Thread: Drager Packs
06-03-2001, 07:28 PM #1firefght50Firehouse.com Guest
My department is lloking into purchasing new packs and they are very interested in the new Dragers. I was wondering if anyone can provide me information from your experiences with them. Anyone else can provide what pack they think is the best and why. Thanks a lot your suggestions will be helpful.
06-15-2001, 12:27 AM #2M1NFDFirehouse.com Guest
My department is finishing the process of testing and collecting info on Scott, Dragger, MSA and Cairns packs. Lemme give you some friendly advice ONT DO IT!!!! We determined that Scott is#1 for a reason, we are getting away from Surviveair(currently in service) Cairns was eliminated on the first night of testing. Drager is in use in 2 departments near me, one being Concord new Hampshire. The guys wearing them HATE THEM, but the chief likes them as they underbid all the rest. What I have seen with them is that they are a cheaper pack as they use a velcro strap to hold the bottle, the frame is plastic, they offer 2 style masks, that both come in ONE SIZE. They boast a double seal in them. A large mask is good for 85% of the people you will meet, but myself being one of the 15%, the inner seal on the double sealing flap lands at the bottom of my eyebrows. The "NEW" mask that we asked for as an alternative is so new they dont have the bugs worked out of them yet, like the nosecup sits about 1/2" from your face, so the masks fog real quick. Here are some other issues we found. The low air alarm is a whistle. We have a few surviveairs that are the newest packs relegated to the high sides of the reserve pump due to this. They sound just like a relief valve on a tank, they are not directional and when you get multiple people in a room its a pain to not be able to see if its yours very easily. I have heard parts are hard to get. I have beat up all our salesmen very much about different experiences I have shared, one being the availability of parts and repairs. When we decided to get new packs in our combination department, we contacted all the manufacturers I listed earlier, they all had reps in within a week of the letter going out, and 3/4 of the manufacturers had packs there within 2 days after that. The draager pack took 3 weeks to arrive, when it did the salesman told me and my partner(2 career 18 call FFs) that the regulator on the pack wasnt the one we would be getting, he couldnt leave the new regulator that the pack comes with because he only had one. When I confronted him with the poor support in service and parts reputation he left the correct regulator. When we told him that we had 4 people that couldnt wear the old style mask, he told me he would bring a new style they have. It took just shy of 2 weeks, and when he brought it he told me"dont judge it on the net, that isnt the right one I took it off an old style mask, as he couldnt get the right one in time, and the same went for the blue clips holding the black mask that he had to take from another mask. Another problem is the docking of the regulator. The regulator/mask attachment angles are waaaaay off so in order to dock the regulator, they recommend looking at the cieling to make it line up properly. ALso the bypass is either full on or off, there is no way to crack it a little. I will say, my wife is German, and several of our firefighter friends in Germany like them, but it isnt the same pack they sell here in the USA. Right now they seem to be limitde to small departments that are extremely tight moneywise, but believe me, they will underbid everyone becase of one simple reason, THEY CAN. I recommend you guys contact all the manufacturers, get demo packs in, as they will usually leave them for a few weeks, get everyone down to run them though an evolution, pull a line, throw and climb a ladder and the lot. We found the Cairns high pressure hose limits you range of motion to the right, and when you look left it knocks the mask off your face. Its amazing how close the frames and backpacks are, and what we found(this is the second time I have done this, once with my call department where I grew up and now that I am carreer we are doing it here)is that it will come down to the masks and regulator docking, as all the packs feel the same with a coat on, even the PSS 100 that draager offers. Good luck and if you want to contact me feel free
Newbury Fire Department
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