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General Topics => R & R => Automotive => Topic started by: MTK20 on September 29, 2018, 04:35:18 pm

Title: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: MTK20 on September 29, 2018, 04:35:18 pm
I have said before that I don't care for trucks. I have no need for them and I am not too knowledgeable on them. Well, it all started when I drove a family member's Tacoma, that I began to be curious about trucks. Not only this, but I have always wanted to learn how to drive a manual transmission. Preferably, I would have liked to learn on an old beat up pick up, but instead all I got was a 2000 Camaro. I guess it would have to do (I am just starting out learning it, but I feel I have the basics kind of down in between stalls, grinding, and engine shut offs :hide).

I remember when I was growing up you could always pick a manual or automatic transmission. Much to my surprise, they don't make new vehicles with manuals too often now. Sure RAM, Chevy, and GMC all have current offering in 2018 for manual transmissions, but they aren't as prolific as they once were.

Here is my question. Why would anyone get a manual transmission today vs an automatic? Is it ridiculous to even consider driving a manual in today's society?

Give me your opinions and knowledge on the subject.
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: Plebian on September 29, 2018, 05:38:42 pm
I have said before that I don't care for trucks. I have no need for them and I am not too knowledgeable on them. Well, it all started when I drove a family member's Tacoma, that I began to be curious about trucks. Not only this, but I have always wanted to learn how to drive a manual transmission. Preferably, I would have liked to learn on an old beat up pick up, but instead all I got was a 2000 Camaro. I guess it would have to do (I am just starting out learning it, but I feel I have the basics kind of down in between stalls, grinding, and engine shut offs :hide).

I remember when I was growing up you could always pick a manual or automatic transmission. Much to my surprise, they don't make new vehicles with manuals too often now. Sure RAM, Chevy, and GMC all have current offering in 2018 for manual transmissions, but they aren't as prolific as they once were.

Here is my question. Why would anyone get a manual transmission today vs an automatic? Is it ridiculous to even consider driving a manual in today's society?

Give me your opinions and knowledge on the subject.

If you are going to tow stuff manuals are still nice. The newer automatics are way better than they used to be, but manuals are still typically stronger and more efficient.

Also the 4 low transfer and granny first gear on my Bronco allows super slow 4 wheeling if needed in rough terrain. It basically lets you crawl around at super slow speed without wearing on brake pads with oodles of torque.
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: coelacanth on September 29, 2018, 05:52:40 pm
Exactly.  The manual is stronger, simpler and cheaper to produce, buy, maintain, and repair if necessary.  The worst part about automatics off road is they overheat without sufficient airflow over the transmission cooler.  Usually near the end of a long difficult stretch of terrain where its really tough/dangerous/damned inconvenient to stop.   :banghead   They end up on everything now because they can be built with more speeds, programmable shift points and lower final drive ratios than a manual and they end up being slightly more fuel efficient at in normal highway driving situations. 
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: MTK20 on September 29, 2018, 06:19:21 pm
Exactly.  The manual is stronger, simpler and cheaper to produce, buy, maintain, and repair if necessary.  The worst part about automatics off road is they overheat without sufficient airflow over the transmission cooler.  Usually near the end of a long difficult stretch of terrain where its really tough/dangerous/damned inconvenient to stop.   :banghead   They end up on everything now because they can be built with more speeds, programmable shift points and lower final drive ratios than a manual and they end up being slightly more fuel efficient at in normal highway driving situations.

So if I drive on paved city roads and occasionally on rural gravel roads, I need to get an automatic?  :hmm
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: coelacanth on September 29, 2018, 06:43:00 pm
Get what ever suits you.  You can have an automatic in your holster and on your wrist and a manual in your truck - its all good bro.  :cool

Most folks seem perfectly happy in a world where the manual transmission is an anachronism.  Both of my vehicles - including my truck - have automatic transmissions and they work fine within their limitations. 

Knowing how to drive a manual transmission makes you part of an relatively small fraternity these days and some day may be considered dangerous, subversive knowledge so beware.    :whistle
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: Plebian on September 29, 2018, 07:27:54 pm
So if I drive on paved city roads and occasionally on rural gravel roads, I need to get an automatic?  :hmm

You will typically have more choices in the automatic category since more of them are produced.
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: AltRight Vanguard on September 29, 2018, 07:36:44 pm
As well, owning a manual transmission means that you will likely never have the wife trying to borrow your car when hers goes down.  :cool
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: MTK20 on September 29, 2018, 08:22:12 pm
Knowing how to drive a manual transmission makes you part of an relatively small fraternity these days and some day may be considered dangerous, subversive knowledge so beware.    :whistle

