You. Yes, you there. You're clearly a man or woman who knows everything there is to know about the inner-workings of the automobile, correct? Of course you are. Well, what if you have to explain something to, oh a friend or family member that might not fully understand the combustion engine and all of the interconnected bits of engineering that go along with it. Well, today you're in luck because we have a wonderful video dug up by the folks at Car and Driver that will help explain to you, er we mean help you explain how a manual transmission works.
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This video from 1936 goes into a simple yet detailed discussion on what makes a manual gearbox tick. It all starts with that wonderful tool the lever. The lever evolves into the gear, and from there we move onto transferring power from the engine out to the wheels. It's the gearing that makes magic happen, and multiple gears means a better transfer of power from the engine, to the wheels, to the ground.
This video even gets into a bit of talk on the application of synchromesh. This is what keeps your gears from grinding when you shift between gears. Older cars lacked synchros which meant you had to learn to be buttery smooth to match the engine speed to the gear you wanted.
Now that you're armed with this knowledge, you can go forth and be more greatly educated about your favorite mode of transportation... oh right, educate others. You already knew all this.