porschenut
porschenut Reader
9/12/18 3:11 a.m.

After a week in Ireland, driving half way around the island on everything from motorways to goat trails I wanted to share the experience. 

1 Shifting with the left hand sucks.  Can't find the lever, and going for the next gear requires too much thought.

2. You quickly learn the corners of the car.  I bet my autocrossing will greatly improve after this.  

3. Will NEVER try to drink coffee or look at my phone while here.  A break in concentration is not possible.

4. Maintaining the speed limits on these roads is a challenge.  Lots of blind corners.

Please share your thoughts, will check in later.

sleepyhead
sleepyhead Dork
9/12/18 4:51 a.m.

I learned driving stick after hours of left-seat "gear select on demand" for my dad and sister.  So, I never had an issue with that.

Hardest thing I had was reverting to RHD turn signal & wiper orientation.  "Why are the wipers on, and everyone is honking at me at this rounabout!?"

GameboyRMH
GameboyRMH MegaDork
9/12/18 5:48 a.m.

I've done most of my driving on the left, shifting with my right hand doesn't feel weird or difficult to me.

914Driver
914Driver MegaDork
9/12/18 7:11 a.m.

Steering column is just flipped over so the blinker is on the right, wipers on the left.  I want to turn and end up hitting the wipers.  Moving down a center turn lane, there's a car coming straight at me.  My buddy says "Is he turning or what?"

How do I know, I didn't see his wipers!

T.J.
T.J. MegaDork
9/12/18 7:33 a.m.

Turn signal hand is not your shifting hand.....that's how I keep it straight when going back and forth from LHD to RHD cars.

Appleseed
Appleseed MegaDork
9/12/18 8:57 a.m.

It's like masterbating with the other hand. Feels weird, but you eventually get used to it.

Duke
Duke MegaDork
9/12/18 10:40 a.m.

I didn't have any trouble with shifting or the column stalks, but I was terrible at knowing where the left front corner was.

If the shift pattern was backward, that would have been worse.

aircooled
aircooled MegaDork
9/12/18 10:46 a.m.

I did not find it terribly hard, but it was a bit freaky to turn at an intersection and try to remember which lane I was supposed to end up in (smaller Camen Island roads).

It did take me a bit to figure out the rear view was up and LEFT.

I really do enjoy the challenge of such things though.  Same reason why I think it would be fun to learn how to drive a Model T.

Jerry
Jerry UberDork
9/12/18 12:40 p.m.

Not sure about shifting, but back in my Navy days in the 80s I remember riding in the front seat of a taxi somewhere in the Med, forget which country.  Every time he made a turn I remember thinking "yup, I'd have gone into the wrong lane there.  Yup, I would have screwed that up too.  Yup, I would have died there as well..."

DrBoost
DrBoost MegaDork
9/12/18 8:18 p.m.

I had a RHD mini for years. The shifting was as natural as anything. My wife agreed. I let others drive it, most were surprised at how easy it was to learn the shifting, once they realized that the brake, clutch, and gas pedals and the shift pattern is the same that is. 

Nathan JansenvanDoorn
Nathan JansenvanDoorn Dork
9/13/18 7:18 a.m.

It depends. I was born and raised in Canada but moved to Australia 4 years ago. We have two rhd  and one lhd car. One rhd car has the turn signal on the right (as you describe), but the other has it on a the left side of the column. The lhd car is as you would expect. I still get the wipers going on a sunny day every once in a while on the rhd cars.   

so far, an e30, e39 and (German assembled) Fiesta ST have all kept the turn signal on the left on the rhd cars.

T.J. said:

Turn signal hand is not your shifting hand.....that's how I keep it straight when going back and forth from LHD to RHD cars.

 

drainoil
drainoil HalfDork
9/13/18 7:08 p.m.
Nathan JansenvanDoorn said:

It depends. I was born and raised in Canada but moved to Australia 4 years ago. We have two rhd  and one lhd car. One rhd car has the turn signal on the right (as you describe), but the other has it on a the left side of the column. The lhd car is as you would expect. I still get the wipers going on a sunny day every once in a while on the rhd cars.   

so far, an e30, e39 and (German assembled) Fiesta ST have all kept the turn signal on the left on the rhd cars.

T.J. said:

Turn signal hand is not your shifting hand.....that's how I keep it straight when going back and forth from LHD to RHD cars.

 

I once read somewhere (can’t seem to find the source now of course) that said in certain parts of Canada years ago were set up to drive on the left side of the road. Anyone know if this was the case?

nutherjrfan
nutherjrfan SuperDork
9/13/18 7:25 p.m.

I wonder what it will be like if I ever go back. indecision

californiamilleghia
californiamilleghia Reader
9/13/18 7:29 p.m.

How many times did you forget  and grab the shifter and end up with the door handle in your right hand ?   OOPS

when I drove my Left hand drive  German registration VW visiting England I would put a note on the Dashboard saying " Drive in the Gutter"

And if driving a RHD car in the USA , you may get stuck as the door will not open with a high curb :)

All in a days work.......

 

nutherjrfan
nutherjrfan SuperDork
9/13/18 7:37 p.m.

When I used to travel back and forth moons ago I'd always try to get in the drivers side as a passenger.  Got some strange looks from family and friends and a 'do you think you're driving?'  Did that quite often without thinking. blush

Our Preferred Partners
G6d7WcWIWmbP25s48RLXVXkpreh0yxqw8uRiCfcDKQEwMhiZZRfTqzkRmapawgv3