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  1. #1
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    Default Anyone have experience with CAFS skids?

    I've got a pending award for a CAFS skid and I thought I'd reach out to my grant-writing brethren about information from anyone that's had past experience they'd be willing to share.

    I don't have any specs written or in mind, as I'm not the most educated when it comes to CAFS. I've emailed a couple of you already, but it never hurts to get information from anyone that's dealt with CAFS.


  2. #2
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    It's just a bigs boys version of a bubble maker.
    Attached Images Attached Images  

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by onebugle View Post
    It's just a bigs boys version of a bubble maker.
    I think I might be able to afford that unit! I might even retrofit all our other apparatus while I'm at it!

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    What are you looking to put it on? How much you got for funding?

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    Quote Originally Posted by MoneyMan29 View Post
    What are you looking to put it on? How much you got for funding?
    Gonna go in a 5/4-ton pick-up (FEPP) for now, though the board's looking at moving it into another truck in the future. Looking at about $40K on funding.

    Probably about a 200 gallon tank, but when it comes to matching the pump/CAFS I'm clueless. I had in my head originally 60 cfm and 200-250 gpm pump, but I may be high on both of those as I look around the websites (Hale, Waterous, etc) and what they have listed as standard brush units.

    The pump/CAFS match-up is my biggest issue, at least for now. I'm sure I'll come up with other questions as information starts to roll in. Things like foam capacity in the tank would be another issue. I know I've seen skids with 5-10 gallon foam capacity, but what works for others.

    The primary thing we'll use this on is either grass/crop fires and fires in the hardwood forests we have around here. Probably some exposure protection, along with it. It shouldn't do any primary attack on vehicles/fires, but if I've got enough money I'd like to set it up just in case. We're building a second station and may end up with a quick-attack there spray some water until reinforcements arrive or until we get a pumper in that station.

  6. #6
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    Catch, check out CET fire pumps, my department was awarded a cafs unit on the 2008 grants. The rep is Chris Efta and he was planning to move to Columbia MO this past fall, do not know for sure if he did. However he can bring down a demo unit for you to try out, he did for us. Ours is a 60 cfm unit with a 175 pump, 350 gallons of water, 10 gallons of class a and 20 gallons of class b on a F 550 .
    Last edited by 72firedog; 02-05-2010 at 06:56 PM.
    God made firefighters so cops can have a hero

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by 72firedog View Post
    Catch, check out CET fire pumps, my department was awarded a cafs unit on the 2008 grants. The rep is Chris Efta and I he was planning to move to Columbia MO this past fall, do not know for sure if he did. However he can bring down a demo unit for you to try out, he did for us. Ours is a 60 cfm unit with a 175 pump, 350 gallons of water, 10 gallons of class a and 20 gallons of class b on a F 550 .
    Mind if I ask you what it cost?

    I haven't ruled out CET by any means, just didn't list them. We've got a mix of small pumps; Hale, Darley, CET. I think Waterous is the only small pump we don't have yet. Part of what we go with may be what the builders bid and the total package. I don't intend to specifiy a specific pump, or if I do include "or comparable", as it keeps some options open. As far as I'm concerned on the pumps, they're all pretty good units. The CAFS units I'll have to rely on the word of others for their reliability experience.

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    We got an award last year for a quick attack unit. It had a slide in skid unit cafs system. It was 80cfm, 325 gpm pump, 300 gallon water and 20 gallon foam. CET pumps was the pump builder and Wynn Fire Apparatus was the truck builder.

    Do your research on your pumps. We were looking at a midship pump with PTO. I recommend on the smaller trucks NOT to do PTO. I hear and have researched that the transmission will not hold the pump and will leak by and ruin the transmission. Only a seal seperates the pump water from the transmission fluid. Seals fail!!!!
    Last edited by MoneyMan29; 02-05-2010 at 07:01 PM.

  9. #9
    Forum Member Cmathis's Avatar
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    I would look hard at Darley. When we purchased our CAFS unit a couple years ago it was clear that they are the industry leader when it comes to CAFS. We had a hard time getting info out of other vendors on CAFS. May not be the case now, but was then!

