1. #1
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    Angry Quality? What Quality?

    The more I read about the dismal quality of of the fire apparatus being built today the more I realize the only solution is for Honda or Toyota to start building fire equipment.

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    Default well...

    we need a reliable heavy duty chassis--Hino isnt gonna cut it. I don't think Honda makes such a thing, nor do they have a diesel engine yet, though one is coming soon. It was my belief that most fire appartus were powered by diesel not gasoline. gasoline+fire(what these put out)=bad.

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    Honda does have a diesel engine, only in europe right now. Neither have anything big enough for powering a fire apparatus.

    BTW, the reason Honda and Toyota are reliable is because of manufacturing consistancy. When they build a model, they make quite a few of that exact model, everyone the exact same in every way.

    In fire apparatus, it is entirely different. almost evey fire Truck is a little different that others. Some are A LOT different, that is why there are many more "bugs" in fire truck.

    If Honda or Toyota did build fire trucks, no one would like it. They would be very reliable but only offer four models.

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    Quote Originally Posted by group3e11
    The more I read about the dismal quality of of the fire apparatus being built today the more I realize the only solution is for Honda or Toyota to start building fire equipment.
    Are you sure you want Toyota? Read this and reconsider:

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/7887155/

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    Just like cars... more "features" equals more things to break. Take some of the older (pick-ups) Fords, Chevy, and GMCs... those things could truly handle all the hard work they were given. You could run them into the ground and they'd STILL keep going... these days they're so concerned with adding new "features" that the trucks just don't hold up like they used to.
    Do it because you love it, not because you love being seen doing it.

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    Thumbs up Reliable

    The most reliable fire truck you can buy are the manufactuers program trucks.
    Limited option higher volume repeatable trucks. But you can't get all the bells and whistles that lead to more failures. I agree with Henry Ford, if it ain't on it, it can't break! Keep it simple!

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    I have to dissagree on reliability on GM trucks, I am a GM mechanic and they last forever, maybe the accesory stuff causes problems but the driveline lasts forever. The 5.3 engine out since 99 We have replaced 1 engine that was at 300000 miles, sometimes I feel like the Maytag repair man.

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    Sklump,you must live in the golden lining.If it weren't for GM's my shop would be bankrupt. 5.3? Intakes and a ton of them.Or if under mileage drag 'em back to the dealer.This company has had 3 Gm's over it's 30+yr history and as long as I own it will NEVER see another one.Nothing but problems. When I gotta go,I gotta go. T.C.

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    Quote Originally Posted by sklump
    I have to dissagree on reliability on GM trucks, I am a GM mechanic and they last forever, maybe the accesory stuff causes problems but the driveline lasts forever. The 5.3 engine out since 99 We have replaced 1 engine that was at 300000 miles, sometimes I feel like the Maytag repair man.
    I have to agree with Sklump. I ran my 1990 5.7 GMC into the ground, 253K on it and the engine was fine. Finnaly put it to rest when I lost the main seal on the tranny in May of 2004.
    As for Toyota and Honda...stick with the reliable American truck builders. If you want to buy a import fire appartus look at the European manufactures.

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    The most reliable trucks I ever worked on were built in the 1960's, a Seagrave and a Mack. Hydraulic brakes, "Armstrong" steering, manual transmission....no bells, no whistles. They got you to the fire and could pump forever. Today, for some reason, we need soft seats, air conditioning, AM/FM radios, heated mirrors, power windows and door locks, hydraulic ladder racks, computerized pressure controls, automatic foam proportioners, lights that flash only when the truck is in gear.....WTF? That is why there are so many problems. Too many accessories. Sure, some are for safety. But alot are for convienence, comfort and bragging rights.
    Last edited by firepiper1; 10-27-2006 at 04:07 PM.
    I have only 2 allegiances, to my country and to my God. The rest of you are fair game.

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    Thumbs up

    Quote Originally Posted by firepiper1
    The most reliable trucks I ever worked on were built in the 1960's, a Seagrave and a Mack. Hydraulic brakes, "Armstrong" steering, manual transmission....no bells, no whistles. They got you to the fire and could pump forever. Today, for some reason, we need soft seats, air conditioning, AM/FM radios, heated mirrors, power windows and door locks, hydraulic ladder racks, computerized pressure controls, automatic foam proportioners, lights that flash only when the truck is in gear.....WTF? That is why there are so many problems. Too many accessories. Sure, some are for safety. But alot are for convienence, comfort and bragging rights.
    1970 - 1990 Mack CF one of the best fire apparatus ever built !....

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    Quote Originally Posted by NewJerseyFFII
    1970 - 1990 Mack CF one of the best fire apparatus ever built !....
    Had a 1971 Mack CF Aerialscope here...........sweeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeet! Mack made a great rig.
    Last edited by firepiper1; 10-28-2006 at 12:38 PM.
    I have only 2 allegiances, to my country and to my God. The rest of you are fair game.

