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  1. #1
    MembersZone Subscriber npfd801's Avatar
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    Default Looking for input on these brands...

    Yes, I know this has been covered in other posts. And yes, I've been looking for myself and searching these forums and others.

    I'm looking for any input on Holmatro, TNT, Genesis and Hurst (high pressure) tools, pumps, etc. We are conducting a very thorough testing process to see what we like best, but it is always nice to see what other people have found, liked/disliked, etc.

    Had Holmatro and TNT in already, had each of their demo tools at least a week to play with extensively, and will also look at the other two. Thanks in advance for any and all input.
    "Share your knowledge - it's a way to achieve immortality." - Stolen from Chase Sargent's Buddy to Boss program


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    We use Genesis with great success at work and Hurst with great success at volly department. What particulars would you like to know?

  3. #3
    MembersZone Subscriber npfd801's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spencer534 View Post
    We use Genesis with great success at work and Hurst with great success at volly department. What particulars would you like to know?
    Likes, dislikes, issues that have come up, problems. Anything you want to share.
    "Share your knowledge - it's a way to achieve immortality." - Stolen from Chase Sargent's Buddy to Boss program

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    Genesis:
    - nice and lightweight
    - capable of cutting most anything (had subaru with boron steel in A & B posts a couple of month ago and it went right through them in one cut)
    - uses mineral oil to cut cost
    - good ergonomics with ability to move forward grip to any position
    - has new single line coupling available to couple hoses & tools while power unit is sending power
    - simo power unit has ability to put more "power" to one hose when then other is not in use
    - if used moderately, needs annual maintenance by Genesis trained people
    - we use quite often and have been pleased especially with the service. Usually when we call they have someone there in 24 hours
    - we use o-cutters & spreaders on squads and combi-tools on engines
    - combi-tool is ok, but (as with most) jaws are not the most effective at cutting and you usually have to change tactics when using this compared to o-cutter

    Hurst:
    - heavier than most tools
    - combi-tool has longer arms and is more effective at cutting
    - expensive
    - uses proprietary oil which is about 10 times as much as mineral oil
    - rarely have any issues where Hurst qualified maintenance is needed, but is used half as much as the Genesis
    - open/close button is very ergonomic, but is in open and is often pushed against something when working it

    TNT:
    - been to three HOT classes on extrication in the last 10 years at Firehouse Expo and all the different manufacturers were represented. TNT outperformed all of them at all of those classes

    In general, I think a big issue to consider is what service you will get from your local rep. Most of the big name manufacturers adhere to new NFPA standards and there will probably be only small differences in the tools abilities. If your run volume is high, service will be a big difference, especially if your own people can be trained to fix them.

    Good luck

  5. #5
    Forum Member RS1606's Avatar
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    Have you ever heard of Resq-Tech? I belive that is how it is spelled.
    Firefighters need not fear fire, but give it all their respect.

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    MembersZone Subscriber npfd801's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RS1606 View Post
    Have you ever heard of Resq-Tech? I belive that is how it is spelled.
    Yup. They were not included after some folks had cut with them and didn't like specific aspects. Same with the Amkus.
    "Share your knowledge - it's a way to achieve immortality." - Stolen from Chase Sargent's Buddy to Boss program

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    MembersZone Subscriber ffmedcbk1's Avatar
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    i see alot of things happening with the cutting force and it seems it will continue to be a big deal with people purchasing units. it is extremely important due to exotic metals and folding of the sheet metal in the posts that support the roof.

    but more importantly the service must be #1 in the choices, but close second is your pump performance. ensure you get a good pump. for us we require the rated flow capacity at 130 feet. that cut the feet out of alot of the competition and made some rise to the top. tnt is tops for me due to those two things. genesis can't touch the pump performance and rescq-tec just keep saying "yeah, it'll work" .... that was all good until our funding got yanked away from us (likely to upgrade baseball diamonds or something).
    Originally Posted by madden01
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    Quote Originally Posted by npfd801 View Post
    Yup. They were not included after some folks had cut with them and didn't like specific aspects. Same with the Amkus.
    Sorry to hear about AMKUS. If you had an Ultimate System Demo maybe you may rethink them? Don't be fooled about stories about 500ft hydraulic lines with no loss of speed or power with electric pumps from certain manufacturers.

    Lines 300ft long with no loss of speed or power are no problem. We used Custom Machine Works reels with 200ft of Parker bonder flex hose and it way faster than are old electric pump with 100ft reels. We also turn the reels on and off at the scene with wireless remotes.

    Good luck with whoever you choose.

  9. #9
    MembersZone Subscriber npfd801's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LittleJoe7197 View Post
    Sorry to hear about AMKUS. If you had an Ultimate System Demo maybe you may rethink them? Don't be fooled about stories about 500ft hydraulic lines with no loss of speed or power with electric pumps from certain manufacturers.

    Lines 300ft long with no loss of speed or power are no problem. We used Custom Machine Works reels with 200ft of Parker bonder flex hose and it way faster than are old electric pump with 100ft reels. We also turn the reels on and off at the scene with wireless remotes.

    Good luck with whoever you choose.
    The Amkus ultimate is cool, however we're not doing anything near that elaborate. We have some neighbors that have the system you mention, and it's quite impressive.
    "Share your knowledge - it's a way to achieve immortality." - Stolen from Chase Sargent's Buddy to Boss program

  10. #10
    Forum Member RS1606's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by npfd801 View Post
    Yup. They were not included after some folks had cut with them and didn't like specific aspects. Same with the Amkus.
    i can only use the tools in training due to me being an explorer, and i hated amkus, i liked resq tech, ive used hurst but ive never heard of the other. I just thought i would throw my support for Resq-tech out there
    Firefighters need not fear fire, but give it all their respect.

  11. #11
    MembersZone Subscriber npfd801's Avatar
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    Thanks for the info thus far. Had three of four vendors in so far. We clearly have a a favorite of the three, but have to wait for the fourth to demo. I won't list what our preferences are so far just in case a vendor reads the forum.

    I've found something to like in all three that we've had to play with. We did manage to break a handle and blow a hose though in the demos we've done, and we were not abusing anything.
    "Share your knowledge - it's a way to achieve immortality." - Stolen from Chase Sargent's Buddy to Boss program

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    AMKUS may soon have a new electric simo power unit out that has the performance of the PTO-driven Ultimate system but will only require 220-volt power - though quite a bit of it.

    If pump performance is a big selling point it could be something to look into? Also, TNT I thought was a "break-off" of AMKUS guys who used to work for AMKUS I mean. Could you use an AMKUS pump with TNT tools? I have seen companies use AMKUS rams on Holmatro system before.

  13. #13
    MembersZone Subscriber npfd801's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LittleJoe7197 View Post
    AMKUS may soon have a new electric simo power unit out that has the performance of the PTO-driven Ultimate system but will only require 220-volt power - though quite a bit of it.

    If pump performance is a big selling point it could be something to look into? Also, TNT I thought was a "break-off" of AMKUS guys who used to work for AMKUS I mean. Could you use an AMKUS pump with TNT tools? I have seen companies use AMKUS rams on Holmatro system before.
    As far as I know just about any of the hydraulic tools that use mineral oil can be used "cross brand." Obviously Hurst's low pressure stuff that uses the old style glycol or the new synthetic stuff needs to have other brand's tool specifically made for use of that fluid (which I know TNT does, as well as I believe Resqtec).

    The TNT pump was very interesting as far as moving a volume of fluid. We plugged it into our existing tools and they performed incredibly well. Having said that, we could still need tools capable of cutting some of the exotic materials, and our twelve year old stuff is not.

    The best we will be seeing is a gas powered simo pump. Our rigs do not have the capability to drive a 220V pump. Not my decision, but I'm along for the ride, and accept what we're told we're going to get when it comes to apparatus.
    "Share your knowledge - it's a way to achieve immortality." - Stolen from Chase Sargent's Buddy to Boss program

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    If you have to rely strictly on gas, investigate carry dedicated fuel for the pump such as SEF 94 (small engine fuel 94 octane) or something similiar with no ethanol. Or plan on running the pump weekly.

    http://www.vpracingfuels.com/sef-94.html

    I don't sell the stuff btw.

  15. #15
    Forum Member Rescue101's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by npfd801 View Post
    Yup. They were not included after some folks had cut with them and didn't like specific aspects. Same with the Amkus.
    What "aspects" didn't you like? Out of all the tools I've run, ResQTek and Holmatro would be my top picks.We cut a Subaru B post with ease with our FX4 Combi tool. Our older Holmatro cutter wouldn't cut it. Neighbors have Amkus,and I've never found anything I couldn't get into with those either. T.C.

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    Uh oh, the flood gates may open with opinions now. I watch these posts just to see the reactions. Anyway, here is what I have to offer:

    I am a career Firefighter and a volly Lieutenant on another department. On the career job, we run with Genesis. We have it on my heavy rescue. We have NEVER had a job that we couldnt handle with those tools. We had a pin job a few days back that involved a new Volvo XC-90 SUV. If you could have seen the metal in the posts we cut with the Genesis tool you would make your mind up without hesitation. That pump is extremely fast but the tools are very controllable- a perfect combination if you ask me. We have run with the Genesis for around 7 years now, switched from the Holmatro. I think we have around 13 sets total. Service is awesome. Most small issues are fixed at the firehouse and the replacement parts are inexpensive. Holmatro uses alot of proprietary parts which was killing us at PM time. We just upgraded our tools to the new hot swappable coupling- that thing is awesome- especially running off of reels like we have.

