Do Real Truckers Drive Automatic Transmissions? - Article By Old School

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Brett Aquila's Comment
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Is shifting gears an essential part of being a real trucker? Aren't you a little less of a trucker driving an automatic? How important is this issue in today's industry?

These are some of the questions Old School answers in his new article:

Do Real Truckers Drive Automatic Transmissions?

Check it out!

G-Town's Comment
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If you were to ask me this question over five years ago, my answer might have been different. Having experienced highway and local driving with both types of transmissions, shifting has little to-do with being a skilled and proficient professional.

That said, I'll read Old School's topic.

Amish country's Comment
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I have to read the article still but I can say I noticed I saved hours on my day after going into an auto from manual. Could just be because of what I do but I'll gladly take that saved time.

Fatsquatch 's Comment
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Honestly, all the "you ain't a real trucker unless/if" nonsense torques me off to no end. I am no more or less of a truck driver for being a company driver, pulling a reefer , driving a manual, managing my clock efficiently, being polite and courteous, driving safely, or any of the other myriad reasons people come up with for that particular scenario. Do you drive a truck for a living? You're a real truck driver. The end.


A refrigerated trailer.

Brett Aquila's Comment
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My favorite part of the article is under the heading, "Shifting Gears Is Not A Real Skill."

When I first read that I thought, "hmmmm......I wonder what he means by that? It seems like a real skill."

But his explanation made perfect sense and I totally agree. I won't give it away because it's a great article and you really need to read it.

Do Real Truckers Drive Automatic Transmissions?

Philly Boy's Comment
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My company put me in an automatic about 3 months ago and at first I hated it . Until I had to go across the George Washington Bridge and drive through New York. I know how to float gears but the automatic makes it so much easier when driving through areas of high traffic and congestion. But it’s an obvious thing though these automatics like it or not there here to stay . It is a different drive but it’s just a matter of getting used to it. And on the subject of driving a manual is a skill well my opinion it’s a matter of having coordination not so much of a skill . That’s just my opinion.

Float Gears:

An expression used to describe someone who is shifting gears without using the clutch at all. Drivers are taught to "Double Clutch" or press and release the clutch twice for each gear shift. If you're floating gears it means you're simply shifting without using the clutch at all.

MC1371's Comment
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I'm on board with autos as well now. As a regular in the Chicago area its brought my stress and exhaustion levels way down.

The one thing I was concerned about I figured out how to do this past winter. *Rocking out of an ice/snow patch. (Its a slower, methodical process than using manual.)

Truckin Along With Kearse's Comment
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Im.coming to an end of my manual trucks life. it will.soon be taken and im dreading the auto. i hated changing trucks last year but now to change to an auto... im depressed. i just hate change.

Jrod's Comment
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It's the same thing we heard 30-35 years ago: "You have POWER STEERING?!? What are you, some kind of wimpy steering wheel gripper who can't turn his truck?"

Can you imagine what a pain in the rear it would be to NOT have it now? Welcome to the age of automatics.

Also, to the iShift haters - how long did it take you to learn how to drive a manual transmission? A day? A week? About the same time as it takes a child to learn to ride a bike?

It's wasted energy & motion. The computer is making about a Ca-gillion decisions a second (totally a scientific term, no need to fact check) and that is just one less thing for you as a driver to worry about. Let someone (something) else do the work for you.

Ever been to Sportsclips? Where the nice folks wash your hair after they are done cutting it? Real Drivers can wash their own hair too, but its SO much better when someone else does it for you.

Bran009's Comment
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Another awesome article! As I'm getting ready to to into a company training program the shifting thing is a major sticking point. By that I mean it is something I know I'll have to learn, but I also know Prime is going to all Autos soon. I have a friend who has been driving for 9 years and he is adamantly against Autos, but he is also one of those crazy flatbedders. I'm more of the opinion that I'd like to know how to drive one, it isn't a necessity now a days.


Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
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