Thread: Nozzle Reaction

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    Default Nozzle Reaction

    I am looking for ways to reduce the nozzle reaction and the wear and tear on our crews. I am already working on proper hose handling techniques but I am looking for some information. I have noticed on several videos that it looks like the handlines are flowing lots of water with not to much effort being put out by the crews. We are using Elkhart SM20fg nozzles and are flowing 165 gpm with a nozzle pressure of 95 psi. It seems like at this flow and pressure there is a lot of nozzle reaction and it is wearing the guys out quickly. I just wanted to see what some others are running nozzle wise and at what pressures I woud like to keep the same flow but hope to reduce the nozzle reaction. Thanks for the help.

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    I kept a loop of webbing in my coat pocket for use as a hose strap/tie off/self rescue.Do they do that?
    My old department started flow at 100 gpm @ 100 psi(so I am told.I was never near the gauges when it happened)and upped it from there as the hose guys got comfortable with the flow.The only time I ever skidded across the ground was when standing in melting ice in a yard.
    Just because we're all big may-cho he-men doesn't mean that we can't work up to full rated pressure instead of taking it full pressure from the time the bail opens.

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    With a 100 psi fog nozzle the reaction force will always be around 1/2 the flow. IE: 200 gpm = 100 psi NR

    The best way would be to change to smoothbore nozzles with a 15/16 tip and 50 psi nozzle pressure. Or a low pressure fog nozzle would bring down the reaction.

    Similarly, when I came to my current job, the popular thinking was "200 for 200 is 200". Meaning we ran 200 ft. preconnects at 200 psi to get 200 gpm. Later proven inaccurate and not practical.

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    Default keep your current set up and learn to use it properly

    The smoothbore is the only realistic way to reduce the nr and maintain effectiveness. My experience with low pressure fogs....well I wasn't impressed with they're penetrating abilities, but my experience is rather limited in that regard.

    Here is an argument to encourage you to stay with your current set up. Many people when they do hose practice or want to see what pressure they want to fight fire with they do it while holding the hose standing up and trying to advance it similar to combating a car fire. I have never seen a productive interior attack on a house fire done this way, be it on video or in person. Keep your current set up and just remember that you are low to the ground in a fire so use the ground and your backup man to your advantage. Or bear down in the door frame to the room or the wall in the hallway if it's possible.

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    ChiefAnthony...

    My advice is to explore low pressure combination nozzles if you wish to stay with combination nozzles. I have over a decade's worth of experience using Elkhart Chief 4000 series low pressure combination tips. In fact our set up is an Elkhart B275GAT pistol grip with a 1 1/4 inch slug tip with the Elkart Chief 4000 series 200 gpm at 75 psi combination tip. In your case Elkhart makes a 175 gpm at 50 psi and a 175 gpm at 75 psi combination tip that is very close to what you flow now.

    As far as penetration and reach of the low pressure stream we have never had a problem in either regard. I find it somewhat amusing that a smoothbore nozzle flows at 50 psi and no one challenges its reach and penetration. But use a combination nozzle at 50 or 75 psi and its penetration and reach become suspect.

    Your easiest solutions are a 50 psi smoothbore or a 50 or 75 psi low pressure combination nozzle.

    Just for clarification I am not now an Elkhart Rep or sell for any compnay that does rep them. I am just a loyal user of their products.

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    Default Nozzle Reaction and Effectiveness

    I would recommend focusing on training your members to manage the nozzle reaction as this has a positive impact regardless of the nozzle type, flow rate, pattern, and resulting nozzle reaction.

    I concur with the posts that question the effectiveness of low pressure combination nozzles. Fair performance on straight stream and poor performance in a fog pattern (extremely large droplets). The solid stream nozzle is a better choice (than a low pressure combination) for direct attack (only), but if you also want to be able to effectively cool the gas layer, a 100 psi combination nozzle will be much more effective.

    I have found that good technique and teamwork solves most nozzle reaction problems!

    Cheers,
    Ed Hartin, MS, EFO, MIFireE

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    Thanks for the reply's. We have been working on handling techniques for a couple of years but with our setup it seems that the hose lines are a real bear to handle. I am very pleased with our setup except for the back pressure. Is anybody using the Vindicator Nozzle? I have looked at them once and may look at them again for consideration for select operations. Thanks again guys.

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    While I agree that teaching proper hose handling techniques can make a huge difference in performance I must strenuously disagree with any questioning of a low pressure combination nozzles effectiveness.

