1. #1

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    Default home made res-q-jacks

    We are at the fire show in Baltimore and we seen res-q-tecks and res-q-jacks struts are made out of signpost. We got a whole pile of signpost in our muni yard and im thinking on making some struts until we get our good ones. My chief says he wont allow it cause we dont know how strong they are and he dont want libility.

    Has anybody made there own struts out of signpost? And do you know how much they hold up? The res-q-teck guy wasnt sure and said 10,000 pounds. The res-q-jack guy at home said 25,000 pounds. The res--q-jack catalog saiys something like 25,000 pounds with a 2 to 1 safety factor in one place but says 4000 pounds maximum in another place and 2000 pounds maximum in another place. Huh?

    If anyone knows I could use the help. Its only for a year of use until we get our 42s on next years buget. Thanks.

  2. #2
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    We built 4 about 6 years ago, we also now have the rescue jacks with the crank adjustment.
    Make sure your pins are high strength. we changed ours to the same ones from rescue jack,
    As for strength we have not "tested" but it sure beats a 4x4.

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    Billy, your chief is a smart man to not want to use sign post, look below your post and you will see a post with a lot of information about sign posts..
    Last edited by KAPNKRNCH; 08-01-2008 at 01:04 AM.

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    Please check my posting under the current "strut" thread....... Thanks

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    Don't know how comfortable I would be with using unrated and untested equipment for emergency stabilization.

    Thrifty none the less....... but just watch yourselves.
    For those of us on the West Coast.....
    www.westcoast911.com

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    When something is HOME MADE and it fails and someone gets hurt, it could end up being HOME LOST when the insurance man says it ain't covered!

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    Quote Originally Posted by CAPPYY View Post
    When something is HOME MADE and it fails and someone gets hurt, it could end up being HOME LOST when the insurance man says it ain't covered!
    Respectfully,

    The insurance company will not deny coverage because the FD used homemade equipment, they will at most try to recover the funds from the FD/Municipality or thier insurance by claiming negligence. It is the Insurance providers responsibility to verify compliance with NFPA, and adjust rates accordingly, not the homeowner's.


    Many Many FD's use homemade equipment every day. Rural dept's build homemade tools to save money and gain capabilities they could not otherwise afford, and city guys modify tools and equipment to improve effectiveness or make tools the dept won't buy. I would be shocked to examine the rescue trucks of the biggest dept's in North America, and not find at least some modified or custom made tools. In fact, a large number of the tools you buy and use today started as some homebuilt mod that somebody decided to mass produce.

    Obviously the best and safest option is to buy engineered and certified tools and equipment. However, if you absolutley cannot afford the brand-name stuff, there is generally nothing wrong with making your own, provided you do the research and some testing, and can back-up your backyard mechanics.

    Contact the signpost manufacturer, I'm sure they have ratings for thier product. Work within those ratings (with a reasonable safety factor), and you'll be fine. If it is a genuine life safety item, like a rope anchor or a lifting strut, you'll probably want an engineers stamp on each non-certified component, or else you could face fines and censure from your gov't regulatory agency (and in that case, certainly the risk of legal action).

    If you just wan't to build some stabilizing struts, or custom brackets, etc. Just do your due diligence.
    Never argue with an Idiot. They drag you down to their level, and then beat you with experience!

    IACOJ

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    You don't consider using sign posts for supporting a side resting vehicle as a life safety item? It darned sure is if it's my head under that vehicle!

    I see that you are from Canada. The people up there still base life on doing whats right and the system seems to still be somewhat fair. Down here, people just sue your arse and the best lawyer wins!

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    I often use my tow truck to "hold" a side resting vehicle.I'm pretty sure of two things:It was NEVER rated to do that job. I have every confidence that the crew working around it and I are just as safe as you would be with most of your commercially made struts.See the thread below by Rescue 42's Tim O'connell on strut ratings. An excellent read. T.C.

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    Default Deja Vu

    Wow this thread reminds me of my idea after I first saw the Res-Q-Jacks at a local fire show. I thought the same thing as BillyAxe. I never asked anticipating the same answer he got and therefore never proceeded with the project. I think we all worry a little too much about getting sued and not enough about our own safety, I've had struts in my "Christmas wish list" for about 3 years and am still waiting. We're a small Dept. with a small budget and don't have a a ton of roll-over MVA's but we have our share. I recall one where we used a come-along and some lengths of chain to tie an axle to a nearby tree to stabilize a vehicle on it's side while we extricated the driver. Not exacly an engineered solution, but I know my guys were alot safer operating around that vehicle. Sometimes you have to "improvise, overcome and adapt" to quote Clint E. Isn't that what FF is all about?
    Last edited by bfd732; 08-07-2008 at 11:53 AM.

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    hit the botton twice - sorry

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    I agree we need to improvise, do it all the time, BUT we need to consider our safety at the same time and that of the patient. Using a come-along and chains is a strong support system and I would'nt hesitate to use it. Using a wench and cables from a tow truck is good when you have one on scene. The idea of using sign posts just sounds dangerous to me. The wooden struts with the metal stand is a cheaper and proven support system. My dept has the money so we can get the best of everything. Good citizen support, good fund raising, good investment of our hard earned money over the years. My people are well trained and as good as they get but when they are under that vehicle, the support has got to be right. It would be up to me to visit their families with the bad news if God forbid anything went wrong. That ain't gonna happen on my watch!

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    Default Need For Correction

    this is a post from another thread that appears applicable here as well:

    In light of some of the statements made in previous posts, it was determined that we should set the record straight.

    The tubing used in Res-Q-Jack struts is made from Grade 50 ASTM A653 steel. Grade 50 steel typically exhibits a 50,000 psi tensile yield, however the cold-forming of res-q-jack tubing results in a minimum average tensile yield of 60,000 psi.

    A problem with the assumptions made in earlier posts is that the "tensile" yield strength is being used as the "bearing" yield strength. This is a typical error made, and in addition, bearing yield and bearing ultimate strength information is hard to come by. In some standard MIL handbooks you will find some of this data as it relates to various steel alloys and some aluminums. This source will illustrate that the BEARING YIELD strength may be closely approximated as being about 1.8 times the TENSILE YIELD strength.

    Once the bearing yield strength is determined, one can then divide this number by the desired safety factor and obtain the ALLOWABLE bearing stress which will then determine a safe WLL as it relates to bearing.

    In our case, we have tubing with a 60,000 psi tensile yield, thus we have a bearing yield of about 108,000 psi. For a factor of safety of 2, we come up with an allowable bearing stress of 54,000 psi. In double shear, using a 3/8 dia. pin and 12ga. tubing (.105 wall) we then come up with an ALLOWABLE BEARING LOAD of 4253 lbs.

    That's just the theoretical explanation, although the theoretical data was developed through testing. Regardless, we do not simply rely on theory, we test. Our testing confirms the above theoretical results.

    The bright side of this is that we wanted to be careful that we did not speak too quickly on this matter until we again confirmed that we recommend a safe bearing WLL. We went through a battery of testing once again and we were pleased with the results and as an engineer kind of enjoyed the process.

    One warning that may be valid in light of some other apparent confusion is that anyone involved in making struts must know the difference between force (lbs.) and strength measured in force/area terms (psi). If strength is confused with an allowable force one could have devastating results.


    Thank you,

    Engineering Dept.
    Res-Q-Jack, Inc.

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