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    Darley is one of the top ones. When we asked about the pumps all the older manufacturers live and die by Darley. Except the PTO ones cause of the seal. Just making sure you are lookin at the overall picture.

    But your doing a skid unit. It wont be PTO driven. Do I'd say CET and Darley are your best options.

  11. #11
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    Talking

    Catch: We purchased a new brush truck last year. We ended up with a 2009 F-550 2 door diesel chassis. Auto transmission , winter package, traction control, heated electric mirrors.
    The fire body is a 9 foot flatbed with side compartments and a 300 gallon water tank, 15 gal
    "A" foam, diesel powered skid unit manufactured by CET in Quebec. The cafs system uses a rotary screw 80 cfm compressor with a 175 gpm water pump.

    We went out to bid and received two quotes, One from a local big name dealer who offered a truck made in florida without the winter package and traction control & heated mirrors and a 25 hp 35 cfm CET skid unit. They were the high bidder.
    The other was from CET themselves. They built us a truck that was exact to our specs with many nice features in the all aluminum flatbed, such as between the rails suction hose storage compartment , in the bed side rail hose storage compartments with one a preconnect 200' 1 3/4 CAFS line. Long tool racks on top both sides, cross mounted stokes litter, 100 foot 1 inch redline CAFS reel . portable 9k lb. winch with receiver mounts front & rear, All LED emergency lighting.
    Total cost delivered was 124k
    There were a few minor problems at first , but they came down & took it back to the factory to fix it, We're only an 8 hour drive. They do have dealers across the country.
    Would we buy from them again?? YES

    Here is a link to the CET CAFS skid unit we got.
    [url ]http://www.fire-pump.com/en/cafs/available_models.asp?id=46
    Last edited by islandfire03; 02-05-2010 at 08:53 PM. Reason: fixed link

  12. #12
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    I really wish I had put in for an entire bed to throw on this chassis. When I got the idea, I had just seen one of Poly-Bilt's badger bodies and was kicking it around, but I didn't know about going through the issues of putting a dual axle on the truck and making it a dually (it's single rear at the moment). After I got to talking about it to board members, they brought up getting a wider flatbed and putting a dually axle underneath it. Go figure!

    I'd still kick it around, but I don't know that $40K would do all of it. I may do some feeling out to see, but I'm not going to hold my breath. Plus, I'm not sure if I'd have fits going through AFG to approve it as an upgrade.

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    Unhappy I had a bad experience on my skid unit with CET

    Quote Originally Posted by islandfire03 View Post
    Catch: We purchased a new brush truck last year. We ended up with a 2009 F-550 2 door diesel chassis. Auto transmission , winter package, traction control, heated electric mirrors.
    The fire body is a 9 foot flatbed with side compartments and a 300 gallon water tank, 15 gal
    "A" foam, diesel powered skid unit manufactured by CET in Quebec. The cafs system uses a rotary screw 80 cfm compressor with a 175 gpm water pump.

    We went out to bid and received two quotes, One from a local big name dealer who offered a truck made in florida without the winter package and traction control & heated mirrors and a 25 hp 35 cfm CET skid unit. They were the high bidder.
    The other was from CET themselves. They built us a truck that was exact to our specs with many nice features in the all aluminum flatbed, such as between the rails suction hose storage compartment , in the bed side rail hose storage compartments with one a preconnect 200' 1 3/4 CAFS line. Long tool racks on top both sides, cross mounted stokes litter, 100 foot 1 inch redline CAFS reel . portable 9k lb. winch with receiver mounts front & rear, All LED emergency lighting.
    Total cost delivered was 124k
    There were a few minor problems at first , but they came down & took it back to the factory to fix it, We're only an 8 hour drive. They do have dealers across the country.
    Would we buy from them again?? YES