    There are really only 2 ways to reduce nozzle reaction:
    1) Reduce flow
    2) Reduce nozzle pressure

    The most common manner is to reduce flow. Either by the nozzle operator gating back the nozzle, especially on automatic nozzles, to a point where the flow is around 100 gpm or less. Or the pump operator being a "nice guy" and cutting the flow by reducing the engine pressure.

    The smarter choice is to reduce nozzle pressure either by switching to smoothbores (an excellent choice in my opinion) or a low pressure combination tip (an excellent compromise in my opinion). I have personally used low pressure combination tips for over a decade and have experienced none of the problems that are commonly stated such as excess kinking, lack of reach, lack of penetration, and poor fog pattern. Kinking is no more or less an issue than with smooth bores and good hose layin and moving training helps eliviate this even more. Lack of reach is a myth. How much reach do I need? 20 feet? 30 feet? 70 feet? This has never been an issue either inside or outside of a building. The reach and footprint left by a low pressure shows that the stream stays together longer and farther than a 100 psi combination nozzle stream. If it stays together longer it would stand to reason that penetration is better too. The fog pattern has served us well in venting and the one or 2 times we have needed fog for fire.

    Is ,ow pressure the answer for everyone? Probably not, but it sure works well for us.

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    As an engineer, this is my personal SOP. I will give you 100% of the flow/psi. The firefighter/officer then have the responsibility to gate down if needed. However when the poo hits the fan they know I am giving all I got. Then if that is not enough they can back out while checking for kinks.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Extinguisher911 View Post
    As an engineer, this is my personal SOP. I will give you 100% of the flow/psi. The firefighter/officer then have the responsibility to gate down if needed. However when the poo hits the fan they know I am giving all I got. Then if that is not enough they can back out while checking for kinks.
    Very sound advice.

    The only time that I have seen a problem with NR is when the backup man (person) is not doing their job. The only other option that I can see (other what has already been suggested) is to add another person on the line. Kind of extreme, but you have to put water on the fire. If your guys are struggling that much with your current setup, something definitely needs to change.
    Just someone trying to help! (And by the way....Thanks for YOUR help!)

    Aggressive does not have to equal stupid.

    ** "The comments made here are this person's views and possibly that of the organizations to which I am affiliated" **

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    Quote Originally Posted by chiefanthony View Post
    Thanks for the reply's. We have been working on handling techniques for a couple of years but with our setup it seems that the hose lines are a real bear to handle. I am very pleased with our setup except for the back pressure. Is anybody using the Vindicator Nozzle? I have looked at them once and may look at them again for consideration for select operations. Thanks again guys.
    We have a Vindicator on one of our lines, and it works out okay. On a 2" line with a lenght of 200', and 50 psi NP we were able to flow 250 gpm. It was fairly easy to handle.

    We are putting an Akron Saberjet on one of the lines on our new engine. It has the dual settings for fog and smooth bore (15/16"). On a 2" line with a length of 200', and 55 psi NP, we were flowing 205 gpm. Reaction was easily handled by one firefighter in a standing position.

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    We moved to low pressure fogs a few years ago. Like any different piece of equipment, there were some complaints until we trained with it and became accustomed to it. We use 50psi/150gpm for 1 3/4 lines and 50/250 for 2 1/2. We also have some smooth bores. We had some initial complaints about kinking similar to a lot of places that move to these nozzles. My theory is that since you generally operate at a lower pressure, even with a higher GPM because of the significantly lower NP the hose doesn't push out the kinks as much as it would at higher pressures. Just a theory. One thing I like about these nozzles as an FEO is that every hand line has the same NP despite whether it's a fog or SB.
    I may speak gibberish, but I don't talk s***! -- Dropkick Murphys

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    Chief

    Task Force Tips build our dept a 55 PSI 95-225 GPM automatic nozzle. Give me a call and we can talk about it.

