Why register? ...To Enhance Your Experience
+ Reply to Thread
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 35
  1. #1
    MembersZone Subscriber
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Gales Ferry, CT, USA
    Posts
    23

    Default Looking into a pumper refurb.....

    We're in the very initial stages of getting a truck committee together to take a look at the costs (financial, out of service time, life span, etc) of refurbishing our 1988 Pierce pumper. Obviously we have a lit of work to do and don't want to leave any details out. Without getting into Pierce vs. _ _ _ _, does anyone have any experience with actually refurbishing a truck like this? I'm looking for feedback (positive or negative) from folks who have actually refurbed a truck, as well as those who have examined this and determined that a new pumper is the way to go......

    (Caveat: I know what my pre-examination thought is, and its the more expensive option )


  2. #2
    Forum Member FyredUp's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 1999
    Location
    Rural Wisconsin, Retired from the burbs of Milwaukee
    Posts
    9,860

    Default

    My volly FD explored this a few years back with a much older vehicle, a 1974 Mack. We knew we had a sound engine trans and pump. We wanted to keep the Mack cab and get it enclosed and replace the entire rear body to make it into a rescue engine configuration.

    Well, by the time we were done it was going to cost over half as much as a new pumper. This was quickly thrown out as impractical.

    Rresearch is the key....simple research involving estimates by reputable rebuilders.

    Good luck,

    FyredUp

  3. #3
    Forum Member Fyrtrks's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 1999
    Location
    Binghamton,N.Y.
    Posts
    265

    Default

    I have to agree with FyredUp. You need to balance the cost of refurbing and the cost of new.

    I have a customer who is going through that right now. They are on the fence wondering if they should refurb or buy a new rescue. The truck is 22+ years old. One quote they received was more than the truck cost new.

    You also have to remember that your unit will will reach it's 20 year limit in less than 2 years. If you refurbish will you get your investment back.
    Fyrtrks

  4. #4
    Forum Member
    Join Date
    Dec 1999
    Location
    Swanton Fire Dept. Swanton, Vermont
    Posts
    475

    Default

    Didn't Hyattsville (Prince Georges County) refurb their similar aged Pierces a couple years ago? You may want to go to their website and look around. They may be able to answer some questions.

    I am not sure of their webpage but you should be able to google it or get it off Firehouse.com.

  5. #5
    Forum Member canuck1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Posts
    205

    Default Annex D

    Quote Originally Posted by Holyfield911
    We're in the very initial stages of getting a truck committee together to take a look at the costs (financial, out of service time, life span, etc) of refurbishing our 1988 Pierce pumper. Obviously we have a lit of work to do and don't want to leave any details out. Without getting into Pierce vs. _ _ _ _, does anyone have any experience with actually refurbishing a truck like this? I'm looking for feedback (positive or negative) from folks who have actually refurbed a truck, as well as those who have examined this and determined that a new pumper is the way to go......

    (Caveat: I know what my pre-examination thought is, and its the more expensive option )
    Check out Annex D in the newest NFPA 1901 standard for a discussion on older vehicles, and some thoughts on refurbishing.

  6. #6
    Forum Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Posts
    27

    Default

    Doesn't Pierce do refurbs? If not, there are two companies on the east coast which come to mind. We had our '76 Mack refurbished by Swab Wagon Company, of Elizabethville Pa, back in 1990. They did a good job for us. The second company is Interstate Truck Equipment of Maryland. I have seen several examples of their work. It is of the highest quality. But as stated in earlier posts, it would be wise to do cost comparisons to see if a refurb is cost effective for your needs. Good luck.

  7. #7
    MembersZone Subscriber
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Gales Ferry, CT, USA
    Posts
    23

    Default

    I've seen some of the new work Swab does and I'm impressed with it. The local hospital here in New London, CT (Lawrence and Memorial) used Swab for their last PRU.

    Thanks for the comments overall guys, I think we're going to get together soon and come up with a list of "wants" , "Needs", and "it would be nice's''. We'll then try to solicit a few opinions from some companies -- get some cost estimates -- and see what we're looking at.

    Overall, I am already of the opinion that we could use a smaller pumper for some of the more rural areas of town. This truck primarily serves as a water supply engine and our telesquirt is the primary first attack engine. I think we need to sit down and look at the tank size and hose loads to see if they are even necessary. Most of the function is either laying into a plug or hitting a dry hydrant for tanker ops.

  8. #8
    Forum Member Fire304's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    At the Helm
    Posts
    1,174

    Default

    Why does the truck need a rehab? Does it just need a paint job and some new gaskets on the doors, or are you talking major body work and a rebuild of the engine? I ask because, obviously, the more work you do the closer you come to buying a new truck. If this is a daily driver would you benefit more from modern safety devices such as 3 point belts and ABS? Does it need a whole new body? What sort of shape is the frame in?

    The way I look at it, if the truck is in pretty good shape and will be used as a reserve piece then a refurb might be worth while, but if its beat or you need a 1st due you should really consider going new, especially if the truck is approaching the end of its life per NFPA standards.

