Cascade System Help
We at the Big Otter VFD in Clay Co. WV have just recently received our FEMA grant in the total of 97,000 after you add our 10% into the pot. We have selected some nice equipment to outfit our apparatus and members. Just to name some things: Globe Extreme Turnout Gear w/Dragonslayer knee protection, Scott NXG2 4.5 45min carbon fiber airpacks, and last but not least a cascade system. This is where I'm needing your help.
We have several bids on different cascade systems, and was wanting input from around the country on pros and cons of each type.
Bid 1: All-in-one Cascade from EagleAir 13cfm 14hp compressor 4 - 6000psi dot tanks and a 2-bottle fill station. ($25,000)
Bid 2: American Airworks 3 piece system with 10cfm 13hp compressor 4 - 5000psi dot tanks, and a 2-bottle fill station ($21,000)
Bid 3: 3-piece Eagle Compressor 13cfm 14hp compressor 4 - 6000psi dot tanks and a Scott Revolvair fill system.($18,000)
Bid 4: 3-piece Bauer compressor 9 cfm 10hp compressor 3 - 6000psi dot tanks and a 2-bottle fill station. ($21,000)
Keep in mind we run maybe 10 structure fires a year in our response area along with about 8 - 12 motor vehicle fires we are needing some feedback on the different types and quality of compressor bids that we have. Also, any previous experience or problems with these systems would greatly help our department choose the best equipment. Respond on the turnouts and airpacks too if you want, all input in accepted and taken into cosideration.
We at the Big Otter VFD are just trying to get the opinion of FireFighters across the nation on the equipment that we are about to purchase, and we want to make the right decisions.
BOVFD - UNIT 3021
Well, considering your fire call volume, I don't see where you can really go wrong with any of 'em. They should last you years with care. I mean if you were a big department running several fire calls a week and filling bottles every single day, I might be concerned. I'm not familiar with the first three, but we have a Bauer at work and it's a good machine, although I don't work with it much.
At my volly department we have a Mako...have you considered them? Granted, we only purchased the Mako because a) it was available and b) it was a steal (secondhand from a nearby department but immaculately maintained). But we're real pleased with it, it's a good unit.
You might consider the local availability of service for the unit. If you have a problem with it, can they get a technician to you quickly and get it back in service? Also ask about routine maintenance...we decided to have it serviced annually by a qualified technician, just to protect our investment.
A little tip our technician gave me, since your actual use of the unit will be fairly low....make sure you fire it up and use it every couple of weeks, even just for 10 minutes or so. He had just rebuilt one for a neighboring department (to the tune of about $3,000). It was about 3 years old and only had, I think, less than 10 hours on the meter. They wouldn't run the thing for months at a time and the pistons just seized up after a while, from lack of use. Try to avoid that if you can.... :eek: