My department protects an area of 40 square miles with no hydrants. We rely on long lays of 4" LDH with no structure more than 3000' feet from a water hole and dry hydrant. We currently utilize a 1987 KME with 2700' of 4" on a hydraulic reel and 700' more in the bed to meet this need. Typically the reel truck (also equipped with a 1,250gpm pump and 1000 gallons of water) will lay a line from the fire (and the attack truck) to the water hole and set in while another 1000gpm pumper sets up a relay valve halfway through the lay.
I am wondering what other departments use for similar situations and what your experience has been with LDH reels vs. large hose beds (one obvious advantage of the bed being the ability to lay dual lines).
Any discussion regarding large loads of LDH and/or relays/long lays would be appreciated.
[This message has been edited by HFD_CLanger (edited 03-15-2001).]
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03-15-2001, 11:52 PM #1HFD_CLangerFirehouse.com Guest
Large loads of LDH: Reels vs. Beds
03-16-2001, 11:26 AM #2NKFFirehouse.com Guest
The department that I belong to had a large reel on our old engine. When we bought 2 new engines we did not get a reel. We felt it took up too much space for a large tank and compartment space. However we are in a hydranted area. If you have mutiple engines that can lay line why not save the space and get a large tank. Ours are 1000 gal. Both pumpers respond and there is 2000 gal without utilizing any water source. They also carry 1500 feet of 5" 600 ft of 3" and 400 ft of 2.5" 2000 gal of water and 3000 feet of 5" with plenty of compartment space and not using any mutual aide that is always available. I don't know what your situation is but this is what works for us. If you plan to sell your pumper with the reel it will be harder because it is specialized. Just one persons idea and suggestions.
03-16-2001, 11:37 AM #3philip publicoverFirehouse.com Guest
We are considering the same type of operations as you describe but with only 4000' between developed water sites. As part of our plan we are eliminating our tanker. Do you still retain a tanker?
There is only one reel equipped truck for LDH in the entire province of 310 FD's and their system seems to work for them. The truck is a 1965 ALF with twin reels, an 840 igpm pump and no water. One reel holds @ 1500' of 4" LDH while the second holds 2000' of 2.5" hose.
Train Hard and Train Safe.
Philip Publicover, Fire Chief
District #1 Fire Department
Blandford, Nova Scotia, Canada
03-16-2001, 01:48 PM #4LHS*Firehouse.com Guest
The hose beds work fine on our rigs, We cary 1 mile of 5 inch on an engine with a 2500 gallon water tank and 2600 feet of 5" on all the quints with 2000 gallon water tanks. We can lay one long line or two lines at once.
No special training like with a real, no extra cost, no limitations on hose volume, no speed limits laying line like on a real, no maintenance, not reloading the spool when it sags, plus a normal bed allows for changin your mid on loads, and what is carried in the space. For example we carry a 5000 gallon drop tank 400 foot 1 3/4", 150 foot 2" and two 250 foot 2 1/2" lines in the main supply bed, all would be lost with a conventional bed. Reels also limit who will bid on your apparatus
03-17-2001, 03:44 AM #5SBrooksFirehouse.com Guest
If you're just specifying a large amount of hose to be used on the 50yr fire or every 10 years for insurance purposes, stay with a large hose bed. If you actually plan on dropping a mile of hose and using it...go with a reel. Also check out Angus LTD's "Fetch" system.
03-17-2001, 04:31 AM #6LHS*Firehouse.com Guest
The nice thing about a reel is you can ride tailboard again, you'll need to unless all of your lays are in a straight line. Of course you all know you have to power off the hose every time you make a turn. If not the hose will pull tight and go right across the yard of the corner lot, bushes, mail boxes people all will be at risk. The controls are on the tailboard. So guess where someone has to ride. So if you left a hydrant man, your captain on a three man crew will be ridin' the rear step.
You could always allow the reel to free spool, if you go too fast, have to slow down for traffic you'll have a huge knot behind the rig and will have to get the whole crew to disconnect a few hundred feet of hose and untangle things before you can continue the lay.
If you catch a hydrant and forget to release the reel lock you'll simply injure the hydrant man and you'll the hydrant out of the ground. But other than that reels are pretty nice expensive toy.
I've never worked in a department that owned more than 11 pumpers with reels but those are our experiences. Someof our god friends copied us, thinking we were on to something. Funny how when the chief left the reels stopped being spec'd. You know the chiefs's new department didn't spec reels. I wonder why?? I've heard rumours that some companies liked them but I never met a single guy who said he liked them. One thing cool was when the power steering pump went out on the reels you wouldn't dare lay hose, because you'd have to manually rewind it. I noticed on many fires the rig with a reel would order then next in company to lay a line to avoid laying their own bed even when the whole world was burning.
