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FWD overstreering/drifting/ *** dragging

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  • FWD overstreering/drifting/ *** dragging

    First off I drive FWD and like it, not everyone likes to drive FWD. I understand this. So this thread isn't to start a fight at all

    This a thread for anyone who likes FWD cars and wants discuss technique. . It is possible to overstreer a FWD car to an extent. That being I do realize that the result might not as pretty as what our RWD, MR or even AWD friends might be able to do. Those of us that drive FWD must focus on wieght transfer and momentum, while other drive trains can power of coners. It's not easy, but with practice and determination we can go sideways. So here's a little turorial.

    Here are some helpfull links I found:

    From the first link:

    "Front-Wheel-Drive Oversteer

    It is generally perceived that front-wheel-drive cars - that is, cars in which the front wheels do both, put power to the road and steer - are understeering wrecks that fly off the road if you go into a corner too quickly. This is generally true, but it is possible to eliminate understeer and actually oversteer to a certain degree. Oversteering fun is not just the domain of rear-wheel-drivers.

    Front-Wheel-Drive Oversteer

    Oversteer is best practiced in an open area, and preferably on gravel so you can lose traction without much effort. You will not be able to hold a long, continuous sideways drift around a sweeping corner with a front-wheel-drive car like you can with a rear-wheel-drive vehicle, and you cannot use engine power on a high-horsepower car to start a "powerslide" since the power acts on the front wheels. But still, contrary to popular belief, oversteer is possible with a front-driver.

    One way to induce oversteer in your front-driver is to plow hard into a corner and then lift off the throttle in the middle of the corner. Lifting off the throttle will cause the weight of the car to "shift" to the front, thereby putting more weight over the front wheels and, ultimately, adding more grip to the front tires. However, if you are lucky, the rear tires will lose traction and start to slide outwards while you're turning. You are now oversteering. Some countersteer now has to be applied to keep control of the slide, that is, steer in the direction of the slide. Learning to precisely "catch" a slide will take a lot of practice, so it is better to play around in an empty gravel lot or a slippery track with large run-off areas. Start off at moderate corner entry speeds and then increase this speed as you become more confident. This technique is only possible with well-balanced front-drivers such as an Integra or an old Sentra SE-R. If your car can achieve oversteer in this way, you will generally be cornering faster. Practice with lower entry speeds, and gradually increase it as you get confident.

    A brute-force way to induce a slide is to pull the handbrake (or press the e-brake) momentarily and yank the steering wheel in the direction of the corner, then countersteer. For example, to take a right-curving corner, you could plow into the corner in second gear and as soon as the corner starts, yank the steering wheel to the right and a split second later, pull the handbrake. The rear wheels will lock and suddenly lose traction. The car will quickly go it a sideways skid, at which point you quickly start countersteering. Now, before exiting the corner, release the handbrake. The front wheels of the car will just try to pull the car straight again and you'll have to steer exactly where you want to go. If you don't release the handbrake in time, you will spin. If done right, eventually you will center the wheel and straighten the car. Throughout the turn, keep the accelerator at a constant position, but you can apply a litle more throttle on the exit if you think you are spinning out. One hand should always be on the handbrake, with the button depressed, so you will have to turn with one hand. The sudden slide is a little hard to control on the first few tries and requires quick reflexes. And, as stated earlier, a continuous slide around the whole corner, like those done with rear-wheel-drive cars, is not possible with a front-driver. Pulling the handbrake to turn around a long radius corner will actually worsen your cornering time in most cases, so it is not a technique for road racing. But it can save you if speeding and understeering off a cliff is eminent.

    Front-Wheel-Drive Oversteer

    Most cars on the road today are front-wheel-drive cars, from Acura to Volvo. The only rear-wheel-drive cars available nowadays are either impractical roadsters, exotic sports cars or overweight luxury cars. There are a number of well-balanced front-wheel-drive cars available that are actually easy to drive fast around corners. Examples include the RSX Type-S and legendary Integra Type-R from Acura, Celica GT-S from Toyota, SVT Focus from Ford, Sentra SE-R from Nissan, and the new Mini Cooper. Do note that not all front-wheel-drive cars are suitable for oversteering. Many cars, like the Infiniti G20 and Chevy Monte Carlo, are set up to understeer, sometimes aggressively so, because understeer is generally easier to control than oversteer for inexperienced motorists. The methods described here only serve as a general guide and will have to be adjusted according to the car you drive. There are other techniques too, such as left-foot braking and the pendulum drift, but these are harder and require their own space for discussion.