Subversive?  :hmm I'm not sure I get that one, but I'm definitely a proponent of having "dangerous" knowledge  :neener . Sometimes you have to take a peek behind the curtain, what can I say? :shrug
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: coelacanth on September 29, 2018, 08:36:14 pm
Knowledge and capability beyond that of typical man bun wearers is usually considered "threatening" or "triggering" in some circles as you would almost certainly use that knowledge to subvert the approved hierarchy.  Those are circles you don't want to travel in anyway so carry on.  You are, after all, reading this on an internet gun forum so you're probably already on some list somewhere.  You could even end up being labeled an intersectional terrorist.    :panic            :rotfl            Don't mind me - I've been drinking.   :cool
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: MTK20 on September 29, 2018, 08:43:29 pm
Knowledge and capability beyond that of typical man bun wearers is usually considered "threatening" or "triggering" in some circles as you would almost certainly use that knowledge to subvert the approved hierarchy.  Those are circles you don't want to travel in anyway so carry on.  You are, after all, reading this on an internet gun forum so you're probably already on some list somewhere.  You could even end up being labeled an intersectional terrorist.    :panic            :rotfl            Don't mind me - I've been drinking.   :cool

Ugh, I hate intersectional terrorists. The trans exclusionary radical terrorists (TERT) are slightly better, despite also being a threat to western society. Am I referencing feminism or terrorism? Who cares, they're both the same thing  :neener .
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: coelacanth on September 29, 2018, 08:46:47 pm
 :thumbup1
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: Mikee5star on September 29, 2018, 10:59:28 pm
I have said before that I don't care for trucks. I have no need for them and I am not too knowledgeable on them. Well, it all started when I drove a family member's Tacoma, that I began to be curious about trucks. Not only this, but I have always wanted to learn how to drive a manual transmission. Preferably, I would have liked to learn on an old beat up pick up, but instead all I got was a 2000 Camaro. I guess it would have to do (I am just starting out learning it, but I feel I have the basics kind of down in between stalls, grinding, and engine shut offs :hide).

I remember when I was growing up you could always pick a manual or automatic transmission. Much to my surprise, they don't make new vehicles with manuals too often now. Sure RAM, Chevy, and GMC all have current offering in 2018 for manual transmissions, but they aren't as prolific as they once were.

Here is my question. Why would anyone get a manual transmission today vs an automatic? Is it ridiculous to even consider driving a manual in today's society?

Give me your opinions and knowledge on the subject.


I prefer manuals.  That is what I learned to drive with, and I did not drive an auto until I was 21 or 22.  Except for a car I owned for 6 months while in college, I did not own a auto until 2006.  I started driving in '88, the Grand Marquis was the third vehicle I owned, my Duramax, current auto truck was the 7th or 8th vehicle I owned.  Both mine and the wife's daily drivers are autos.  Hers simply due to the fact that nothing else was available.  We both prefer to control our vehicles, rather than have them control us.    I prefer them in snowy and icy weather conditions, and while towing.  Also for general fuel economy, and cost.

I find the selection of manual transmission vehicles available in recent years to be an inadequacy.  Base models, economy boxes, 2wd, or performance.  When you start looking for a 4X4 your choices go to almost zero.  Ford ended manuals in their heavy duty models in around 2010, GMC/Chevy ended theirs in 2005.  Chevy basically ended manuals in 1/2 ton 4x4 pickups back in the '80s.  I am half-heartedly looking for a newer truck, trying to get better mileage, but need the utility.  The options just flat out suck.  I might have to build a truck to get the options and mileage I want.

Dodge has the best options for newer manual transmissions in their trucks, but I won't own a Dodge product. 
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: MTK20 on September 29, 2018, 11:32:54 pm
I prefer manuals.  That is what I learned to drive with, and I did not drive an auto until I was 21 or 22.  Except for a car I owned for 6 months while in college, I did not own a auto until 2006.  I started driving in '88, the Grand Marquis was the third vehicle I owned, my Duramax, current auto truck was the 7th or 8th vehicle I owned.  Both mine and the wife's daily drivers are autos.  Hers simply due to the fact that nothing else was available.  We both prefer to control our vehicles, rather than have them control us.    I prefer them in snowy and icy weather conditions, and while towing.  Also for general fuel economy, and cost.

I find the selection of manual transmission vehicles available in recent years to be an inadequacy.  Base models, economy boxes, 2wd, or performance.  When you start looking for a 4X4 your choices go to almost zero.  Ford ended manuals in their heavy duty models in around 2010, GMC/Chevy ended theirs in 2005.  Chevy basically ended manuals in 1/2 ton 4x4 pickups back in the '80s.  I am half-heartedly looking for a newer truck, trying to get better mileage, but need the utility.  The options just flat out suck.  I might have to build a truck to get the options and mileage I want.

Dodge has the best options for newer manual transmissions in their trucks, but I won't own a Dodge product.

If you didn't have the ability to build a vehicle (like yours truly  :rotfl ), what would be your thought process for navigating todays limited offerings? You said Dodge has the best options, but you omitted dodge. So who is next in line then? For pick ups? And for the hell of it, daily driver sedans as well?

BTW, I swear I saw a GMC 2018 Canyon with a manual transmission.

https://youtu.be/pewD3Owm7Hw

https://youtu.be/-eNmXsyoIkM
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: Mikee5star on September 30, 2018, 12:32:21 am
If you didn't have the ability to build a vehicle (like yours truly  :rotfl ), what would be your thought process for navigating todays limited offerings? You said Dodge has the best options, but you omitted dodge. So who is next in line then? For pick ups? And for the hell of it, daily driver sedans as well?

