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  1. #1
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    Default platform vs. ladder looking for advice

    we are village vol. dept 35 strong. preparing for the replacement of an alf 100' stick and boy is it getting complicated. how do we decide what we need? anybody with insight or who can compare and contrast, drop me a line. we do know it will have a pump, big pump. Factors: 1 1500gpm/1000 gal engine
    1 1250gpm/1000 gal engine
    1 duty driver/ engineer on 24/7
    10 story high rise senior apt bldg
    3 large manufacturing complexes and a co-gen
    approx. 40% of our coverage is rural
    3 1/2 story down town, one side left


  2. #2
    MembersZone Subscriber E229Lt's Avatar
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    Stick!

    No need for a platform and only 35 members. Why tie up two of them for an aerial operation?

    10 story highrise apt building, I assume fireproof is vastly an interior op.

    3 large manufacuring complexes, what height, I'm guessing 1-2 story. A single platform will not move manpower up and on as fast as a stick.

    Cost!!!!!!!!! nuff said on that.

    Other platforms in the area which could be called in the rare event one is needed?

  3. #3
    Forum Member Bones42's Avatar
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    While I can't disagree totally with E229Lt's points, in fact I agree with most of them, why limit yourself to a stick only? If you don't have the manpower, use the TL without anyone in the bucket, point the nozzle, start flowing, climb down and move on to something else. With a stick or TL, someone should still be at the turntable and/or pump panel and can shut down the pipe if needed. Otherwise, difference in vehicle size, weights, heights, etc all need to be looked at to make sure either can go where you need them to. And yes, cost will be a difference also.
    "This thread is being closed as it is off-topic and not related to the fire industry." - Isn't that what the Off Duty forum was for?

  4. #4
    MembersZone Subscriber jfTL41's Avatar
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    Having worked in a tower ladder company, one thing that seems to esape everyone is the safety concerns of a tower ladder. Some people look at a TL as and elevator or a carnival ride. Tower ladders are dangerous tools and can get you injured very easily. A few examples include:
    Crashing the bucket into the building (injuring the members and the bldg.)
    Putting the bucket up over a parapit and pulling it down into the street.
    Contact with power lines
    bouncing members out of the bucket by jerking controls.
    On ladder towers: Repositioning the bucket with members on the ladder.
    These are just a few real life hazzards, for those of you who say "we'll make a rule about that" you make your rules, firemen will continue to be firemen.
    Save the $$ go with an aerial. Have them make what you want/need, not what they make with your name painted on it. Take the time and do it right or you'll be living with the mistakes for 20 years.

  5. #5
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    Lightbulb It's the simple things...

    I agree with the others that for you an aerial would be the better option considering it sounds like most of your truck work will be 2- 3 1/2 story. I imagine that much of that will be using portable ladders.

    One absoultely critical feature if you should decide to go with the aerial AND if you also decide to get a pre-plumbed waterway with it is to make sure it is pinable.

    For years I worked on a 75ft Quint without a pinable waterway and while I could have done without the waterway altogether, the rocket scientists that spec'ed the rigs for us tried to save money by having it permanently attached to the top fly section! Well not only was it almost imposible to safely postition for upper floor or roof access it was extreemly dangerous as it couldn't rest on the parapet so it would wobble and thrash when getting on and off it.

    If you can't do without a pre-plumbed waterway, please do yourself and the brothers a favor and get the waterway pinable.

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  6. #6
    55 Years & Still Rolling hwoods's Avatar
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    Thumbs down Time to Disagree..............

    I (Very Respectfully) disagree with my friends who support the 100' Stick option. I have a 105' Seagrave Apollo Tower Ladder. It was the first production Apollo ever built, and it has it's problems. NONE of those problems have anything to do with the Bucket, just the "Truck" part. (Lousy design cooling system) I don't say Never very often, but, if if I have a choice between a Stick and a Bucket, I'll Never take the Stick first. The other thing, I'll Never put a pump on it. There is nothing my tower can't do, that a Stick can. There are things that my tower does, that a Stick can only dream about, such as the THREE Elevated Master Streams. Sticks provide a pathway to the roof, the bucket provides a safe working platform, complete with Lights, Water, Tools, and room for 2 to work comfortably. I've never seen a Stick advance horizontally into a warehouse with Master Streams flowing from the tip, we've done it with the Tower, several times.
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    Forum Member Weruj1's Avatar
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    I have to agree with Harve ......we run an older Sutphen quint and it would seem to me that ladder tower/platform/bucket can give you more than a straight stick can. I also think that some of these new trucks are flat out too darn big. But ya I would go for the patform vs the stick too.

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  8. #8
    Forum Member MemphisE34a's Avatar
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    Something that hasn't been mentioned is the time the truck is on the road. I know you buy it for firefighting, but realistically, especially in a town of your size it will only be used for aerial operations less than 1 % of its lifetime. The stick will forever be easier to drive as well as all the other benefits already mentioned.
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  9. #9
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    We are also a village department with roughly the same number of members. We just signed for a new 105' 500# tip quint with 500 gallon tank and 2000 gpm pump. I have to echo the previous post regarding the lack of use of the aerial. You may find that a nice big tower ladder is too big for your everyday operation. Its nice to have the bucket sometimes, but try to think of instances in the last few years when having the bucket would have made an appreciable impact. And try to keep in mind the jack spread. Our new truck is going to have a 14' spread on 4 jacks. Most of the towers are about 18.

