1. #26
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    Thanks for all the replies especially bobsnyder's. I can say that we defintely will not be using the sawzall on the roof.

    Oh and I'm with FFFred, give me a hook and Halligan for overhaul. The sawzall would take all the fun out of it
    FTM-PTB-DTRT

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    bottom line is this; practice, practice, practice, and know that when you actually have the privilege of cutting a peaked roof, it will never be as easy as it was during practice! Use whatever is good for you, because that's how you'll be most effective. Chain saw, circular saw, or jerry garcia's axe (if you take an axe, i suggest making it a heavy one, 10 lb. minimum, less bounce, more brawn, let the adrenalin do the work), just leave the damn cip-saw on the rescue where it belongs. This is bullwork territory, balls and brawn. If you want to be a surgeon, go to medical school. That's my take, and I'm an Engine man!

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    Question

    jerrygarcia,

    Just curious... Is the axe you use on your roofs 6 or 8 lbs? Is it a flathead or pike axe?

    FTM-PTB

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    FFFRED, I mentioned a 10 lb. axe in my reply. For what it's worth, my experience has shown that the heaviest axe you can handle is best, and the fireman's axe is prefereable as you can use the pick end to lever up or hinge on the rafters, sections of cut roof deck. I don't believe the 6 lb.er has any business on a roof, too light. Again, whatever works best for you, there is no "one size fits all".

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    Originally posted by FFFRED


    Whats wrong with the hook guys?

    FTM-PTB
    For a big fire, nothing. But for something small, when you only have to open a little bit, the sawzall makes much less of a mess. Makes repairs easier and its all about keeping the "customer" happy

    But if we have significant fire and need to open up in a hurry, its hook time
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    My department tried it in a training situation and it was a total disaster.

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    For peaked roof operations. How about getting inside and pulling the ceilings no need to cut a hole. No need to send the roof man up there and put a hole to vent smoke from an attic if there is heavy fire in the attic it will be vented already by itself. Be agresive get in there.

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    Dont use them for Vent. we have used them in overhaul and cutting posts during a jaws call. If you have a good metal blade it cuts pretty fast and clean.
    A "Good" fire is not measured by how big it is, but by the fact that everyone is going home safe, and that we possibly learned something new about firefighting. Member:IACOJ

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    Originally posted by FFFRED
    jerrygarcia,

    Just curious... Is the axe you use on your roofs 6 or 8 lbs? Is it a flathead or pike axe?

    FTM-PTB
    I just saw this question to me and am finally answering it. I have a 7 pound pike axe. It has just a little longer blade and the underside of the pick is V-shaped. I'll see if I can get a pic of it and post.

    It seems to me that even after you cut a hole with any saw mentioned in this discussion, you still are going for your hand tools to strip it.

    I have opened many of flat roofs with saws. Apartment cocklofts and such other than that, I'll take my axe anyday.




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    Dont know if it is a KC thing or not, but I agree with Jerry on using an axe.

    While compleate practical skills for Fire I & II , we were given the option of axe or chainsaw with fancy depth gauge to use. I chose axe, and I 'm glad I did.

    I was the last of 4 to vent the roof. The first two guys used the chainsaw. ( they also carried the heavy sumbish up there too). The third guy, my partner tried to use the chainsaw but it would not start. He got thru his cut with the axe just fine. I made the final cut, and finished the first two cuts that were incomplete.

    Someone said somthing about balance with the axe. I have found( in my limited experience that short quick strokes with the axe worked much better for me then taking a huge swing at it.

    My choice would also be a pick headed axe as well.

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    Back in '92 I was given a TNT tool to try. I was so impressed I bought one with my own money. Not a slam on the pickhead. Also I just started testing the Ryobi 18v battery powered chain saw. So far I have mixed results. Well thats my 2 .

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    Default Nice idea...but not practicle

    I have been on many roofs...cut many holes using many tools...the chainsaw is the safest, most efficient and most expedient way to go on a wood roof. Follow the basics.
    1. Make sure all members are properly trained.
    2. Make sure the saw starts before you take it up.
    3. Ensure roof integrity.
    4. Always use a roof ladder.
    5. Start the cut at the point farthest away from you and work back.
    6. Work as a team.
    7. Get on and get off.
    8. If it's not safe...don't go...find an alternative form of ventilation.

    In twenty years of firefighting, the last 10 as a truck captain, not one of our firefighters has been injured using a chainsaw on a wood roof, pitched or otherwise. The newer saws are extremely effective and reliable.

    If it ain't broke...don't fix it.

  13. #38
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    Let me start by saying that I love reciprocating saws.
    IMO they are one of the best tools for extrication.

    But as much as I love them I dont think they have any place for roof ventilation. I personally have never used one but the next burn down we get I will be sure to give it a shot and report it back.
    "Train as if your life depends on it"
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    Career department Truck Co. set-up:

    K-12 saw #1: Metal blade for forcible entry.
    K-12 saw #2: Combination blade (Derivitive of the Warthog blade) for
    flatroofs where kicking isn't as much of an issue.
    Echo Quickvent: Pitched roof vent saw. Works like a champ.
    Straightbar saw: Utility work.
    24V recip saw: Vehicle extrication (Windshields, "A" posts, etc.)
    18V recip saw: Vehicle extrication (Windshields, "A" posts, etc.)

