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    Default Bauer, Scott, or Mako SCBA compressor

    Looking for advice on purchasing one of these SCBA compressors with our AFG grant. Looking at 6000psi and a two position fill station. Any advice, good or bad problems and such would be great.

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    We bought a Mako compressor, 3 bottle fill station and 8 bottle cascade system back in 2003 with an AFG grant. It has been without problems and works very well for us.
    The compressor is station mounted with a 75 foot high pressure reel and the cascade & fill stn are on our rescue truck. They make a quality product for a good price.

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    Quote Originally Posted by islandfire03 View Post
    We bought a Mako compressor, 3 bottle fill station and 8 bottle cascade system back in 2003 with an AFG grant. It has been without problems and works very well for us.
    The compressor is station mounted with a 75 foot high pressure reel and the cascade & fill stn are on our rescue truck. They make a quality product for a good price.
    Ditto that... we love it.
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    We had a Bauer. Great unit that ran well for us most of the time. We added some upgrades to it over the years and started pushing it's capacity.

    We now have a Mako. Bigger unit that we not near capacity on.

    Both great machines. For us, the deal was made due to our local service rep. The Bauer rep was horrible. Double/Triple billing, work not completed, minimal response. Mako rep has been outstanding.

    Done deal.
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    We had a bauer in our old station and it wasnt bad and I never heard any problems with it, but with our new station we got a massive Mako set up and it is great.

    The little drawings they have on the front of the compressor are a bit confusing but we just wrote up a step by step direction and posted it next to it so if you are new and not familiar with it or havent filled bottles in a while you can figure it out.

    We have the cascade system right next to the fill system and the compressor on the second floor storage mezzanine right above the fill station and it is very quiet and we love it. I'll try to remember to snap a few pictures of our setup tomorrow.
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    We have a 2 bottle fill station and a 5 bottle cascade with a bauer compressor. Serves us very well for the amount of cylinders we actually fill.

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    Have had a Bauer operating for about 10 years. Some minor problems with moisture elimination from auto drain valving. We are into (last month) our third cycle of hydro test for the cascade bottles and have found a slight rust coating in the cascade. This started an investigation about class D air vs Class E air and the pressure dew point of air at 6,000 psi. My suggestion is to insist on class E air due to the moisture content of class D. A minus 65 deg. F atmospheric dew point translates to a pressure dew point of 44 deg. F at 6,000 psi. In other words if you put -65 F dew point air into a bottle on your aerial, fill it to 6,000 psi., and then take it outside at less than 44 degrees, some moisture will condense inside the cylinders on your aerial or in the cascade tanks on your air truck. The methods that you use for refilling your cascade are critical from the adsorption column function. The higher you can keep the pressure in the filter columns, the longer the residency time for the air and the better the contaminants will be removed from the breathing air. Here is an online calculator for comparing atmospheric dew points with pressure dew points. http://www.dew-point.com/calculate.html I believe that to eliminate any moisture problems you will need at least one column using 'Hopcolite" for chemically removing moisture.

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    You have any ref to Air class (D, E etc). Nothing in NFPA1989.

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    Had A Mako,never again, Have a big Bauer now and it's been flawless outside of a PLC issue we think was caused by a power surge. Support has been outstanding. This unit maintains a 12 bottle cascade so it pumps some air. VERY happy with Bauer. T.C.
    Last edited by Rescue101; 03-01-2010 at 09:07 AM.

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    I've worked with both Mako and Bauer and never had a problem with either. Both seem to be good machines. I've heard good and bad about the Scott, mostly good, though.

    I think you're looking at the right angle with the 6,000 psi system, as you get a lot more fills than with a 4,500 psi, especially if you're filling 4,500 psi bottles. You might also look at the ASME bottles as opposed to the DOT. Longer spans between hydrostatic testing, which can be worth it by the time you get to the bottles, get them loose, get them out, and get them to whoever tests them and then pay them for the service.

