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  1. #1
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    Default Is anyone else having issues with CAFS engines?

    I was just wondering if anyone else is having problems with them? We are using E-One Typhoons with a CAFSPro system? We have 3 of them with lots of issues.


  2. #2
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    Not particularily

    Most problems are from operators that can't run the system. Actualy easier that water as the hydraulics are not a factor. But some guys are just slow.

    If equipment issue contact E-One CAFS guys. A update to Elkhart ICS controller would be $ well spent if possible. VERY EASY to use.

  3. #3
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    Hi JMac73,

    My department is running 2 CAFS units with very few mechanical issues. They are both E-Ones. One is a 1998 Cyclone II with a Pneumax CAFSystem (now owed by Waterous) and the other is a 2008 Cyclone II with a Waterous Eclipse. The 1998 CAFSystem has been out of service a total of maybe 5 days in the past 11 years. Not to bad. Operationally both of our systems are simple and easy to use. We do use CAF on every fire we respond to.

    I agree with firefo10 that the Elkhart ICS valves are the way to go with CAF, however I do not think they will integrate with your system as I believe your system is a Hale CAF system. You may want to check with hale and/or Elkhart.

    Hope this helps,

    Capt Lou
    "GotFoam?"

  4. #4
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    Default No problems!!!

    Our dept has purchased 3 EOnes Cyclone II with the CAFSPro systems in the last year & have no major problems with them. 2 have been in service for a year now & the other one will go inservice soon after proper training for the company that is going to receive the engine. We have had small issues, but no more than what is common with new vehicles. All the issues have been taken care of by EOne. I teach the CAFS ops for our dept & have taught other area depts CAFS tactics & ops.I have used most of the major systems that are on the market & In my opinon the HALE CAFSPro is by far the simplist system out on the market, (no of the area depts have a Hale system).

  5. #5
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    Default

    We too have three CAFS engines. We have had ALOT of compressor problems. Dont really know why. My money is on operator error. Not sure if it matters but we arein Florida. Wonder if the weather or hummidity could be a factor as well. Rumors are that we will trade them in early (oldest one is about 3 yrs old) so they can still get some $$ out of them. Also beem rumored that they will disconnect the compressor and just run them as a regular engine.

  6. #6
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    We have two CAFS engines and have had many problems with them as well. Most of the problems center around the compressor (hercules system). At least for us, it is not just operator error. The thing just acts possessed. Sometimes when performing a normal rig check and putting the pump in gear and engaging CAFS, the compressor makes an awful, LOUD noise. Most of the time, I will return to idle, perform the same sequence again and it works just fine.

  7. #7
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    Talking

    Not all CAFS system are built to the same standards.

    My theory would be that you bought a system that wasn't fully tested and had the bugs worked out before they rushed it to the market as a new innovation.

    Our Eclipse system is 9 years old and has been flawless except for one sensor that went bad 2 months after delivery due to a bad electrical terminal that was over crimped at the time of manufacture.

  8. #8
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    "We have two CAFS engines and have had many problems with them as well. Most of the problems center around the compressor (hercules system). At least for us, it is not just operator error. The thing just acts possessed. Sometimes when performing a normal rig check and putting the pump in gear and engaging CAFS, the compressor makes an awful, LOUD noise. Most of the time, I will return to idle, perform the same sequence again and it works just fine"

    Are you engaging the compressor at increased RPMS? It should be engaged at or near idle.

  9. #9
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    Are you engaging the compressor at increased RPMS? It should be engaged at or near idle.


    Our system engages automatically. When the truck goes into pump the compressor starts up too.

  10. #10
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    Our 2002 Cyclone has been flawless as well...Training and maintenance are key....

  11. #11
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    If you are having that many issues What is your builder doing about them? We are running 2 CAF's pumpers and on our first one we had problem after problem because the OEM could not follow the foam systems installation instructions, The pump manufacture went to bat and once the OEM corrected there mess the unit has been nearly trouble free.
    The newer unit by a different OEM has been completely trouble free.
    In our Area All the Problems with CAF's has either been faulty install by the truck builder, lack of operator training or no maintenance being done,"what do you mean we are supposed to change the filters on our 3 year old truck?"

  12. #12
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    I was on the phone yesterday with Rich from Waterous Arizona with a service question. While we were talking he couldn't stress enough his #1 maintenance item. "Run it, run it, run it." Most especially, run the compressor at least once a week for about 15 minutes or more, enough to get the oil up to operating temperature. You don't have to discharge foam to do that part of it, but you do, of course, have to circulate water so that you have a flow of water through the oil cooler.
    Last edited by chiefengineer11; 01-28-2010 at 08:36 PM.

  13. #13
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    Chief 11
    are they having you work the unload switch we were doing run ups and flowing air until we worked up to temp but we had the low end air valve stick so they had us make sure during weekly run ups that we work load unload several times to keep the valve from sticking.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by captaincvfd View Post
    Chief 11
    are they having you work the unload switch we were doing run ups and flowing air until we worked up to temp but we had the low end air valve stick so they had us make sure during weekly run ups that we work load unload several times to keep the valve from sticking.
    That wasn't mentioned, Cap, but it certainly seems logical. Everything that moves ought to be moved to keep it from not moving when you want it to. I'm going to add it to my procedure. Be good to hear from Capt. Lou, Gregg Geske and/or JohnGage on the subject.

  15. #15
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    The low end air valve you are referring to is usually called a minimum pressure valve and takes roughly 50 PSI air pressure to open. You can exercise it by using the unload valve, opening and closing the air valve, or a nozzle mounted on a discharge. Just like everything thing else on the engine lack of use or exercise is one of the biggest enemies.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by chiefengineer11 View Post
    I was on the phone yesterday with Rich from Waterous Arizona with a service question. While we were talking he couldn't stress enough his #1 maintenance item. "Run it, run it, run it." Most especially, run the compressor at least once a week for about 15 minutes or more, enough to get the oil up to operating temperature. You don't have to discharge foam to do that part of it, but you do, of course, have to circulate water so that you have a flow of water through the oil cooler.

    Okay, so our compressor problems are fixed (for now). We switched to a lower viscosity oil in the compressor and things are working great. No more crazy loud noise coming out of it (which we were supposed to ignore). Also, we'll try running the system for longer to reach operating temps.

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