Thread: tillers

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    Question tillers

    does anyone make either of the following apparatus--

    a tillered tower

    a tillered ladder over 105 feet.

    with all that space, it seems like you could have a lot of freedom.

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    I believe Sutphen played around with the idea, but due to engineering concerns, shot it down. Apparently due to not being able to sufficiently or efficiently stabilize the trailer to be able to handle the dynamics of a main supporting a basket.
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    Sutphen actually built one or more tillered towers. I saw at least one at New York Chiefs the first or second year the show was in Syracuse. Weird arrangement; the bucket came down somehow to become the tiller cage. I don't know why they never went anywhere with it; maybe other people thought they were weird, too. Maybe someone with a little more inside scoop can chime in; I'd be interested in knowing more about it. I had also understood that Sutphen had a plant in Wisconsin, I don't remember if it was in Janesville, Kenosha or Racine. They were supposed to have been building tractor drawns there. Anyone know what ever became of it?

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    According to their website the Columbus Fire Dept operates a few 1997 LTI 110' Tiller's.










    "In 1998 at the Fire Rescue International trade show in Louisville, Sutpehn introduced a tractor drawn platform aerial called the 2000+ platform tiller. This is a four section, 100 foot, box boom aluminum ladder from their popular mid mount tower. It has a differant bucket with a unique platform design that acts as the housing for the tillerman when the ladder is bedded. the bucket floor becaomes the ceiling for the tillerman's cab. Once on scene, the roof of the cab raises up for deployment of the tower and becomes the platform which has a pre-piped gun on either side of the bucket like the mid mount towers. The trailor has one pair of H-style outriggers. The body was built with many compartments using roll up doors and is pulled by a custom Sutphen tractor".
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    Default ALF Tiller's

    American LaFrance makes 110 ft. ladders on a tiller with either 500 or 750 pound tip loads. The ones in Columbus are tandem axle tractors, however you can get them with single axle on the tractor.

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    if e-one still makes the 135 RMA--they could mount it on a tiller and get a more manuverable unit. howcome stuff like this doesn't happen?

    anyone have pics of the stutphen rig.

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    I think essentially it comes down to this - there just aren't that many tillers sold each year, and between E-One, Pierce, Seagrave and ALF - they each can't be selling that many of them, especially compared to their other aerial products.

    I think the other comment about the stability issues is a valid one as well - as most (if not all) of the these units have only two outrigger jacks for stability, and depend upon the nature of the tiller for part of the stability - going to a longer length or heavier tipload and structure associated with a tower would likely require a major redesign of the stabilizing system, which again - is a major cost for not a whole lot of sales.

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    The salesman handling our Precision Fire Apparatus(Which is a subsidiary of Sutphen) purchase gave me the scoop:

    Sutphen has made a number of tiller ladders, regular aerials, that is. There's about 8-10 of them around. He told me the departments, but who they are escapes me at the moment.

    The Sutphen Tiller Tower did have the tillerman in the bucket. Only one was made, it never took off because many thought it was too weird. From the way he talked, they didn't have many problems associated with stability and the like. The guys at the sutphen factory broke the unit up and scrapped it in 2002.
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    ALF made Boston a 125' tiller in the 40's. If I remember right, it didn't last long, because a wall fell on it at a fire.

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    Default 135

    Quote Originally Posted by skipatrol8 View Post
    if e-one still makes the 135 RMA

    E-one quit making it a few years ago. We have one now we are about to replace, if we could we would get another.....I do like the idea of puttin git on a tiller.
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    I posted a pic of the Sutphen tiller in the last post here:

    http://forums.firehouse.com/showthread.php?t=77994

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    Default Sutphen Tiller

    Back in 03' my old company purchased their 2nd Sutphen Pumper. I was more of an associate member, not very active with them at that time but was asked to sit on the Engien Comittee. During our Per-Build trip to Sutphen we Saw the infamouns Sutphen Tiller. The was it was explained to me was it was nothign more than IDEA that the Old man Tom Sutphen wanted to try just for fun. So he did it. Took them about 3 years to get it all worked out, but when I saw it, it was 100% functional. They marketed it for a year and with little to no intrest decided to scrap the Idea, and the Rig sat their for some time, then was schedualed to be "recycled" The Aerial Device was torn off and used in the re-build of a Sutphen that rolled over, and the tractor was tore apart and rebuild as an engine.
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    Default tillers

    i really think tillers are old school, ya there cool and all, but there huge, bulky, and hard to drive. Not to mention one little bump will put a huge dent in it. The only reason we had tillers were because no one thought of the idea of the ladder truck. The ladders are the same length, unlike most people think.

    Why america continued to make tillerss after the ladder truck was invented? I don't no. But with my experience on the ladder and tiller trucks, i really dont no how the sffd or the lafd can survive having all tiller truck companies. and very few truck companies at that. I guess san fran and la dont need as much truck work. america is getting more city like and the tillers just cant survive lots of turns and traffic.

    its time for america to move on, get rid of the tiller

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    well i dont know about LA city, but as for the SFFD they need tillers to get through a lot of the streets in SF, because there are a lot of sharp turns and extremely narrow streets and having someone control what the back end is doing is very helpful when navigating there streets, years ago san francisco bought two quints but they just couldnt get around the city streets and they were never put in service.
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    Quote Originally Posted by gabegrenade View Post
    i really think tillers are old school, ya there cool and all, but there huge, bulky, and hard to drive. Not to mention one little bump will put a huge dent in it. The only reason we had tillers were because no one thought of the idea of the ladder truck. The ladders are the same length, unlike most people think.