    970-290-5163


    Jason

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    If you're looking to keep a flow rate close the the 165GPM, I would explore the 7/8" smooth bore. It is rated at 162GPM @ 50psi, with a reaction force of about 55 lbs. This is a setup that can be handled by one firefighter if necessary, and is very effective on a 1 3/4" hose line. My dept. uses the 7/8" on one 1 3/4" line and the TFT Metro 1 combination nozzle on the second line. The metro 1 is a fixed gallonage nozzle that comes with 10 flow discs, allowing you to set up a variety of flow rates at pressures from 50 to 100psi, depending on your depts needs. Anymore today, you will be able to find combination nozzles from most any manufacturer that are low pressure (50 or 75psi), that have an adequate flow rate for both 1 3/4" and 2"-2 1/2" hose.
    NorCal Firefighter

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    What a great topic and discussion. I have to agree with what most of the other brothers have pointed out and as a pump ops instructor its a nice review and to hear some input about some things I don't see often.

    I am a very big smoothbore proponent. 50 psi NP and you can flow it from 150 GPM and up. My department flows 1 3/4" with 15/16" SB at 185 gpm with 200'. The one thing I will say is I have had several departments including my own that have brought in the Akron Sabrejet nozzles and I for one do not like them. Some members get confused by its operation and at lower gpm's 150 to 165, it doesn't keep the hose stiff enough and the nozzle causes a bend right behind the male coupling causing a kink.

    Others ideas to those mentioned, and training is important is working with your personnel to find a technique that may be more conducive to backing up the nozzle person. They are the most important line members along with the controlman. Get them to try putting their backs towards the nozzle man, with their cylinder against the nozzleman's back and "pushing" backwards. Its is a more natural and ergonomic way to support the back pressure and I've had students tell me that its less fatiguing. The thing to remember is when the line has to be moved, it has to be half gated so the back up can turn around and assist with movement then get back into position again. When practiced it is still extremely quick. Another arm positioning technique I've found that works is gripping the hose like in a headlock with the hose against the body, the hand with the "headlock" then grips the forearm of the opposite arm, which holds the hose out in front like in traditional grips, palm up or palm down. The only other point is, the back up person depending on how the hose is positioned can also use building construction components to add additional friction to help control the line, like pushing the hose against a wall or door frame with the body is basically like adding another person on the line.

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    Take a look at the TFT Dual Force nozzle. At the tip is a switch that lets you run @ 100psi, or if you need to scale down the psi you can flip the switch to run at 55psi.

    And yes, I do sell TFT but I also sell Akron and Elkhart. So I'm not biased b/w those three, but the Dual Force is a heck of a nozzle.

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    Quote Originally Posted by flamewalker25 View Post
    Take a look at the TFT Dual Force nozzle. At the tip is a switch that lets you run @ 100psi, or if you need to scale down the psi you can flip the switch to run at 55psi.

    And yes, I do sell TFT but I also sell Akron and Elkhart. So I'm not biased b/w those three, but the Dual Force is a heck of a nozzle.
    The problem with the "Emergency Low Pressure" selection on the dual force nozzle is the same problem with the regular setting. IF the nozzle doesn't get the right amount of pressure to move the spring to allow the stem to open very little water will flow. Less than 20 gpm in some cases. How do I know? I was in a class where this was demonstrated. A simulation of a standpipe with a presure reducer allowing only 45 psi to flow thru the hose. 100 feet of 1 3/4 inch hose to a dual force nozzle. At regular setting the nozzle flowed 13 gpm, in emergency setting that nozzle gained an amazing 1 gpm and flowed 14 gpm. We replaced the TFT with a 15/16 smooth bore and flowed 118 gpm thru the exact same hose line. Sure the TFT tip went about 70 feet and the smoothbore tip went about 40. But what puts out fire? reach or gpm's? I think we all know the answer.

    Plain and simple NO AUTOMATIC NOZZLE WORKS RIGHT IF THE MINIMUM NOZZLE PRESSURE ISN'T MET. A smoothbore or a single gallonage combination nozzle that is not an automatic will flow all the water that is pumped to it. Will the stream be pretty? Nope. But given the choice I woulod rather have an ugly stream with more water than a pretty one with virtually no water.

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    Plain and simple NO AUTOMATIC NOZZLE WORKS RIGHT IF THE MINIMUM NOZZLE PRESSURE ISN'T MET. A smoothbore or a single gallonage combination nozzle that is not an automatic will flow all the water that is pumped to it. Will the stream be pretty? Nope. But given the choice I woulod rather have an ugly stream with more water than a pretty one with virtually no water.[/QUOTE]

    Oh I agree 100%!!

    I am not a fan of the low pressure movement that I'm seeing. I think the easier you can make a situation on everybody the better. Like you said above go with a fixed gallonage and let'r rip! If you have a fixed gallonage running 200gpm@100psi you know what you're getting, or should know, every time.