Unfortunately it took two generations of apparatus 20 total with reels to make a pretty easy job of loading hose in a bed very very hard on a reel.
Call Seminole County and Gainesvile and see for yourself. Why did they stop. Right there you have the two biggest users of reels, ever. Ask Strawpump PA why they gave up on them. Ask hundreds of others who once owned pumpers with reels. There must be a reason.
03-17-2001, 04:06 PM #7Dalmatian90Firehouse.com Guest
The nice thing about a reel is you can ride tailboard again, you'll need to unless all of your lays are in a straight line.
Or you design it to work right in the first place. A rear vision camera and controls in the cab do nicely to watch hose coming off and power off as appropriate. Put in decent size drive chains (which a weak point in early reels) and good hydraulics and they work well.
Although there are some Engine-Tanker-Reel combinations in our area (Northeast CT), most of the reel trucks are units whose function is specifically water supply. And the one dual-reel truck (2 -- 2000' 5" reels) can lay dual 5".
If your looking for multi-function, and there's nothing wrong with that, a standard hose bed is most flexible. It also is probably easier to mount a rear mount pump with a traditional hose bed. Rear mounts tend to weigh less & use less plumbing, among other advantages.
If your looking at reels, check out trucks like mine ( http://www.geocities.com/dalmation90...Engine_190.htm ), and Sister Bay, WI ( http://www.firefightersforums.com/ub...ML/000065.html ). Take the best features from both and you'd have one good reel truck.
Reel trucks in Northeast CT include Woodstock and Atwood Hose with fairly conventional engines with reels on the back; Dayville & Plainfield with older reel trucks carrying 3000' of 4"; Scotland, CT with dual reels with a total of 4000' of 5", and Mortlake with a single reel of 5000' of 5"
While we're happy with the reel, I'm also keeping an eye on Angus' FETCH system. That might be a good replacement for our current truck when it's due in another 15 years for replacement. It looks like it would be less expensive than reels, probably work to allow dual/triple/etc lays (since your laying from a conventional bed), and give a willingness to lay massive amounts of hose since it would be a cinch to pick up...
03-18-2001, 04:03 AM #8tmr91Firehouse.com Guest
Hey NKF, do you happen to have a website to see the truck you talked about from your department. The ones that carry 1500' of 5" and 2000 gallon of water. Thanks
03-18-2001, 10:12 AM #9SBLGFirehouse.com Guest
While i will agree that a reel is not for every one and there may be some training issues ( as there is with every thing). I will say that we ( Sister Bay Fire ) like our reel , ours is set up as a source unit only and has improved our water access for both relays and tanker filling. We are able to load the reel much faster then a conventional hose bed. Fair Harbor NY is taking delivery of a new reel truck this month 2500 feet on a single reel 4x4 front mount pump.
03-18-2001, 10:30 PM #10NUMBYFirehouse.com Guest
I dont have anything to add on the issue, just a question for Larry. How much does one of those ISO slaying monster engines weigh? Just between water weight and hose you have over 25,000 lbs. Ive seen the pics of those things and it looks like you carry a whole lot of stuff on there, so im just curious what one weighs in at.
Anything I post in the forums is my opinion and does not reflect my department or any organization I belong to.
03-18-2001, 11:30 PM #11LHS*Firehouse.com Guest
64,000 pounds. If youcan't get a ladder truck to a fire we can get our engines and ladders there.
They carry exactly what we want them to carry and with almost 80,000 miles on them are performing just fine.
03-19-2001, 02:32 PM #12NKFFirehouse.com Guest
03-28-2001, 12:23 AM #13st34ffFirehouse.com Guest
We had a 1986 Pierce with a 5" reel. I was nice to lay in with it as long as there was experanced people driving and operation the reel. It was a good truck, but we had the only truck in our area that had a reel on the back. The one thing that most people compained about with that truck is the reel on the back made the thing drive different. I know from the passenger side that is rode terrible.
03-30-2001, 11:16 PM #14Big ZeeFirehouse.com Guest
One thing to remember with a LDH reel that is able to carry 1200' of 5" hose, most water tanks are mounted vertically or like a L on these units. So, not only will the vehicle ride differently, it will turly handle like it to. Also, make sure you install a hydraulic brake.
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