    I think Greenwood in Attelboro MA also does rehabs.
    ______________________________ __________________
    If you are new to posting please CLICK HERE for an essential lesson
    ______________________________ __________________
    A bad day in the boat is better than a good day in the office. And in my case the office is a boat!

    IACOJ Fire Boat 1

  9. #9
    MembersZone Subscriber
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Gales Ferry, CT, USA
    Posts
    23

    Default

    Its actually our busiest piece of equipment because it rolls to MVA's, any alarms, fires, etc in both our district and our automatic aid district. Its second due to our district for any 1st Alarm assignments. The frame is in decent shape, the body needs a little bit of work as far as removing some typical rust near the wheel wells , etc. It definately needs some serious work on the electrical system.

    I think the first thing we'll need to do is have a qualified technician / mechanic go over it with a fine toothed comb and come up with a pick-list of what needs to be done.

    I think a 3rd party needs to give a good size up of the truck because anyone in-house will already have biases.

  10. #10
    Forum Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    4

    Default

    I have 2 refurbed trucks in my fleet and we will never have another one. You end up with a truck that looks good on the outside and is the same POS underneath.

  11. #11
    MembersZone Subscriber
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Posts
    91

    Default Refurb vs New

    We refurb'd an '82 Mack CF back in the 90s. We will never do that again. Here were the problems we had after refurbing:
    - The trucks electrical system was still only 200 amps give or take. With all the new power hungry radio chargers and such, the truck always had electrical problems.

    - Swab wagon company installed an air conditioner in the newly extended cab area. The electrical system could not handle the load so we couldn't use it.

    - They butchered the factory electrical system installing new lights and such. No one wanted to do repairs on the truck after that.

    - The steel body and cab rusted back through after about 6 years.

    - A lot of refurbed trucks end up exceeding their front axle weight when enclosed.

    - As previously mentioned, check-out nfpa 1901.

    We had two Swab engines on Mack CFs. We will never deal with them again. They build better dog catcher trucks then fire trucks.

  12. #12
    Forum Member Rescue101's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2001
    Location
    Bridgton,Me USA
    Posts
    8,162

    Default

    One of the considerations on Refurbing an older truck is whether or not you can still get chassis parts and for how long.In many cases by the time the truck is due for a rehab,chassis is 20+ years old and parts become increasingly hard to find.Plus body styles change and many parts will have to be hand made.As the others said do your homework and look carefully at the cost/benefit.Good luck,T.C.

  13. #13
    Forum Member Fire304's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    At the Helm
    Posts
    1,174

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Holyfield911
    It definately needs some serious work on the electrical system.
    $$$$$$$$$$$$ and you will never be happy with it unless you do a 100% rip out and upgrade.
    ______________________________ __________________
    If you are new to posting please CLICK HERE for an essential lesson
    ______________________________ __________________
    A bad day in the boat is better than a good day in the office. And in my case the office is a boat!

    IACOJ Fire Boat 1

  14. #14
    MembersZone Subscriber npfd801's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Somewhere in Illinois
    Posts
    2,216

    Default

    My take on the issue is this - if you need some paint work and maybe an enlosed cab - that's one thing. To start really going at the guts of the thing, things start getting terribly expensive. A couple of departments here have extended the life of decent rigs by adding enclosed cabs, freshening the paint, maybe changing some of the warning lights - that to me seems financially sound. Trying to make an old chassis compliant to current standards, things start to get ugly.

  15. #15
    MembersZone Subscriber
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Gales Ferry, CT, USA
    Posts
    23

    Default

    The cab is enclosed but its a cab-over-engine so its tight inside to start with. One thing we're going to look at it is what its going to take to recude the engine noise inside the passenger compartment. There's really no room to put any sound dampening insulation or anything inside -- so thats of course one concern.

    The next hot topic is what does it cost to re-pipe the pump system? I have a feeling once you start trying to make all the gauges and valves line up properly, its not going to be cheap.

    I think i'll have more to post once we get a few brainstorming meetings in and come up with some direction for this whole thing.

  16. #16
    Forum Member Fire304's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    At the Helm
    Posts
    1,174

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Holyfield911
    The next hot topic is what does it cost to re-pipe the pump system?
    Wow, between the electrical and the plumbing your talking beaucoup bucks. You know I've seen a lot of older trucks, include my FD's 1948 that still can make an annual pump test, and with a few isolated exceptions (usually the rear discharge pipes that run through a steel tank) I've never seen a pump that needed to be replumbed.

    As for engine noise, good luck. Best bet it to buy a David Clark or Fire Comm system, or just some cheap ear phones for the crew to wear. You can replace the existing insulation under the hood and maybe cover the cowling with a 1/2 thick pad but those older trucks are just noisey and there is not much that can be done. If the truck has side intakes a lot of the noise comes through the air ducts leading to those.
    ______________________________ __________________
    If you are new to posting please CLICK HERE for an essential lesson
    ______________________________ __________________
    A bad day in the boat is better than a good day in the office. And in my case the office is a boat!

    IACOJ Fire Boat 1

  17. #17
    Forum Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Woodbridge Twp, New Jersey
    Posts
    863

    Default

    Look into buying a new " Pierce Enforcer Pumper " with a 400 hp engine , 1500 - 2000 gpm pump , 750 tank for about $ 340,000 and save yourself all the problems in refurbing a older pumper , a tower ladder or aerial maybe worth saving !...
    Last edited by NewJerseyFFII; 04-08-2006 at 03:37 PM.

  18. #18
    Forum Member
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Bryn Athyn, Pa.
    Posts
    1,614

    Default Gliders

    One thing I haven't heard too much about in the last few years is the use of "Glider Kits." It's a fairly common practice in the trucking industry that's used mostly when a truck has been wrecked or burned but its drive train is still in good condition. They take any or all of the engine, transmission, rear and in the case of fire apparatus, the pump. Those get rebuilt (if you want) and reused. The whole rest of the vehicle is brand new, to your spec.

    E1 was plugging it for a time some years ago. I thought Pierce was, too. Other builders fooled around with it as well. Any manufacturer that does refurbs certainly has the capability of doing a glider, if they want to. I've also seen what was called powered gliders, where they put in a new (or factory rebuilt exchange) engine.

    A couple of things I'd want to watch out for. How would this thing be titled? Would it retain its original title, or is it a new vehicle? D.O.T regs with respect highway vehicles and gliders used to say that if you use two or more of the major components you can retain the original title (and presumably, V.I.N.). I don't know what current practice is. Why would you want to retain the original? If you call it new, it has to meet all current standards for new vehicles. That would include emissions, ABS, and anything else the Feds have blessed us with, not to mention NFPA.

    There's a company (the name escapes me at the moment) that advertises in "Pennsylvania Fireman" that's doing a takeoff on gliders. You'll see ads for new engines or ladders at what seems to be ridiculously low prices. What I understood them to be doing is taking drivetrain components from wrecked trucks and building fire trucks around them. If a highly ethical company was doing it, that's something that could have possibilities. If not....

    Has anyone gone this route? Any feedback?

    Stay safe out there, everyone goes home!

  19. #19
    MembersZone Subscriber
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Rural Iowa
    Posts
    3,106

    Default

    The glider is what the Army is doing with their fleet of over the road tractors (M915 - Frightliner conventionals). Very low miles by civilian stds (as with fire trucks). Pull the engine (Cummins) and rear bogey assembly. Everything else is new. Cost approx 50% of a new truck.

  20. #20
    Forum Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Woodbridge Twp , New Jersey
    Posts
    492

    Post Glider Information

    Quote Originally Posted by chiefengineer11 View Post
    One thing I haven't heard too much about in the last few years is the use of "Glider Kits." It's a fairly common practice in the trucking industry that's used mostly when a truck has been wrecked or burned but its drive train is still in good condition. They take any or all of the engine, transmission, rear and in the case of fire apparatus, the pump. Those get rebuilt (if you want) and reused. The whole rest of the vehicle is brand new, to your spec.

    E1 was plugging it for a time some years ago. I thought Pierce was, too. Other builders fooled around with it as well. Any manufacturer that does refurbs certainly has the capability of doing a glider, if they want to. I've also seen what was called powered gliders, where they put in a new (or factory rebuilt exchange) engine.

    A couple of things I'd want to watch out for. How would this thing be titled? Would it retain its original title, or is it a new vehicle? D.O.T regs with respect highway vehicles and gliders used to say that if you use two or more of the major components you can retain the original title (and presumably, V.I.N.). I don't know what current practice is. Why would you want to retain the original? If you call it new, it has to meet all current standards for new vehicles. That would include emissions, ABS, and anything else the Feds have blessed us with, not to mention NFPA.

    There's a company (the name escapes me at the moment) that advertises in "Pennsylvania Fireman" that's doing a takeoff on gliders. You'll see ads for new engines or ladders at what seems to be ridiculously low prices. What I understood them to be doing is taking drivetrain components from wrecked trucks and building fire trucks around them. If a highly ethical company was doing it, that's something that could have possibilities. If not....

    Has anyone gone this route? Any feedback?

    Stay safe out there, everyone goes home!
    Do these fire apparatus builders re-use the front & rear axles and frame rails when doing a Glider Kit, And then install a new cab & truck body on the vehicle ?

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Similar Threads

  1. Terminolgy? pumper, pumper tanker, recue pumper, Etc???
    By rezfire in forum Apparatus Innovation
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 02-04-2004, 02:27 PM
  2. Replies: 0
    Last Post: 06-04-2003, 01:07 PM
  3. 208-year-old pumper
    By NJFFSA16 in forum Fire Buffs' Firehouse
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 08-19-2002, 01:32 AM
  4. Civilian Fire Fatalities
    By DCFF in forum Firefighters Forum
    Replies: 38
    Last Post: 02-08-2002, 08:18 AM
  5. Refurbing a pumper....what should we know?
    By FyredUp in forum Apparatus Innovation
    Replies: 10
    Last Post: 10-27-1999, 05:39 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts