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Where have all the manual transmissions gone?

Post in 'The Gear' started by Joful, Jun 20, 2013.

  1. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    Prolly true though my son is now learning to drive and wants to learn stick.

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  2. Their is a few of us left :)

    Good luck finding someone under 40 that knows the shift pattern of a 3 speed on the column. It would be funny trying to see some punk steal one of those though.
  3. I wouldn't think there is much that would go wrong on a 60k mile truck that would leave you stranded that couldn't also happen to a newer vehicle, if that is the concern. Aside from maybe the fuel pump or starter there are very few things that leave you stranded without a warning sign. You could replace those things and have new tires for a fraction of the cost of a new truck.

    I fully expect to drive my truck to 200k miles or more. When it is completely rusted I will send it back to china. (And be looking for a truck like Joful is thinking about selling)

    I actually thought about selling my truck a few years ago but for what new or nearly new trucks were going for it made no sense financially.
  4. lukem

    lukem Minister of Fire

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    I guess I'm a 5 percenter...

    I think that varies a lot by geography. Farm kids vs. suburb kids.
  5. simple.serf

    simple.serf Feeling the Heat

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    Bingo.

    And can I just say that the manuals hold up better to abuse than the autos do. So long as you get the clutch up quick and match RPMs, they seem to hold up. The autos start to smoke and puke trans fluid from the dipstick half way home. I'd be willing to bet that the wiring harnesses on the new autos wouldn't hold up so well to some of the logging roads I find myself on.
  6. MasterMech

    MasterMech Guest

    I'm 30 and can drive anything with wheels and most things without. I learned on vehicles that did not have synchros or the letter D in the shift pattern. Split rears and sliding gears every day. Every summer kid we get on the golf course gets a free education on stick shifts since we have a couple utility vehicles that have three pedals.

    If you are looking for kids that drive stick, there are whole bunch of them running around in front wheel drive four bangers making a bunch of noise. ;)
  7. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    Suburb kids around here, and I cannot think of too many who cannot drive stick. Whether you owned a crappy Honda Civic, or an old CJ Jeep, they were all manual.

    I've met several girls who somehow avoided driving stick, but not too many guys.
  8. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    Not if I end up keeping it! :)
  9. NE WOOD BURNER

    NE WOOD BURNER Minister of Fire

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    I would keep it!
    The devil you know is always better.
    The cummins power with with the 6spd is a sweet truck. but wow what a price.
    Look this fall at the new 1/2 ton dodge with the smaller diesel suppose to be nice and early talks say they where going to have a standard available. Fall 2013 was the target date. But only time will tell.
    http://blog.bushwacker.com/5228/news/2014-dodge-ram-1500-diesel/
    Joful likes this.
  10. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    Cool! For me, diesel would actually be a detriment, but one I'd deal with for the sake of getting a manual trans. Diesel is great if you want to put more than 100k miles on a truck, and drive enough per year to make the mileage gains pay off the initial cost. For someone who's truck sits out in the cold, driving less than 5000 miles per year, who likes to trade in vehicles long before they hit 100k miles, and doesn't want to be forced to the one gas station in town that actually carries diesel, paying the ~$8k up-charge for diesel is not exactly a great investment! Then again... no new vehicle is a good investment. ;lol
  11. clemsonfor

    clemsonfor Minister of Fire

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    I thought that was the thing to do in the 90s and early 00s? Been a long time since i lived in a city with "those" kind of folks but i too am 31 (your age) and i remember that was the thing when i was in Highschool and college but dont see it amymore? I just see the "box chevies" and now the more curvy chevy caprices from the late 90s that are jacked up and on 26"s.

    I can drive a stick as well and like driving one.

    Would i buy a new truck if i were to buy new... in one, probably not. DO i like having an old truck in one...yes. Sticks are a pain more so in traffic, i dont live in an area with it but do go to one sometimes in mine. There more of a pain to get rolling on a hill, like at a boat ramp. And yes i can move from brake to gas without rolling all the way into the water, and i also know the park brake trick etc. My daily drive truck for years was a 4cy ranger, and i still have that truck and load it up crazy with wood and haul it loaded and a loaded 4x8 trailer with wood as well, and thats all that motor can handle. I dont think i would load it as heavy with wood as old as it is if it were an autothough.
  12. NE WOOD BURNER

    NE WOOD BURNER Minister of Fire

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    yes, diesel upgrade is expensive. Hard to justify for situation. But a cummins 2500 with a 6spd manual I bet you would keep for a long time. Cummins will start in the cold. and resale with your mileage would be close to new price. they are getting crazy money for used cummins.

    the post on the 1/2 ton diesel was just a fyi. They will most likely not offer in a standard like they always do to us. 8spd auto transmission is what that article spoke of. who knows.

