actuate it, it sounds like the electronic motor "actuator" system and not the ones using an electronic cable puller. I would assume that being an electronic motor driven system that the chances of "freezing" the way older systems worked is unlikely. Now obviously it means a whole new set of possible issues. I was trained to always put the parking brake on before putting it into park and more specifically before letting off the brakes, to keep the transmission linkage from sloshing around as your car comes to a rest. Which has the bonus of not falling foul of the use it or lose it type of thing where the ebrake wouldn't actually work or would seize if you only used it once in a blue moon.
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post #8 of 15 Old 03-07-2018, 08:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt Esteve View Post
Please be careful using the auto feature on the electronic parking brake if you live somewhere cold. After having a parking break freez in place many years ago, I never leave the parking brake on when below freezing. Leaving the car in gear and turning the wheels properly (if parked at a curb) is more than secure enough.

I have had this happen as well the solution is to figure out how water in getting into the E-brake system. In my case the plastic jacket around the E-Brake cable had deteriorated where the cable ran through the backing plate. We had a huge puddle in our driveway and water was running off the tires and getting inside not only the cable housing but into the backing plate itself. Took a bit to figure out that for the E-brake to freeze we had to have prettl low temps and recent or current heavy rain. Duck tape and silicon to the rescue and we never had the issue like that again.

arudlang, is correct about needing to use things like these to keep corrosion and what not that can cause them to bind up. This includes some of the things in certain types of 4wd vehicles, I had an S10 4x4 that if you did not engage the 4wd for a while you would have to fight with it to get it working. This again because of a cable. It run from a actuator down to the front axle to engage the axle lock out. The cable would stick in the casing and you had to free it up if possible or replace it.
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post #9 of 15 Old 03-07-2018, 09:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt Esteve View Post
Please be careful using the auto feature on the electronic parking brake if you live somewhere cold. After having a parking break freez in place many years ago, I never leave the parking brake on when below freezing. Leaving the car in gear and turning the wheels properly (if parked at a curb) is more than secure enough.
my understanding is the EPB does not operate at all like a traditional wire parking brake. I think there could be trouble if the car does not start, as it needs to be on to disengage the EPB. It is the one reason you cannot "push-start" the manual Jeep.

I have never driven a manual and not used the parking brake.

'18 Compass 4x4 Sport 6-speed manual
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post #10 of 15 Old 03-08-2018, 12:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arudlang View Post
My experience with parking brakes is that they are use-em-or-lose-em devices. If you do not exercise the parking brake, the odds that it will seize up the one time you do use it become higher and higher. A parking brake that sees regular use stays "limber" and resists build up of corrosion that leads to the brake sticking on.

I have used my parking brake all winter with no issues, but of course its a brand new vehicle so their damn well better not be any issues this early am I right? But still no issues even when its -30 F my parking brake has engaged and released no problem every time. This Compass rocks around too much after parking it to not use the parking brake most of the time, even with the automatic transmission. Basically it just doesn't "look cool" to park and have the buggy rocking back and forth, sloshing the fuel around in the tank and overall seems much nicer to come to a solid stop and have that wrrrrrrt lock-in-place sound, I like that much better and I have no concerns my brake is ever going to stick in the first five years, even with the road salt here.
^^^What he said. I ALWAYS use mine, and always have on every manual transmission/transaxle vehicle I've owned. That is seven (not counting ex-wifes).

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post #11 of 15 Old 02-27-2019, 02:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nda View Post
Hey guys,

I have a 2017 Sport with a manual and I have a few of questions for those of you who have put some miles on manual compasses:

- There's a distinct clunk in the first two gears when letting the clutch out and the throttle isn't exactly the right place to maintain speed. It makes me think that there might be a looseness in engine or transmission mounting and the engine torque is moving something a bit so it bangs into something. Does anybody else experience this? I worry about things banging into each other and cracking over time.

- The fuel/throttle calibration is really rough. Small, smooth changes in the throttle position can lead to jerky changes in speed, particularly when letting off the throttle. There is a distinct, jerky fuel cutoff when engine breaking in gear with no throttle. Does this get smoother in time? Has jeep released updated fuel/throttle programming since the model's been released?

Otherwise, I'm really enjoying my first jeep!

Thanks!
I've just bought a new 2019 manual compass, and I have all the same issues. I don't believe this is down to operator error as put forward in response to the OP. I've driven stick for 40 years (and motorcycles) , never an auto, and this is the most jerky vehicle I've had (which include learning to drive having to double declutch in non synchromesh boxes, so if you want to talk about rev matching, I'll raise ya 10!).

I suspect something in the software. The engine responses to throttle are really sketchy. Having also been a control engineer, I can almost feel the bad code every time I shift! I suspect that it's not just the throttle response, but also the transfer case control on the AWD, as you can hear the snatching coming from the the transmission, all the way back to the rear diff. Another, almost worse, problem exists when using cruise control. Resume just bangs the transmission with a binary change in throttle. If you want to reduce the snatching when using cruise, you need to gently ease the power on the throttle and then engage resume. I've honestly never driven such a rough vehicle in this regard.

It's a shame as it spoils the experience significantly, all for a few lines of poor code. I bought the manual as the 9 speed auto had a whole set of issues of it's own, and I couldn't see how a manual tx could be bad, but I didn't factor in software control! Hopefully, FCA will issue an update to fix these horrible engine control problems. Anyone in FCA listening?
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post #12 of 15 Old 02-27-2019, 07:29 PM
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Yeah, its hard to screw up a manual, but I guess they've found a way. Software controls are a PITA. I wish Jeep could get back to basics.
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post #13 of 15 Old 02-28-2019, 08:26 AM
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Interesting topic. I haven't noticed software issues but I might not have paid enough attention or it might be 4x2 vs 4x4 differences (no transfer case on mine).

The manual seemed really familiar with me. I had a manual Dart with the 1.4. The shift knob looks identical and there are probably a lot of shared parts.

The same 1.4 went into the Renegade and likely the same transmission for the 4x2.

Then the Dart GT got the 2.4 with the 6 speed manual. The same engine got put in the compass and I'd imagine the same 6 speed for the 4x2.

I am curious as to how FCA sourced the manual on the renegade 4x4. The autos are clearly different. Did FCA have any Euro only 4x4 Fiats or did they modify the existing fwd/4x2 in the Dart (and other Fiats) into a 4x4 setup? The Wrangler is another 4x4 manual but the JK was designed during Daimler Chrsyler times and paired with those engines. Does the 4x4 manual have more in common with the Wrangler than the 4x2?
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post #14 of 15 Old 02-28-2019, 01:49 PM
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I have no issues with my manual transmission in my Latitude 4x4. It shifts fine and is never jerky unless I make it that way. OP, it sounds like you're having issues with yours and I'm sure you know what you're doing, but it's certainly not universal across all MT Compass vehicles. It may be worth trying to see if there's something that the dealer can fix.

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post #15 of 15 Old 02-28-2019, 02:55 PM
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never had problems with the cruise control. it works flawlessly and I use resume etc. all the time.

the jerkiness is definitely user error. I don't do it at all now (about to hit 40k miles) and I've only had the jeep one year. It's just foot-muscle memory and you will learn to finesse the throttle at low gears/speeds so you're not jerking through parking lots.

'18 Compass 4x4 Sport 6-speed manual
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