1. #1
    Rhinofire
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Question custom vs. commercial chassis

    Our department is in the process of specing out a new heavy rescue/squad. Is there a good source to compare the custom vs. commercial chassis. The department would like to see a custom chassis, but the board does not see any benefits from the custom or want to spend the extra $25,000. We have shown that the truck would be shorter with the custom and that it would be more like the other apparatus in the fleet. Any input on this topic would be helpful.

  2. #2
    Engine 224
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Talking

    What it most often comes down to is walk-in versus nonwalk-in. Yes, you can get a custom walk-in but forget about the $25,000 difference. More like 4 times that!

    If you have a walk-in already get the same or ask why you got the walk-in in the first place. If you don't - get a custom non-walk-in. Lot's of crew room (up to 10) and a gigantic tool box to carry everything you want.

    By the way - start with the equipment list, then design the tool box around it.

  3. #3
    cruiser
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    I agree. Build the truck around the equipment you have or will purchase. A little extra room is always a good idea too. We are due to receive a non- walk in Medium/Heavy Rescue in about a month, replacing a 1977 crew cab utility truck. Overall I like the custom chassis' much better, but we were on a very tight budget and had to go with the commercial chassis. We drove both the International and Freightliner, deciding to go with the Freightliner FL 70. Chassis rides nice and had better vision and also more room inside. The non-walk in is definitely alot cheaper and has more storage space, pluses on both fronts. Most importantly, purchase the type of vehicle that best suits YOUR Department's needs and wants. Good Luck and Stay Safe.
    <IMGSRC="http://www.firehouse.com/interactive/boards/uploads/upload.jpg">

    ------------------
    Eric W. Schmitt
    ---CRUISER---
    Assistant Chief
    Harrison Hills VFC #4
    Natrona Heights, PA
    http://www.ak-valleynet.com/harrisonhillsvfc

    [This message has been edited by cruiser (edited May 26, 2000).]

    [This message has been edited by cruiser (edited May 26, 2000).]

  4. #4
    SBrooks
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    Does anyone have ballpark figures on the cost of various commercial chassis?

  5. #5
    cruiser
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    Our 2000 FL70 Freightliner ran us $57,000.

    ------------------
    Eric W. Schmitt
    ---CRUISER---
    Assistant Chief
    Harrison Hills VFC #4
    Natrona Heights, PA
    http://www.ak-valleynet.com/harrisonhillsvfc

    [This message has been edited by cruiser (edited May 30, 2000).]

  6. #6
    pvfr fyrfyter
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Thumbs up

    Our 99 International 4900 with a 300 hp/allison 5-speed auto ran $53000.

    ------------------

  7. #7
    Rhinofire
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    I guess I need to be more specific in what info I am looking for. We have designed a box that is a hybrid walk-in. Inside the box will be room for four firefighters a command post and medical supplies. The only access to the box will be from the back of the cab. The back of the truck will house air, hydraulic, and electric reels plus extrication tools. The rest of the box will be cabinets for everything else. Our situation is that one manufacturer will build the truck on a Peterbilt chassis with a custom crew cab this will seat 6 (driver, officer, 4 ff's) which gives us space for 10 on the truck. Another manufacturer will build the truck on a custom chassis that will seat the same number for an extra $25-30 thousand. The advantages we see on the custom chassis is that the truck is about 4 feet shorter and the wheelbase itself is much shorter plus there is more room in the cab. We also think that with the custom chassis the truck will be easier to repair and add on equipment later. I am looking for testimonials from departments that run commercial chassis and have switched to custom or any input one way or the other. Thankyou

  8. #8
    fireman116
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Angry

    Go with the costume!!! We got our new heavy rescue last year on an international chas and it sucks, very noisy, shakes, poor quality, plus we have been told by other departments they will only hold up for about 10 years at the most! Have any problems with the costumes? The sad thing is it was only 5000 dollars difference in the 2 cabs, we have learned our lesson and will stick with our custom cabs!!! Good luck

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