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Thread: Alf

  1. #1
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    Default Alf

    I'm in a department that is looking to purchase a few American LaFrance engines. I need some input. Have heard all the stories about ALF, but need some help. please post ANY information you can to help us decide.


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    Default Do your homework

    Not looking to bash anyone's product with this response. My dept. purchased a new pumper two years ago. We started out by polling ALL of our members for thier preferences and narrowed it down to 3 manufacturer's- Pierce, Seagrave, & Alf. (We were replacing an E-one that we didn't have good luck with, that's why they weren't on the list). Met with salesmen from all three, designed essentially the same truck. Pricing was close enough that it was not a major deciding factor. Went to Harrisburg show, where we could do some side-by-side comparisons, and quickly eliminated ALF. Just didn't seem to match up well against the other 2. Our truck committe consisted of 6 people and we were all in agreement. I realize we all have our "favorites" when it comes to this, but I definately recommend looking at a few brands before making your decision. We did and did not buy the truck we originally thought we would.

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    Thanks for the info. just want to get the best we can for the money spent. Quality, service, workmanship, and reliability a must.

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    Ferrara!!!!
    Unit 71 - Probationary Firefighter / First Responder
    Bossier Parish Fire District #1

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    Wink A little poke

    Quote Originally Posted by arcticcat 400i View Post
    Thanks for the info. just want to get the best we can for the money spent. Quality, service, workmanship, and reliability a must.
    With a "name" like Articcat your judgement on quality, service, workmanship, and reliability are suspect! Here kitty, kitty.

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    Be nice I bite !!!!!!!

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    Default

    ALF has a record of being financially unstable. That is strike 1.

    I personnally have little experience with the new ALF apparatus, however I have friends who run ALF that say while they have thier pluses, they do have a significant issue with quality and reliability. Again, this is from folks I trust but I can't say anything from personal experience.
    Train to fight the fires you fight.

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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    ALF has a record of being financially unstable. That is strike 1.

    I personnally have little experience with the new ALF apparatus, however I have friends who run ALF that say while they have thier pluses, they do have a significant issue with quality and reliability. Again, this is from folks I trust but I can't say anything from personal experience.
    I second this comment. Financial stability is very important so that they will be around to honor the product.
    The other item I would look at is what type of service you will get going forward. Do they have a road crew from the factory that can get your truck back up and running quickly? Could you take the truck back to the factory for any fixes / updates / modifications?

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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by arcticcat 400i View Post
    I'm in a department that is looking to purchase a few American LaFrance engines. I need some input. Have heard all the stories about ALF, but need some help. please post ANY information you can to help us decide.
    Run! As fast as you can in the other direction. I have a local reference if you need it. Late, and UNreliable. T.C.

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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Rescue101 View Post
    Run! As fast as you can in the other direction. I have a local reference if you need it. Late, and UNreliable. T.C.
    While I can't complain about our 06 Eagle Tower, had the award date been two week later we'd have steered clear based on the financial uncertainty. In all we've had no real issues, but then ours seemed to be one of the last of the "on time's" and remains fairly trouble free. Like some other companies, I've seen a difference in fit and finish between the aerial product line and the engines of late. Maybe they still get decent help in Ephrata.

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    Default

    ALF used to be the **** back in the day, and I mean way back. Steer clear of them now. Financially they're unstable. And all of the folks I know at departments that have them aren't particularly fond of the re-introduced Lafrances. It's mainly a name thing now, ALF had a reputation for being awesome, they came back in the late 90's under new ownership and just never really delivered the quality that went with the old company. My personal experience has been with Sutphens. Damn fine apparatus, mighty hard to swallow price tag though.

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    Default

    My department purchased two ALF's in 2004. We have had problems due to the financial problems with ALF. We have had to get our city attorney to get warranty work completed and then it took a couple of years. The quality of the work was poor. I was involved in the purchase process of these two trucks and can cite many examples of the poor quality. One example was found on an in process inspection, the body had not been mounted on the chassis yet and we found that when the two sides of the body were mated they were out of square not just a little but by two inches! I could go on but I won't. There are several companies building quality apparatus that are financially stable. Do your homework which it appears you are doing. STAY AWAY FROM ALF!

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    Default

    Note: These are my opinions and in no way reflect the opinion of my fire department.

    I would steer clear. We have had plenty of problems with ours. Especially the CAFS system that ALF put on the engine.

    The thing was almost a year late (if not more) and has been a lemon ever since. It sure is pretty to look at though!

    Seems to me that they cut alot of corners in the construction and the truck has been out of service quite a bit for repair. Not to mention that the wiring on all the door alarms must be run with un-insulated speaker wire. The things go off constantly.
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    These opinions are mine and do not reflect the opinions of any organizations I am affiliated with.
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    Question ALF's

    Posted yesterday that we are looking into new American LaFrance engines. Just for info., these will be NEW from the ground up built to our spec. Please help us to decide if this is the way to go. Any input will be appreciated.

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    Default

    I believe we've already discussed this over here, and I believe a good response has been delivered.
    Sutphen, Smeal, Ferrara, Rosenbauer, Crimson would be better choices.
    But each to their own.
    http://www.firehouse.com/forums/showthread.php?t=121289 (Alf)

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    Default

    I have to agree, seems like you aren't hearing the answer you want... I would certainly look into a Sutphen, if you have the budget of course. A family made apparatus tends to maintain its standard far better than a Larger factory built product (Not always but certainly the case many times over)

    Sutphen vs. ALF?
    Smeal Vs. Rosenbauer?

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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by arcticcat 400i View Post
    Posted yesterday that we are looking into new American LaFrance engines. Just for info., these will be NEW from the ground up built to our spec. Please help us to decide if this is the way to go. Any input will be appreciated.
    Why did you start a new thread on the same thing? Just keep adding to same one!


    BTW All fire apparatus are built from the ground up! Look at other brands as the delivery time for ALF is too long for most fire departments. Service is better elsewhere.
    Stay Safe and Well Out There....

    Always remembering 9-11-2001 and 343+ Brothers

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    Default

    Sorry, on new thread and the wrong use of words. I know they are built from the ground up. Just needing some input on ALF as a whole...

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    Default

    Why limit yourself to one builder ?
    ?

  20. #20
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    Default

    Not, just the lowest so far, and you know that lowest is not always best. Just doing some homework.

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