Learning on auto trans

Discussion in 'Questions From New Drivers' started by Redex, May 4, 2021.

  1. BeHereNow97

    BeHereNow97 Medium Load Member

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    I say this as somebody who hates manuals and wish the industry was 99% automatics - Get your CDL in a manual so you don't have the restriction if you plan on going LTL. Yes, a lot of the new trucks are automatics like others have said and that goes for most companies, not just LTL companies. That said though, most of the big LTL companies will make you test out in a manual. And you have a high probability of being assigned a manual truck at some terminal locations too. You can't get on with most of the big LTL carriers with that restriction on your license.

    If you're with TMC and plan on doing Flatbed, I would think a lot of the specialized Flatbed stuff would be more manuals. I would think Flatbed in general would have more of a necessity for manuals than the Dry Van/Reefer sector but I could be wrong I don't know.
     
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  3. buddyd157

    buddyd157 Road Train Member

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    do yourself a huge favor....learn on a stick, test on a stick, get a CDL with NO restrictions.
    '
    gonna come a day you WILL leave one job for another. being restricted to automatics only will stop you dead in your tracks if a great job comes along, and they have manuals.

    don't short change yourself, cuz if i am correct, (and this will prove me right in the future) you will be here someday complaining that you are denied jobs cuz of that restriction.

    too many others before you..."saw the light", and sadly had to spend MORE money later to have the restriction removed.
     
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  4. Cowboyrich

    Cowboyrich Heavy Load Member

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    I've got an automatic I'm still learning, 13 or 18 speed no learning involved.
     
  5. ad356

    ad356 Road Train Member

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    Geez what did the manual transmission do to you? 99% autoshifts count me out. They suck, but I dont care if they exist I just dont intend on driving one.

    I backed one into oatka. I was giving the thing 1/4 fuel and it was still rolling forward. Felt like I was balancing on a 2x4 carrying a 5 gallon pale of water. Backing in with a manual is so much simpler. Let foot off clutch, truck walks into the bay. They are terrible at hills. I took an autoshift up transit road going to a farm. I counted 22 times that stupid piece of crap shifted. It's a grade that goes up, levels off and goes up again. Absolutely terrible. With my manual I simply get her into 4th for the 1st hill, when it levels out go to 5hi, downshift down to 4Lo up the steep grade, split gears up the hill. Not shifting 22 times. Then there is the issue of hooking up a loaded trailer that someone dropped too low.... in the snow and ice. Start backing up, stupid thing stops when the weight transfers onto the 5th wheel. Give it more fuel to get it moving again. Truck takes off and slams the kingpin.

    I dont care if you like autoshifts that's your choice, but don't think this junk should be forced onto everyone. These things have their problems.

    In my opinion the only guys that like these junk boxes are incompetent or lazy. That's my opinion.

    With air assisted clutches these things are a joy to operate. Learn how to float as well
     
  6. ad356

    ad356 Road Train Member

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    I also stand a much better chance getting a manual moving on ice. I can rock the truck if it wont move. You cannot do that with an autoshift.

    I've driven both
     
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  7. tscottme

    tscottme Road Train Member

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    To a few guys automatic restriction is the end of all life on earth. In the industry, it's often no big deal. As long as you are prepared to re-test, if necessary, it's nothing to worry about. You are better off to learn manual, but I doubt it's worth worrying about for 85% of drivers.
     
  8. tscottme

    tscottme Road Train Member

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    Backing a surging trailer with auto sucks, especially uphill. Turn off the "Hill Stop Assistance" or you will need to back at a fast speed or tranny slips into neutral.
     
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  9. ad356

    ad356 Road Train Member

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    Just learn how to drive a manual truck. Problem solved
     
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  10. Wasted Thyme

    Wasted Thyme Road Train Member

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    You guys must have had some crappy autoshifts or this was a while ago. I've never had an issue backing one up to a dock. Little bit of peddle and she eases back in. Same with hooking up to a trailer. A little bit more juice as she starts to slide under. Then let off. Slips right into place.
     
  11. ad356

    ad356 Road Train Member

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    Perhaps its because I haul milk and gross weight is over 100k? Maybe it's not being programmed correctly, the guys in the shop have tried multiple programs and none of them work well. I also tend to think eaton ultrashift is the worst system. Volvo I shift, mack, and freightliner/western star I think all have better systems. The ultra shift 18s I've driven also seem to have no awareness when it comes to hills.

    Anyone here drive a real automatic that wasn't an AMT? that would mean an allison with a torque converter. I once drove a triaxle dump truck with that setup and it was smooth as silk.

    I also find a certain satisfaction in getting it just right and having it slide right into gear. Downshift at 1,200 upshift at 1,700. Works almost everytime
     
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