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-   -   Old School hypermiler PULSE AND GLIDE (

Dragonova 06-15-2008 03:22 AM

Old School hypermiler PULSE AND GLIDE
Hi all

First off it is good to see people being proactive in reducing there carbon foot prints And just saving some money. I myself am a avid hypermiler I own a
2001 Honda civic lx (automatic) with 161000 miles and going strong. I currently get 50-56 mpg. Here is a little tid bit on a technique that was taught to me while I was in the military (ARMY) for all of 14 years. The technique is called pulse and glide
sadly the military does not teach this method any more as a standard tactical driving method. The technique pulse and glide was born during WORLD WAR II when the greatest effective method in a war is to ambush fuel and ration supply convoys i.e trucks that was sent to refuel tanks,armored vehicles and troop transport vehicles.
Well this happed offend to U.S armed forces wide particularity to the ARMY. With out fuel to run vehicles GAME OVER but out of psychological resilience and a health does of never give up. Soldiers improvised and learned to use techniques the lead to fuel rationing and effectively increasing the Mpg's. I had the pleasure of being taken under the wing of one of the finest military tactical driving instructors (ARMY).
I was taught a modified version of pulse and glide
technique. and I have using pulse and glide ever sense 1996. But come to find out to my surprise pulse and glide is the same techniques used hypermiling.
Which is PULSE= steady footing on that gas pedal and never I never repeat going above 2000 rpms ( keep your cool) GLIDE= coasting in neutral on all declines and flat leveled roads no highways.
Now this method was originally for rural roads (unpaved) hence the modified version I said I was taught. Which is as you may have guessed paved modern roads also this method involves rpm matching which is a whole other ball game. This method can be used with manual and automatic transmissions. Again I was taught this and practice this method for over 6 years I do not recommend rpm matching in a automatic transmission. But with the pulse and glide method I an able to achieve 50-56 Mpg constantly.

regor 06-15-2008 11:49 AM

AS we try to save money on gas, are we wearing our vehicles out quicker? What do I mean? Let's say, coasting downhill in neutral. While it is saving gas, you'll probably be using your brakes more, hence, wearing out the pads.

It's like driving down a long mountain grade (I use to drive a school bus, so this is what I was taught). Do you use your transmission (lower gears) or your brakes to slow down? If you think about it, if you use your brakes and lose them, your transmission won't stop you, however, if you're in a nice low gear (And I've experience being in such, in a full bus, that I did not have to use my brakes at all), you might not have to use your brakes, but you're wearing out your transmission quicker, but your brakes will be there if you lose your transmission.

So it's basically figuring out what evil is worst. With my commute, I plan my downhills so I will hit then slow enough, so I won't need my brakes, but stay in drive for just that bit of braking. Of course, I piss off alot of people because I hit those hills slow.

Dragonova 06-15-2008 05:26 PM

Regor you are right about brakes but like you I meter my break usage.
I too use hills as a advantage I never go over 50 mph and I piss people off. when I do break I use the intermediate counting method ( maximum 2-3 second count) lite tap not constant foot on the break pedal. The technique I use has both wear and tear, gas millage in mind again this was an official driving technique used but the military. Of course there are other factors involved like understanding Rpm matching and Rpm sensing and feeling methods. But there is always a tid for a tat in life you will never get 100% out of anything the most you will get is 80% order on a good day the rest of the % is left for change and chaos. But breaks are wear and tear items that can be changed
easy for me versus paying 4 + dollars for gas that can be wasted in a blink of an eye. And with the stated 50-56 Mpg I rather change my breaks any time lol.

Jon M 06-15-2008 05:38 PM

Coasting down a hill is A LOT different than driving down a mountain.

For coasting down a hill, I think it's assumed that you can see the bottom, know the road, and will use that kinetic energy for a long as possible after you hit the bottom.

My .02

regor 06-15-2008 08:19 PM

My commute goes from home (500') to the local mountains (4000')

chrislk1986 06-15-2008 10:38 PM

You figure if you increase your mpg by a mere 5mpg, and you have a 12 gallon gas tank, that is 60 extra miles per tank. if you fill up once a week that is at least 240 miles per month. At 40mpg that is 6 gallons or approximately $26 savings a month/$322 ish yearly.

If you know how to change your own brakes, you are still saving over $250 a year. And I would rather wear my brakes down than my transmission (manual).

And one thing you probably notice is that the price of brake pads don't generally rise with the price of gas.

cfg83 06-16-2008 02:45 AM

regor -


Originally Posted by regor (Post 35066)
My commute goes from home (500') to the local mountains (4000')

Today I took Laurel Canyon Blvd to get from the Valley to the West Side. I lost 7 MPG going up the hill and gained maybe half that back. Because the down hill run was too steep, I stayed in 3rd or 4th gear all the way down. Using only my brakes could have gotten my down the hill and increased my MPG, but it could have put me in danger of overheating my brakes. When the downhill is too steep, it's a no-win.

I would hate to have that commute every day. It would always result in a net loss.


cfg83 06-16-2008 02:53 AM

Dragonova -

Welcome to EM! I do think that saving fuel is patriotic for civilians (i.e. self-rationing similar to WWII forced rationing). It's neat to think that the Army taught pulse-and-glide for tactical reasons.


OneBadBird 06-19-2008 01:24 AM

I'm not getting are the brakes being worn out more? Are you actually saving SO much gas that you think the car is a perpetual motion machine that must be held back from its neverending gogogo?

sdmagintern 07-07-2008 06:51 PM

Hi regor,

I'm working on an article for San Diego Magazine about hypermiling and gas-saving tips, and I'm looking to talk to people in the area who are hypermilers. Would you be able to give me more info on it, or know of anyone that could?

Thanks so much!
Leslie C.

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