1. #1
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post Turbo Draft................Ever used one?

    My dept. has decided to buy a Turbo Draft for every pumper and tanker we have, a total of 12.
    My questions about them are.
    What are likes and dislikes about them?
    Any problems deploying them?
    Are they durable?
    What is the maxium distance it can be used from the pumper effectivly?
    What is the maxium lift?
    What is the maxium GPM you can get from them?
    How much GPM did you have to provide to achieve that flow?
    And any other "tricks" you use to make it more user friendly (i.e. how it is mounted on truck, preconected)?


  2. #2
    Firehouse.com Guest


    //What are likes and dislikes about them?

    The turbo draft is nothing more than another make of ejector, siphon or high lift strainer. It does exactly what it is designed to do. That is allow you to reach static water supplies away from the pumper or at lifts that hard suction cannot reach. They have been in use for over 70 years in the fire service. You can lift water 120 feet. Get a draft hundreds of feet from the water source.

    Likes: It works well.

    Dislikes, like drafting you need to know what you are doing.

    //Any problems deploying them?

    Sure, don't kink the hose, don't bury the strainer in muck, don't go over gaurd rails or sharp corners to kink your hose,

    ///Are they durable?

    If your rough with them you'll bend the screen on the strainer, sractch the hard coating off, and check the set screws on the storz heads odds are they were not locktited to keep them on.

    Do use a carabiner and empty foam pail as a float, use 3" versus 2 1/2" to supply it. Keep Ep in the 175 to 200 psi range, do gate the lines you are supplying to maintain flow and pressure, do not cavitate the pump by trying to over pump the line.

    //What is the maxium distance it can be used from the pumper effectivly?

    Up to the limit of your supply bed. 2000' feet of 5 inch hose.

    //What is the maxium lift?

    Depends what you pump and the diameter of the hose used and the flow. Where at draft you only have 14.7 psi to work with the turbo draft gives you 250 to 300 psi. SO, that means 15 to 20 times higher that a hard suction set up.

    //What is the maxium GPM you can get from them?

    In your department Friday only 950 gpm, because 2 1/2" hose was used. The end of the month we will flow 2000 gpm with your 1500 gpm pumpers at draft.

    //How much GPM did you have to provide to achieve that flow?

    1/4 to 1/3 or 200 to 300 gpm thatis on top of the 950, not bad for a 1500 gpm pump with a 19 foot lift.

    //And any other "tricks" you use to make it more user friendly (i.e. how it is mounted on truck, preconected)?

    Tail board or rear compartment mounting connected to a 3 inch line. Hook up the 5" after it is deployed.

    LOng lays lay dual 5" lines.

    Ideal for doubling the flow from a dry hydrant and getting lifts in excess of50 feet, ie Klien's airport.

    Steps for use.

    1. Hook a 3 and 5 inch line to it, hook up a float and put it under 2 feet of water.

    2. Throttle up to 175 psi.

    3. Make sure there aren't any kinks in the line.

    4. Open the pet **** drain on the suction valve.

    5. Charge the 3 inch line.

    6. Close the air drain.

    7. SLowly open the side suction

    8. Fill your water tank

    9. Slowly charge your hose lines watch, the 5 inch line when it gets soft stop opening the lines, throttle up or limit the flow.

    10. Use two turbo drafts if you need even more water.

  3. #3
    Firehouse.com Guest


    Thanks Larry, I figured you would help me out.
    You said we could get 2000gpm with our 1500gpm pump, is that net or gross?
    From my understanding, with the turbo draft and a shuttle there is no reason we can't flow well over 3500gpm for ISO, is that correct?

    People, I have come to realize, a good ISO grad isn't as hard to accomplish as you think. Just gotta use your head!!


  4. #4
    S. Cook
    Firehouse.com Guest


    We bought one and have been playing with it.

    We got 600gpm 125' from the TD the other night at 180psi discharge..

    We initially had a problem with having to keep the Tank to Pump valve open, but we figured out we we're opening the discharge too fast and closing the tank to pump too fast.