    My buddy is welding his f150 frame just to keep his standard. I told him to run it and find a clean used truck even if only an auto. then we could swap his standard into his newer truck.
    Joful likes this.
  13. clemsonfor

    clemsonfor Minister of Fire

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    GET a new car and keep your truck problem solved. You will be driving that truck 20 years from now with probably little trouble. My ranger has just a few thousand miles shy of 300,000 and is 23 years old this year. I will get in it and drive it on a 6 hour round trip, i have AC and dont worry about it. Knock on my firewood pile i dont think it has left me once in 11+ years or so of owining it, never failed to start once.

    Now i have put work into it, but nothing major. List of things i can think of since i owned it in the last 11 years or145Kmiles or so.
    -new radiator (old plastic tanks leaked)
    -new alternator
    -battery (2)
    -water pump (2x with each timing belt)
    -timing belt (twice..Maintence it did not break)
    -spark plugs ( at least 3 sets)
    -starter
    -radius arm bushings
    -muffer (2x)
    -tailpipe(2x)
    -brakes (front 2x, rotors once and shoes once)
    -wheel cyls
    -one caliper
    -exhaust manifold
    -all new AC system
    -fan and clutch (cooling)
    -ac condensor
    - a pile of oil and changes
    -heater hoses
    -water hoses
    -spark plug wires
    -bypassed the rear abs solonoid as it was stopped up with junk
    -some brake line for above fix
    -think i put a new master cyl on it but not sure (brake)
    -new U-joints
    -several sets of tires


    I think that is an inclusive list I did all the work myself and buy the parts with online deals or coupons as good as i can get them. AC work yes was done by me including freon work ( i own a machine.. which i know few folks even would).

    May seem long but keep in mind the truck was over 10 years when i got it and have had it for over 11 years and all of it was not done at once. I bet i spent less on this repair list that you did in 1 year of truck payments...oh yea i know i did.
  14. joecool85

    joecool85 Minister of Fire

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    It's not the shifting for me so much as lack of clutch. I like being able to instantly cut power to the wheels, or when being in a sticky situation being able to control exactly how much torque is going to the wheels. I also like that when I'm going down a steep snow covered driveway and need to stop I can keep the clutch engaged until I am only rolling 1-2mph then put the clutch in and come to a complete stop. This keeps the wheels from locking since they are still engaged to the engine. In an automatic it will lock the wheels because there is very little traction and the transmission slips thinking you are coming to a stop. I need a manual clutch more than the shifter.

    **EDIT**
    I should note that I'm 28 and have never owned an automatic. I've had my license since I was 16, so 12 years. I've had in order:

    1994 Mercury Tracer (2001-2003)
    1994 Jeep Cherokee (2003-2005)
    2001 Ford ZX2 (2005-2009) - only sold because I needed a truck
    2000 Ford Ranger (2009 - current)

    All were 5spd manual transmissions. The Ranger gets loaded regularly. A couple weeks ago I moved 2 cords of wood, moving 1/2 cord at a time. 1/4 cord in the bed, 1/4 cord in a small trailer. Wood was mostly fresh cut birch and maple. I'd estimate 2,000lbs per load or so including trailer weight and it was fine. Hill starts and all. If you can't keep your rig from rolling on a hill start, you probably should have an automatic. My truck never rolls more than 1/2" on most hills, 1" if I'm not paying attention. I've had someone measure :)

    I've also towed a 1968 Chevy 3/4 pickup on a dolly 5 miles with my Ranger. In low range, down a sketchy dirt road in the snow no less. That was interesting, but the manual trans really gave me the control I needed.
    Joful likes this.
  15. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    Well, I pay cash for my vehicles, so no car payment. I think too many people fail to understand that when they finance a vehicle, they're paying almost 50% more for the same car, than simply doing the saving BEFORE you buy. <>

    The flip side to that is, by sitting on cash right now, we're losing money! Banks are paying 0.7% on savings, while inflation is at 2.9%. Considering current inflation, and where it's expected to head (gotta pay off that national debt!), it might be an ideal time for buying a vehicle.

