Downshifting questions from a new driver, please help!

Discussion in 'Questions From New Drivers' started by Masonding, Nov 17, 2019.

  1. Masonding

    Masonding Bobtail Member

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    Nov 17, 2019
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    So I am going to school to be a Lineman and we are in progress of getting our CDL. Lineman typically will never have to drive manual transmission but I decided to go for it anyways. Our school has a program thats about 18 hours driver training with a 10 speed international, 40-50ft flatbed, not sure how long it is. I basically just learned how to drive manual yesterday and my test is already next Friday. I can shift up to all gears very smoothly, downshifting too except to when I use the splitter and I go to 5, this is when sometimes I may not be watching my speed close enough and It grinds off of both 4 and 3. But my teacher says that you have to downshift all the way to 3rd gear when stopping. Why can't I just stop in 5th gear, and then when stopped I can just throw it into third gear nice and smooth with no problems. I mean as long as I am in a low range gear I dont see an issue. Would the tester have any problems with this?
     
  2. Dick Danger

    Dick Danger Medium Load Member

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    What kind of boots you wearing for climbing?

    No clue about your question, depends on the guy doing the test.
     
  3. Judge

    Judge Medium Load Member

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    Most 10 speed transmissions shift on 400 RPMS,
    They shift one the "One.. Two count"
    When dropping a gear it's the same, if down to 1000 RPM bring it up to 1400 RPM and it'll go right into gear.
     
  4. Masonding

    Masonding Bobtail Member

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    Nov 17, 2019
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    They make boots specifically for lineman with a bit of angle in them, but you dont need those. Just have to be steel toe and have a big enough heel so your climbers dont slip from under your foot while strapped. Just no real low heeled boots.
     
  5. buddyd157

    buddyd157 Road Train Member

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    just downshift the way you are being taught. you wanna pass that DMV road test.

    if you ever get to actually drive a stick, (what i did) was stay in gear until the engine was about to stall, and push the clutch in, then stop. then hit the splitter, then back to second or third gear, depending on the weight of the load, and take off.

    i rarely if ever downshifted, too much work for me.

    not only that, but if i recall, i was told more than once, that downshifting wastes fuel....i never bothered to check that out, since i never paid for fuel.
     
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  6. Dick Danger

    Dick Danger Medium Load Member

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    You should try a pair of Meindls, they'll change your life.
     
  7. x1Heavy

    x1Heavy Road Train Member

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    I usually downshift just as well down as well as coming up. In fact, it's really important to do it well coming down when you are downgrade and cannot miss it.

    I don't know if you are in a little truck or a big truck but most engines shift using 400 RPM blocks between gears. If you know the RPM number for upshifting, that is where your engine needs to be at in revving before your next gear down. Generally you take her out of gear, raise the RPMs to just above that value (Usually 1600 or over but not too much) and it should be waiting for you when you put the next gear in on the double clutching.

    Do not stress about your personal views on shifting. Learn the way they are teaching you which is what is expected by the State Test. Once you get past that state test you can shift her any old way you like.

    The splitter for low from high is usually pulled about two heartbeats from pulling the transmission out of that gear and going for the next one down in low range, it will make the range shift while you are in between gears. Usually two heartbeats. Then try for the next one down.

    157 posted a workaround by reducing the RPM in gear until close to idle and then coming out of it. Your next gear down should be just about torque RPM where you can pull on it a little bit and get ready for the next shift down.
     
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  8. Tx Countryboy

    Tx Countryboy Road Train Member

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    Some DMV will fail you for not down shifting. Learn to do it in case you are slowing down & a light changes. It's easy once you learn it.
     
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  9. x1Heavy

    x1Heavy Road Train Member

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    Not that material difference in fuel.

    Its either miles per gallon at speed or gallons per hour pulling straight up (Around 30 or so)
     
  10. buddyd157

    buddyd157 Road Train Member

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    yeah. like i said, i never worried about fuel costs or mileage. i just felt it "easier" to slow down in gear, coming to say a stop sign or red light, then putting in the clutch, and put it into the gear i'd need.

    also, by me doing it the way i described, i'd never be in neutral if say i blew a gear, and coasted. which technically, one would not be in gear!!

    going down a mountain, (after i crested the top) i'd be in that one lower gear i climbed up the mountain with, and many trucks i drove over the years, did NOT have any sort of engine brake. we did it with downshifting/gearing back then.

    coming down the sandstone mountain, with a day cab, 53 footer, loaded with Kentucky liquor at or about 45,000 pounds, (give or take a few pounds, i cannot recall the heaviest it had been) was a joy............
     
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