    The TD will be best for us in the areas where the houses are on the canals around the lake, although there are many other apps for it.

    "Any problems deploying them?"

    Nope, just the old heads on the department telling me they ain't going to use it.

  5. #5
    Firehouse.com Guest


    The 2000 gpm I'm talking about will be actual water moved to fill tankers not the amount needed to supply the turbo draft.

    Yes you'll meet the ISO water supply needs with tanker shuttles, long hose lays and turbo drafts from ponds.

    You are a member of one of only a handful of departments in the entire country who has mapped every single commercial building and knows exactly the distance to your water supplies and how much water can be moved in a shuttle, hose lay or combination of both.

    The computer data base to show what rig arrives first to any commercial structure, plus the order of 16 other stations worth of apparatus, how long it takes each to shuttle, fill dirve etc for every company including mutual aid rigs is pretty cool.

    What is also cool is your apparatus was designed to maximize the wide variety of water supply challeges you face. Not many departments in a rural setting can say the same thing. Your efforts at complete standardization between stations is one to be copied.

    Scott is using a more drawn out process to accomplish many of the same things.

    Most departments cannot access draft points more than 20 feet away from a hard surface and you two can take advantage of sources hundreds of feet away.

  6. #6
    Firehouse.com Guest


    Buck: We purchased two about ten years ago. They were made in Germany I don't remember the make. Both are out of service now and we use flota pumps 250 gpm in rural areas or 500 GPM pumps mounted on brush rigs with 4" hard suction for drafting.

    1. Intensive training needed to deploy and operate them correctly.

    2.We had a lot of maintenance problems, impellers clogging up or jamming

    3.We used up to 500' ok 2 3" lines from the pump to the source. On the discharge from the turbo pump we have gone over 1,000' with 5" iine.

    4.We are mostly at sea level but 50' off a bridge seemed no problem.

    5. Ours were rated at 250 GPM but by running the discharge back into the pumper we could boost that to 500 GPM.

    6. You can easily do it with a 500 gallon pumper you just need to fill the lines that turn the turbo.

    I hope we are talking about the same type pumps. We did not keep them preconnected and found them to labor and training intensive. The porta pumps and porta tanks seem to work well for us. JHA

  7. #7
    Firehouse.com Guest


    Totally different animals JHA. No impellers to clog.

  8. #8
    Firehouse.com Guest


    This is the gadget we are talking about.

    The device with a 2 1/2" in and 5 inch out

    Flowing 800 gpm

  9. #9
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Thumbs up

    No nothing about the topic, but if I needed to I would consult someone like LHS. His department is one of the only ISO 1 Volunteer departments and their hydrant less in a majority of their district. Trust his word.

    Stay Safe!

  10. #10
    Jolly Roger
    Firehouse.com Guest


    That thing looks COOL!

    Jolly Roger

    Let's not let the honor, tradition, and pride of the fire service erode away.

    [This message has been edited by Jolly Roger (edited October 10, 2000).]

  11. #11
    Firehouse.com Guest


    Who makes and sells this critter? "Turbo Draft" into a search engine doesn't bring up any firefighting equipment sites!

    Can anyone offer the full name of the manufacturer or name a distributor that has a web site featuring the unit? Would be nice to learn more about this device.

  12. #12
    Firehouse.com Guest



    It is made by Schutte&Koerting out of Bensalem, PA. Their telephone # is 215-639-0900. Their website is www.turbodraft.net

    pretty impressive contraption isn't it?


  13. #13
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Thumbs up

    Thanks, Buck! A Tip o' the Helmet to ya!

    Seems like a nice device, but they don't claim anywhere near the 2000 gpm that Larry talks about...

    Hey, Larry: What sort of flow and pressures are required to obtain the 2000 gpm? And what pressure does the Turbo generate or feed into the 5" return line?

  14. #14
    Firehouse.com Guest


    I'm thinking again...(I know, that's dangerous...)

    Anyway, how would this thing work in conjunction with hard suction? Manufacturer already lists it in conjunction with piping & hard suction...

    I'm think this (or maybe a version with a larger intake area) hooked up to a single hard suction may give you the performance of having two hard suctions in the water -- say around 1700-1800gpm out of a 1500gpm pump??? And/or overcoming long 60' hard suction layouts to still provide 1500gpm performance?

  15. #15
    Firehouse.com Guest


    ///Seems like a nice device, but they don't claim anywhere near the 2000 gpm that Larry talks about...

    Actually they(The maker) did 1750 gpm with 5" IN AND 5" OUT.

    //What sort of flow and pressures are required to obtain the 2000 gpm?

    Simply use two and pump @175 psi.

    // And what pressure does the Turbo generate or feed into the 5" return line? 15 psi-ish.

    With hard suction. I have four 6 inch versions on order and I feel 3000 gpm will be attained with one.

  16. #16
    Firehouse.com Guest


    LHS your are correct it is a different animal we will look into them. same principa much better design. Thanks for the picture JHA

  17. #17
    S. Cook
    Firehouse.com Guest


    Larry - was that 5" in done on the standard 2.5" intake of the TD or did they build one with a 5" intake?

  18. #18
    Firehouse.com Guest


    std 2 1/2" version

  19. #19
    Firehouse.com Guest


    Well, today I spent several hours messing with the Turbo Drafts. It is a very impressive piece of equipment. At 150' away from a pond we were able to get 668 gpm out of it. We were pumping a 3" line @ 180 psi had a 5" return line into the truck and getting 100 psi at the deck gun 1-1/2" tip.

    We tried a 5" supply line to it and we were having some problems keeping our prime, but I think with more practice we will be able to do it effectivly with the 5".

    Our main objective with the TD is to use 2 of them on one pumper as a fill site utilizing water sources that we once thought were unreachable. We should be able to fill our tankers at over 1300 gpm possibly more.

    If your department is restricted by water supply you might want to look at getting one or a dozen of these devices, they will allow you to operate outside the box of norm.

    And for those of you that are saying "all we deal with are hydrant areas",just one question. Does your hydrant system flow the amount of water you need per ISO? If not, like we are going to have to do is supplement our city's water system with drafing from ponds and use a tanker shuttle.

    If somebody told me 3 months ago, "I can draft water out of old man Nesters pond whlie sitting on the road", I would have laughed at them. But believe me it is possible.

    Anyway, hoped I have helped and remember never say never.


  20. #20
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Thumbs up

    I have been working with a Bucks Co. PA fire company who has purchased 4 TurboDraft units. They have trained with the units often,and have put the units to a test on an actual emergency. In mid September this company responded to a M.V.A. that turned out to be a gasoline tanker vs. dump truck. The tanker was ruptured and there was no hydrants in the area. The only water source availble was the Delaware Canal which was about 75 ft from the roadway. They were able to put the turbodraft unit in service and support the fire scene. Fortuately the tanker did not ignite and no one was hurt, but the TurboDraft unit allowed the Fire department to establish a water supply in a fraction of the time it would have taken to setup a tanker shuttle.

  21. #21
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    May 2001
    Greensboro, NC USA


    I had the opportunity to train on one this morning.

    The setup was:
    1,500 GPM pumper
    100' 2.5" to the Turbo Draft
    100' of 4" to the ball intake valve
    about 10' of elevation from water source to the pump

    The first thing we found was;
    1. DO NOT allow the pressure on the siphon line to fall below 175.
    2. DO NOT exceed the flow capacity of the setup, which was just under 400 GPM. The instant you exceed this flow, the siphon line looses pressure, which causes the intake line to loose pressure and collapse, thus destroying your water flow.

    We were trying to use it for supply to the fill pumper in a water shuttle.
    I found that if you use your trucks booster tank, you supplement the flow to the fill line. When the tanker is full, shut the fill line and go back to the tank fill. The is allowed us to fill tankers as a faster rate than the turbo draft could supply. But as soon as the tanker was full, you best switch back to tank fill and get ready for the next unit.

    The NFPA required check valve in the tank-to-pump line kept excess pressure from the intake from going into the tank, and if we out-flow the turbo draft, the check valve would kick open to prevent cavitation.

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