1. #1
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    Default pump spec to low for tanker?

    I know this is a small tanker by some standards. 1500 gal capicity tank with a 480 gpm @ 150PSI pump.

    For a rual area, 1 truck town deal. May or may not have hydrants. Do you feel the pump is adaquate? Now I know bigger the better, keep $$ in mind.

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    GPM1230:

    Cash outlay should not be the only consideration when making an equipment purchase. Simply from the standpoint of fighting fire, you can use the Iowa formula as a starting point. Building size in cu ft divided by 100 is a good estimator for required water application. For each exposure add ½ the fire building requirement.
    Assume a 40 by 60 – 1 story with conventional roof (15 ft avg height) we get a fire flow requirement of 360 gpm. Then add in one exposure and the required flow escalates to 540 gpm. Already your pump is inadequate for the required flow.
    Secondly, the ISO grading will not recognize pumps with less than 500 gpm capacity. If you do not have a recognized fire pumper, you will most likely be rated at a 10 or unprotected. A one classification reduction results in about a 5% reduction in insurance rates for your community. The difference in cost going from a 480 gpm pump to a rated at 500 or 750 gpm might return many times the cost to your citizens in lowered insurance rates.
    These forums are full of suggestions to “examine your community for problems” and then plan accordingly. You might decide to put a “Red X” on the feed mill, but decide that the local convenience store needs to be protected to avoid having to drive 20 miles should it be destroyed.
    What hose arrangement will you employ on the rig? If you commit a 2 ½” line for attack, you should have a back-up of equal size. Your 480 gpm pump will be inadequate to supply two 2 ½ inch lines at a fire.
    Kuh

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    On the other side, what is your staffing?

    Do you have the manpower to flow (2) 2 1/2" attack lines? Given a tanker operation, that would only be a 3 minute operating time. Size of the pump does need to be tied to resources if the budget is tight. While a larger pump may be nice, if you simply don't have the manpower available to operate multiple large-flow lines, the money you have spent, that possibly may be needed elsewhere, is a waste.

    If you have the staffing to flow (2) meduim sized lines, then the pump would be adequate.

    Previos poster does make a good point however, as a pump must flow a minimum of 500gpm to be rated as a pumper. Otherwise, it will simply be classified as a transfer pump and not a fire pump. One option may be to go with a 750 gpm pump as that will give you the capibility for slightly larger flows at a relativly small increase in cost. But at least go 500 gpm.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post

    While a larger pump may be nice, if you simply don't have the manpower available to operate multiple large-flow lines, the money you have spent, that possibly may be needed elsewhere, is a waste.

    If you have the staffing to flow (2) meduim sized lines, then the pump would be adequate.

    Manpower should have NOTHING to do with pump size. A Chauffeur and two firefighters can easily put a ground-stand monitor and a 2 1/2 inch line in service with no issues. You can easily hit 750 GPM with those three people.

    Also, think about when the piece is committed as the initial attack piece feeding off a portable tank. Do you really want to limit yourself to <500 GPM ? <750 GPM? <1000 GPM?

    Invest the money in a bigger pump. Whether it comes down to filling the tank yourself at draft, or filling other tankers, or needing the extra capacity of the pump while you are the initial attack piece... You'll appreciate the capacity.

    1500 Gallons / 480 = 3.125 minutes if you sustain 480 GPM the whole time while filling your tank from draft. You'll be lucky if you average around 300 GPM while filling your tank. That's 5 minutes time. Add time for making connections, pulling prime, etc, and you're looking at the range of 8-10 minutes.

    1500 Gallons / 750 = 2 minutes if you sustain the 750 GPM the whole time. You'll probably be able to average around 500. That's 3 minutes time to fill the tank. With making and breaking fittings, pulling prime, etc, you're looking at probably 7-8 minutes.

    Granted, the numbers above are extremely rough estimates. Assuming around a 60% flow rate averaged from time elapsed from start of draft to tank being full based on previous experience in a hydrant-less community. Assuming 3-5 minutes to make connections, pull prime, and break the connections, you'll have a rough ball park.

    Also, in 20 years time, or whatever the life of the unit will be, is a 480 GPM pump going to meet your needs 2, 5, 10, 15 years down the road? Spend the initial $$$ now, instead of wasting your money later and having to have the piece modified for a bigger pump. An option you have is buying a used fire pump. Crashed apparatus, dead-lined apparatus, whatever. Look and see what you can find. A used 1500 GPM pump will be better then a 480 GPM transfer pump...
    Quote Originally Posted by ThNozzleMan
    Why? Because we are firemen. We are decent human beings. We would be compelled by the overwhelming impulse to save an innocent child from a tragic, painful death because in the end, we are MEN.

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    Honorary Disclaimer: While I am a manufacturer representative, I am not here to sell my product. Any advice or knowledge shared is for informational purposes only. I do not use Firehouse.Com for promotional purposes.

  5. #5
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    Forget about current staffing. Staffing in a volunteer department fluctuates, pump capacity does not.

    Spec what you need, and if you have the staff to maximize it then use it to it's full potential.

    If you base your decisions on current staffing then you are ignoring the future.
    We do not rise to the occasion. We fall back to our level of training.

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    My guess is that you're looking at a tanker from one of the companies in the south that uses gorman-rupp pto transfer pumps.

    not iso or nfpa compliant i believe. maybe others can chime in further.

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    Thanks for the response thus far. I was thinking along the same way, and could not see the reasoning for the small pump. I'm going to make the case for a larger one.

    FYI, This will be Hale or Waterous when it comes in. Working on a spec here.

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    I think you need to identify the purpose of the unit you are looking to buy.
    Is it a structural pumper with a large tank and a hose bed that can carry a decent hose load, pumper ground ladders and basic pumper equipment, then a 1,000 - 1,250 pump should be on board.
    If it is primarily a water shuttle, fight a few grass fires type of unit, then a 500 gpm pump is fine.

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    Default Back-up

    Even if it is primarily a tanker, a larger pump means it can be used if an engine is out of service or a second call. We put a 1,250gpm on our last tanker purchaesd. It was worth the extra $$$$.

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    When you're writing the specs for the tanker, keep in mind that most tankers (and engines for that matter) don't have the plumbing sized to allow you flow the pump capacity from the tank. With some departments, this isn't an issue, and with others it is. Research the size plumbing you'll be using!
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    Question Pump Size

    It's your money. Spend as big as you can afford. But a 500 gpm pump will run a couple of 1-3/4" lines or a couple of 2-1/2" lines or a 500 gpm deck gun. How many times do you do much more than that with a 1,250 gpm pump. Unless you are going to occasionally draft from a pond or have a tanker acting as a relay pumper, I think it's overkill. Plus the larger pump will probably cost you some longer wheelbase. IMHO

  12. #12
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    Default Tanker Pump

    My department is a very large metro department (60 stations), but we also operate 14 tankers. They have 750 GPM pumps for the following reasons:

    They could handle a fire attack if first on scene
    The increase in pump size from the old 500 GPM was not cost prohibitive
    We can use them in relay sitations freeing up pumpers

    With a 4" tank to pump pipe and valve, they actually can pump close to 1000 GPM from the tank. They are still tankers but the added features makes them more versatile. They also have preconnects and a deck gun.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 16Scott View Post

    With a 4" tank to pump pipe and valve, they actually can pump close to 1000 GPM from the tank. They are still tankers but the added features makes them more versatile. They also have preconnects and a deck gun.
    Just curious - What size main inlet do your pumps have? 4/5/6 inch?

    Can you operate dual suctions?

    What model pump, and what have you seen them perform at draft as being capable of doing?
    Quote Originally Posted by ThNozzleMan
    Why? Because we are firemen. We are decent human beings. We would be compelled by the overwhelming impulse to save an innocent child from a tragic, painful death because in the end, we are MEN.

    I A C O J
    FTM-PTB


    Honorary Disclaimer: While I am a manufacturer representative, I am not here to sell my product. Any advice or knowledge shared is for informational purposes only. I do not use Firehouse.Com for promotional purposes.

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    Pump is woefully inadequate if this is a one truck town. 1000 gpm allows you to rate this vehicle as an engine wihich is better for insuarance ratings than your tanker with a portable pump.

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    What about equipment needed for ISO. without it its a loss!

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    Back in 2003 we took delievery of a 2000 gallon pumper/tender (tanker). When we spec'd it we decided that it needed to be capable of filling multiple roles, such as primary attack of fires, filling itself and others, relay pumping, and being able to fill brush units. So we chose to put a Hale QPak 1000 GPM Single Stage pump midship, the QPak fits into an area as small as 24" depending on plumbing configurations. We have been very happy with this pump and its capabilities.

    If you would like to look at the truck and some of its features go to this link.
    http://www.alexisfire.com/Literature...Benona1827.PDF

    Good Luck

    R.Schultz Jr.
    SBFD

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    Quote Originally Posted by westofd1 View Post
    What about equipment needed for ISO. without it its a loss!
    Equipment can always be added piecemeal. It is really hard to add a fully rated firepump after the fact.

    Having a larger pump will never be a loss. It will always offer more options than a tailboard or compartment mounted portable pump.

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    You say it is a 1 truck town? does that mean this will be the only truck in the town? If so then I would say no, 480gpm is not enough. Will it be used as an engine or just mainly a tanker? Do you want it as a dual purpose truck? What kind of gear are you going to carry on it?

    We spec all of our tankers with 1050gpm or bigger and make sure that the piping is sufficiant to handle the water flow. But we also outfit our tankers with enough gear to work as an engine if need be.

    I would say myself at least 750gpm unless all you are going to do is use it as a tanker and shuttle water. In which case why even put a pump on it? Throw a portable pump on it and gain the extra water capacity.

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