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Old 04-13-2013, 12:05 AM   #1
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We are looking at so many different truck RV conversions coaches (on the internet) and see a lot of different transmission options, and on one place on this forum it was suggested that automatic is best for resale.
As for the manual transmissions Cliff learned to drive in an old International 4000 gallon water truck with10 speed; then later on a ten speed in a TopKick.
For a class 8 with a full length coach on the back and as much gear and supplies that some one going full time would want, and tugging along a car trailer, what should we be thinking for a transmission?
maybe it all depends upon the engine?
thanks
Cliff & Wendy
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Old 04-21-2013, 08:37 PM   #2
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Sorry I didn't reply sooner, just spotted this thread. I wouldn't worry too much about the trans. If you find a coach that's good for you I think the trans wouldn't be a make/break part of the deal. Generally, the heavier the coach I think the auto shift or fully manual trans would be more durable and economical (i.e: better fuel mileage). The more gears keep your engine in the sweat spot for power and economy. And no torque converter means less energy loss and heat buildup. I was figuring a fully manual trans would be the most durable when I was shopping rigs. I visited with the service manager at my nearby Kenworth shop. He said actually the auto-shift trans seems to hold up better since you can't really mess it up. The driver won't be able to grind the gears and slip the clutch. Now, I was talking to him about the 10 speed Eaton autoshift that the coach I was looking at (and eventually bought) has in it. My son used to work for a trucking company (he's a driver) and they mostly just bought trucks with 10 speed manuals. They bought a couple Columbia's with the 12 speed Ultrashift. Their service manager said they had some issues with u-joints failing. He thinks the Ultrashift was the problem. Realize both these guys are talking trucks that get 100k miles a year on them.

The hydraulic (Allison) trans would likely shift smoother than an auto shifter or manual unit. My truck really digs in under acceleration when it gets into each gear.

I have put about 10k miles a year on my coach for the last 4 years. I am sure glad I haven't had to row the gears. My son told me the auto shift is not a true driver's trans. He said he likes to row the gears. I can see where manual would work better for him since sometimes he's bobtailing and sometimes he's at 80k lbs.

I'm pretty sure there are lots of people that wouldn't consider buying a manual trans coach. So, if you are ever planning on selling it that would likely rule out some buyers if yours was a fully manual.

This is soo much fun shopping for a truck, isn't it?
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Old 04-21-2013, 09:13 PM   #3
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This is soo much fun shopping for a truck, isn't it?[/QUOTE]

yep shopping around is such fun!
We actually was in Wisconsen yesterday and looked over a Wanderlodge Bus, then stopped by a freightliner M2 with a Pony Express coach, it was a08 or 09??? with the Mercedes engine and a ten speed auto
this week we are looking at one right next to us about 30 miles away
it has over a million miles.
We really like the pony express coach we looked at today, but out of our price range.

the one we are going to go look at is at this link
Toter Home - Nex-Tech Classifieds

We think it looks clean and nice, has a lot of miles, it may be to short and it does not have slides, but we really do not know what we are wanting so we are going to look it over.
the miles seem like a lot to us.
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Old 04-22-2013, 01:32 PM   #4
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That's a nice looking rig. I wouldn't be worried about the miles if you have a full pre-purchase inspection done on it including a dyno and oil analysis.

Have you looked at Hawk Engineering's site? They have two rigs for sale there: CoachesForSale

I really like that lesser priced one. I looked seriously at buying that one but I want to some day get a stacker trailer and he said the hitch on that one is good for 10k lbs.
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