1. #1
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    Question American LaFrance good or bad?

    My engine committe is now looking at an American LaFrance engine w/ an Eagle cab. I don't know much about American LaFrance. Any information would be appreciated. Does your department have an American LaFrance engine, what year? What large cities have American Lafrance fleets? Any problems? Comments welcome.

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    my dept does not have one but a nearby city (Summit) just received a ALF Tower Ladder and it was 3 inches above the spec, so they sent it back and from what i understand they removed something to lower it and when they got it back a peice of the suspension fell off the truck when it was being driven. I also heard ALF delivered some units to Philadelphia and those also failed the spec and they refused the delivery.

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    Default ???

    How many different companys have you asked about on here? Why dont you just put one post naming all the companies you are looking at and what type of truck you are considering. It would just be easier and we could get it all nailed down in one post.

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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Firefighter92
    My engine committe is now looking at an American LaFrance engine w/ an Eagle cab. I don't know much about American LaFrance. Any information would be appreciated. Does your department have an American LaFrance engine, what year? What large cities have American Lafrance fleets? Any problems? Comments welcome.
    I believe the Trucks the Philly refused were KME.
    We have a 2004 ALF on the Eagle chassis, Aluminum body. The people at RD Murray (our dealer) have been great to work with. Originally there were some issues with the wiring of the 110 on the cab, but that was corrected by RD Murrary (they didn't like the number of splices and connectors used by Ladson). If we were to do it over again, the entire unit would be built at Murray. Overall we've been satisfied with the engine, and extremely pleased by the response from our Dealer.

    Larry Welker
    ***'t Chief
    West Walworth FD
    Wayne County NY

    ** disclaimer- The opinions presented here are mine and mine alone they may or may not reflect those of my department and it's membership**

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    Default ALF Engine

    Quote Originally Posted by Firefighter92
    My engine committe is now looking at an American LaFrance engine w/ an Eagle cab. I don't know much about American LaFrance. Any information would be appreciated. Does your department have an American LaFrance engine, what year? What large cities have American Lafrance fleets? Any problems? Comments welcome.


    My Department has a 2003 ALF Engine. We have had only two problems, the first was a problem with the Harrison generator which was taken care of by the Dealer. The second was a problem with the injector pump on the Engine which was taken care of at our local Detroit warrenty center. This unit was built by Hamburg. Other then the above problems the unit has been great.

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    we have an eagle pumper 2002 1500 pump and water single axle luv it to death, very little problems mostly with vender equipment, recieving new pumper tanker fron them in sept, tandem axle eagle, both trucks built in casper wyo. email me if you have anything i can help you with, good luck i know those truck commitee meetings can be brutal lol

    sparky

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    We took delivery of a single axle 75' quint on an Eagle chassis this past summer. It has seen quite a bit of action and is doing great. No issues at all except for vendor installed radio and some burnt out lights on the 110 system. Everyone is very happy with it.

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    After all the bashing that ALF has had here, it's nice to see that we're not the only ones to get a decent piece from them. For a while I was begining to think that we were the abnormality, glad to see it was just the vocal minority that had problems.

    Larry

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    My Fire Dept. has a 2004 100' ALF Rear-Mount Ladder that runs about 1000 calls a year with very few problems. It's a nice size truck for city work. In addition we took delivery of a new ALF Metropolitan Rescue aluminum Pumper in March of 2005 and so far so good. The guys like the space in the cab and the handling of each vehicle.

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    Default good news

    It's nice to hear some good things about ALF for a change. Maybe they can Mstart plugging some of her holes to keep her upright. My good man, . RETJAZZ may be on to something. lets give it time

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    Thumbs down

    All you guys with the love fest for American LaFrance, ask Dansville, NY about their 3 year old platform that just went into service a few weeks ago for the first time because American LaFrance built a piece of junk. Or the village of Pittsford, NY that sued American LaFrance over their 2 pumpers and settled out of court. They then put both pieces of junk up for sale and bought a new Pierce. I know one was sold for sure but I am unsure about the other. I can go on and on and on. There is a reason they are called American LaTrash!

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    Default Appointment Aug 22, 2051

    I've set an appointment in my calender for 8/22/2051. On that day I'll be 100 years old, and I'll bet anyone who wants to attend my birthday party that we can log onto Firehouse.com on that day, and still read comments on how sorry _________ (insert Manufacturers Name) trucks are that were built years ago. It wouldn't surprise me on that day to still see post on the last two trucks mentiond in this forum.

    I guess no matter what name a Fire Truck carries your only as good as the last truck built. Of the last 1,000 truck built by any manfacturer if there were a few "lemons" in the batch then the whole 1,000 were lemons in the eye's of the "experts"?

    I'm not surprised. We treat "people" the same way so why not Fire Trucks? No matter how good a person, Firefighter, husband, or father you are your only remembered by most not for your last heroic act.... your remembered for the one incident that wasn't so heroic, and apparently nothing you do after that erases the one bad incident. It makes no difference that last month you saved 10 children from a burning school house. This week when they talk about you.... "did you hear about FF Smith?" "yea the drunk bastard left the retirement party and got a DUI". From this day forward FF Smith will only be remembered not for the time he did something good, but for the time he had a little too much to drink at the retirement party, and got stopped by the Police, and he'll always be considered a "drunk" from here on out.