    On doing all that maintenance, I used to do the same and more (building custom hotrods), when:

    1. I was younger
    2. Didn't have kids
    3. Didn't have a large house / property to deal with

    No time for repairing / playing with cars, these days. I go from my job, to working on the house each evening, right now. When that's done, it's time to spend an hour or two with my son or helping my wife with something. Maybe when the son is older, repairing the truck is something we'll do together, but not at age 3.


    Amen, brother! Very well stated.
  16. clemsonfor

    clemsonfor Minister of Fire

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    The kid will come soon and thus necessitate more repairs and personal maintenance. He is due in the fall. But I am younger 30 and own a pretty big house but don't have money to do much updates etc to it. I have to cut wood mow lawn help with dinner
    Excersize a few times per week and I have a farm property too. I understand bout interest and latter remember u said u pay cash. I do as well too. But I don't have the money to pay for a newer vehicle nor pay someone to do my work.

    Just what I do I guess it does not work for all.;
  17. UMainah

    UMainah Member

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    My 2010 Silverado 1500 with a 6speed auto has the rocker switch on the gear selector.
  18. UMainah

    UMainah Member

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    I think it's more related to income level of a family, then geography.

    I'm 26. I learned to drive and took my driver's test in a 96 Nissan Pathfinder manual trans. I saved up and bought my first car while in high school, an 89 Chevy s10 4 banger manual. While in college I bought a 97 Nissan Pickup manual. Then I got a 98 Land Rover Discovery, my first auto. After that I got my Silverado, my first vehicle that isn't a beater.
  19. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    Congratulations! I know I'm wasting my breath here, as much as all those who told me 4 years ago, but you have no idea the changes that are in store for you! I used to get more done per week than I do per month, now! If your wife works (mine does), your free time is about to evaporate. You sound a lot like I was, always with a dozen projects going, and doing everything yourself. I told myself it wouldn't change, but when you have a 3-year old saying, "Daddy, can you play with me?," your priorities will go out the window!


    How so? Poor = old Japanese cars with manual trans. Rich = Porsche and BMW with manual trans. Perhaps only the middle class are missing out? ;lol
    MasterMech likes this.
  20. blacktail

    blacktail Minister of Fire

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    I'm 34. When I was 16 I drove my uncle's late 60's ford across the pass. Straight six and a three speed on the column. I drove it over so he could keep it at his vacation cabin. It didn't go fast, but it made it.
    My commuter is a manual 4-speed and my truck's a 5-speed.
  21. NE WOOD BURNER

    NE WOOD BURNER Minister of Fire

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    I think most kids learn on whats available to them.
    a yard full of cars growing up is the best. society only likes two now.
    3spds on the tree. 4spds in trucks. 5and 2 in the bigger trucks. road ranger in the even bigger trucks.
    If i wanted to go anywhere or not shovel snow learning standard was a neccessity.
    I think it is the market that is demanding the automatic in the half ton market. It is a utilitarion vehicle that once replaced the station wagon. drive it to work. drive it at work. drive it in the woods. very useful for the homeowner. but now the speeds on the highways are very excessive try towing a trailer @ 55mph on any highway. the power in most engines are much more useful at any rpm now. the only real limiting factor in a half ton is Brakes. they are light for hauling. so we put brakes on the trailer and electronic automatics. problem solved.
    if you drive 65-85 and drink coffee, smoke and talk on the cell phone. the automatic makes steering with the knees much easier-LOL
  22. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    Hence this comment in the OP:

  23. NE WOOD BURNER

    NE WOOD BURNER Minister of Fire

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    So out of curiosity I went to edmunds.com and search truck with manual. They all(even automatics) come up but the radio button on the selection says there are 15 available. shame even edmunds has falling for the marketing tactics of the internet.
  24. joecool85

    joecool85 Minister of Fire

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    Yeah there really aren't that many manuals left. It does look like Jeep may release a small pickup based on the Wrangler. It'll probably have a 5' or 6' bed, decent sized tires, tow rating in the 3,500-5,000 lb range and come with a manual. If all those things are met, it may be my next truck. Last I heard they were to be release in 2014 or 2015.
  25. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    Similar to the old CJ-8 Scrambler? Owing to the OP... remember when all Jeeps had manual transmission? I read they started offering 3-speed auto in the CJ-7, but I honestly never saw an automatic Jeep until the 1990's.

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