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  1. #1
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    Question Sutphen engines good or bad?

    My engine committe is seriously considering a Sutphen engine. Any problems? How's the service? If your department has an engine what model and year? Comments welcome.


  2. #2
    Forum Member gunnyv's Avatar
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    Our first Sutphen is approx 1 yr old now, Shield series pumper. IMO, junk. It didn't help that it's a bargain basement demo model that is completely different from the rest of our apparatus. The thing bounces all over the road, worst riding rig I've ever been in, and that's saying something, cuz we had a 1975 FTI when I started that seemed to have square wheels. One of the folding jumpseats tore right off the back wall, it had no reinforcement, was screwed into the sheet metal. The Q is built into the front of the cab, which seems to focus the sound right back into the cab. Because it's built into the cab, you can't put the sound focusing shroud on it.

    Previous attempts by Sutphen to get our business were denied due to their limited ability to customize. Compartments are 12" or 24" deep (no 16" or 20", etc),hosebed too high because of the location of frame rails.

    To be fair, most of the depts that have the Sutphen towers like them. Noone that I know that has Sutphen pumpers likes them.

  3. #3
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    Default reply to question on sutphen

    in all truth fairness honesty i have impressions of fire matters based on years and years of travel and talk all over

    so far i havent had a positive image of anything sutphen BUT

    i am willing to keep an open mind

    columbus ohio has just gotten 10 beautiful new top of the line pumpers that look fdny-ish

    maybe sutphen is really trying hard

    but till now i have had a hard time liking the product from what i have seen

    i think u will get different stories from people who like or dont like

    i am undecided

    they do sell a big heap of trucks

    especially towers

    but seems they have been pushing hard on the pumps too

    contact columbus ohio and ask them

    they have had sutphens over and over coz they r next door to the plant
    Last edited by apparatusfan; 01-27-2006 at 10:16 PM. Reason: typo

  4. #4
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    Default gunnyv

    If you and/or your department have issues as described in your reply, I would suggest you call Sutphen at 1-800-848-5860 and ask for Ken Creese. With the seating problem you incurred does not sound correct, where the folding jump seats added at a later date. Also regarding the Q siren, the Q is traditionally mounted in the grill 95% of the times on all Sutphen pumpers, rescue and aerials. If your not use to it there it can be relocated.

    It is unfortunate that you feel it is not worthy of your department by buying the demo that was already built so I am sure it does not compare to I am assuming, much higher priced apparatus in your fleet. The Sutphen Monarch series offers upgraded suspensions and options that are not possible on the shield series.

    The Shield Series is a standard, limited optioned engine that is priced in line with all other manufacturers. The shield chassis is basically the same you would recieve on all Sutphen engines with the exception of chrome and trim packages.

    All manufacturers have different compartment sizes, width, depth and height. Usually no two are the same. The main thing with your situation is how your department is being taken care of by your dealer and the factory with the issues you have presented. I am a dealer for Sutphen and would not be replying to this if I did not believe service and satisfaction comes first.

    Take Care & Good Luck !

  5. #5
    Disillusioned Subscriber Steamer's Avatar
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    We've got 3 Engine's and a Tower, and all are Sutphen's. We just ordered another Engnine, and looking at another Tower. We've never had any major problems that they haven't worked with us to fix, so we've been satisfied over the years.
    Steve Gallagher
    IACOJ BOT
    ----------------------------
    "I don't apologize for anything. When I make a mistake, I take the blame and go on from there." - Woody Hayes

  6. #6
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    Thumbs up

    The " Sutphen Shield Series " pumper is a bargain at $ 275,000 and is much better than a commercial cab at almost the same cost !! The departments in our area like there Sutphen engines.

  7. #7
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    we have 2 1993 Sutphen engines and a 1989 Quint. All three have had their shares of issues, some Sutphens and some not. i.e. Detroit engine, Hale pump, etc.
    The engines had problems when new due to body screws coming loose. We spent the first 3-4 months tightening screws and replacing lost ones. Have had electrical with all three also. But I believe every fire truck has elec. issues. The quint has an electical short in the platform now. Stand in the bucket and touch the ladder you get a shock. Not good. About to go in for a refurb. Replaced with a Smeal 100' platform.
    The guys don't like then due to the specs, design etc. Partly due to the city not having the $$ at the time to build a perfect rig. whatever that is

    You best plan of action is speak to neighboring dept that may have them and hear what they say about the trucks and the dealer. Sutphen is a reputable company and they build a good product.

    in my opinion the best trucks come from Pierce, Sutphen and Smeal and Ferrara.

  8. #8
    Forum Member backsteprescue123's Avatar
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    Where I am an explorer we have a 1978 Sutphen TL. Weruj1 can shed more light on this issue, but the truck is in great condidtion and still works great.
    ------------------------------------
    These opinions are mine and do not reflect the opinions of any organizations I am affiliated with.
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  9. #9
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    Orlando has been exclusively Sutphen for pumpers and towers since the mid 70's. Compared to what other depts in the area have, E-One and Pierce, we seem to have the better trucks. Our pumpers are the Monarch Series so I can't comment on the Shield. Hose beds are rather high, but it's a trade for increased compartment space with a shorter wheelbase. The trucks manuever and handle great. Even as units are downgraded from frontline to reserve status, then eventually auctioned off, they still run well. Any issues are always addressed and never result in extended downtime. We did have the same problem with the flip-down jump seats breaking off, but this was when the new cab first came out and we haven't had the problem with the later trucks.