BTW, I swear I saw a GMC 2018 Canyon with a manual transmission.

https://youtu.be/pewD3Owm7Hw

https://youtu.be/-eNmXsyoIkM

Only in 2wd.  Once you select 4X4, you lose the base engine option, and that is the only one that is available with a manual.   That is not an year round option for me.  If 2wd is an option for you, then you have better choices in pickups.  For both transmissions and engines, mileage wise.  2wd trucks also generally ride nicer, and have a lower bed height which is nice if you ever have to load heavy items.

I have not looked much at sedans or cars in general.  I have only owned one out of 15 vehicles, all the rest have been pickups or truck based SUVs .  I have owned more motorcycles than cars.  I would look at Mazda, Toyota, Nissan, or VW if I wanted a manual transmission sedan that was not a base model or a economy box.  Subaru has manuals in their all wheel drives also, but they are over priced and not as reliable as they used to be IMHO.
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: Langenator on September 30, 2018, 09:15:14 am
Last I checked, both the Toyota Tacoma and the Nissan Frontier are available with manuals.
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: Grant on September 30, 2018, 03:09:35 pm
   I like manuals.   That said I'm often pulling trailers of hay or cattle (21K or 17K pounds+trailer weight respectively), which is where a manual shines.

   That said the new automatics are awesome pullers, my dad has a '12 ford with the 6.2 gas (hate teh pickup but pulls good) and a '15 Dodge with the 6.4 gas, both pull great.

  The older 4 speed automatics of ford and dodge both sucked for pulling trailers.  I swear a Dodge 360 with a manual could outpull a cummins or V10 with a (stock) automatic.  And a ford 7.3 powerstroke with an auto would lose to a gasser with a manual.

  City or long distance highway driving?  I like automatics, one reason I prefer cars for town or highway driving. 
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: cpaspr on September 30, 2018, 03:34:13 pm
My Chevy Colorado (twin to the Canyon) is a crew cab, and came with the six speed automatic.  Yes, I can drive a manual transmission, and have had more manuals than automatics, but this truck is more of a daily driver to and from the office than can do weekend hauling duty when needed.  So for us, the automatic works.  Plus, it has a manual mode where you can choose the shift points, and can go up or down as needed.  Coming down a long hill with a trailer I was able to use both the trailering feature and the manual shifting feature of the transmission to keep it from going too fast.  Barely needed to use the breaks. 

It works well for what the vehicle is intended for, a heavy half-ton / light 3/4 ton, but for anything that will be truly hauling heavy weights, there should be the option to have a manual transmission.
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: coelacanth on September 30, 2018, 03:37:46 pm
   I like manuals.   That said I'm often pulling trailers of hay or cattle (21K or 17K pounds+trailer weight respectively), which is where a manual shines.

   That said the new automatics are awesome pullers, my dad has a '12 ford with the 6.2 gas (hate teh pickup but pulls good) and a '15 Dodge with the 6.4 gas, both pull great.

  The older 4 speed automatics of ford and dodge both sucked for pulling trailers.  I swear a Dodge 360 with a manual could outpull a cummins or V10 with a (stock) automatic.  And a ford 7.3 powerstroke with an auto would lose to a gasser with a manual.

  City or long distance highway driving?  I like automatics, one reason I prefer cars for town or highway driving. 


Agreed on all counts.  Our farm trucks were all manual transmissions and they were both capable and bulletproof.  Once I arrived in Arizona I quickly found that most stock automatic transmissions of the day were ill suited to any off-highway adventures without considerable modification.

One of the absolute best pick-up trucks I ever drove was an old F-250 with a 300 c.i. six cylinder and a manual transmission with a granny low and a 9" rear pumpkin and 4.11 gears.   It was even fast enough on the road to make 265 air conditioning work OK.    :thumbup1
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: MTK20 on September 30, 2018, 04:57:41 pm
Agreed on all counts.  Our farm trucks were all manual transmissions and they were both capable and bulletproof.  Once I arrived in Arizona I quickly found that most stock automatic transmissions of the day were ill suited to any off-highway adventures without considerable modification.

One of the absolute best pick-up trucks I ever drove was an old F-250 with a 300 c.i. six cylinder and a manual transmission with a granny low and a 9" rear pumpkin and 4.11 gears.   It was even fast enough on the road to make 265 air conditioning work OK.    :thumbup1

Okay, I'm going to need some explanation. I think I know what the 300 cubic inch 6 cylinder is. It's what's I  our Bronco and I've heard dad refer to it as a "straight six". What is a pumpkin and 4.11 gears?

My Chevy Colorado (twin to the Canyon) is a crew cab, and came with the six speed automatic.  Yes, I can drive a manual transmission, and have had more manuals than automatics, but this truck is more of a daily driver to and from the office than can do weekend hauling duty when needed.  So for us, the automatic works.  Plus, it has a manual mode where you can choose the shift points, and can go up or down as needed.  Coming down a long hill with a trailer I was able to use both the trailering feature and the manual shifting feature of the transmission to keep it from going too fast.  Barely needed to use the breaks. 

