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Old 04-07-2014, 06:08 AM   #1
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Transmission: Manual vs Automatic

Does anyone pull their camper (particularly a fifth wheel) with a vehicle that has a manual transmission? We eventually want to move up to a fiver and I found a great deal on a new truck with a manual transmission. Just curious.
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Old 04-07-2014, 06:38 AM   #2
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tell us a little more about this new truck and how much you think your future 5th wheel might weight
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Old 04-07-2014, 08:08 AM   #3
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I pull my 5er with a manual transmission, what would you like to know?

It does just fIne, every now and then I get clumsy on the clutch and with all the hitch weight over the rear axle the front end will bounce. Just push the clutch, start over and go on about my business.
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Old 04-07-2014, 08:50 AM   #4
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I've been pulling my TT with my 6-speed Dodge and will be pulling my 5-er with it when it comes in. I love my manual transmissions, I don't own an automatic trans in my fleet (except DW's SUV, but that's HERS!) I love the engine braking, and couple that with the exhaust brake, I can stop my rig pretty effectively. Never had any issues.
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Old 04-07-2014, 08:58 AM   #5
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Some years back I pulled a travel trailer with a truck that had a manual transmission. Most of the time all was fine but occasionally some camping spots would require a lot of jockeying around to get into position. Then the clutch would overheat and you could smell it burning. If you plan to do much backing in tight spots I would go with an automatic.
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Old 04-07-2014, 09:49 AM   #6
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This is all early speculation but the fifth wheel would be 33 ft. (living space) and dry weight right at 12,000 lbs. The truck would be a Dodge 2500 diesel so there is plenty of truck there. Just was wondering how inconvenient it was using a manual over automatic; as far as if there was constant shifting. We look for pull throughs whenever possible but back in spots are the majority in Missouri State Parks.
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Old 04-08-2014, 01:22 AM   #7
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This is all early speculation but the fifth wheel would be 33 ft. (living space) and dry weight right at 12,000 lbs. The truck would be a Dodge 2500 diesel so there is plenty of truck there. Just was wondering how inconvenient it was using a manual over automatic; as far as if there was constant shifting. We look for pull throughs whenever possible but back in spots are the majority in Missouri State Parks.
I've got a Dodge 2500 diesel with a six speed, nope, no constant shifting or anything of the sort. Just pulls pulls pulls. In sixth gear I can get down to 45ish and it just will roll away. I lose a little speed on the hills but I don't push it either, I could drop to fifth but it's no big deal to me.

Only time I wish I had an auto is traffic, but I know very few manual drivers that disagree with that. I personally like it, they're tough, old school and get the job done.
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Old 04-08-2014, 04:36 AM   #8
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The man trans will reduce your payload and towing cap. some and that is about it. 4x4 will reduce it more. You may not really have enough truck for that rig. You will be very close if not over on payload. I know I am w/RAM 2500. Looking for a 3500.
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Old 04-11-2014, 08:34 AM   #9
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I have a 06 2500 dodge with the 6 speed manual. No problems at all. As far as backing and the clutch getting hot ( never had that happen) I would just put mine in low range. Of course you have to have a 4 wheel drive for that. I pull a 38ft sabre 33 ckts that weighs a round 13000lbs loaded and my pin weight is 2700lbs. I do run air bags. I have towed it about 4000 miles so far with no issues. Oh and my truck is leveled running 35 inch tires.
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Old 04-11-2014, 07:05 PM   #10
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Quote:
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I've got a Dodge 2500 diesel with a six speed, nope, no constant shifting or anything of the sort. Just pulls pulls pulls... I personally like it, they're tough, old school and get the job done.
X2. I don't own an automatic transmission!. My friend's 3500 just crapped out his auto trans (again) and he decided to buy a new truck instead of fixing it again. Some day he'll learn and buy one with a third pedal...
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