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Old 09-10-2018, 04:34 PM   #1
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Manual Transmissions

Just curious here but, it seems 90% or more of tranny discussions are fixated on automatic transmissions. From 3 years experience driving a school bus with a manual 5 speed converted to tour with a band, I would opt for a manual in a heartbeat. Is there a reason that everyone seems to be focused on automatics? Perhaps availability? I would also bet that a manual could be had more cheaply as many people shy away from changing gears. The main reason I loved the manual was because you could use the precise gear for the situation and know it wouldn't shift at an awkward moment. There was never a heat issue, a slipping issue, or a costly replacement issue. Anyhow, I'd like to hear everyone's thoughts especially those with manual rigs. Peace / capnron
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Old 09-10-2018, 04:43 PM   #2
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The supply of manual equipped buses is dwindling.

I prefer a manual as well and wondered why I see so few of them lately. I asked a school district transportation manager and he told me that workman's comp claims for carpal tunnel were a problem and they had far fewer issues with the drivers running automatics.
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Old 09-10-2018, 05:03 PM   #3
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Most school buses are driven by women who prefer automatics for their simplicity. Once locking converters were developed they provided better fuel mileage. Those are 2 major reasons why you don't see many manual tranny's in buses.
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Old 09-10-2018, 05:26 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by capnron View Post
The main reason I loved the manual was because you could use the precise gear for the situation and know it wouldn't shift at an awkward moment.
This is the main reason I wanted a manual. I've owned many over my lifetime and always preferred the control it gave me, especially in less-than-ideal conditions. I had to search for 18 months to find one hooked up to the engine I wanted, and couldn't be happier (well, I'd be a little happier with a more usable gearing in first, but maybe this granny gear will come in handy when I start boondocking).
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Old 09-10-2018, 05:34 PM   #5
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manual vs auto

Many factors contribute to the growing population of automatic transmissions.
These days, four, five, six speed automatics, usually have "lock up" torque converters, mini computers, or if you will microprocessors controlling the shift points. The net result is in the immediate is increase in fuel mileage.

Long term, if you looked at the wear and tear of tires, u joints, differentials, and perhaps clutch assemblies, I am willing to say there is probably reduced expenses here.

Perhaps one of the biggest factors is most americans are not interested in driving manually shifted transmission and never learned how to drive one. Difficult to hire bus drivers for buses with 5 speeds, when not one in your applicant pool says they can drive a stick shift.

But business being business I think cost is the driving force here.

My bus will have a 6 speed manual transmission. The telephones on my bus will have the microprocessing power on board, not the bus.

hell, even the air ride level sensors are mechanical.

william
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Old 09-10-2018, 05:38 PM   #6
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I think only like 3% of vehicles manufactured now have a manual trans.
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Old 09-10-2018, 06:06 PM   #7
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give me my 6 speed auto with manual over-ride any day over a clunky truck Stick...

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Old 09-11-2018, 05:59 AM   #8
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Manual Transmissions

I can totally understand from a fleet operator perspective why automatic transmissions are easier to deal with as most people have had little experience with manuals. However, for those who have, and can appreciate the benefits they can offer, it's a shame they are not more available. Thanks to all who replied as it was most enlightening. Keep on bussin.
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Old 09-11-2018, 08:02 AM   #9
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I love a manual transmission.
But my left quadracep is damaged and driving a bus with a clutch in traffic doesn't sound fun.