    Why america continued to make tillerss after the ladder truck was invented? I don't no. But with my experience on the ladder and tiller trucks, i really dont no how the sffd or the lafd can survive having all tiller truck companies. and very few truck companies at that. I guess san fran and la dont need as much truck work. america is getting more city like and the tillers just cant survive lots of turns and traffic.

    its time for america to move on, get rid of the tiller
    Are you serious? Have you ever driven a tiller? Just for some background I have driven/operated a TDA as both the tractor driver and the tillerman, I have also driven/operated a Pierce All-Steer straight body rear mount ladder. There is no doubt that the TDA is by far the superior machine. It easily out maneuvers the All-Steer 99% of the time. Not only is it more maneuverable it also has a lot more compartment space and lends it self to a more expansive load of ground ladders. The primary reason for the decline of the tiller is not practicality of the apparatus but of pansy assed chiefs and idiot politicians who think it is more cost effective to cut the second driver's position.

    Point blank, you sound like an idiot. For future reference know what your talking about before you spout off and make yourself look like the proverbial horses ***.

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    Ease up Cookie, the man has a point. I was in on a test done after a section of Santana Row, San Jose, CA, burned to the ground. The Fire Dept brought each style of Aerial to Santana Row before reconstruction started trying to improve their lot in the future. The Midmount could not even get in, the tandem Rear Mount was driving over future buildings while trying to get around and the most pathetic display was by the tillered aerial that was brought over by a neighboring city.

    Now forget I sell Shopping Carts! I used San Francisco Airports 125 foot Aerial on a single axle 216" wheelbase chassis and zipped through the entire course in less time than it took the others to get around the first corner. The fact that the Aerial was a Shopping Cart had nothing to do with it. Size matters. Any short wheel base rig can do the same thing. I too operated both ends of a TDA for 25 years and I still have the original video walkaround we did as I was trying to convince the Germans we had to have a Tiller to get around our little town. Hey, I was wrong but I was smart enough to hear them out.

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    Show season must be winding down. Good to see you back in there, Tony!

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    Baron, I'm not being harsh because he is downing tillers, each apparatus has its place....even a shopping cart. Reread his post it reads as the opinion of a uneducated neophyte that needs remedial English lessons. I'm by no means use perfect grammer but a little effort would lend greater weight to his position. Let's look at it again (I'll be nicer I promise).

    i really think tillers are old school, ya there cool and all, but there huge, bulky, and hard to drive. Opinion not fact. "Hard to drive." Compared to what? IMHO a rearmount platform is more difficult to driver than a TDA, but that's just my opinion.Not to mention one little bump will put a huge dent in it. WTF? Is everything else is dent resistant?The only reason we had tillers were because no one thought of the idea of the ladder truck. Tillers are ladder trucks.The ladders are the same length, unlike most people think.Who are these most people that you speak of?

    Why america continued to make tillerss after the ladder truck was invented? I don't no.It's obvious. But with my experience on the ladder and tiller trucks, i really dont no how the sffd or the lafd can survive having all tiller truck companies.Maybe because a TDA fits their needs while a straight body truck doesn't, but what the hell do they know? Right? and very few truck companies at that. And how many "truck co.'s would that be?I guess san fran and la dont need as much truck work.I'm sure some of the brothers from San Fran and LAFD can testify to the amount and quality of truck work they do and I would venture to guess that IT'S A LOT AND IT'S DAMN GOOD. america is getting more city like and the tillers just cant survive lots of turns and traffic.I can't I don't even know where to start.

    its time for america to move on, get rid of the tillerSo don't buy one or use it but for many departments the "tiller" has served its purpose for many years and will continue to for years to come.
    I'm an advocate for whatever aerial device fits "YOUR" needs not what's in vogue. Rearmounts, midmounts, TDA's, "shopping carts", bronto's, snorkles, platforms and even "quints" (where's the pukey smilie when you need 'em) all have their place as each has its strengths and weakness. It's up to "us" to decide which fits best. For example your "shopping cart" can fit, set up, and operate in areas that no other type of aerial device would fit. On the other hand the TDA has an exponential amount compartment space compared to the shopping cart and can carry more ground ladders. Does either example mean that either is obsolete? No, it simply means that each has it's niche.


    Besides everbody knows that real trucks bend in the middle.

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    Gabegrenade, pull the pin buddy, he gotcha. Buff, see what you can do with a 12 step program on Tillers!

    Hello Sam,
    Did you make the GAFA Muster?

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    I love the look and class of the classic Tiller, what impresses me is that both Driver and tillerman can make a ladder truck dance down the roadways. I know there was one on the way to Collingwood sitting on a lawn in Stayner.... Rusting slowly away, it is truly a sad sight.

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    Quote Originally Posted by RedBaronl32 View Post
    Hello Sam,
    Did you make the GAFA Muster?
    Not only did I make it, I got stuck judging it. At first it was thought that the judges (Shamrock or DelVal, I'm not sure which) just didn't show up. Later on they figured out, nobody asked them to come. You should have brought something to it. You could have taken a "Best Appearing Aerial" trophy back to Karlsruhe!

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    How about "Most Useless Aerial"

    Or "Least amount of ground ladders"


    Hmmmmmmm


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    OK 807.5 I hear you!!!!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by RedBaronl32 View Post
    Buff, see what you can do with a 12 step program on Tillers!
    REHAB IS FOR QUITTERS!!!!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by RedBaronl32 View Post
    OK 807.5 I hear you!!!!!
    awww now that was low!
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