  10. #10
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    first off, thank you all for the great feedback and by all means keep it coming. would it make a difference in anyones mind if i said there were two platforms both with pumps in our area? they are both about 20-30 min out. and yes correct on the mfg facilities, 1-2 stories. we would be reaching over more than up to. you must also realize that 35 strong is really only 15-20 well trained and seasoned regulars. i know many descussions reflect "truck co" operation comments and we do not work like that. manpower is always an issue and we just do what needs doin. this ladder is gonna carry a good deal of our structure fighting eqpmt. the comments on size and actual aerial use do make good sense. basically this truck is gonna need to be on scene if only for what is on it. chew on this and get back

  11. #11
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    Arrow

    More considerations that might effect you...

    1. Cost. Your dept probably isn't flush with cash. An aerial will be much cheaper than a comparable platform.

    2. You mentioned 40% is rurual, do you have either low weight bridges or low clearance bridges you must cross? If so that might affect your decision.

  12. #12
    Forum Member Rescue101's Avatar
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    Old men's diapers. Depends.Tower ladders come in different configurations and heights.So do aerials.A tower will cost you 75-100k more than a straight stick(nominal).You'll need to figure out a few things.What's the sharpest turn the rig will be required to make? What's the lightest bridge load you will have in the response area? What's the narrowest area you'll have to work in and what is the jack spread? What,exactly,do you want this new vehicle to do for YOU.How much $ do you have to work with? We are currently going thru the same proccess and the committee is leaning very heavily toward a TL,we have other aerials in reasonable travel distance but only 1 TL.So a lot depends on what you hope to accomplish with this piece.Good luck,T.C.

  13. #13
    Forum Member SpartanGuy's Avatar
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    I say it in every aerial discussion:

    Whatever you do get, GET A 100FT LADDER. Shorter is just asking for trouble in the rare event you gotta pluck someone off that balcony in the senior center, or when Wal-Mart comes through in five years and you're trying to reach the roof from the middle of a row of cars, or when you're trying to reach the roof of a three story stepped building where you have to throw the stick over a 50 foot setback due to the other tiers of floors being in your way... I've seen em all happen in neighboring companies. (we don't have a ladder, and if we call in for a truck, our protocol is always a 100fter)

    For a low run volunteer department, a ladder is 20+ year investment. Spend a little more, because it might be slightly overkill now, but you never know what might happen in 15 years.

    Remember one thing: You can always get 75' foot of reach out of a 100' ladder, but you can NEVER get 100' of reach from a 75'

    Nuff said about that issue.

    In regards to whether a straight stick or a tower, it depends a lot on your SOGs, manpower, and what you'll be using it with. A neighboring department has a 1988 Sutphen that looks almost identical to the old Water Tower 18(Harve), and it's pretty damned impressive to watch the fire disappear when you've got multiple master streams raining down on it. Then again, our neighboring on the other side has a 75' straight stick quint, and it's very good for a means of rapid access/escape from roofs or upper floors, much better than a tower for example.
    Last edited by SpartanGuy; 01-12-2005 at 03:18 PM.
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  14. #14
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    Good post TR.

    I'm a past Chief of said department, and one possiblity that is out there is running this vehicle in the Village as our first out. Does that change any opinions, or add any.

    Thanks.

  15. #15
    MembersZone Subscriber jfTL41's Avatar
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    Definitly, if you are going to use this as a quint and your primary response, you should go with the aerial ladder. Tower ladders both mid mount and rear mount are generally speaking going to be 40 plus feet o.a.l and in excess of 75000lbs. You may send it out only to have it not able to access the location due to bucket travel on the rear mounts or the 15' of rear end on the mid mount (which is the better option of the two). Aerial ladders can be speced in the 35' range for o.a.l. The rear mount aerial or Tl will offer greater compt space, regardless of what's on the end of the ladder.

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    as we do more research we have found the kme to be the shortest truck that has the most to offer. we have a kme 1500gpm/1000 now that is set up rescue style and we are happy. ant thoughts on the kme ladders?

  17. #17
    Forum Member firenresq77's Avatar
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    Originally posted by tjrcfd11
    as we do more research we have found the kme to be the shortest truck that has the most to offer. we have a kme 1500gpm/1000 now that is set up rescue style and we are happy. ant thoughts on the kme ladders?

    All I can say is do a thorough search through these forums........
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  18. #18
    Forum Member Rescue101's Avatar
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    Who wants to go fishin'? The can of worms just got opened.Say,are the Pa units still available? Duck and cover! Hehe T.C.

  19. #19
    MembersZone Subscriber jfTL41's Avatar
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    Grumman used to make fire apparatus that was crap including the Aerialcat line of ladders and TL. Grumman went out of the business KME picked up the Aerial cat line and guess what it is???

  20. #20
    Forum Member SpartanGuy's Avatar
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    Talking

    jfTL41:

    It's obviously the highest quality aerial on the market!
    "Captain 1 to control, retone this as a structure and notify the fire chief...."

    Safety is no accident.

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