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Thread: CAFS - hose & nozzle selections?

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    Default CAFS - hose & nozzle selections?

    Hey CAFS users out there, we're going to purchasing new attack lines and nozzles for the new CAFS pumper that we have on order, and we're trying to solicit input from those who've had success with certain brands out there.

    We're been using 1.75" Ponn Conquest as our attack line for several years, but as just about every Conquest user will tell you, it has some kinking habits that we don't won't to make even worse with the introduction of CAFS into the equation. We haven't tried the latest release of Conquest, although one of the stations at work just got some that they're experimenting with.

    Currently, there's a push towards 1.75" Mercedes with a TFT VIT series nozzle, with a 1 3/8" slug with a 15/16" tip.

    Welcome to comments from anyone...
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    I will let Capt Lou do the technical explanation, I am sure he will be along as soon as he sees the title of your thread.

    That being said, CAFS is truly a wonderful thing, when you are properly trained on it and begin to get experience using it. One of the neatest thing about CAFS is of course the chemistry and what it does to water. Kinking hose is always a concern, however CAF-impregnated water has a much lower surface cohesion and friction.....and will flow more efficiently; especially around kinks. I would not hesitate to continue to use Conquest myself, however I would want to talk to more CAFS users as well, especially the guys who are dragging the hose down the hallways.

    As for nozzles- K.I.S.S. All you need is the FDNY style 15/16" smoothbore. Thats all. Stay away from fog nozzles, they tend to "strip" the bubbles out of the finished solution.
    "Loyalty Above all Else. Except Honor."

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    We're using Mercedes and so far so good. Don't have a Cafs unit so can't answer the kinking question in that application. T.C.

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    the brand of hose won't make much difference as the CAFS line will resist kinking much better than a standard water only line due to the addition of the compressed air component. We have been using CAFS since 2000 and the majority of our hose is 15-20 years old and of mixed brands.
    It's also easier to maneuver a charged line with CAFS through a house and around obstacles because it's much lighter. We use 1 3/4 attack lines of the crosslays with a simple ball vale with a 15/16ths tip.
    We also have 2 2 1/2 " discharges that can flow CAFS for those heavy fire load situations.

    Be sure to include an auto tank fill valve to your new truck.
    dan likes this.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BoxAlarm187 View Post
    Hey CAFS users out there, we're going to purchasing new attack lines and nozzles for the new CAFS pumper that we have on order, and we're trying to solicit input from those who've had success with certain brands out there.

    We're been using 1.75" Ponn Conquest as our attack line for several years, but as just about every Conquest user will tell you, it has some kinking habits that we don't won't to make even worse with the introduction of CAFS into the equation. We haven't tried the latest release of Conquest, although one of the stations at work just got some that they're experimenting with.

    Currently, there's a push towards 1.75" Mercedes with a TFT VIT series nozzle, with a 1 3/8" slug with a 15/16" tip.

    Welcome to comments from anyone...
    Was all ready to extoll the virtues of the low friction loss of the Ponn hose, then realized it really doesn't make much difference if you're flowing CAFS all the time...

    If we didn't buy whatever the chief found cheapest for hose (be damned friction loss numbers and such) we'd have Ponn hose. A neighbor just started using Key Combat Ready and they're very impressed with it as well.
    "Share your knowledge - it's a way to achieve immortality." - Stolen from Chase Sargent's Buddy to Boss program

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    Hi BoxAlarm187,

    Congratulations on your new CAFS unit. And thank you FWDbuff for your kind words.

    As for nozzles, what seems to work the best is a very simple and usually the least expensive "ball Valve" type nozzle. With CAFS the nozzle is needed to only allow the nozzle-man the ability to turn on and off the flow as desired. In a CAFSystem the finished product is manufactured in the fire hose itself. The "break-apart" nozzles seem to afford you the most options. Be sure to get a pistol grip with the the nozzle and be sure it has an 1 3/8" ID ball in it. You can then put any size removable tip you desire on it from there. My department uses a 15/16" tip. We run this nozzle setup on our 1 3/4" and 2" handlines. As FWDbuff said a fog nozzle will "POP" bubbles. We do use a fog nozzle (with CAFS) for overhaul, brush and car fires.

    As for hose. We use wide variety of hose with no issues. We pump our attack handlines at 100psi main pump pressure, with no kinking issues. The only type fire hose that seems to be able to "clamp" off the flow when kinked is the rubber jacketed type hose. But any double-jacketed, cloth covered fire hose will work fine.

    The key to having a successful CAFS operation is the training and learning about CAFS prior to the actual fire job. It is not that one has to learn how to fight fire all over, but just learn about this "new tool" called CAFS and how it is best utilized to fight the fire.

    Just for my own curiosity, whose CAFSystem did you end up with? Waterous, Darley and Pierce basically "do it" the same way. Waterous does supply hands-on delivery CAFS instructional training with purchase of most of their units at your fire station when the truck is delivered.

    Good luck and if you have any other questions, ask.

    You're going to like CAFS.

    Be Safe,


    Chief Lou
    "Got Foam?"

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    Guys, thanks for the information & advice. I knew several of you are CAFS users already (FWD and IslandFire came to mind), and I hoped that CaptLou would see the post within a few days of posting it.

    We've been experimenting with different CAFS systems that have been delivered across the state for a couple of years now, and it was easy to convince us that it was something we needed. We're lucky to have a county chief (who's paying for the rig) that was open minded enough to trust our judgement on the advantages of CAFS.

    We selected a 140CFM Waterous system, which will be plumbed to five different crosslays.

    It sounds like our thought process on the nozzle was in-line with the rest of you all, now we just have to decide on hose, since the rig will be delivered with all new hose on it - something we haven't had the luxury of in the past.

    Thanks again fellas.
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    We went with Elkhart Select-o-matic break away nozzles. We tried both Figure 3 & 4 on page 2...

    http://www.elkhartbrass.com/files/aa...g-f2-01-08.pdf

    After playing with them I would agree with the prevoius posts and go with the 1 3/8 ball valve with a removable tip (figure 3). The straight valve is the cats ***** for Dry CAFS.

    Doing the math, we found 7/8 tip worked well with the fog nozzle breakaway combo. (running water only) Meaning if you're suppling the solid bore at 50 psi and break it off and use the fog nozzle you'll have around 100 psi at the tip... works in resverse too
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    Quote Originally Posted by CaptLou View Post
    Chief Lou
    "Got Foam?"
    CHIEF Lou???????

    Looks like someone done hit the books too hard and went and got themselves promoted?????
    "Loyalty Above all Else. Except Honor."

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    Quote Originally Posted by FWDbuff View Post
    CHIEF Lou???????

    Looks like someone done hit the books too hard and went and got themselves promoted?????
    Thought I told you about that.

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    Quote Originally Posted by chiefengineer11 View Post
    Thought I told you about that.
    Alzheimers.
    "Loyalty Above all Else. Except Honor."

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    Hi BoxAlarm187,

    Good to hear you purchased a Waterous 140 CAFSystem. If you purchased the "Platinum" series, training is included from Waterous. If you purchased the "Silver" series then training is optional and at an additional cost.

    Look into it and see what series you are getting. If it is a "Silver series" I do recommend contacting Waterous and purchasing the training. It will be money well spent.

    Good luck and be safe,

    Chief Lou
    "Got Foam?"

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    We are operating a Darley AutoCAFS unit (1500gpm/220cfm) with (5) preconnected CAFS discharges. The handlines (3) 1 3/4" and (1) 2 1/2" are equipped with Akron 1528 dual shutoff SaberJet nozzles with 1 1/8" tips and we are pleased thus far with their performance. For primary fire attack with CAFS we utilize the straightbore portion of the nozzle which is controlled on and off by the bale handle and this does not break up the bubble structure of the CAFS. The fog portion of the nozzle is controlled by rotation of the outer cup if desired. The 5th CAFS discharge is preconnected to an Akron 3443 Mercury Quick Attack Monitor with an Akron 489 Straight Bore Deluge Tip. We also carry a ball shutoff nozzle with a 1 3/8" tip for making dry CAFS when desired.

    The 1 3/4" handline in these videos is being pumped off our apparatus at the Darley plant prior to final delivery.

    Akron 1528 DSO CAFS http://www.youtube.com/user/TroyCarot#p/u/5/1fJ0dsKbeBc

    Akron 1528 DSO CAFS http://www.youtube.com/user/TroyCarot#p/u/6/4_4QnVaR9t0

    CAFS Engine 29-2 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HWHVArxU5Xw

    As CaptLou indicated training is extremely important. Our team spent a great deal of time training (classroom and hands on) prior to delivery while attending Pump/CAFS training school at Darley's pump facility in Wisconsin. Upon delivery to the fire department we also had extensive multiple day training provided by Neal Brooks from Darley. Along with that we also involved our neighboring mutual aid departments in training with CAFS application and operations.
    Last edited by ejfeicht; 07-29-2011 at 12:05 PM.

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    We have been using CAFS since 2001. We currently have a quint and an engine both with the Darley System. A few things direct automatic Tank fill is a must, we put flow meters gauges on all our CAFS discharges makes it easier to manage the type of foam you are putting out. I also recommend if you can upgrade to the 200cfm compressor if you use multiple lines you are going to run out of air.
    We have been purchasing Mercedes 1.75" hose with great success with CAFS. We have also standardize with Akron Saber Jet nozzles. Those nozzles make great foam and can be used for any application.
    Good luck with you new piece and training is key if you have never had CAFS before.

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    Boxalarm: as Chief Lou said get the Waterous factory trainer when you take delivery & have
    all hands attend the classroom portion which explains the theory and the science behind making and using CAFS .
    See if you can have an acquired burn house to train on with the completely new system.
    Don't let the "old salts" give the excuse they've been fighting fire for decades to not attend, CAFS is different.
    The look on their faces when they find out that a fully involved room & contents can be extinguished with less than 50 gallons of water will be fun to watch.
    Even dinosaurs can be retrained.

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    Quote Originally Posted by islandfire03 View Post
    Boxalarm: as Chief Lou said get the Waterous factory trainer when you take delivery & have
    all hands attend the classroom portion which explains the theory and the science behind making and using CAFS .
    See if you can have an acquired burn house to train on with the completely new system.
    Don't let the "old salts" give the excuse they've been fighting fire for decades to not attend, CAFS is different.
    The look on their faces when they find out that a fully involved room & contents can be extinguished with less than 50 gallons of water will be fun to watch.
    Even dinosaurs can be retrained.
    CAREFUL! Some of us Dinos aren't as far behind as you MAY believe,hehe T.C.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rescue101 View Post
    CAREFUL! Some of us Dinos aren't as far behind as you MAY believe,hehe T.C.
    Tim: since you & I are the same age it wasn't aimed at you.
    I was thinking more about the knuckle draggers with the pea sized brains and small Pen#### from all the testosterone.

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    Thanks for the rest of the replies, fellas. We do have mandatory CAFS training required from the Waterous factory, so we're covered on that.

    As for "selling it" to the old timers - we were able to get two acquired structures during our CAFS evaluation period, so it helped sell the idea - even to a lot of "old folk".
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