    Here is a link to the CET CAFS skid unit we got.
    [url ]http://www.fire-pump.com/en/cafs/available_models.asp?id=46
    We bought a CET skid unit last year with our AFG with Class A foam. It is a real beauty and now works great. Initially, the foam pro system did not work at delivery. I ended up fixing it myself as the ground was attached directly to paint. They argued that it was fully tested prior to shipment. I guess the red paint got under the ground lug somehow during shipment? It also took 6 month's to get my 200' of forestry hose and a Crestar nozzle. I had to report them to the better Business Bureau of Quebec to get these items. Here in NY, I got zero service after the sale, regional CET rep's name was Jason Messerschmidt. I am also not a big fan of insulation displacement connectors. The little blue connectors that bite through the wire. The majority of the electrical connections were made with these. They do not last with wet and salty roads. The mechanical work is world class. The electrical work was poor. I would not buy from them again without a final inspection at the factory or a local dealer that I could hold their feet to the fire.

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    Wow, seems this is a common occurance. We initially had an issue with the CET pump we had. But they came down and fixed it. They came down twice to do training. They paid for any fixes. They took care of everything.

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    I don't know CAFS and i don't know pumps--but i do hear a lot of good and bad about a lot of both. That said...i've never heard anybody with a Darley CAFS system that didn't speak pretty highly of both the equipment and training, especially those that are new to CAFS.

    That makes a statement to me.

    earl

  16. #16
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    Default Odin Foam Systems

    We currently have CAFS engine on order from W.S. Darley which will have their AutoCAFS system. The folks at Darley have been great work with and are extremely informative when it comes to CAFS systems. I am currently developing specs for a Brush/Attack unit and Odin Foam which is a division of Darley makes some really nice units that I would recommend you take a look at.
    http://www.odinfoam.com/

  17. #17
    MembersZone Subscriber LVFD301's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fighting41NY View Post
    I am also not a big fan of insulation displacement connectors. The little blue connectors that bite through the wire. The majority of the electrical connections were made with these. They do not last with wet and salty roads. The mechanical work is world class. The electrical work was poor. I would not buy from them again without a final inspection at the factory or a local dealer that I could hold their feet to the fire.
    Are you talking about these?

    http://www.google.com/products/catal...057&sa=title#p

    I have fired people, on the spot, for using these. They are all told NEVER, but NEVER use them. Sometimes, they just seem too easy, and they are included with the piece of equipment so they use them. Only until I catch them, and too often it is when the install is brought back because that connector failed.

    I have not had the problem in a long time - once they see one or two guys fired, they tend to learn.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Catch22 View Post
    I really wish I had put in for an entire bed to throw on this chassis. When I got the idea, I had just seen one of Poly-Bilt's badger bodies and was kicking it around, but I didn't know about going through the issues of putting a dual axle on the truck and making it a dually (it's single rear at the moment). After I got to talking about it to board members, they brought up getting a wider flatbed and putting a dually axle underneath it. Go figure!

    I'd still kick it around, but I don't know that $40K would do all of it. I may do some feeling out to see, but I'm not going to hold my breath. Plus, I'm not sure if I'd have fits going through AFG to approve it as an upgrade.

    Could you not make it mobile and place on a trailer until you get you chassis issue figured out ?

    You do know that if Missouri is involved in the DOD program you will get the title after a year from the fed's ? If you are, start looking for the newer chassis.
    Why they just don't include the FEPP equipment in service now and let the dept's have what setup's they have now I'll never figure out. Go thru all the trouble of fixing them and maintain them and get nothing in the end.

    Hell even if gov would give 1st crack at buying would be a nice option instead of going to an auction and getting pennies on the dollar.

  19. #19
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    Check out ROWE Industries, the easiest, simplest CAFS with a lifetime warranty. Great system!
    http://www.cafssystems.com/

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    Quote Originally Posted by Greenacres2 View Post
    I don't know CAFS and i don't know pumps--but i do hear a lot of good and bad about a lot of both. That said...i've never heard anybody with a Darley CAFS system that didn't speak pretty highly of both the equipment and training, especially those that are new to CAFS.

    That makes a statement to me.

    earl
    I've heard a lot of good things about the Odin/Darley units as well. Waterous seems to have a good rep from what I'm hearing, too.

    I hate having a lot of options, makes deciding a pain in the tail.

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