Drifting for Beginners
We all have to start somewhere, but where exactly is the starting point when it comes to choosing your first drift toy.
The likes of S-body's, Chasers, Skylines and Supra's are cars that drifters dream of getting behind the wheel of. They are also the cars that most of us see when first introduced to drifting, so it's very easy to run away with the idea of getting one to learn how to drift; But, we’re going to tell you why you shouldn’t.
1. The price tag
When learning to drift you will crash. It is inevitable. It's nothing to be ashamed of, it's just what happens when you’re learning, sometimes things go wrong.
"If you don't crash, you're not trying hard enough" these words are a godsend when it comes to learning how to drift. Sometimes things go your way and you pull of an amazing entry, a perfect skid and a beautifully executed exit. Sometimes you crash into a bridge, a ditch or a wall. With the hike of ‘drift tax’ and the growing popularity of the sport, the sought after jap cars will see you selling your clothes to get the latest broken part.
This is going to be the opposite of what you think. High powered drift cars (when set up properly) are very nice and smooth to drift. So when it comes to drifting at low speeds it's a lot easier with the high power turbo'ed cars, but you should always always start from the bottom when it comes to drifting.
It might sound stupid but everyone should start with low powered cars, the likes of Volvo 340's, E36’s and MX-5’s. Having a low powered car will teach you things that the big powered cars wouldn't when learning, such as control of the throttle, how to initiate at high speeds, that's how to get every inch of power you can from your car and growing a pair of balls.
3. Lock Mods and Hydro’s
We all see the top spec drift cars with mad lock and huge hydros and can only dream of our car being like this. When learning you shouldn’t get lock mods or a hydro.
It's often seen that beginners will buy e36’s, chuck a hydro in and get the front hubs modded off they go, thinking they’re DK. The problem with this is they will enter too fast and use the hydro to slow them down; rather than just break traction. Then they will set down on full throttle and use full lock, then the angle slows the car down for them. This is a no go.
Drifting is a fine art, you should be able to control that throttle pedal with perfection not just hold it to the floor. Without lock mods or hydro's you with learn how to clutch kick enter and you will learn how to control your car in every aspect with your right foot. Build your skills up before proceeding to the next level.
The likely hood of you crashing or breaking something when learning is high. Parts are a lot cheaper for smaller RWD cars. Your local breakers yard will become your best friend, and you’ll find yourself always asking for parts. MX-5’s and E36’s boast a whole range of cheap second hand parts, with one being broken practically every minute, and that's good news for those who are learning.
Lower powered cars also bring the luxury of smaller tyres that don’t burn as quickly, with next to no power going to the wheels. Get yourself a pile of part worn tyres and you’re set.
5. Grass Roots Drifting
It's grass roots drifting, meaning bottom of the pile, the start, the beginning. Start from the beginning and work your way up the ladder and to the top. You'll learn a hell of a lot more this way. Learn how to pedal a car the way it should be, not relying on the modifications instead of your driver skill.
As they say, if you can’t drift an under powered car, you can’t drift. What was your first drift car, tell us in the #drift chat.