  10. #10
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    Took delivery in Dec. of our Monarch Rescue Pumper. I have operated Pierce up till then and at this point not go back to Pierce. THe truck has performed beyond our expectations. Excellent dealer support with any Q's or concerns. Came in early on delivery too! Compared to our Quantum and Enforcer by Pierce, I have to give the nod to the Sutphen.

  11. #11
    Forum Member backsteprescue123's Avatar
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    Pageing Weruj1............. Weruj1 report to the Apparatus Innovation Forum............Question Pending.........
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    These opinions are mine and do not reflect the opinions of any organizations I am affiliated with.
    ------------------------------------

  12. #12
    Forum Member Weruj1's Avatar
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    yeah go ahead caller ...........you are on the on the air with 'Ruji !
    IACOJ both divisions and PROUD OF IT !
    Pardon me sir.. .....but I believe we are all over here !
    ATTENTION ALL SHOPPERS: Will the dead horse please report to the forums.(thanks Motown)
    RAY WAS HERE 08/28/05
    LETHA' FOREVA' ! 010607
    I'm sorry, I haven't been paying much attention for the last 3 hours.....what were we discussing?
    "but I guarentee you I will FF your arse off" from>
    http://www.firehouse.com/forums/show...60#post1137060post 115

  13. #13
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    Default Sutphen always been dependable

    Our department has three Sutphen engines. '82, '93, and a '98. They have always been very dependable and have worked hard for us. All three have Detroit Diesel engines. This year we will take delivery of a new Heavy Rescue with water. Sutphen would not build our configuration so we will be getting a new Marion/Spartan. Hopefully we will get the same level of service that we have enjoyed with the Sutphens.

    Keep learning, Keep moving.

  14. #14
    Forum Member SCOOBY14B's Avatar
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    Default

    Since the mid 80's we've had about 20 Sutphen engines and about 8 mid mount ladders. Our newest engine is a 1991 model and they are still running around in reserve status with anywhere bewteen 175,000-240,000 miles. They'll pump and run circles around our 1994 Ferrara's and 1996 and 1999 FL/Saulsbury (9 in total), our 2002 FL/Luverne's (4), and 2004 FL/American Lafrance (4).

    We currently have 2 Sutphen 75' midmount sticks and 6 midmount 90+ towers (1992-2005) with another to be delivered next month and 3 more on order.

    Our department LOVE's Sutphens, they have served us well. I just wish we could have bought 10 new Sutphen engines instead of the KME's (low bid).

  15. #15
    Forum Member confire's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by concord41
    Our department has three Sutphen engines. '82, '93, and a '98. They have always been very dependable and have worked hard for us. All three have Detroit Diesel engines. This year we will take delivery of a new Heavy Rescue with water. Sutphen would not build our configuration so we will be getting a new Marion/Spartan. Hopefully we will get the same level of service that we have enjoyed with the Sutphens.

    Keep learning, Keep moving.
    The 1983 that concord41 mentioned underwent approximately $60K in cosmetic repairs three years ago. Repairs like minor body work and paint (steel body) new Upholstery, emergency lighting, radio, siren and generator but nothing done mechanical. The pump, engine and drivetrain were fine. We did have the radiator cleaned and flushed. Also the hose bed was raised to accommodate 2500 feet of 5Ē hose.
    This 23 y/o truck drives rides and pumps like it was new. Iíve often wondered if we had not fought for the custom over the commercial chassis, what shape it would be in today?

    Most manufactures provide good, reliable trucks, sometimes you can get a lemon. Ours are apples; they just look the color of lemons but have performed excellent over the years

    Confire
    [IMG]eng2.jpg [/IMG]
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  16. #16
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    Default Junk

    Garbage...call Hamilton NY Fire Department.....numerous electrical problems, tank over-flow spills into compartments, cross-lay bed for 2 -1/2 in was 1" too narrow to fit 2 rows, etc.

    LDR20TRK

  17. #17
    Forum Member Fyrtrks's Avatar
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    Default Not Junk

    Hamilton has had some problems but I think they center around the salesman. Granted there are/were electrical problems, but sales should have made every effort to correct the other problems. Travel down Rte 12 to Binghamton entire department is Sutphen no problems other than chassis problems on commercials and abuse on other parts. Then go a little west to Endwell they are changing over to all custom Sutpphen. Talk to Stittville NY Sutphen has bent overbackwards for them on one 65' tower. Syracuse has has 12+ Sutphens.
    Last edited by Fyrtrks; 02-12-2006 at 05:19 PM.
    Fyrtrks

  18. #18
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    Thumbs up

    Quote Originally Posted by Fyrtrks
    Hamilton has had some peoblems but I think they center around the salesman. Granted there are/were electrical problems, but sales should have made every effort to correct the other problems. Travel down Rte 12 to Binghamton entire department is Sutphen no problems other than chassis problems on commercials and abuse on other parts. Then go a little west to Endwell they are changing over to all custom Sutpphen. Talk to Stittville NY Sutphen has bent overbackwards for them on one 65' tower. Syracuse has has 12+ Sutphens.
    Also take a look at " Seagrave & Pierce " they build a very good apparatus that sould be in service for 20 -25 years without to many problems !!

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