All my cars have manuals, though.
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Old 09-11-2018, 11:24 AM   #10
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The MIC coach I posted in the non affiliated buses for sale is a 5 speed
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Old 09-11-2018, 11:38 AM   #11
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I drive a manual bus. I traveled 700 miles each way and over payed for it because I was ready to get into a bus(after several slipped through my fingers) and it was a 28' dt powered bus with a 5speed. After scouring cl all over the country, I could only find three 5speed Shorty's for sale...two in Montana and one in California of which I bought. Sure arnt many diesels with manuals out there.i love it but wouldn't let it be a deal breaker if I were looking again. There are plenty of good automatics out there. Now, the real trick would be to find an auto hooked up to a more desirable mechanicly injected diesel.i feel that some of the best and most mechanicly simple diesel engines were produced from the mid 80's to the mid 90's. Good luck finding a lockup/overdrive auto in this years. That is where the manual shines even harder...with a mechanicly injected dt bolted to it. Next step for me is to get more gears and an over drive...10 speed anyone?
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Old 09-11-2018, 03:07 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SolomonEagle View Post
I drive a manual bus. I traveled 700 miles each way and over payed for it because I was ready to get into a bus(after several slipped through my fingers) and it was a 28' dt powered bus with a 5speed. After scouring cl all over the country, I could only find three 5speed Shorty's for sale...two in Montana and one in California of which I bought. Sure arnt many diesels with manuals out there.i love it but wouldn't let it be a deal breaker if I were looking again. There are plenty of good automatics out there. Now, the real trick would be to find an auto hooked up to a more desirable mechanicly injected diesel.i feel that some of the best and most mechanicly simple diesel engines were produced from the mid 80's to the mid 90's. Good luck finding a lockup/overdrive auto in this years. That is where the manual shines even harder...with a mechanicly injected dt bolted to it. Next step for me is to get more gears and an over drive...10 speed anyone?



the mechanical DT-466 powered busses with autos BEFORE 1995 pretty much all had MT-643. 4 speed Lockup converter type.. AT545s were used on the DT360s when those came out in the mid 80s and the DT-466E offered a low torque low HP version which was 1995 and newer that could take a AT545.. if you find a mechanical DT-466 automatic chances are its a MT-643..
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Old 09-11-2018, 05:15 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SolomonEagle View Post
I drive a manual bus. I traveled 700 miles each way and over payed for it because I was ready to get into a bus(after several slipped through my fingers) and it was a 28' dt powered bus with a 5speed. After scouring cl all over the country, I could only find three 5speed Shorty's for sale...two in Montana and one in California of which I bought. Sure arnt many diesels with manuals out there.i love it but wouldn't let it be a deal breaker if I were looking again. There are plenty of good automatics out there. Now, the real trick would be to find an auto hooked up to a more desirable mechanicly injected diesel.i feel that some of the best and most mechanicly simple diesel engines were produced from the mid 80's to the mid 90's. Good luck finding a lockup/overdrive auto in this years. That is where the manual shines even harder...with a mechanicly injected dt bolted to it. Next step for me is to get more gears and an over drive...10 speed anyone?
Could you share with me where you found the shorty's in Montana?

Thanks
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Old 09-11-2018, 06:06 PM   #14
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Found everything on cl
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Old 09-19-2018, 05:33 PM   #15
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I love my manual transmissions! I can pick a gear on steep down hills and not have to ride the brakes. I can also shift down when pulling hills and not have to wait for a computer to shift down after momentum is already lost.
I had a "newer" 1996 bus with an automatic and sold it.

I also like older buses without computers in them. I can work on them myself and don't have to worry about software not being available or fining a replacement computer.
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Old 09-19-2018, 07:29 PM   #16
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My 92 blubird is a manual a manual transmission and I love it. Its basically a 2 speed rearend. 5 high and 5 low gears. Hardly ever use low gears. Plus i get good fuel mileage
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Old 09-19-2018, 08:20 PM   #17
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Ive got a 5-speed manual and wouldnt trade it..i learned on one and i feel a little more in control.
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Old 09-19-2018, 09:18 PM   #18
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Most school buses are driven by women who prefer automatics for their simplicity. Once locking converters were developed they provided better fuel mileage. Those are 2 major reasons why you don't see many manual tranny's in buses.
You really just have to chime in on every single thread, don't you?
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Old 09-19-2018, 09:32 PM   #19
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automatics in buses are because the bus companies could not find people to hire that could drive manuals, they also got tired of putting clutches in them every year
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Old 09-19-2018, 10:20 PM   #20
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You really just have to chime in on every single thread, don't you?
It could be worse.......he could be your neighbor.
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