Automatic transmission

Discussion in 'Questions From New Drivers' started by Nickster909021, Aug 6, 2022.

  1. SmallPackage

    SmallPackage Road Train Member

    Dec 20, 2019
    Marion Texas
    Put trans in “D”. Put left foot up on the dash. Use right hand to pick nose. Easy peezy.
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  3. Brandt

    Brandt Road Train Member

    Sep 17, 2012
    Once you drive an automatic you won't want to drive a manual transmission again. The Detroit Diesel DT-12 has Descent Control mode. You set the downhill speed you want to go. The transmission and engine both work together to hold truck at your set speed. You can usually go downhill faster with less braking because the transmission will drop a gear or two. It will bring engine RPMs up to 2200 and you can roll downhill without touching the brakes. I don't see many drivers talk about Descent Control on the DT-12 it's really nice feature. I think Detroit Diesel was claiming it can hold 80,000 lbs on 8% grade.
  4. Nickster909021

    Nickster909021 Bobtail Member

    Mar 18, 2022
    Sterling Heights Michigan
  5. Lohse

    Lohse Bobtail Member

    Jun 16, 2022
    Your Mom
    I have an automatic restriction and I get $.65-.70 per mile (depending on what trailer I'm pulling), stop pay, layover and weekends off at a small company. Pretty decent gig if you ask me, we have a couple of 13 speeds but two of them are sittin right now because almost everyone prefers the automatics. Auto restriction is not a big deal and not having to fondle sticks doesn't make you less of a driver, there's plenty of other things, imho that do that.

    I started my CDL training in a manual and finished in an automatic. One of the trainers just made me so nervous I froze up when I grinded a gear and I couldn't get over that or avoid that trainer and I was running out of money so I decided it was better to get out sooner rather than later and tested in an auto. In hindsight the tester was super chill and I probably would have passed in manual but que sera sera.

    Anyway, I think you should start in a manual if you have that option, it's not actually that hard and once you start getting those gears in smooth as butter it's actually kind of satisfying. If for some reason you feel like you need to switch to auto, it's not a big deal, but if you can avoid the restriction it might benefit you down the line.
  6. Judge

    Judge Road Train Member

    Mar 19, 2014
    Newport, Ar
    I bought an auto in 2020.
    I’m kinda on the fence, though it’s first auto semi Ive dealt with, it’s been ok.
    Had to drive a mack with mDrive, but it was when I was company driver and my 13 speed was in shop for Def issues.
    I only drove for a couple days, not enough to get used to it.

    The cascadia I bought in 2020, only reason i did was it was 3 years old, DD15, DT12Auto, 415k miles (138k year or so) and with Freightliner warranty bumper to bumper, was 43k.

    Took a bit but by figuring out to turn off hill assist, you can back under a trailer or ease backwards without it taking off like a rocket by touching acceleration pedal.

    Auto is great in Chicago traffic.
    Swapping trucks a lot means finding yourself reaching for a gear stick that isn’t there.
    In auto i have to have arm rest or I feel uncomfortable because I’ve always laid hand on gear stick.

    But an auto restriction could hinder on some jobs, most companies now have a few autos these days, as it opens up more opportunities for getting drivers in a truck.
  7. Dexterr

    Dexterr Medium Load Member

    Jul 25, 2011
    Lafourche parish
    Automatic transmissions seems to be more efficient I guess.perfect for being stuck in traffic.and easier for new drivers. Might be costly to repair. Rebuild

    manual transmission.feel like your in control.and more fun just to switch gears. not good in traffic jams unless you let it coast . Easier to replace repair

    Good luck with both be safe
  8. LTL Bull

    LTL Bull Heavy Load Member

    Mar 12, 2020
    Trained my son. 6 months on the truck with me in the passenger seat. Passed his test on second try. Yuck it up chuckles. That’s the way it is supposed to happen. I have better than three decades driving to include what you folks call automatics which are really just auto SHIFTS and actual automatic heavy trucks. People can’t even get the terminology correct to actually understand what they’re driving and if they fall on there face because of a missed gear they shouldn’t be behind the wheel anyhow. Driving with all your attention outside the vehicle is incorrect as well. You should be monitoring all the systems on the vehicle. Hope you had a good laugh
  9. Nickster909021

    Nickster909021 Bobtail Member

    Mar 18, 2022
    Sterling Heights Michigan
    Good information. I appreciate it.
  10. buddyd157

    buddyd157 Road Train Member

    May 25, 2017
    under a shade tree
    uummm...i have been retired, did you miss my signature line???

    you have at it though, with your automatic
  11. Hammer166

    Hammer166 Crusty Information Officer

    Aug 18, 2007
    ~8600+' and loving it!
    We need the forum to put up a disclaimer every time you post this.

    Descent Control will not magically change the laws of physics and allow a truck equipped with it to go down a hill faster than a properly driven manual tranny truck (or for that matter an auto without it.) That's not to say it's not a nice feature, especially in this age of less than stellar drivers, but the reality is it only does the same thing an experienced driver does.
    Blue jeans, striker, MACK E-6 and 2 others Thank this.
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