    Recip saw on the roof is asking for problems. Let one of those batteries develop a memory and quit after getting 1/2 the whole cut. Or break a blade and you have to change it. Take a "Power tool", not the battery operated variety.
    Stay low and move it in.

    Be safe.


    Larry

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    Axes,chain saws and circular saws are for roofs and walls.We keep our Dewalt saw for extrication.When we start cutting the door posts,it's on the battery and a crewman is dragging out the power cord from the engine and hooking up the AC adapter to it.
    Once we get that put on the tool,you have unlimited run time to make all the cuts needed and the only concern is if the generator drops offline.

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    Cool

    We got a second Stihl chainsaw with a depth guide for our second pumper. Local dealer trades the power unit back in after two years at no cost. The first we cought with a bullet chain, the second has a carbide chain in it. They work great and everyone on the department is trained in using them.

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    Larry's got it about right.GAS AXE(s).And a good selection too."Cept I'd trade the Echo in for a CE.Personal preference on my part but BC Mittendorf has opened more roofs than I've been on and his saw is: A Cutters Edge.And,I might add,he's damn clever with it.Showed me a couple really neat time savers that get you on and off the roof quick.With a nice 4x8(or larger,if you prefer)left behind. T.C.

  18. #43
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    Default Pop the top and give me da shlt

    Take your recip saw and put it in the back of your compartment. Take an axe and saw to the roof. My truck carries a K-1200 with warthog, K-950 with warthog, K-650 with metal/cement blade, cutters edge chain saw. I personally like the cutters edge but it can take a beating cutting our flat roofs that have been re-tared multiple times. Think about cutting 2x6 topped with tar paper topped with 1" tar toped with tin or stone topped with tar paper topped with 1" tar topped with stone. Take an axe to that and youll feel it for days. Cant say enough for the warthog cuts awesome doesnt bind easy as long as your full throttle (you are arent you!). Depending on who works the roof with me you probably will find both the K-1200 and the cutters edge an axe and 6ft Hook. Only draw back to the cutters edge is clean up but it works great on the cornice and barge boards. Since the question was posed, I take an 8lb pick axe to the roof and a 6lb pick axe with halligan when searching and 6lb pick axe and 6ft hook when inside hook.

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    Quote Originally Posted by dpwb22
    I'd hate to be that engine co. waiting for vert-vent in a hotroom while the truck comp. is swinging axes on the roof.
    I've been that engine plenty of times and I love to hear them up there with axes. I'll take a competant truck crew with axes any day. I think the problem is that truck work is a dying art. Its hard, heavy work and consequently I think many are looking for an "easier" way. I think (don't quote me here because I'm not 100% sure) that we use 12lb axes here and the few times I've used them on roofs (I'm on the engine but do get detailed to trucks on occasion) I've never had a problem puching through a roof with an axe. As far as loosing your balance with it, I never swing it above my head, as my academy instructor taught us "We're firemen, not lumberjacks." In my opinion there is no replacement for a good truck co. with axes on a peaked residential roof.

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    "We're firemen, not lumberjacks."

    Funny thing, I was told the same thing in the academy during truck company classes. Head level controlled swings are more effective than swinging away with hopes of hitting the right spot. Chop, chop, chop. My local doesnt have many peaked roofs. The only one I have been on recently I used the axe opened a nice 4 x 6 hole. As a truckie the only time I dont carry an axe is when im the up and over guy....responsible for second floor windows from the roof and helping the roof guy open'er up. But still take a saw. Better to have 2 saws and an axe on the roof.

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    That's similar to what I've heard green deckhands say when I tried showing them how to clout a pelican hook to turn barges loose from a tow.
    Some folks you can't tell a working solution because the "new way"they want to use has already been tried and left at the wharf but there it is.

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    DH,not being a wharf rat,does that mean you be on the saw or the axe side of the fence(er roof)?Saw on a pitched roof? Every chance we get.Damn few flat roofs in this town unless they're industrial.T.C.

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    Default Recip saw

    For what it is worth I have run alot of cordless tools and there is no way I would take a cordless sawzall on the roof to vent. The batteries just will not hold up you will have to make blade changes, what a pain. Stick to the ax, and if you cant run an ax learn.

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    Using the resip saw to open a roof is somewhat time consuming. I have tried them on the training ground and the K-12 and or Chainsaw blows the doors of it everytime. But iina small department that cant spend the money on a good K-12 or chainsaw then I can see someone using it.

    We do use the resip saw on our RIT team. Its proved its self many times during training on aluminum studs, dry wall, especially the construction used in hotels. (Sound Proof Construction) dougle everything!

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    I was responding to ChicagoFF's post about not being lumberjacks.
    I've had a few green deckhands swing at a pelican hook like it was a golf ball and wonder why it didn't pop off like it does when I take a short backswing and lay into it hard,twisting at the waist.
    My department doesn't go on roofs if the fire's been going more than 5 minutes.All we know is how long it took to get there,right?
    If we should have a need to open a roof,we reach for the Stihl saws in the trucks and if they can't get started,then we would use the axe.
    BTW,we do have a couple lumberjacks on my department.They're just itching to use those skills on a fireground.

    Quote Originally Posted by Rescue101
    DH,not being a wharf rat,does that mean you be on the saw or the axe side of the fence(er roof)?Saw on a pitched roof? Every chance we get.Damn few flat roofs in this town unless they're industrial.T.C.

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