    The old Firehouse adage appears to be true. 100 "Atta-boys" don't make up for 1 "oh-s**t".

    Pretty sad state of affairs when society, and we "humans" only judge each other solely on the last negative incident we can remember, hear about, and read about, and take nothing else into consideration.

    If you want an invitation to my Birthday party on 8/22/2051 let me know.

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    Pretty sad state of affairs when society, and we "humans" only judge each other solely on the last negative incident we can remember, hear about, and read about, and take nothing else into consideration.
    Unfortunatley thats the fire service for ya. I have members cryin about a salesman that screwed up an order 20 years ago. Sad thing is the guy is dead and buried.

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    Even sadder is when someone doesn't get the results of the bidding process that they want, then when they receive the piece as speced, it is nit picked to death. Especially when the specs had flaws in them which were pointed out by the engineers, only to be told to build it as speced. Then they badmouth the manufacturer for building what they wanted.

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    Revenant.. is Murray building on Spartan chassis again? We have 3 in service, excellent apparatus and dealer. I don't know alot about ALF chassis, but if you buy an ALF built in Hamburg it is going to be an exceptional rig.

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    According to the sales manager at RD Murray, they will now build their body on any chassis that is available, be it LaFrance, Spartan, HME, Freightliner, International... I know him fairly well and ran into him a few weeks ago. I agree that RD Murray builds a great body. It is too bad they did not buy themselves back out of the whole LaFrance deal. It should be interesting to see what happens now with them.

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    If it's built as a LaFrance it will carry a Lafrance nameplate. They built a heavy rescue on I believe it was a Spartan Cab and chassis a while back in Ladson and it was LaFranced. I've even heard rumors that there were a couple of Murrays built since the buyout bearing the Murray nameplates, can't confirm this tho

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    We just received our Metropolitan on Dec 21,2005 and it has been a great truck. It happens to sit by a 1977 ALF and a 1975 ALF both that still make pump test and I would put up against any new engine. (Our New ALF also) Every manufacturer has its issues at some point. The thing to do is get past all the folks thats going to talk junk and get to the meat of the matter.
    Forrest Gregg
    Chief
    Holtville/Slapout
    Fire & Rescue Inc.
    District 10 Director
    AAVFD
    IAFC
    www.holtvilleslapoutfd.org

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    Unfortunately my department has switched over to E One for all our new apparatus so I can not comment on the new ALF. One thing I do know is that the older ALF are some serious work horses. We run three ALF: A 1975 Engine, a 1982 Ladder (Quint) and a 1983 Engine (Just recently retired a 1969 Engine) and each one of these pieces of equipment are currently active (Ladder is the busiest company in the borough). Other than old age, there has not been any problems with these vehicles.

    Like I said, we do not have the privilege to run with ALF (unfortunately), but from what I hear on the forums sounds like they do not build them like they used to (to much electronics??).

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    A department I work at as a side job has 2 ALF Eagle chassis pumpers. One was a demo bought when the department was started a little over 2 years ago and is itself about 5 years old. The 2nd one was speced and bought by the department and is almost 2 years old.

    To this day the following problems exist:

    Both rigs: Electrical system issues involving warning lights, sirens, interior cab lights and radio.

    The newest rig: Everytime we can see smoke in the distance this rig will invariably blow the hose attached to the turbo. I mean everytime, damn near without exception. Detroit blames ALF and ALF blames Detroit so the Pierce dealer keeps fixing it.

    Both rigs: Aluminum bodies. Complete re-do of the crosslay area sub-structure
    due to cracks.

    Just my experiences from 1st hand experience with the "New" ALF.

    In my volunteer department we had a '79 ALF Century that was the most reliable and mechanically sound pumper I have ever seen, ridden on or worked from. This rig took a beating time and time again and never gave up. With one exception where the engine blew and we installed a new crate 8V71 (2 years before we got rid of it), the rig was damn near perfect.

    Oh well, they don't make things like they used to.

    Bottom line, the new ALF is at the bottom of the pecking order in my book.
    Stay low and move it in.

    Be safe.


    Larry

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    Post

    There is a huge difference between the American LaFrance of old and the one now in business. In fact the only thing that is the same is the name. No one from the original American LaFrance has been associated with American LaFrance for quite some time. My understanding, (some please correct me if I am wrong) is that Freightliner basically bought the naming rights to American LaFrance in the late 90's when they decided to go into the firetruck market. They bought up RD Murray, 3D, LTI along with a few others, and slapped the American LaFrance name on them. The current American LaFrance cannot and does not and will never be able to hold a candle next to the American LaFrance of old!!!

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    The problem with the turbo hoses blowing isn't limited to ALF. We have 22 Pierces in our fleet- 12 Quantum Pumpers, 1 Quantum ladder, 1 Dash Pumper, 2 Dash Towers, 1 Dash Ladder, 2 Enforcer Pumpers, and 3 Quantum Heavy Rescues. All of the ones with Series 60 Detroits (which is all of the Quantums and some of the Dashes) have had problems blowing turbo hoses. Pierce says it's a design flaw by Detroit, which the local Detroit dealer and our techs seem to agree on. Not sure what Detroit's response has been.

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