It works well for what the vehicle is intended for, a heavy half-ton / light 3/4 ton, but for anything that will be truly hauling heavy weights, there should be the option to have a manual transmission.

Very good info  :thumbup2 . It looks like for a daily driver a 2 wheel drive (maybe 4wd), automatic transmission would be fine.
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: coelacanth on September 30, 2018, 05:21:13 pm
OK - here goes .  .  .  "pumpkin" is slang for a differential housing, owing to it's rounded shape similar to well, a pumpkin.  The 9" Ford rear differential is recognized as a very strong, capable piece of machinery that can take a lot of punishment and still deliver the goods.   The "4.11 gears" reference refers to the axle ratio ( actually 4.11 to 1 is more technically correct ) where the numerically higher number refers to the number of times the drive shaft has to rotate through 360 degrees to equal one turn of the wheels.   The axle ratio is determined by the number of teeth on the pinion gear and the ring gear respectively. 

That particular engine, transmission and driveshaft combination was favored by heavy duty end users that wanted a workhorse rig and a real torque monster. It was usually put in a no frills truck with crank windows and rubber floormats and if you were lucky it had power steering and an AM radio.  With four wheel drive, a two speed transfer case, a little weight in the bed and a driver who wasn't an idiot, trucks like that were nearly unstoppable off road.  Ask me how I know.   :cool
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: Plebian on September 30, 2018, 06:18:50 pm
OK - here goes .  .  .  "pumpkin" is slang for a differential housing, owing to it's rounded shape similar to well, a pumpkin.  The 9" Ford rear differential is recognized as a very strong, capable piece of machinery that can take a lot of punishment and still deliver the goods.   The "4.11 gears" reference refers to the axle ratio ( actually 4.11 to 1 is more technically correct ) where the numerically higher number refers to the number of times the drive shaft has to rotate through 360 degrees to equal one turn of the wheels.   The axle ratio is determined by the number of teeth on the pinion gear and the ring gear respectively. 

That particular engine, transmission and driveshaft combination was favored by heavy duty end users that wanted a workhorse rig and a real torque monster. It was usually put in a no frills truck with crank windows and rubber floormats and if you were lucky it had power steering and an AM radio.  With four wheel drive, a two speed transfer case, a little weight in the bed and a driver who wasn't an idiot, trucks like that were nearly unstoppable off road.  Ask me how I know.   :cool

My 78 Bronco runs 4.11s in the rear with air lockers front and back. That particular model has the the granny gear 4 speed with a solid gear transfer case. I went thru the 400 motor in it. The dyno read a bit over 350 horses with just a touch over 440 ft-lbs of torque. You lock it up, put it in 4lo  granny 1st it will pull out a stuck tractor. I dug two 15 inch trenches about 20 feet long and a foot deep, but it got the tractor out. You tie onto something with that setup it moves or something/s break. It is a great bullet-proof off-road setup, and it can go about anywhere but past a gas station. 
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: Mikee5star on September 30, 2018, 09:30:03 pm
My main vehicle when I was in high school was dad's '72 chevy K20.  He had swapped out the stock 305 v6 for a 350 with a Holley eco-mister carburetor, I think the best mileage I ever got was 9mpg.  With the 4speed and we think 510-1 gears you could shift into 4th at 25 mph, in 2wd high.  In 4wd low top speed was about 25mph.  We drug the tool trailer, about 5000lbs, off a job through 2' deep mud for about 1/8th of a mile.  I never got that truck stuck.  I got it stopped a few times, but was always able to back out, or work through.

My first truck was a '78 F-150 2wd 300 6 with a three on the tree.  With a load of firewood in the bed, and studded tires I only got stuck once, but had to be real careful where I went in the winter.  I never took the keys out of the ignition as most people thought it was an auto until it would not start when they turned the key.
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: coelacanth on September 30, 2018, 09:38:10 pm
 :cool 
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: RMc on October 01, 2018, 05:42:30 am
I remember when "standard transmissions" really were standard transmissions!
                                                         :coffee
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: Chief45 on October 01, 2018, 10:00:38 am
I learned to drive on a manual.   had several over the years and drove more (farm trucks, grain trucks, semi's, etc).

with that said,  My left knee will no longer reliably operate the clutch for extended periods.   I can still drive a manual,  it's just . . . . painful.   :banghead

 
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: booksmart on October 01, 2018, 10:08:05 am
I prefer manuals, as well, but if I'd known I would be moving to Atlanta when I bought my Subaru, I would very likely have opted for the CVT, instead.

Manually shifting (constantly) during the s___ty traffic we have here suuuuuuuuuuucks.

If traffic isn't a concern for you, go with whichever you decide suits you.  May be worth looking for an automatic with shift paddles on the steering wheel, if such a beast is within your budget.
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: coelacanth on October 01, 2018, 12:27:30 pm
Yup.  Stop and go city traffic and a manual transmission - especially one with a fairly long clutch throw and strong springs - gets old in a hurry. 

I absolutely hated getting caught in a freeway traffic snarl in that old F-250.  Creeping forward forty or fifty yards at a time at 10-15 mph and then stopping for twenty or thirty seconds and then doing the whole cycle over and over again - never getting up enough speed to out of first gear or enough to even get a reliable breeze coming in the windows - is its own kind of hell.  Especially in the summer in Phoenix.   :facepalm

It always seemed to me that the best solution to that problem would be to keep the truck and ditch Phoenix but alas, it was not to be.   
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: ZeroTA on October 01, 2018, 01:49:55 pm
If I had a sports car I'd definitely want a manual, because that'd be just for fun and not at all practical. For a daily driver truck, automatic is the way to go. A lot of my driving is short trips through or between towns and I don't want to mess around shifting. There's not too many hills around here, I never tow more than a light trailer, and if I was faced with a combo of the two you could just put it in Tow Mode and keep the RPM's up (hell sometimes I do that anyway :D).

Auto makers love automatics because they can set it to shift at lower RPM's and get better mileage, even on trucks...even if you don't want it to.
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: ZeroTA on October 01, 2018, 01:58:40 pm
OK - here goes .  .  .  "pumpkin" is slang for a differential housing, owing to it's rounded shape similar to well, a pumpkin.  The 9" Ford rear differential is recognized as a very strong, capable piece of machinery that can take a lot of punishment and still deliver the goods.   The "4.11 gears" reference refers to the axle ratio ( actually 4.11 to 1 is more technically correct ) where the numerically higher number refers to the number of times the drive shaft has to rotate through 360 degrees to equal one turn of the wheels.   The axle ratio is determined by the number of teeth on the pinion gear and the ring gear respectively. 



This. Most current light duty trucks run appx 3.4-3.5 ratios, 3/4 tons might be 3.7-4. My '17 Silverado is 3.08  :shrug but like I said, I don't haul much with it (basic jobsite loads, tools, etc) and I don't notice a difference hitting the gas. So it handles normal 1/2 ton payloads and light off-road (jobsites) just fine. I would definitely not want that ratio if I did anything halfway serious with it.
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: MTK20 on October 01, 2018, 03:27:23 pm
Yup.  Stop and go city traffic and a manual transmission - especially one with a fairly long clutch throw and strong springs - gets old in a hurry. 

I absolutely hated getting caught in a freeway traffic snarl in that old F-250.  Creeping forward forty or fifty yards at a time at 10-15 mph and then stopping for twenty or thirty seconds and then doing the whole cycle over and over again - never getting up enough speed to out of first gear or enough to even get a reliable breeze coming in the windows - is its own kind of hell.  Especially in the summer in Phoenix.   :facepalm

It always seemed to me that the best solution to that problem would be to keep the truck and ditch Phoenix but alas, it was not to be.

 :rotfl
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: cpaspr on October 02, 2018, 01:10:01 am
When I was younger my uncle ran dump trucks and backhoes.  He would stockpile gravel during the fall/winter, keeping the farmers creeks cleaned out for free (sweet deal for both my uncle and the farmers).  Kept their fields from flooding, and he had the gravel to sell when road projects started up in the spring and summer.

One weekend I was helping by keeping the trucks full.  He'd take the manual into town with a load, and I'd load up the truck with the automatic.  I'd them move it out of the way, and when he got back he'd park the manual tranny truck for me to load, jump in the auto and go.  I had no idea how that thing worked.  I remember it had a four-speed with a 5-speed gear box behind it.  I was somewhere around 14, I think.  Come to think of it, I still have no idea how to run that particular combo.
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: sqlbullet on October 02, 2018, 11:26:17 am
I feel bad that I am late to this party.  All the relevant comments have been made.

Plebian apparently owns the object of my lust and desire in a 78 Bronco.  First year of the "big" Bronco, and last year that had no federal emissions requirements, though they did come with the 351M/400 which were smog specific engines.

I personally like to drive manual trannies.  But, I no longer have any vehicles with a manual.  This is due to a couple of factors.  First, my wife doesn't drive stick and really discourages purchase of a stick shift since she can't drive it.  Two, I mostly drive in the city, and an auto is easier to drive around town.  Three, while it is true in absolute terms that a manual is more reliable than an auto, in practical terms of the driving and buying habits I have, a modern auto is just as good.

Someday I plan to buy a clean 78 Bronco and build my dream SUV.  Two years ago there was no doubt that I wanted a manual tranny.  Preferred was an NV4500, but I would have settled for a NP435 or an SM465.  But lately I have been thinking more along the lines of a really hardcore E4OD build instead of rowing myself. 
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: coelacanth on October 02, 2018, 02:54:50 pm
When I was younger my uncle ran dump trucks and backhoes.  He would stockpile gravel during the fall/winter, keeping the farmers creeks cleaned out for free (sweet deal for both my uncle and the farmers).  Kept their fields from flooding, and he had the gravel to sell when road projects started up in the spring and summer.

One weekend I was helping by keeping the trucks full.  He'd take the manual into town with a load, and I'd load up the truck with the automatic.  I'd them move it out of the way, and when he got back he'd park the manual tranny truck for me to load, jump in the auto and go.  I had no idea how that thing worked.  I remember it had a four-speed with a 5-speed gear box behind it.  I was somewhere around 14, I think.  Come to think of it, I still have no idea how to run that particular combo.
Sounds like a split axle.  That's what we had on our heavy farm truck.  Good set-up for that kind of thing.   :thumbup1
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: booksmart on October 02, 2018, 03:24:52 pm
Sounds like a split axle.  That's what we had on our heavy farm truck.  Good set-up for that kind of thing.   :thumbup1

So how does it work?
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: Plebian on October 02, 2018, 04:29:37 pm
So how does it work?

There are just multiple gear choices in the axle. The ones I have driven were not shiftable while moving. You had to stop and choose gear you wanted.

We had a truck for hauling cotton burs at my Grandfather's cotton gin. It had a 7 speed tranny then a hi-lo axle. I used it much the same way you to a transfer case in a 4x4 truck. If you were dumping burs in a field you used low to creep around, and then used high once you hit the pavement again. 
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: coelacanth on October 02, 2018, 04:44:42 pm
Yup.  A lot of them worked similar to that.  Later ones could be shifted while moving.  They were intended to allow very low speed, high torque usage and also something that was highway capable once you left the fields.   A modern picture of these in action takes place in the midwest and plains states at harvest time when the trucks with grain beds on them drive alongside combines and get loaded while the combine is still moving through the field and continuing to harvest the grain. 
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: MTK20 on October 02, 2018, 05:36:38 pm
I feel bad that I am late to this party.  All the relevant comments have been made.

Plebian apparently owns the object of my lust and desire in a 78 Bronco.  First year of the "big" Bronco, and last year that had no federal emissions requirements, though they did come with the 351M/400 which were smog specific engines.

I personally like to drive manual trannies.  But, I no longer have any vehicles with a manual.  This is due to a couple of factors.  First, my wife doesn't drive stick and really discourages purchase of a stick shift since she can't drive it.  Two, I mostly drive in the city, and an auto is easier to drive around town.  Three, while it is true in absolute terms that a manual is more reliable than an auto, in practical terms of the driving and buying habits I have, a modern auto is just as good.

Someday I plan to buy a clean 78 Bronco and build my dream SUV.  Two years ago there was no doubt that I wanted a manual tranny.  Preferred was an NV4500, but I would have settled for a NP435 or an SM465.  But lately I have been thinking more along the lines of a really hardcore E4OD build instead of rowing myself.

 :hmm
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: luke213(adamsholsters) on October 02, 2018, 08:24:12 pm
I'm late to the party too as said most everyone mentioned the points.

My 2 cents, I've owned and driven a bunch, everything from old muscle cars, 3 on the tree Chevy trucks, etc. My 78 Chev is a granny 4 on the floor sitting 25 feet from me;) But my Jeep Grand Cherokee's are both auto's(not sure they ever made a WJ manual, I've never seen one). None the less the biggest difference I'd say is control, if you want to control the RPM for shift points for whatever reason the manual is a good route to take. It's why I'd prefer them for any sort of performance driving and for fun. Granted auto's have come a very long ways in recent times and you can have fun with an auto also or at least much more than the old ones. But it's still one of those things.

Places I don't care for a manual tranny, in traffic as mentioned it gets old. No matter how light the clutch is if you spend enough time in stop and go your leg will get tired eventually;) Plowing snow, this pains me since the manual is more reliable in this application and would be alright if you just pushed roads. But if you're plowing and backing up allot an auto is SO much easier. And even on the road it's far easier to get the "right" speed for plowing with an auto. Manual the speed you want always seems to be between gears never fails.

It's certainly a skill to know, and it's not something that really drives me one way or the other unless that vehicle happens to fall into a category like plowing that I take that into account. But overall I'd say learn it, but don't worry much more unless you've got specific needs for it.

Luke
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: RetroGrouch on October 05, 2018, 11:56:23 am
I know how to drive a stick, but I haven't done it in ages.  Our sports car has a 6 speed auto with paddle shifters, which according to the car magazines will shift faster than a human can shift a manual.  Our F-150 has a manual mode which does lock the tranny in whatever gear you select, and it has a separate radiator for the tranny to keep it from overheating.  I don't take it rock crawling or mudding, I just use it for hauling stuff in the bed and going off road to hiking trail heads or shooting spots.
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: Mikee5star on October 05, 2018, 10:26:36 pm
I love manuals for towing, but hooking up a trailer by yourself in a manual with a non-functioning parking brake is a special sort of hell.

I will likely only have a manual transmission on a toy vehicle from now on.  Most new auto's are reliable, and durable.  Newer engines are making so much power and torque that clutches have to be so heavy that they are a pain to shift, or are complicated systems in their own right.

That said I will keep one so that the kiddo will learn to drive a stick.
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: Mikee5star on October 05, 2018, 10:29:16 pm
Also don't forget my dad's advise, "Learn to drive a stick in a vehicle you don't own, and don't have to fix."
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: MTK20 on October 05, 2018, 11:52:24 pm
Also don't forget my dad's advise, "Learn to drive a stick in a vehicle you don't own, and don't have to fix."

