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      01-26-2013, 09:17 AM   #1
NFAM3
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Paddle Shifters on M3 vs Other Cars

I have a quick question. The paddle shifters on our cars move with the steering wheel. Meaning, when I turn, the paddles turn with the wheel. But then on some exotics like the Lambos and Ferraris, the paddle shifters remain stationary. Meaning they always remain in the 9 o'clock and 3 o'clock positions. I've always noticed this but last weekend, I was able to road course a Gallardo. I caught myself wanting to downshift or upshift during a turn and my hand had to let go of the steering wheel to get to the paddle shifter. It was uncomfortable as I wanted to keep my hands on the wheel. On our cars, since our hands are supposed to be on the 3'o'clock and 9 o'clock positions, when we turn and need to shift, we don't have to let go of the wheel since the shifters always remain by our fingers. My question is, why do Ferrari and Lamborghini have their setup the way they do and we have it the way we do? Is there a reason? Is one supposed to be better than the other?
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      01-26-2013, 09:35 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NFAM3
I have a quick question. The paddle shifters on our cars move with the steering wheel. Meaning, when I turn, the paddles turn with the wheel. But then on some exotics like the Lambos and Ferraris, the paddle shifters remain stationary. Meaning they always remain in the 9 o'clock and 3 o'clock positions. I've always noticed this but last weekend, I was able to road course a Gallardo. I caught myself wanting to downshift or upshift during a turn and my hand had to let go of the steering wheel to get to the paddle shifter. It was uncomfortable as I wanted to keep my hands on the wheel. On our cars, since our hands are supposed to be on the 3'o'clock and 9 o'clock positions, when we turn and need to shift, we don't have to let go of the wheel since the shifters always remain by our fingers. My question is, why do Ferrari and Lamborghini have their setup the way they do and we have it the way we do? Is there a reason? Is one supposed to be better than the other?
when you rotate the wheel very quickly beyond 1 rotation it can get very confusing/inconvenient as to where the paddles are when they are part of the wheel. also during track time to catch an over steer you may take your hands off then quickly shift. another scenario is when you make a sharp turn (more than 90 degreees) and you need to up shift out mid/exiting it can get awkward shifting when the paddles are on the 1-2/7-8 o'clock position .

during street and light track you downshift before entering the apex so its not too bad. on BMW with paddles i use a combination of both the paddles during corner entry to slow down (in a straight) but if im in a heavy drift or wheel is rotating ill just tap the shifter up/down vs 'looking' for the paddle. imo paddles are good when your arm is not crossing over during steering other than than i prefer a quick up or down tap on the shifter.

f1 cars also have paddles fixed to wheel but their steering radius for the most part doesn't go beyond a half rotation as they rarely take their hand off during steering (yes i know they hit knobs off steering and make brake bias adjustment manually via lever)
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      01-26-2013, 09:41 AM   #3
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Our shifter is there for when the paddles are not convenient.

Ferrari and Lambo don't have a shifter, and I suspect it is safer to have fixed paddles for those cars without shifters for obvious reasons.
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      01-26-2013, 09:41 AM   #4
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Thanks Nova. It was my first time tracking ever. It was a light track. It was at the Speedway outside of Magic Kingdom so just imagine. It was a gift from my wife. It was a exotic car experience. It was a lot of fun. But that was one of the things I noticed. Again, thanks.
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      01-26-2013, 09:43 AM   #5
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I personally prefer the paddles that move with wheel. On track, you rarely need to turn the wheel beyond a quarter turn, so it is not an issue to keep the hands at the 9-3 position. In the rare occasions I need to shift when my hands are not at 9-3, I just go for the shifter instead of trying to figure out where the paddles are.
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      01-26-2013, 09:47 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NFAM3
Thanks Nova. It was my first time tracking ever. It was a light track. It was at the Speedway outside of Magic Kingdom so just imagine. It was a gift from my wife. It was a exotic car experience. It was a lot of fun. But that was one of the things I noticed. Again, thanks.
exotic racing or dream racing if your ever headed to vegas. its friggen awesome . two diff exp but worth it.
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      01-26-2013, 09:52 AM   #7
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It was a light track. It was at the Speedway outside of Magic Kingdom so just imagine.
A real Mickey Mouse track!
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      01-26-2013, 09:58 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CanAutM3 View Post
I personally prefer the paddles that move with wheel. On track, you rarely need to turn the wheel beyond a quarter turn, so it is not an issue to keep the hands at the 9-3 position. In the rare occasions I need to shift when my hands are not at 9-3, I just go for the shifter instead of trying to figure out where the paddles are.
+++ 1
I always thought the same thing
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      01-26-2013, 11:12 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by piloto
Quote:
Originally Posted by NFAM3 View Post
It was a light track. It was at the Speedway outside of Magic Kingdom so just imagine.
A real Mickey Mouse track!
LoL. That was good!!
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      01-27-2013, 06:46 AM   #10
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In all regards.. It is not common practice to be shifting while your car is in a turn for the simple fact that you could very easily upset the balance of your car...