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    I am not a fan of the low pressure movement that I'm seeing. I think the easier you can make a situation on everybody the better. Like you said above go with a fixed gallonage and let'r rip! If you have a fixed gallonage running 200gpm@100psi you know what you're getting, or should know, every time.
    I think first of all you are contradicting yourself here. Let me quote your first post here and explain why I think that.

    Take a look at the TFT Dual Force nozzle. At the tip is a switch that lets you run @ 100psi, or if you need to scale down the psi you can flip the switch to run at 55psi.

    And yes, I do sell TFT but I also sell Akron and Elkhart. So I'm not biased b/w those three, but the Dual Force is a heck of a nozzle.
    First of all let me correct your sales pitch here on the Dual Force nozzle. I used to sell fire equipment and yes the company I worked for sold TFT. I never pushed them or even mentioned them unless the customer wanted them so I can claim I kept my principles about not believing automatics are a good choice. The intent of the Dual Force "Emergency Low Pressure" setting was not to simply "Scale down the pressue", its was supposed to be used in an emergency situaution where more flow was required OR because of pump or friction loss issues you could dial it to low pressure and reduce the PSI needed to make the nozzle work. Hence the designation of emergency low pressure.

    Secondly, how can you advocate the low pressure operation of the dual force at 55 psi and claim it is a heck of a nozzle yet claim in your very next post you are not an advocate of the low pressure movement. All the switch on the dual force does is turn your TFT into a low pressure automatic. So which is it? Low pressure is only a good idea if it is from an automatic nozzle or you don't like low pressure period?

    My volly and career FD's use low pressure single gallonage nozzles. We have used them successfully for about a decade. Flowing 200 at 75 beats flowing 200 at 100 anyday of the week. Better yet is flowing 209 at 50 from a 1 inch smoothbore. Low pressure works and FD's prove it every day. Less confusing, less training, less maintenance (which by the way the lack of proper maintenance is the largest reason that TFT's don't function properly),
    less nozzle reaction for the same flow...seems like a no brainer to me.
    Last edited by FyredUp; 08-08-2008 at 03:47 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by FyredUp View Post
    I think first of all you are contradicting yourself here. Let me quote your first post here and explain why I think that.



    First of all let me correct your sales pitch here on the Dual Force nozzle. I used to sell fire equipment and yes the company I worked for sold TFT. I never pushed them or even mentioned them unless the customer wanted them so I can claim I kept my principles about not believing automatics are a good choice. The intent of the Dual Force "Emergency Low Pressure" setting was not to simply "Scale down the pressue", its was supposed to be used in an emergency situaution where more flow was required OR because of pump or friction loss issues you could dial it to low pressure and reduce the PSI needed to make the nozzle work. Hence the designation of emergency low pressure.

    Secondly, how can you advocate the low pressure operation of the dual force at 55 psi and claim it is a heck of a nozzle yet claim in your very next post you are not an advocate of the low pressure movement. All the switch on the dual force does is turn your TFT into a low pressure automatic. So which is it? Low pressure is only a good idea if it is from an automatic nozzle or you don't like low pressure period?

    My volly and career FD's use low pressure single gallonage nozzles. We have used them successfully for about a decade. Flowing 200 at 75 beats flowing 200 at 100 anyday of the week. Better yet is flowing 209 at 50 from a 1 inch smoothbore. Low pressure works and FD's prove it every day. Less confusing, less training, less maintenance (which by the way the lack of proper maintenance is the largest reason that TFT's don't function properly),
    less nozzle reaction for the same flow...seems like a no brainer to me.
    Well, first of all I'm not contradicting myself at all. Just because I stated that the Dual Force is a heck of a nozzle does not mean that I wouldn't use them. I stated that in my opinion, not the opinion of the chief to whom I'm selling, 100psi is the ideal pressure. It would be like me saying that my Dodge Ram 4x4 is my truck of choice, but Chevy makes a heck of truck also.

    If I talk to a chief who goes with low-pressure and he's going to be making a nozzle purchase down the road you can bet I will bring up the Dual-Force! If, however, I'm talking to a chief who can't stand low-pressure I would discuss other nozzles I carry. Since you were in sales you should know it's about providing what that particular client needs, not according to your own personal belief. So I appreciate the concern with my sales pitch, but I will offer TFT all day long which apparently you didn't according to your above post.