    On a cautionary note, sliding a car not set up with substantial bracing might cause your car to fall apart! Practice on gravel, grass or in the rain, in an open area. Then adapt your car and your driving to handle the tarmac. 2003 "

    Next Lesson: Left foot Breaking
    Last edited by Tercel_Drifter; 05-07-2005, 09:39 AM.

  • #2
    Left foot Breaking

    Once again I would like to thank for such great information.

    "Left-foot Braking

    Left-foot braking is primarily used in front-wheel-drive cars and comes in handy during cornering at high speeds.

    A severe problem affecting most front-drivers is understeer during fast cornering. Understeer generally means that during cornering at a high speed, the car has a tendency to keep moving straight and to the outer edge of the curving road rather than the direction in which you are pointing the car. To cancel out understeer, there should be more grip at the front wheels than at the rear. The left-foot braking technique more or less helps you to do just that.

    When approaching a corner, you should start slowing down like you normally do, using your right foot to apply the brake. At this point, you can use the heel-and-toe maneuver and downshift to the proper gear. Now, you should move your right foot over to the accelerator and your left foot to the brake at the same time. You are now ready to perform left-foot braking. Continue slowing the car down to a reasonable - but not too low - speed by applying the brakes with your left foot. As you are about to turn into the corner, hit the gas with your right foot and keep braking with your left foot at the same time. Being a front-wheel-drive, the rear wheels will lock while the front wheels keep moving. The car's weight is transferred to the front, causing the front wheels to have more grip than the rear wheels. The car now starts to oversteer.

    Now you have to keep the car in control by steering in the direction that you want to go, and applying more or less throttle and braking as needed. You have to use both your pedals at the same time, which will take practice. Lifting off the accelerator will cause more oversteer and flip out the car's rear even more. Applying more throttle while easing off the brakes will reduce oversteer and straighten out the car. Keep performing this balancing act to smoothly clear the corner at high speed, all the while making little corrections to your steering. At the end of the corner, just floor it and power out.

    When you get good at this technique, you should be able to just keep the accelerator completely floored and keep the car moving in your preffered direction using just your brake pedal and steering wheel. Understeer is eliminated if done correctly and you clear the corner at a higher speed than in normal driving. The trick is to keep practicing braking with the left foot and learn to apply the brakes as well with the left foot as with the right.

    With a typical race-car gearbox, you can even start your initial braking with your left foot instead of your right without having to use the clutch pedal. When braking, you can blip the throttle between the gear change. Most normal gearboxes cannot cope with such abuse and so it is generally better not to even think about trying such a move with your commuter car unless you have deep pockets to foot the resulting repair bill! Also keep in mind that many upmarket cars are equipped with computer-controlled stability systems that will help you to safely keep a car in control during high speed cornering. But with practice, you can control a car better with the stability system turned off and turn at an even higher speed. 2003"


    • #3
      Lesson #3, The E-break is your friend.


      "Handbrake Turn

      It is possible to turn the car a full 180 degrees to face the opposite direction by performing what is known as a handbrake turn. Some colorful folks even call it a bootlegger's hairpin. In effect, it is essentially a U-turn done in the space of two lanes of road without resorting to tedious three-point turns. It is a very easy technique. However, to do it safely and accurately takes practice.

      handbrake turn

      Handbrake turns are the easiest to perform with a front-wheel-drive car, although any car will do. A Kia Rio will be just as effective as a Chevy Corvette. To pull off this maneuver, drive along at about 30 to 35 mph, in first or second gear. Too slow and you won't be able to complete a 180. Any faster and you will start going backwards after you complete the turn. The exact speed depends on road conditions and the type and condition of tires on your car.

      Position one hand on the steering wheel in a way that will allow you to quickly turn it one full circle. This basically means that, on a left-hand-drive car, you place your left hand on the right side of the steering wheel, ready to flick the wheel around quickly. The exact positioning will depend on which way you want to turn. Also, with a manual car, keep one hand on the handbrake with the release button already pressed (but with an automatic, shift into neutral first, then get ready with the handbrake). Now, the key here is to start turning before you pull the handbrake. Ease off on the accelerator, floor the clutch (or in the case of an automatic, go into neutral) and quickly yank the steering wheel smoothly either left or right (or on whichever side you have more space to make a turn) until it locks. A split second after you start turning, quickly yank the handbrake lever (or, as with most American cars, apply the foot-operated e-brake), locking the rear wheels completely. At this point, you will start rotating and really feel the lateral G building up. As you are rotating, you should gradually bring your steering wheel to the center again and straighten out your front wheels. In the end, you will more or less be facing the opposite direction, at a complete stop, or moving backwards slowly. You can judiciously apply the normal foot brake (or not at all) to control the end of the rotation precisely and stop moving backwards.

      If you're feeling particularly destructive, you could go one up. While rotating, when you've completed about three-fourth of the 180 with the clutch pedal depressed, shift into first gear, release the handbrake (or e-brake), floor the accelerator and dump the clutch, performing all one by one quickly. You will start moving again as you complete the turn, spinning your wheels and kicking up some tire smoke if you have enough power. If you spin more than 180 degrees, you can apply some countersteer to straighten out your car while driving away. With an automatic, just move from neutral to Drive, then floor the accelerator.

      handbrake turn

      Just remember - for manual cars, depress the clutch, turn, pull the handbrake (or press the foot e-brake), straighten the steering wheel, release the handbrake (or foot e-brake), shift into first, floor the accelerator, dump the clutch, and finally, countersteer to keep the car straight. For automatics, go into neutral, turn, pull handbrake (or press foot e-brake), straighten the wheel, release the handbrake (or foot e-brake), shift into Drive, floor the accelerator, and finally, countersteer to keep the car straight.

      Pulling off the tire-smoking maneuver with a manual car will take a lot of practice to get it right. Try practicing in an empty parking lot or on gravel. An even better solution is an empty parking lot right after it has rained or snowed. It will be easier on your tires. Remember that pulling off 180 degree turns repeatedly will kill your tires. And be warned that this move is always risky with a tall SUV! 2003"


      • #4
        Lesson #4 No ABS? No problem!


        "Cadence Braking

        If you lock the front wheels under heavy braking, you can no longer steer. ABS (anti-lock braking) automatically keeps the tyres on the point of locking so that you can continue to steer as well as slow down.

        If you don't have ABS you can use cadence braking whereby you lock the wheels, then release the brakes so that you can steer, brake again, release and steer again in sequence until you have avoided the hazard. This is particularly useful on slippery roads, but it takes practice and quick thinking to be able to release the brakes when you are sliding towards the hazard."


        • #5
          Lesson #5 Short shifting, a way to fight too much weight transter to the rear


          "Short Shifting

          Short-shifting is where you change up a gear before it is needed; In other words, you change up a gear before you have used up the previous gear.

          Why would you want to do this? Well this is a valid question because short-shifting almost always means you will be instantly losing some power and torque due to being in a higher gear than is necessary.

          Well there are two main reasons.

          One reason is to purposefully take away torque from the wheels. Maybe it is a bump / slippy curve and you will be unable to use the full torque of the gear you would normally be in, so it might be a safer bet to be in a higher gear to reduce the likelihood of sudden wheel-spin, etc.

          The other (and more common reason) is to save the time taken to change gear. Lets say you have a tight 2nd gear left-hand bend, followed by a long straight. You are at about 2/3 revs as you approach the apex.

          You can either stay in second gear and use the extra torque to accelerate as quickly as possible.

          Or you can change up to 3rd before you need to start accelerating and sacrifice the extra acceleration for the time saving in not having to change gear.

          A judgement has to be made as to which would be quicker. In race driving this is normally already tried and tested for your formula on the track you are racing on so it is often pre-decided. In rallying it is less clear, and probably slightly less important.