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    Default Air standards

    neiowa: Check these (from Bullard - Listed) then look at the URL

    Grade D Breathing Air Specifications
    The complete specifications are detailed in ANSI/Compressed Gas Association Commodity Specification for Air, G-7.1-1989, which include:
    Oxygen Content of 19.5-23.5%
    Hydrocarbon (condensed) content of 5 milligrams per cubic meter of air or less
    Carbon monoxide (CO) content of 10 ppm or less
    Carbon dioxide content of 1,000 ppm or less; and
    Lack of noticeable odor
    Reference: 29CFR1910.134(i)(1)(ii)

    In Canada the requirements include:
    Oxygen Content of 20-22%
    Hydrocarbon (condensed) content of 1 milligram per cubic meter of air or less
    Carbon monoxide (CO) content of 5 ppm or less
    Carbon dioxide content of 500 ppm or less; and
    Lack of noticeable odor


    http://www.airchecklab.com/assets/docs/08AirSpecs.pdf

    I think this will help with the discussion.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Catch22 View Post
    I've worked with both Mako and Bauer and never had a problem with either. Both seem to be good machines. I've heard good and bad about the Scott, mostly good, though.

    I think you're looking at the right angle with the 6,000 psi system, as you get a lot more fills than with a 4,500 psi, especially if you're filling 4,500 psi bottles. You might also look at the ASME bottles as opposed to the DOT. Longer spans between hydrostatic testing, which can be worth it by the time you get to the bottles, get them loose, get them out, and get them to whoever tests them and then pay them for the service.
    At minimum ensure you're getting DOT/UN cascades. A newer standard with a 10yr hydro. Price approx. same as a DOT and eliminates 1/2 of your hydrotests.

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    Quote Originally Posted by KuhShise View Post
    neiowa: Check these (from Bullard - Listed) then look at the URL

    Grade D Breathing Air Specifications....

    http://www.airchecklab.com/assets/docs/08AirSpecs.pdf

    I think this will help with the discussion.
    Thanks for info.

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    We have two Mako units, one stationary that is probably 20 years old, and one mobile trailer that is about 3 years old. Both are great units and dont gove any trouble that I am aware of.
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    Default Scott

    We bought our Scott RevolveAir 6000 psi compressor system about 3 years ago with our AFG grant. We absolutely love it. With never owning a compressor we did quite a few site visits to see all makes and models. With the ease of operation and low maintenance so far I guess I would consider this model. We are not all that far from you Houston. Located in Glenville.

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    Any one have expierence with Max-air compressors and cascade systems? Near my fire deptment also got a AFG grant for a air system and the local fire equipment vender sells Max-air and is recomending it. But we have very alittle experience with this brand?

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    Default cost

    what does a high pressure system with a 2 bottle fill capacity cost these days. just a ballpark idea.

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    Quote Originally Posted by michtfd View Post
    what does a high pressure system with a 2 bottle fill capacity cost these days. just a ballpark idea.
    Around $32k. We are looking for a mobile (ie trailer mounted) compressor right now, and it will be around $60k

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    If you requested and received the $ allowable under FG then spend the $ and buy the Bauer. Much higher quality unit.

    The Scott block was designed before WWII. Antique in pretty clothes.

    The entire Mako thing is quicksand at the moment. Compair/Mako was recently purchased Gardner Denver and what block Mako will access to is up in the air (so to speak) A modern block with pressure lube/roller bearings or a POS with splash lube/babbit. If you can wait until that gets sorted out then maybe will be a worthwile option.

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    Quote Originally Posted by volfireman034 View Post
    Any one have expierence with Max-air compressors and cascade systems? Near my fire deptment also got a AFG grant for a air system and the local fire equipment vender sells Max-air and is recomending it. But we have very alittle experience with this brand?
    Max-Air is a re-packager of the ColtriSub compressors out of Italy. Depending on which model you are looking at, they can be great machines and probably the bast bang for the buck in 5000 PSI systems. The new larger 6000 psi machines are excellent as well. Go with the 14 CFM model or larger and you should get years of reliable service.

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    thank you for your help

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