Automatics VS Manuals

Topic 8574 | Page 1

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Phillip 's Comment
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What are some your guys thoughts on the autos? I personally prefer a 13 or 18 myself

The Persian Conversion's Comment
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As a new driver, I was being trained on a manual. I was taking a little longer to smooth out my shifting than they had hoped, so I ended up getting an automatic. Now, on my first run, I can honestly say I am SO GLAD to have an automatic. Shifting can be a brain-intensive activity until it becomes second nature, so what with being a new driver, getting stuck in traffic, going up and down grades, city driving, etc., having the automatic made it much easier for me to not hit anything.

Sure, if you just set it in D and let it do it's thing, the automatic does things sometimes that you wish it wouldn't. Like upshifting when going down a hill, or not downshifting soon enough when going up a hill. But it has a manual mode which lets you control the gear while doing the clutch work itself. Plus, I've discovered that even in D, you can press the down button on the shifter and it will downshift for you and keep it there until you adjust the throttle or the speed changes to a shift point. I find the combination of these features to be incredibly useful. If I see a downgrade coming up, I can press the down button and have it shift to 9th for me, then pop it in M and it will keep it there. You just have to remember to put it back in D. Also, if I'm coming off an exit, I can take a quick downshift, let the jakes slow me down, then keep downshifting while the jakes slow me down further. Using this method, I usually don't even have to apply the brakes until about 15 feet from a stop sign.

Getting going from a dead stop can be a little frustrating at times. Especially if I'm turning or going uphill at the same time. It starts me out in 2nd, and if I don't pick up enough speed or give it enough throttle, it will try for 3rd but while it's shifting the truck will slow down to the point where it wants to go back to 2nd, so it will spend a few seconds just hovering while it figures out what it wants to do. It usually ends up going back to 2nd and repeats the cycle unless I push the throttle down further to make the RPMs go higher before it tries for 3rd again. This is where the M mode comes in handy.

Another good thing it does is hold your truck for you if you are stopped on an incline. I think it's like 2% or more of an incline. It will detect it, and when you take your foot off the break, it gives you about 3 seconds where it will keep the truck from rolling back until you apply the throttle. Awesome feature. The only thing I wish it would have an option to do is to skip gears. Like if I'm starting from a stop and the street has a downgrade, I'd like to be able to go from 2nd to 4th to 6th, or 3rd to 5th to 7th, etc.

All in all, I'm very happy with the automatic. Does it make me feel like less of a trucker? Maybe a little. But am I a lot less stressed? You bet I am.

RedGator's Comment
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Having driven both I prefer my manual. I personally found the auto to make me alittle lazy. As my auto still had a clutch I didn't get the benefits in traffic I could see how that would be nice for city driving but Ill stick with my "stick":-)

Dennis R. (Greatest Drive's Comment
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What are some your guys thoughts on the autos? I personally prefer a 13 or 18 myself

love my auto,would even be better turned up to full power,but pulls fine in current tune.

Phil C.'s Comment
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You should always learn on a manual, because if you test on a manual you can drive either a manual or auto, but if you test on an auto, you can only drive an auto. Good to keep yourself as capable as possible especially when starting out.

Phil

Pat M.'s Comment
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I have driven both and I can deal with either one. Now I will say that I drove the first generation ultrashift and noticed that I would use the brakes more than I would in a manual transmission. I learned pretty quickly how to control the autoshift so it is not a big deal. All these that say they could not control what gear they were in were driving it like a car. You have to make the transmission work for you. I had no issues going from Montana to Washington coast and back and then to Louisiana and back. The only issue with the truck was that you could chain the truck to a tree and the jake would still not hold you back.

People tend to take other issues with the truck and blame it on the transmission. Oh and traction control sucks when you are in an ice covered parking lot.

Brett Aquila's Comment
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You should always learn on a manual, because if you test on a manual you can drive either a manual or auto, but if you test on an auto, you can only drive an auto. Good to keep yourself as capable as possible especially when starting out.

Phil

I completely agree.

That being said, I had driven standards for years before getting on with a company that had "auto shift" transmissions. They weren't true automatics like in a car. They were standard transmissions with a computerized shifting mechanism. You still had to use the clutch if you were coming to a stop. But otherwise, once you were rolling they were basically like regular automatics that gave you the ability to put it in "manual mode" and select the gear you wanted to be in.

I couldn't find any disadvantage to the auto shift from a driving standpoint. It was far easier in slow, heavy traffic and on city streets. It was much easier eating a cheeseburger while you're driving too!

smile.gif

If you knew how to handle those transmissions properly they were great. You could handle the mountains and everything just fine. The only disadvantage to those transmissions were reliability. At least twice a year you could count on being stranded and very few people knew how to work on them. When they stopped working, that was it. You were dead in the water.

Today they're coming out with new generations of automatics and I don't know much about them so I can't say. If I had to buy my own truck today I would buy a standard because it's cheaper and more reliable. If I was driving someone else's truck today I wouldn't mind either one. I was fine with shifting, I was fine without it.

TWIC:

Transportation Worker Identification Credential

Truck drivers who regularly pick up from or deliver to the shipping ports will often be required to carry a TWIC card.

Your TWIC is a tamper-resistant biometric card which acts as both your identification in secure areas, as well as an indicator of you having passed the necessary security clearance. TWIC cards are valid for five years. The issuance of TWIC cards is overseen by the Transportation Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.

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Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Jay R. R2-Detour 's Comment
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I'm just nervous because all my experience was in a 10, now I'm getting ready to get a 13 speed..

Heavy C's Comment
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Man I don't care either way as long as I'm still driving a truck. Manuals are more fun though!

Brett Aquila's Comment
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I'm just nervous because all my experience was in a 10, now I'm getting ready to get a 13 speed..

Don't sweat it a bit. You'll fumble with it a bit for a day or two and then you'll have it. They're not difficult.

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