Diesel trucks with manual transmissions are hard to beat, especially when it comes to towing. Though there are some excellent automatic transmissions out there, many diesel owners still prefer a stick on the floor to a shifter on the column. Even though manual transmissions have been around for a long time, the good news for these diehard stick fans is that technology continues to evolve, both in the transmissions themselves and the critical link between them and the engine. There’s a lot of new technology in clutches targeted towards the diesel truck market that address the concerns of both the diehard stick crowd and performance enthusiasts, but it all boils down to how to best get the power to the ground.
With the big power that modern diesels are putting down these days, especially once a few aftermarket modifications are added to the mix, it’s easy to understand why most stock clutches aren’t up to the task. The reliability issues of the dual-mass flywheels on Cummins-equipped engines aside, strap a big load to a mildly warmed over Cummins and you have a recipe for clutch issues. Some people gravitate toward a multi-disc system that can handle the extra power and heavy loads, but many of the multi-disc clutches on the market introduce quirks that make the truck a hassle to drive every day, like rough engagement, lots of noise, and other problems. Enter Centerforce with the Diesel Twin, a multi-disc clutch solution, which provides the superior holding power of a multi-disc clutch (up to 1,700 lb-ft) and the everyday drivability of a single disc.
We traveled to H&H Diesel Performance in Dewey, Arizona, where we had the opportunity to watch a 2005 Ram get the ultimate solution to rough shifting problems and a major upgrade in clutch holding power all at the same time. We didn’t have the opportunity to witness the drivability problems the truck had when it came in, but we did drive the truck once the repairs were complete. We can honestly say the clutch “feel” of the Centerforce twin-disc system was exactly as it should have been: it felt no different than a stock clutch when it came to shifting, engagement or anything else that would indicate that the truck was now equipped with a multi-disc clutch. Check out what it took to fix what ailed this Ram and its shifting problems once and for all. DW
H&H Diesel Performance