          The main reasons you would use short-shifting in rallying would be for balance rather than outright time and speed. If there was a twisty section ahead for the next 50 yards and you will need 1 up change in the middle of it, you may decide to get the change done before the complex to avoid upsetting the car mid-way through it. "


          • #6
            Lesson #6 Gripping, yes griping...

            This Lesson is for the fastest cornering at the tires limit of gripping potencial, I one wants to drift. It is necesarry to know all aspects how one's car handles.


            "Cornering Lines

            Taking a car around a corner is more than just turning the steering wheel, especially in competition driving. When throwing a car around a curve at breakneck speeds, the line taken when entering and exiting the turn makes a lot of difference.

            "Cornering Lines

            There is a certain procedure to be followed when approaching a corner on the track at high speed. While driving in a straight line, when you see a corner ahead, smoothly lift off the throttle. You will learn to do this as late as possible with practice. Now progressively apply the brakes as needed while still in a straight line. Quickly downshift to the right gear to maintain enough revs for accelerating out of the turn. While looking ahead to the apex of the curve, smoothly release the brakes just before you turn-in. Braking during the actual turn may upset your car's balance. Gently apply a little throttle as you start the turn-in. As you turn, always look further ahead into the turn by physically turning your head. Always turn the wheel slowly and smoothly, as jerky steering movements will also upset the car's balance. Co-ordinate your hands and eyes, for progressive steering input. As you pass the apex of the turn, smoothly apply more throttle in a progressive manner, and begin your move towards the outer edge of the track as you exit the turn. Let the steering wheel smoothly and progressively unwind towards the trackout point, by which time your wheel should be pointing straight ahead.

            In a constant radius corner, if you turn in at the correct point and start with the correct amount of steering input, you can keep the steering wheel at the exact same position through the whole turn and your car will travel in an arc from the turn-in point, through the apex and to the exit point.

            Cornering Lines

            With respect to navigating the turn, there are various lines you can take, but only one line which is the most beneficial. The best line to take largely depends on driver skill. The diagram above demonstrates three methods of entry and their potential consequences on exit.

            The early apex, as shown by the red line, is quite the wrong method of negotiating a turn. You get a fast entry speed into the turn but safely exiting the turn becomes harder. Early apex usually have an early turn-in point where you start your turn away from the outside edge of the track and move towards the center. Entering the turn too fast is always a sign of driver error, and the troubles get worse especially with cars that have a tendency to understeer. The result is that a very sharp turn is required for the exit, which may be unsettling for the car and the driver may instead go off the track.

            The late apex, as shown by the yellow line, is a safe method, good for beginner track-drivers but it is not the fastest way through a turn. This technique involves driving past the ideal turn-in point and then making a hard turn into the corner at a relatively slow speed. After hitting the late apex, the exit is very easy for the driver and does not require driving to the outside of the track. This minimizes the chances of an inexperienced driver going off the track, and exit speeds are quite fast.

            The ideal apex, as shown by the green line, is a good balance between a fast entry and a fast exit. The turn is started from the outside edge of the track and the car hits the midpoint of the turn on the inside edge. Finally, one tracks-out to the outside edge of the track for a fairly fast exit.

            The key to safe turning at the track is to follow the old saying "slow in, fast out." Enter a turn slowly to avoid getting into trouble, and speed up as you are exiting the turn heading for a nice and straight piece of asphalt. To drive at the limit of of your tires' traction, it is important to turn-in, apex and track-out at the precise points. With practice at slower speeds, you can learn to drive along the proper line through every corner, so you get used to the idea of "clipping" the apex.

   2004 "


            • #7
              An important aspect of drifting, in a FWD is that you can't really power out, so your best bet is the lift-off tech. if you want to use throttle control. Right now I'm researching suspension and lsd set-ups and will post them once I find anything worth while.


              • #8
                Originally posted by Tercel_Drifter
                An important aspect of drifting, in a FWD is that you can't really power out, so your best bet is the lift-off tech. if you want to use throttle control. Right now I'm researching suspension and lsd set-ups and will post them once I find anything worth while.

                Your best bet is to ditch your tercel, and get a RWD ANYTHING
                -Don't forget the struggle. Don't forget the streets-


                Listen to Motley Crue


                • #9
                  there was a stock 4door civic at drift day 24 lol i tihnk there was also a rsx but i dontk now if it was driving or not


                  • #10
                    Keep being open minded and don't listen to the haters. All that matters is that your having fun and enjoying your time in your car. Falken Tires Drift EF Rocks and Hatakeyama can drive the pants off that thing! Keep Sliding!
                    Last edited by 110octane; 05-23-2005, 01:50 PM.


                    • #11
                      lol a tercel drifter...whatever floats your boat dude... FWD drifters are unorthodox and pretty uncommon doesnt mean that its not done properly. If you have the right setup on a car and the car has good balance you can get it to hang with the 240's and rx7's...account that the driver is damn good... i heard the EF civic hatches are good base FWD drift cars. Team falken is running one and it is pretty impressive. i heard the driver runs it with toe out on the rear and about 35Psi in the rear tires....his techinique is to not stop the tires when he brakes, but to cause the car to kick out just so he can get into a decent slide. anywho...good luck tryin to drift that


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Drift Alliance
                        Your best bet is to ditch your tercel, and get a RWD ANYTHING
                        planning for a second car,looking for an fc. but not ditchin the tercel looking to do a swap to a 4e from the 3e. yes i know that rwd is prefered and superior to fwd, in many aspects. but i do not deem it, in any way impossible. i mentioned that in my first post i'm not looking to win drift competions, just trying to have fun

                        Originally posted by TokyoDrifterxo7
                        lol a tercel drifter...whatever floats your boat dude... FWD drifters are unorthodox and pretty uncommon doesnt mean that its not done properly. If you have the right setup on a car and the car has good balance you can get it to hang with the 240's and rx7's...account that the driver is damn good... i heard the EF civic hatches are good base FWD drift cars. Team falken is running one and it is pretty impressive. i heard the driver runs it with toe out on the rear and about 35Psi in the rear tires....his techinique is to not stop the tires when he brakes, but to cause the car to kick out just so he can get into a decent slide. anywho...good luck tryin to drift that
                        have gone sideways before . but can't hold it very long (duh it fwd ) just trying to improve. looking at camber, dampener stuff right now.
                        Last edited by Tercel_Drifter; 05-23-2005, 01:27 PM.


                        • #13
                          A good overall read for fwd drifting.

                          I wouldn't diss fwd for drifting. I started on fwd. In fact, I'd like to see more people start on fwd cars. Sure fwd isn't a good platform to drift with, but it is a good platform to start a new drifter on.

                          Why? It forces them to enter fast and use momentum, and it forces them to work on weight shift techniques rather than just pegging the throttle.

                          Feint and braking techniques was all I had to start with. They're great techniques to learn and transfer over to every other car you will ever own. You learn to come into corners with a lot of momentum and to bleed it off through the feint and braking. The only problem occurs is when you want to exit at speed. It won't happen. You enter as fast as you can, but every time, you're putting out of the corner. When starting on fwd, this frustrated me so much. I never could exit as fast as I'd like to. It pushed me to enter faster and faster and improve my line as best I could. It was a wonderful motivator for improvement, but you always were disappointed in the end.

                          Rwd changes it all. It gives you the ability to maintain or gain speed through the corner and exit. You can enter fast and exit fast. It's so much more satisfying and enjoyable. Plus, the skills you learn running on a fwd go right over to the rwd car. You just add more techniques to your bag of tricks.


                          • #14
                            Thanks for the support Drift For Food. trying to find ways of playing with the dampeners right now. its been raining all week around here. Great time to practice wieght transfer technique without too much tire wear . been practicing throttle off and brake drifts all week. I've found engine braking is really usefull in fwd cars as well if you want to concentrate on slowing down the front without touching the rears. A quick shift from 3rd to 2nd really throws the wieght foward, followed by steering seems really effective.


                            • #15
                              Thanks for finding all this information for FWD cars Tercel-Drifter. I could actually use some of these techniques to get me out of hazards of understeering.