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Old 08-12-2009, 04:48 PM
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Power Upshifting: Easy Power Downshifting: ???

Well, I've finally gotten off double-clutching for my upshifts. For a while, I was having a hard time power shifting. The rigs we drive are Sterlings with the straight 7spd() & you've gotta rev them a lot higher (2500-2000rpm)than the International I drove with the 9spd(1500-1000rpm). I can power shift now with minimal grinding or missing gears. Now my problem is trying to power downshift. I know I'm not doing it right. I've been told to keep the rpms high, throw it in neutral, rev, then downshift. Everytime I try to keep the rpms high......they're usually too low. I give it fuel while it's in gear until I can throw the stick in neutral, then rev, then drop a gear & the truck jumps & doesn't sound like other rigs I hear. So now I'm reverting back to double-clutching when I downshift. What's the secret? What am I doing wrong? I really don't want my left calf to be twice the size of my right one, so can anyone give me some pointers?
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Old 08-12-2009, 04:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RadarRider View Post
Well, I've finally gotten off double-clutching for my upshifts. For a while, I was having a hard time power shifting. The rigs we drive are Sterlings with the straight 7spd() & you've gotta rev them a lot higher (2500-2000rpm)than the International I drove with the 9spd(1500-1000rpm). I can power shift now with minimal grinding or missing gears. Now my problem is trying to power downshift. I know I'm not doing it right. I've been told to keep the rpms high, throw it in neutral, rev, then downshift. Everytime I try to keep the rpms high......they're usually too low. I give it fuel while it's in gear until I can throw the stick in neutral, then rev, then drop a gear & the truck jumps & doesn't sound like other rigs I hear. So now I'm reverting back to double-clutching when I downshift. What's the secret? What am I doing wrong? I really don't want my left calf to be twice the size of my right one, so can anyone give me some pointers?
It would match your forearm Shifting a truck is hard to explain. You just have to practice and get used to it. I had to drive @ work yesterday (first time in about a year). I went to pull out of work in my truck and when I got up to the main road, I nearly put my foot through the floor board, trying to hit my imaginary clutch. I also hit my arm on my console, trying to grab my imaginary gear shifter I guess it all just comes back to me that quick
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Old 09-02-2009, 06:26 PM
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you can usually feel it out when you up the revs and mostly it will just fall into gear while down shifting. Of course im used to 13 spds/Super 10's. I just use the clutch to stop and go, never touch it to downshift.

I once had an old timer tell me double clutching does nothing, accept wear your clutch/trans brake out.

Last edited by redline73; 09-02-2009 at 06:26 PM. Reason: typo
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Old 09-05-2009, 04:07 PM
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Originally Posted by redline73 View Post
you can usually feel it out when you up the revs and mostly it will just fall into gear while down shifting. Of course im used to 13 spds/Super 10's. I just use the clutch to stop and go, never touch it to downshift.

