Automatic only in school?

Discussion in 'Questions From New Drivers' started by Stallonejr, Apr 26, 2022.

  1. tscottme

    tscottme Road Train Member

    Jul 25, 2008
    Nashville, TN
    Every week manual shifting is less and less important. Since about 80-90% of newbies quit before they finish 1 year in trucking, manual vs auto is nothing to worry about. EVERY NEWBIE builds up the difficulty of shifting trucks into some Godzilla like difficulty and EVERYONE that tries is virtually expert at shifting in few days to a few weeks. It's not the end of the world to make a mistake when shifting. EVERY driver, new, old, and in-between makes them. Just take a breath and fix it and move on. It's now easy to drive your whole career and drive nothing but autos. But in school is the best, cheapest, and easiest time to avoid the restricted license. You never know when a great job will open up and they might require manual experience.
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  3. W923

    W923 Medium Load Member

    Feb 28, 2022
    Get into the tandem dump truck world for a couple days you’re gonna have a sore arm if you haven’t drove in a while lol
    You’ll get good fast lol
  4. Bean Jr.

    Bean Jr. Road Train Member

    Mar 30, 2014
    The first time I drove a 4+4, I went across all four lanes of the road I was on, plus the turn lane! Now, shifting is as automatic as chewing gum. There is no thinking about it. But I'll be honest, drivers are surfing the web while driving. They are not paying attention, and it seems the less they have to do while driving, the less they are capable of doing. How many times have we seen a video of a guy hitting a car or truck, or G-d forbid, a person in the breakdown lane because they couldn't even pay enough attention to stay in the lane. As easy as shifting is, it makes you pay attention, and when you do, you pay attention to everything.
  5. Todd727

    Todd727 Light Load Member

    Jun 7, 2021
    Go to a dealer and see what they have on the lot or try to order a manual. In a few years, you aren't going to see any new manual trucks. They flat out told me I was going to have a tougher time selling my new truck in a few years because I ordered it with an 18 speed.

    Large fleets are not going to spec manual trucks either. They don't want to deal with the maintenance costs. If I was going to have someone else driving my truck, it would've been spec'd with the 7 speed Allison. The new auto and automated transmissions are very good.

    In short, the restriction isn't going to matter down the road.
  6. DesperateCDLstudent

    DesperateCDLstudent Light Load Member

    Apr 20, 2022
    It’s better to have something and not need it, than to need it and not have it, right?

    After my last run in with a school, I’d strongly recommend a school that teaches on both. Try for manual, and if it’s really too hard for you (It’s not. I knew what to do by the 2nd day and could do it by the 3rd), tell the school to stick you in an automatic. Best of both worlds.

    The problem with learning manual is not the shifting, it’s the confidence with the truck. If I had a school, I’d buy a huge plot of land and let my students only drive on that until they felt confident handling the truck. So it’s possible that a school could start you on auto to get you used to handling a truck, then switching you to manual. That’s another good option.
  7. CaliRaised

    CaliRaised Light Load Member

    Dec 20, 2021
    Only a very small number of companies would that type of situation be an actual problem. Auto-only restriction is a non-issue. It's just not relevant for 99% of drivers.
  8. CaliRaised

    CaliRaised Light Load Member

    Dec 20, 2021
    Why put time into learning something that will never be used? Better to have that time focused on something relevant.
  9. REO6205

    REO6205 Trucker Forum STAFF Staff Member

    Feb 15, 2014

    99% ? Better check your sources and refigure your math.
  10. rockeee

    rockeee Light Load Member

    Apr 22, 2015
    Kalama, Wa
    I suppose if your goal is to never have a job that is non What if someone offers you an awesome job but it's in a 9, 10, 13, 18 speed what is your response going to be? "Well sir, the job that your offering me is not really relevant so I am just going to stick with this less than desirable job for now"
  11. CaliRaised

    CaliRaised Light Load Member

    Dec 20, 2021
    That won't happen. Manual trucks are a dying breed. Companies are not replacing older manuals with new manuals. Older manuals are being replaced with new automatics. We can talk about What-ifs all day long. I might be in the same room as someone who has a heart attack one day, so should I go to medical school just in case? That's how ridiculous your question is.
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