    The Dual-Force was designed as a dual purpose nozzle, interior/exterior approaches, not a nozzle with an "emergency" low-pressure setting. We just went over this 2 weeks in Valpo at the TFT plant.

    Yeah, there is upkeep on a TFT automatic nozzle. But you know what, even if something happens to that nozzle and you ship it in to TFT for repairs, that nozzle is in and out of their doors within 24 hours. No exceptions. That is exactly why I am a TFT believer. Customer service first and foremost. I've had clients send in nozzles from other companies that I carry and the nozzles took 4 months to come back. Never will that happen with TFT, never ever.

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    Elkhart came out and gave a hose/nozzle class for every one of our firefighters with new low-pressure fogs and smoothbores. We used to just have a pair of crosslays with SM30's on each. We now have new Key Combat 1 3/4" crosslays, one with the LP fog, the other with the smoothbore. Our skid loads still have our old Key hose with SM30's, but the skids don't get pulled that often. Between the Key Combat hose, which has EXTREMELY low friction loss, and the new nozzles, it's very easy to fight fire with the 1 3/4". I'm not sure if it was Key or not, but someone also came out and set up a friction loss chart for EVERY SINGLE pumping apparatus, individually (they all had to be tested), using the new hose. The Key Combat hose is very flexible, and nearly impossible to kink. It doubles back on itself with no effort, and could really make a difference in some interior attacks, just based on ease of maneuverability. Getting more water through it doesn't hurt, either.

    Now, 2 1/2's are still challenging, and it's really important that the driver not kill you with pressure. We had a fire not too long ago where the driver gave us so much on the 2.5" that even with one of the tips removed, you couldn't get a solid stream at ANY point on the bale. No matter how much you opened it up, you couldn't get more than an air-filled broken stream. And we had three men on the line getting pushed around, without opening it up all the way.

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    Quote Originally Posted by footrat View Post
    Elkhart came out and gave a hose/nozzle class for every one of our firefighters with new low-pressure fogs and smoothbores. We used to just have a pair of crosslays with SM30's on each. We now have new Key Combat 1 3/4" crosslays, one with the LP fog, the other with the smoothbore. Our skid loads still have our old Key hose with SM30's, but the skids don't get pulled that often. Between the Key Combat hose, which has EXTREMELY low friction loss, and the new nozzles, it's very easy to fight fire with the 1 3/4". I'm not sure if it was Key or not, but someone also came out and set up a friction loss chart for EVERY SINGLE pumping apparatus, individually (they all had to be tested), using the new hose. The Key Combat hose is very flexible, and nearly impossible to kink. It doubles back on itself with no effort, and could really make a difference in some interior attacks, just based on ease of maneuverability. Getting more water through it doesn't hurt, either.

    Now, 2 1/2's are still challenging, and it's really important that the driver not kill you with pressure. We had a fire not too long ago where the driver gave us so much on the 2.5" that even with one of the tips removed, you couldn't get a solid stream at ANY point on the bale. No matter how much you opened it up, you couldn't get more than an air-filled broken stream. And we had three men on the line getting pushed around, without opening it up all the way.
    footrat ditto on elkhart!!!!!! they wher the only co to give us the time of day when we wanted to purchase new nozzles in 1993. at that time the sales rep's name was mitch beaver. he brought a van loaded to the max with everythig from sbores to a portable monitor. back then my ff liked the auto 1-3/4 we got two. we have had NO truble with them. on our new pumper in 2006 we again pur elkhart. 2 1-3/4 and 2 2-1/2 75psi combo's. these have worked well for us and two other mut aid dept after using our hose lines in battle have purchased the same for there departments pumpers.. the 50psi just sounded to soft.

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    Akron has something called Zero Torque that would make easier with high pressure, rather than me explaining how it works, just go akronbrass.com click nozzles and then on zero torque to find out.

    Also, over here we use a "recoil reducer" when flowing a large nozzle (from a 3" hose) AWG calls them "Branchpipe holders" http://www.awg-fittings.com/Branchpi...197868_en.html and I do have experience with these and can say that it does help, but still, advancing with a flowing 3" hoseline around is like wrestling with an anaconda.

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    Quote Originally Posted by E40FDNYL35 View Post
    Vindicator
    What exactly did you like about them? Please share your experienece with us.

    We had thm for a while to demo and I was impressed with the high rate of flow and how easy they were to handle.

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