    The volly job we are running TNT. JUST MY OPINION- steer clear. I just got on this department about 8 months ago but I do know that their service is good, but I only know that because they are ALWAYS THERE fixing something. The new pump they have is lighting fast, but heats up the fluids to the point that you can hardly touch the tools- and the pump feels like it is going to boil over. The tools are lightweight, the pumps are heavy. The cutter seems pretty powerful but we have snapped blades. There are good points, but it doesnt hold a candle to Genesis.

    Again, just my opinion. What are you leaning towards?

  17. #17
    Forum Member Rescue101's Avatar
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    Genesis pump is only "fast" in overdrive, two of our neighbors have them and I've got mixed opinions. I PERSONALLY DON'T like the controls,but I've had Holmatro for 27 years so that may taint my opinion somewhat. A LOT of what a tool can do rests in the operator and the location you choose to cut. Even with the Gen 2 Holmatros we have along with two 10 amp Sawsall's we've managed this far. Tools are Due to be replaced this year,two more to test. SERVICE after the sale would weigh HEAVILY on my decision on which system to purchase. As exotics become more popular,you MAY want to think about some 13 amp saws with DIAMOND blades. As pointed out some of the new upper end vehicles are getting pretty layered in the posts. T.C.

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    I have been involved in extrication instruction with our state academy for several years- specializing in extrication practices.

    With this, I was asked a while back to help a bordering department evaluate tools. It is a chore. I did have some great experiences and some really bad ones dealing with the vendors. I will shed some light:

    -Compare apples-to-apples. Prices will be all over the road, especially those brands you picked. You get what you pay for. Someone might be offering you the badest cutter out there for $$$. The competitor might offer you a lower scale cutter for $. Dont be tricked.

    -There are guys selling tools who are straight shooters. There are some that are not. DEMAND they give you the tools NFPA data sheets. This will help you make a decision based on a 3rd party's findings. But, make sure the sheets are legit- that is one thing we ran into, fudged numbers. COMPARE the cutter sheets. You'll be suprised what you find. We were.

    - If something goes wrong at a demo with the tool (you mentioned something about hoses, handles, etc)- its not the end of the world. These guys use their tools for demos 6 days a week. They see more action than you probably will in 10 years. If it isnt a catstrpohic failure (blades snapping, body cracking in half, spreader arm sheering off) its not reason to toss a manufacturer. These are tools. This stuff happens. We saw problems with 3 of the 4 we worked with.

    -Look at who is staying ahead of the game with the new cars on the road. There are manufacturers who have the same tools that havent changed in 7 years- not a good sign.

    -DONT keep your tools for 12 years! Extrication is an evolving discipline. You have to keep that stuff on a replacement program in order to keep up with the streets. 12 year old tools will be like using a chisel and hammer on todays cars.

    -Call the manufacturer reps if you think you are getting hosed by a saleman. They will usually be able to get you legit information.

    -I dont know what brand you said you have now, but think about sticking with that. sometimes the guys will be comfortable with it, the training will be easier, especially if you guys are volunteer, you will already have a relationship with the service men and you could usually save some coin by upgrading the key components in your fleet.

    - Do not use Firehouse forums to weigh you decision. There is every clown in the world on here posing as "firemen" who dont have 2 hours of experience working these tools who want to tell you all about why you should use the tools they have.

    We ended up recommending Genesis for the department I assisted. They are more than satisfied with them. DO YOUR HOMEWORK!

    Let me know if you need anything else. God Speed- lol

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    Thumbs up Genesis #1

    I am not one to support or bash a certain product unless I feel 100% sure that my opinion has a leg to stand on. I used Genesis tools on the department I was on in Illinois...we used to get an astronomical amount of extrications- I can honestly say I would never use anything else. We had Hurst, then Amkus. They were both OK for the time we used them, but when we switched to Genesis- wow. I moved to a larger municipality out west and we also use Genesis. The speed of the tools is amazing, the strength of the cutters is second to none. One thing I have always admired about them- they are constantly coming out with new equipment. Their product line is never stale. Our dealer support was very strong in Illinois and the sales guys always seem to be down-to-earth. We dont run nearly as many trap calls out here, but the ones we have were no match for the set we have on our ladder company. (We've got 9 sets total). Like I said before, I am not one to express my opinion on equipment too often- but i felt props were due in this case. I noticed you are from Illinois- where at? Its my old home! Stay safe out there guy!

  20. #20
    Forum Member Rescue101's Avatar
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    Not keeping tools for 12 years is GREAT on paper but in smaller Depts NOT always an operational feasibility. We're STILL opening cars with Gen 2 Holmatros. You gotta be SMART about it but you can get in. I agree with MOST of your points but I put LIMITED emphasis on NFPA numbers and MORE weight on field trials. I won't be using MY tools in a Lab. Do the research,narrow the field,and get your hands on the tools. Use them on everyday situations. Then make a decision based on sound testing and performance. T.C.

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