Not sure I get this. Are they high maintenance? Or is me learning to drive my friends vehicle fluffing it up? Cos then I'd just feel awful :hide .
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: coelacanth on October 06, 2018, 12:16:04 am
Hell, don't ask me - I learned on a tractor.    :shrug
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: MTK20 on October 06, 2018, 12:51:06 am
Well, I'd practice on a beat up pick up if I could, but all I have available to me is a Camaro.

I just try to keep an eye on my RPM's (my buddy taught me keep it somewhere between 1500 to 2000 before shifting. It's his vehicle, so what he says goes) and to engage the clutch all the way before shifting. Other than that  :shrug .
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: Mikee5star on October 06, 2018, 01:47:21 am
Don't ride the clutch and you should be okay.  Get the clutch in or out.  Letting the clutch slip while starting, and riding the pedal while going down the road, so the clutch is not completely engaged are the easy errors that wear a clutch out prematurely.

Well, I'd practice on a beat up pick up if I could, but all I have available to me is a Camaro.

I just try to keep an eye on my RPM's (my buddy taught me keep it somewhere between 1500 to 2000 before shifting. It's his vehicle, so what he says goes) and to engage the clutch all the way before shifting. Other than that  :shrug .

RPM's for shifting are vehicle and engine specific, and are not going to hurt the clutch unless you rev it up and dump the clutch.  Failing to have the clutch all the way in can hurt the transmission.  It also makes a horrible noise that makes most people try to never repeat.

Also don't forget my dad's advise, "Learn to drive a stick in a vehicle you don't own, and don't have to fix."

This was more of a joke than anything else.  Remember all his kids learned to drive in HIS car.  My sisters and I learned to drive in a Chevy Citation II with a 4 sp manual.  It was quite high geared in first and reverse, and we had a hill in our driveway.  I guess we all learned well enough, as it had 155,000 on the original clutch when he sold it. 
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: RMc on October 06, 2018, 05:03:04 pm
Hell, don't ask me - I learned on a tractor.    :shrug

My first experience with a tractor taught me to always ask the most important question about operating a vehicle first!
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: Plebian on October 06, 2018, 07:28:44 pm
Hell, don't ask me - I learned on a tractor.    :shrug

I learned to drive a tractor first as well. When I first started I had to hold onto the wheel and hop off the seat to depress the clutch fully. It was before I was 8 years old for certain since we moved when I was 8, and I already had been driving for sometime.

I first started driving pick-ups at around 10. It was following dad in the tractor on dirt roads as we moved fields, and I sometimes got to move trailers of hay from the field in my uncle's diesel pick-up when uncle was 'too tired'(drunk).

My main transport before I was legal to drive was a horse tho. We were about 13 miles from town. So if I needed to go town badly I just saddled the ole steed up and rode in. There is no legal age to drive a horse it seems.   
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: coelacanth on October 07, 2018, 01:02:02 am
So, I can still ride when I get too old to drive then?    :hmm
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: MTK20 on October 07, 2018, 01:21:33 am
I learned to drive a tractor first as well. When I first started I had to hold onto the wheel and hop off the seat to depress the clutch fully. It was before I was 8 years old for certain since we moved when I was 8, and I already had been driving for sometime.

I first started driving pick-ups at around 10. It was following dad in the tractor on dirt roads as we moved fields, and I sometimes got to move trailers of hay from the field in my uncle's diesel pick-up when uncle was 'too tired'(drunk).

My main transport before I was legal to drive was a horse tho. We were about 13 miles from town. So if I needed to go town badly I just saddled the ole steed up and rode in. There is no legal age to drive a horse it seems.

That's a pretty unique childhood! Especially considering, aren't you in your late 30's/early 40's?  :hmm
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: MTK20 on October 07, 2018, 01:22:12 am
I learned to drive a tractor first as well. When I first started I had to hold onto the wheel and hop off the seat to depress the clutch fully. It was before I was 8 years old for certain since we moved when I was 8, and I already had been driving for sometime.

I first started driving pick-ups at around 10. It was following dad in the tractor on dirt roads as we moved fields, and I sometimes got to move trailers of hay from the field in my uncle's diesel pick-up when uncle was 'too tired'(drunk).

My main transport before I was legal to drive was a horse tho. We were about 13 miles from town. So if I needed to go town badly I just saddled the ole steed up and rode in. There is no legal age to drive a horse it seems.

That's a pretty unique childhood! Especially considering, aren't you in your late 30's/early 40's?  :hmm
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: Grant on October 07, 2018, 07:32:22 am
That's a pretty unique childhood! Especially considering, aren't you in your late 30's/early 40's?  :hmm

Pretty normal for anyone that grew up outside the city ;)

  I was driving dads honda four wheeler by five.  Drove dads old 90 F250 by the time I was 8 and was running a tractor swathing hay when I was 10.  Pretty par for most of the other people I know.     My cousin right now is 7 and swathing with a self-propelled swather.  Though that is only when his dad is also on the field cutting and strict orders he never leaves he seat. 

Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: Plebian on October 07, 2018, 10:00:49 am
Pretty normal for anyone that grew up outside the city ;)

  I was driving dads honda four wheeler by five.  Drove dads old 90 F250 by the time I was 8 and was running a tractor swathing hay when I was 10.  Pretty par for most of the other people I know.     My cousin right now is 7 and swathing with a self-propelled swather.  Though that is only when his dad is also on the field cutting and strict orders he never leaves he seat.

We didn't get a 4 wheeler until I was 14 or so. My dad figured since we had horses there was little need for one.

We got one after my horse fell with me breaking my leg, a rib and cracking multiple others. It was about a mile and half walk back to house with a gimp leg and then wait on the porch for an hour or so for dad to arrive home. No cellphones at that time so I just had to wait until someone got home.

It is not like the 4 wheeler was safer though. I flipped and rolled that thing a ton of times.

It is pretty common for anyone I know from my hometown in western OK. It seems to be pretty normal for most parts of the country in rural areas from my college friends as well. I never went on wheat harvest during summer, but most of my classmates in school did so for extra money during summer. I usually worked on my cousins fence building business for some extra cash or rode doing round-up for someone.

Swather seems to be the de facto starting implement of choice. I think since it is really nothing more than a big mower in practical function. The one we had that I learned on was a single stick hydrostatic drive model. Which is dead simple in function, push forward go forward, left to turn left, etc etc. Most of our fields that I started on were close to dead level. So I didn't even have to monkey with the head tilt/raise etc.
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: MTK20 on October 07, 2018, 12:23:01 pm
Pretty normal for anyone that grew up outside the city ;)

  I was driving dads honda four wheeler by five.  Drove dads old 90 F250 by the time I was 8 and was running a tractor swathing hay when I was 10.  Pretty par for most of the other people I know.     My cousin right now is 7 and swathing with a self-propelled swather.  Though that is only when his dad is also on the field cutting and strict orders he never leaves he seat.

I'm not sure about that. I know many people who grew up outside of the city, and very few owned horses  :hmm .
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: coelacanth on October 07, 2018, 08:59:54 pm
Well, rumor has it you don't actually "own" a horse - you just enter into an indentured servitude arrangement for the duration of the horse's life.  :cool
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: booksmart on October 09, 2018, 10:59:45 am
https://jalopnik.com/the-2020-ford-bronco-could-get-a-7-speed-manual-transmi-1829563048?utm_source=jalopnik_facebook&utm_medium=socialflow&utm_campaign=socialflow_jalopnik_facebook (https://jalopnik.com/the-2020-ford-bronco-could-get-a-7-speed-manual-transmi-1829563048?utm_source=jalopnik_facebook&utm_medium=socialflow&utm_campaign=socialflow_jalopnik_facebook)

Quote
The number of new cars available with a manual transmission gets smaller every year, and even sports sedans like the new BMW 3 Series are getting rid of them for the U.S. market. And while trucks and SUVs have overwhelmingly been equipped with automatics in recent years, we might have a new savior in the form of the upcoming 2020 Ford Bronco.

According to sources who spoke with Jalopnik, Ford has tapped Getrag to build a manual transmission for the upcoming 2020 Ford Bronco. The new transmission which is to be dubbed, the MT-88 will be a seven-speed gearbox and will likely be paired with their 2.7-liter EcoBoost V6 engine.

This tickles my interest...
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: Langenator on October 09, 2018, 12:29:58 pm
Something odd I just realized...I've never driven a U.S.-made vehicle with a manual transmission.

I learned to drive stick in my dad's 1965 VW Beetle.  In college, I bought myself a 1987 VW Rabbit GTI.
At various times in high school and college, I drove my friend's 1979 VW Westphalia conversion, and his dad's 1973 Beetle.
When I was stationed in Germany, I bought myself a 1998 Audi A4.
When I was in Afghanistan, I drove a Toyota HiLux and a Toyota SUV type thing.

One thing about the various products of Wolfsburg and Ingolstadt:  the clutch take-up is STRONG.  You know when the clutch starts to grab.  It's very obvious.  Even when the engine only has 32 horses.  (1100ccs in that '65).  The clutches on the Toyotas (granted, overseas models, not U.S. market spec) were similar, if less pronounced.

On one (and only one) occasion I tried to drive a friend's early 90's Honda Civic.  Given that my whole experience with manuals at that time was with those German clutches, I could barely tell when the Honda's was engaging.  I stalled it like 3 times, just driving across town.
Title: Re: Pick Ups and the Manual vs Automatic Transmission.
Post by: booksmart on October 09, 2018, 01:53:45 pm
There's also a pronounced difference in how badly German transmissions respond to stalling, versus Japanese transmissions...

German: "HALTEN! Du STALLEN!"

Japanese: "Excuse me, you didn't do that right, we're stopping here."

My first manual was an '84 VW Rabbit "Wolfsberg" edition (affectionately known as 'Fiver', for you Watership Down aficionados), followed by my '95 Civic DX Coupe ("Quincy", because it was iguana green).

Veerrry different driving experiences.