Proper racing technique as you approach a turn would be to 1. Scan ahead, look for turn, apex and exit if possible 2. Brake and Shift 3. bleed Off the brakes 4. Turn-in 5. Clip the apex 6. squeeze back onto the throttle....
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      01-27-2013, 07:17 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Xcelrrate
In all regards.. It is not common practice to be shifting while your car is in a turn for the simple fact that you could very easily upset the balance of your car...

Proper racing technique as you approach a turn would be to 1. Scan ahead, look for turn, apex and exit if possible 2. Brake and Shift 3. bleed Off the brakes 4. Turn-in 5. Clip the apex 6. squeeze back onto the throttle....
It was on part of the oval that I needed to upshift. I understand not wanting to shift on a full turn. But I was accelerating though gears on the oval and would have to let go of the wheel to shift into the next gear since my right hand wasn't at the 9 position.
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      01-27-2013, 07:21 AM   #12
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Quote:
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In all regards.. It is not common practice to be shifting while your car is in a turn for the simple fact that you could very easily upset the balance of your car...
And there lies one of the beauties of DCT in that you can shift mid corner without upsetting the balance of the car.
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      01-27-2013, 07:55 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Xcelrrate
In all regards.. It is not common practice to be shifting while your car is in a turn for the simple fact that you could very easily upset the balance of your car...

Proper racing technique as you approach a turn would be to 1. Scan ahead, look for turn, apex and exit if possible 2. Brake and Shift 3. bleed Off the brakes 4. Turn-in 5. Clip the apex 6. squeeze back onto the throttle....
There are turns on many tracks that require or are better taken with a mid turn shift change. Shifting does not necessarily have to upset the balance of the car in a turn. But in general, what you said, applies.
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      01-28-2013, 05:07 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NFAM3 View Post
It was on part of the oval that I needed to upshift. I understand not wanting to shift on a full turn. But I was accelerating though gears on the oval and would have to let go of the wheel to shift into the next gear since my right hand wasn't at the 9 position.
Maybe I could have said, In general rather than in all regards. Every situations would obviously need to be handled differently..

Quote:
Originally Posted by SenorFunkyPants View Post
And there lies one of the beauties of DCT in that you can shift mid corner without upsetting the balance of the car.
Yeah yeh... no argument there..(I will refrain from any smart ass comment) but still I love my 6MT.. nuff said..

Quote:
Originally Posted by mlhj83 View Post
There are turns on many tracks that require or are better taken with a mid turn shift change. Shifting does not necessarily have to upset the balance of the car in a turn. But in general, what you said, applies.
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      01-28-2013, 10:06 AM   #15
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I love the paddles on an EVO X MR, It's stationary and covers a larger area than our M3's. But that said, I primarily use the main shifter, with that I love how you pull for upshifts and push for downshifts. Its the right way to go not like VW's, opposite or Mercs, left to right.
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      01-28-2013, 03:11 PM   #16
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exotic racing or dream racing if your ever headed to vegas. its friggen awesome . two diff exp but worth it.

Ditto! Anyone hitting vegas on a trip should definately hit up Exotic racing. I was down in Vegas for a conference in October and being that my wife knows my fetish with cars, she signed me up for 8 laps with the 458 italia and a 8 laps in Gallardo. Man was it awesome. They really let you kick the crap out of their cars. The instructors are cool and not overly intrusive.

OP sorry for the mild thread jak.
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      01-28-2013, 04:18 PM   #17
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+1 on stationary paddles. Much better and logical. You never have to question where the + - are when you need that split second extra gear or short shift on opposite lock. Hallelujah for the pull back for upshift on DCT vs. Audi push forward (dumb).
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      01-28-2013, 04:29 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by novablackm3 View Post
also during track time to catch an over steer you may take your hands off then quickly shift.
I've tracked my car a few times and never heard of shifting as an oversteer recovery method. How would that work? Especially if it involves taking your hands off the wheel (which I'm thinking would be a bad idea under oversteer since your the wheel would immediately start spinning in the opposite direction with you no longer forcing them to turn against where they'd go naturally), that seems fairly dangerous and I can't see what the benefit would be above adjusting your throttle input. But I'm also no expert so I'm curious.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mlhj83 View Post
There are turns on many tracks that require or are better taken with a mid turn shift change. Shifting does not necessarily have to upset the balance of the car in a turn. But in general, what you said, applies.
True on all counts. Generally turns where you'd be upshifting are going to be pretty wide and thus require relatively little steering input, like the oval the OP mentioned, and turns where you'd downshift would be longer, decreasing radius turns like the tight turns at the end of the straightaways on Circuit of the Americas, where you're coming down from 4th or 5th all the way to 2nd.
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