Manual vs Auto-shift transmissions

Discussion in 'Questions From New Drivers' started by Dahmer8afew, Mar 20, 2011.

  1. Mylastmile2018

    Mylastmile2018 Bobtail Member

    Jan 13, 2018
    Auto shift does not belong in trucking, not ever. The industry let a bunch a panzy lightweights in. I'm soo freaking angry. How many times do i have to say it, auto shift does not know conditions of road surface, grade, traffic around you and million other things. The pansy lightweight just got a free hand to text with! There is no class in trucking anymore. Crybabys can't synchronize a transmission, so I gotta dumb down. Tried auto, I could not drive the way I have done for years, you can't even approach a red light intersection, you can't save torque, momentum, the right rpm nothing etc. It is extremely dangerous to me. The kid thinks shes in a car, and when she takes that high center of gravity paper roll load into a hairpin, she's gonna lay it over...Auto shift does not belong in trucking, not ever. Auto shift is for sunny day drivers.
    I'm a greasy ice driver and I can't let a computer do everything for me.
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  3. Mylastmile2018

    Mylastmile2018 Bobtail Member

    Jan 13, 2018
    I will never get used to that. That is assinine. This is horrible for trucking. I need to be in control of when I need what gear!!! Hey trucking! I thought you were smarter than this. A computer shifting for me is against everything I know about matching a gear with the texture of the terrian. Years of blizzards, feeling the drives in my feet legs and ### and spine. Feeling the steers in in my palms, and knowing the right gear for that stretch, grade, and greasyness, and now I tried Auto shift it was extremely dangerous. I dont need a transmission dropping or gabbing gears or fluctuating r p m. Computers don't know my surroundings, roads surface conditions....much more to say, but it would fall on deaf ears anyway.
  4. Newto Trucking

    Newto Trucking Medium Load Member

    Dec 26, 2013
    NE Illinois
    Whenever I need more control over the gears I shift my ishift into manual mode. For a fact you don't fill the ishift with atf its using same oil as an manual.
  5. AUfan78

    AUfan78 Light Load Member

    Feb 13, 2018
    Mobile, Alabama
    I have never driven an autoshift but where I currently work has 6 speed allisons in all the dump trucks. They do have faster acceleration over a manual but I don't care for them. I've had it upshift while coasting downhill with the engine brake on. If you are travelling at the speed it has a shift point at it constantly shifts up and down.
  6. Punisher255

    Punisher255 Bobtail Member

    Feb 6, 2018
    The driving school I went to wouldn't even train me on a manual. Said "the entire industry is going to autos." Funny, now that I'm looking for a job most of the companies require that you drive a manual. Now I have to rent a truck to re-take the test in so I can qualify for these jobs.
    Toomanybikes Thanks this.
  7. Toomanybikes

    Toomanybikes Road Train Member

    Apr 8, 2009
    Go get your money back. You school lied to you and ripped you off.
    Tb0n3 Thanks this.
  8. Lysdexis

    Lysdexis Road Train Member

    Oct 25, 2018
    I would like to add a bit to this post not to ruffle anyone's feathers but to anyone that may still be around that's commented here in the past automated manuals have changed significantly in the last few years.

    So much so in fact that the 2017 model Pete I used to drive behaved worlds differently than the 2018 model I drive now. Same model trucks just one was an eaton 10 auto shift and the new one is a paccar 12 auto shift.

    The 12 I can let off the brake and it'll creep forward just like I let out the clutch and will skip gears just like I would with a manual. It's alot smoother operation than the 10 was. You can leave it in auto mode or press a button and shift it manually.

    It's true you have to know your truck and where it likes to run. The MX-13 is happiest around 1200-1700 and I manually shift on acceleration to maintain the truck in the powerband. Weighing 83k I can still pull off a stop faster than a manual truck.

    Any of you that are die hard manual only drivers I encourage you to try out a new auto shift and use both modes, you'll be surprised at how much you actually like it. And to those of you that say well I don't have the same feeling of control.... it's no different than a car with paddle shifters. You tell it when to shift and how many gears to change. It won't however let you damage the truck.

    It's no more expensive to work on because it literally is a manual trans with motors on top to control the gear selector and a motor that actuates the clutch.
  9. x1Heavy

    x1Heavy Road Train Member

    Mar 5, 2016
    White County, Arkansas
    I had the same attitude that I will never drive a auto either. The closest to auto we had was a school bus type situation with a Cummins and a transmission mated to it for years, it's not particularly special or outstanding in anyway but it did ok. Not so much on the shifting or ride quality.

    Fast forward to 2000, FFE handed us a brand new Century with a 500+ detriot and a rockwell meritor automatic transmission on it. It did have a manual mode paddle on the steering column with the usual synbols to control the transmission for parking etc with two differences, one is a M for manual mode. Nothing more than stay in the gear you are in. You can shift it yourself if you like and it will do it. (It might not like it but that's on you) and the L mode which for mountain work if you had the cruise set at say 20 downgrade with the jacobs in the truck will do whatever it takes to hold her at 20 jacobs or not. It will find the right gear and know what the grade is under it. To wit I have always come down all mountains in manual mode. Donner is a exception. That has a section where you let her drift and let gravity do what it will as you literally drift cooling brakes if necessary.

    The biggest things are two with the automatic that won me over. First is the engine. The transmission needs to know when it's time to shift. It took me weeks to stop reaching for the transmission shifter which is not there on the cab floor anymore as it's time to shift up or down. She will proceed to shift.

    Second leaving aside NYC GWB cross bronx gridlock traffic, the transmission did a good job in one of our jackknifes on ice. The tractor fell off a patch on a curved upgrade on 40 west of Knoxville and tried to fold into our own trailer. SPouse was driving. I told her to freeze like statue and do nothing with her body. I hopped up on the dash and added a few inches of wheel into the skid. Once the tractor got a hold of that ice, the transmission did what it needed to do with the new slower situation dropped from 20 down to 8 or so and proceeded to climb out while number two stayed with us and numbers 3 through 7 fell into the center canyon, closing the interstate for a while.

    I remember that moment when the tractor got that traction back. The moment it did, it knew what it needed doing in terms of changing to a better gear lower down and maintaining whatever that foot was telling it to. Spouse did a good job, but seeing that was her first jackknife it would not have gone very well if I was not there or awake to fix it. It was a nice little storm that day on ice.

    Fast forward. I stayed current until about 2010 as a Crew Boss with ADESA of Little Rock My job was to take a group of temps with CDL's and assign them tractors to take to the barn for sale and repark it back to the spot. Some of the temps never touched a auto before so I come up there and teach them in a few moments. Push this button wait for that special rattle click then let clutch out with parking brakes off. There it is, you are moving Get going.

    And so the manuals those temps who have never touched a manual I put them in there bobtail only stick em into third gear and they idle off towards the barn. Usually by the time they get it back to park they are making experimentation in shifting.

    That's my belief you wanna learn how to swim? Great. Stand here by the water a minute. Good. **Shoves** splash, start swimming. Quit stressing, nothing bad will happen continue swimming. It usually is not long before they are wanting to do racing from one end to the other.
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