I once had an old timer tell me double clutching does nothing, accept wear your clutch/trans brake out.
So now, wait a minute; you're saying the stick will fall into gear while the rev's passing the correct RPMs, right? I've been practicing power downshifting(haven't used the clutch @ all!), but the way I'm doing it still doesn't sound like the same way I hear experienced truckers do it. I give it a little fuel while the RPMs are low, pop the stick back, give it either a little rev or big rev depending on how low/high the RPMs are or if I'm on an uphill or downhill, & then try to pop it into it's next gear. Lately, I think my problem is how much of a rev I should give it & end up grinding. Sometimes, too, I don't think I'm giving it fuel correctly to pop the stick into neutral. It's like, the truck jumps a little when I give it that quick rev & all the other trucks I've seen power downshift never do that....I just don't know.
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Old 09-05-2009, 04:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RadarRider View Post
So now, wait a minute; you're saying the stick will fall into gear while the rev's passing the correct RPMs, right? I've been practicing power downshifting(haven't used the clutch @ all!), but the way I'm doing it still doesn't sound like the same way I hear experienced truckers do it. I give it a little fuel while the RPMs are low, pop the stick back, give it either a little rev or big rev depending on how low/high the RPMs are or if I'm on an uphill or downhill, & then try to pop it into it's next gear. Lately, I think my problem is how much of a rev I should give it & end up grinding. Sometimes, too, I don't think I'm giving it fuel correctly to pop the stick into neutral. It's like, the truck jumps a little when I give it that quick rev & all the other trucks I've seen power downshift never do that....I just don't know.
It sounds to me like your putting it into gear as the RPM's are increasing, that's why the truck is "jumping". You either want to gradually bring the RPM's up to the right RPM and let it fall into gear or pass the right RPM's and put it into gear as the RPM's fall back down past the gear matching RPM (which is the easier but sissy way to do it) You seem to have it, just keep practicing. You'll get it, it just takes a little touch and feel
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Old 09-05-2009, 08:25 PM
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it wont "fall" persay you rub up against the next gear with the shifter and feel it out, dont jam it or force it. My rule of thumb was to rev it up approx 500 rpm to catch the gear and keep it within useful jake-braking
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Old 09-06-2009, 05:37 AM
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Originally Posted by SixStringMadness View Post
It sounds to me like your putting it into gear as the RPM's are increasing, that's why the truck is "jumping". You either want to gradually bring the RPM's up to the right RPM and let it fall into gear or pass the right RPM's and put it into gear as the RPM's fall back down past the gear matching RPM (which is the easier but sissy way to do it) You seem to have it, just keep practicing. You'll get it, it just takes a little touch and feel
Quote:
Originally Posted by redline73 View Post
it wont "fall" persay you rub up against the next gear with the shifter and feel it out, dont jam it or force it. My rule of thumb was to rev it up approx 500 rpm to catch the gear and keep it within useful jake-braking
Thank you very much for the advice, guys! The more good advice I get, even with the long weekend, I wanna hurry up & get back to work so I can give it a try! Thanks again!!!
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Old 12-12-2009, 04:46 PM
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Try it at lower rpms until you figure it out, and slow down don't try to rush it
I mean slow everything down, the truck, the rpms and the shifting
until you pick it up. Maybe some day you can even shift with you jake.
Whole different story. Been doing this for going on 30 years.
good luck. That is 30 yrs., 3.2 mill. miles all accident free. All lower 48 states.

See Ya Down the Road......
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Old 12-13-2009, 04:57 AM
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I am also an 'experienced' trucker -- and it is hard to explain how the "shifting without the clutch" works, but it is possible and most of us do it every day. We used to have 7-speed International straight trucks (DT466 & 530 engines) - which were replaced by Sterlings (Freightliner's leftover junk brand) with Cummins ISB & ISC engines, of course. They were phased into our fleet between 2007 and 2009. They all have Allison automatic (!) transmissions (6 speeds + reverse); nice in city traffic but just not the same as a good Spicer stick-shift in IMHO.

Our tractors are a mix of Internationals, Sterlings and Freightliners -- all of which are 10-speed manual transmissions (Eaton-Fuller, mostly). My favorite is the 2009 Freightliner Cascadia, with the next-best one being the 2007 Columbia. The Sterlings we have are junk, but they do have a nice Mercedes-Benz diesel under their hoods. The 435-hp Detroit Diesel in the '09 Cascadia is the quietest of all, however, and the whole cab rides on air (rather than just the chassis & the seat).

When I shift, I don't pay much attention to the tachometer; but rather I can "hear" when the right time to shift is upon me. I suppose it is sort of an instinct (?), as I can jump into an entirely different truck and have it nailed down in about ten minutes. With the newer trucks, it seems a little trickier because the tranny & gears might not be "loosened up" for awhile. Even so, you'll figure it out by driving it and driving it.

The cool thing about trucking is that you learn something new every single day. Show me a driver who knows everything, and I'll show you a damn liar!

Good luck to you and keep the shiny side up!!
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Old 12-13-2009, 06:40 AM
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Originally Posted by JK23112 View Post

The cool thing about trucking is that you learn something new every single day. Show me a driver who knows everything, and I'll show you a damn liar and a driver I want to stay away from, those are the one's that crash!

Good luck to you and keep the shiny side up!!
Fixed it.

As the other drivers have said, take your time and you'll get the "feel" of it.
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