From Ishift to Eaton 10 speed

Discussion in 'Trucks [ Eighteen Wheelers ]' started by Locruid, Jun 30, 2021.

  1. Locruid

    Locruid Bobtail Member

    Jun 30, 2021
    So my "First" auto was a Ishift 12 speed transmission in a 2013 Volvo. REALLY loved that transmission EXCEPT it had the basic shifter with no manual shift buttons and the silly thing REALLY emphasized Economy.....not shifting out of 12th until 45-50 mph on Cabbage. However, when bobtailing it would skip shift wonderfully.

    Just got a 2017 Peterbilt 579 with the Eaton 10 Ultrashift. Now I do like this transmission for pulling grades BUT........why wont it skip shift? Been bobtailing for a couple days (dont ask but getting paid good money) and the stupid thing will start 3 then go 4, 5, 6, 7, so on and so forth. It will not skip shift.

    Im ok with it when pulling a trailer but god almighty, Im getting REALLY annoyed not being able to move decently when bobtailing. Is this a "feature" of the transmission or possibly a setting in the ECU?
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  3. Cattleman84

    Cattleman84 Road Train Member

    Nov 1, 2017
    The Sticks, Idaho
    I don't know hiw they are all programmed... But I have been in Volvos, Frieghtliners, and a Pete with automated transmissions.... The ONLY one I like is the Volvo I-Shift with the premium shifter package that allows full manual control... I flat refuse to drive any other automated shift truck now. Manual or Premium I-Shift... Or I walk down the street and drive for someone else.
    Locruid Thanks this.
  4. Lazer

    Lazer Medium Load Member

    Jan 22, 2017
    Just be glad you have an Eaton that shifts!
    Northern Nomad Thanks this.
  5. prostartom

    prostartom Bobtail Member

    Jun 20, 2014
    We bought a 17 Pete with the Eaton 10 speed autoshift almost bran new, I ran that truck until last year. Really liked it except for that dam transmission. It will only skip shift when the conditions are perfect, like heading down hill.
    When I first got it I had an awful time trying to back up to docks and hook to trailers. It was setup so as soon as you took your foot off the brake the clutch fully engaged, I actually did some damage to the rail Gates on the trailers by slamming into the dock too hard.

    We had an Eaton rep come out and changed the programming to let you feather the clutch by how far you push the gas peddle when you first start to move. That helped with the slow backing but it still was a terrible transmission on the road.

    It worked fine on the highway but I travel alot of back roads and it really sucked on those, especially on rolling hills. I would be going over some small rolling hills and it would downshift from 10th to 8th and scream the engine at 2100 rpms going down hill. Then as soon as you got back on the gas peddle it would upshift back into 10th even though I was heading uphill and you lost all of your momentum before it shifted back to 8th gear and then scream the engine at 2100 rpm the rest of the way up the hill.

    If I could have locked out 10 gear as 9th would have been fine running at that speed it would have been a much better ride, but I didn't have that option and the manual shift buttons were down low on the transmission console and very hard to use without taking your eyes off the road so I rarely used them.

    I used to also hate taking off from a stop sign and turning uphill because it would sometimes refuse to shift and then it would allow the engine to over rev so it would start dinging at you and I would have to take my foot off the accelerator and wait for it to make up it's mind and shift, very frustrating.

    At the end of 2019 the company decided to lease a new tractor from Penske and they let me spec it out. I was begging them to let me go back to a 10sp manual, but the other 2 bonehead class A drivers can't drive a manual worth ####. So they wouldn't budge on the auto, ended up with a 2021 Volvo I-shift 12sp and I can't believe how much better it is than that awful Eaton. I don't even miss the manual now!
    jdchet, BoxCarKidd and Locruid Thank this.
  6. Locruid

    Locruid Bobtail Member

    Jun 30, 2021
    Thanks for this. She seems to do fine climbing. Grabbing 9th soon as she starts up a grade and seems to do wonderful both up and down. I certainly agree with "feathering".......slowly......slowly...LURCH VROOM! The only thing bugging me is the #### thing wont skip shift. WHich seems strange coming from a 2013 Volvo that did great. It wasnt the Ishifts fault it was stuck in Economy with no way to override it lol. But I agree that Ishift was smooth as butter at everything it did. REALLY impressed with it.

    Im not going to fret too much as when she's pulling a trailer she seems to do what she needs to just when she is bobtail in town/heavy traffic where I get WTF moments. Maybe Ill get my boss to convince hers to have Eaton come out and check them. This is the first non Volvo in our fleet of 30+ and they want feedback from time to time. We have one other entering service soon that's the twin to mine so pretty sure they want feedback before getting more. Maybe we can get Eaton to come out and fiddle with it. We Do a bit of bobtailing daily cause we are mostly DnH with another companies trailers. I absolutely LOVE the pete though and will probably put up with the transmission as the older Volvos we have include the 61" sleeper and the Pete is the 80" AND has a built in fridge. Not to mention is SMOOOOOOTH when driving. Now, if we could somehow put the Ishift in the Pete.........
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