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    Default Quality

    My most favorite apparatus over the years was a 1976 and 1980 Ford C/Great Eastern pumpers, 1982 Hahn and our present rescue, a 1988 Mack CF ex FDNY engine 24. Nothing like the simple old stuff. A simple sensor goes bad and you are stuck nowadays

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    Amen to that! I would give anything to go back to an old Mack or Seagrave with the 5 speed crash box and armstrong steering and an open cab with the wipers on the inside and outside. That was a real firetruck. I might be old school, but those trucks ran for ever. Look at history, some of them are still going strong. Simple is the way to go. Enough of all this crap! It is a Firetruck after all!

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    Whilst we don't have your cab/chassis I will agree that quality is shocking now. We had the legendary International ACCO as our mainstay from the 70's through to the late 80's, what a truck that was, tough and durable.

    We took the last 6 off the run this year, 27 years service, can't complain about that, and Darley pumps, simple and powerful, no electronic governers, no electronice valves, you pulled the inlet/outlet levers and this directly opened the valves, not hoping that the electronics work!!

    But apparently we have progress. Its ironic that our bottom of the range brushtrucks are often online more than the whiz bang pumpers. Hmmmmm

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    We have an '88 Mack CF with a Pierce body. Most reliable engine out of the 5 we have. Starts every time, pumps for hours if needed, no issues with computers or other high tech add-ons.

    My favorite was our '77 Mack CF. The 5 speed Maxi-Dyne (IIRC) tranny was a tough one to learn, but once you had it down, there was nothing like it.
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    RESCUE101 I dont mean to argue but 5.3L dont have intake problems you are probably refering to 5.7l

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    We have a 72/85 Mack CF Baker Scope in service at one of our fire districts, and is one of best trucks ever owned !...

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    Sk,Maybe 5.3's don't have intake problems in WI but they do here.We've done five of them this year alone.Everybody's got their favorite but GM isn't mine.I wouldn't give you $50.00 for a yard full and based on my experience,you would need a yard full if you were trying to make a living with them.But as I said they keep the shop busy(Gm's in general).Intake issues are pretty prevalent across a broad spectrum of GM engines starting with the mechanics favorite(2.8)and working your way up.I'm with the other guys,give me an old MACK with a HALE pump and mechanical controls.It will work forever and is :"street fixable". If you're having good luck with the 5.3,I'm happy for you and hope it continues.Just don't be too shocked if you start seeing broken ones landing on your doorstep. T.C.

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    Default quality

    Getting back to the original question I don't think that the solution is to have Toyota or Honda build them. The problem is with the quality control and construction of the current builders. The bean counters control the speed of the assembly line and shove the stuff forward without a chance for true quality work to be performed or problems to be resolved prior to delivery. I also agree that with the advent of everything being electronically controlled and everyone wanting the truck to do the work for them that problems will abound. Electronics are good but only if the total program is absolute in its ability to survive the type of abuse for which it is intended. Profit at the expense of quality only creates ill will in the field.

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    Default What Quality

    How can you have (or know you have) quality when there are 375 versions of any particular model. Building a fire truck in North America is like building a Street Rod. Any other type of commercial equipment; ships, bulldozers, airplanes etc. you get what the engineers design and certify and if you want to customize it you do it with paint. I don't think any industry has as many reliability or parts procurement issues as the fire service. God forbid we should have a truck like our neighbor. It is not totally the fault of the apparatus manufacturers. Thank God firefighters are not allowed to design airplanes.

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    Quote Originally Posted by RedBaronl32
    How can you have (or know you have) quality when there are 375 versions of any particular model. Building a fire truck in North America is like building a Street Rod.

    I agree whole heartedly. If you think fire apparatus is bad, talk to someone who sells ambulances. "We need a glove box here" or "our jump kit is this big and it needs a shelf with a roll up door there." Customizing has led to many of our problems with rigs. We have become spoiled.
    I have only 2 allegiances, to my country and to my God. The rest of you are fair game.

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    I have yet to understand how customizing compartments has an effect on how well an engine/transmission/electronics work.
    "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?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bones42
    I have yet to understand how customizing compartments has an effect on how well an engine/transmission/electronics work.

    My point is, when we ordered an engine in the '80s, a custom pumper was considered a truck built on a custom chassis, and thats about it. Now, a custom truck is about 200 pages in a bid spec containing "fluff." I am sure quality would go up if manufacturers could build stock trucks instead of parade pieces.
    I have only 2 allegiances, to my country and to my God. The rest of you are fair game.

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    Default Japanese

    What trucks do the Japanese use?
    I can guarrantee they are not American but Hino or Isuzu just like we run down under in Aus.
    Downunder we have some Iveco and Scanias around as well.
    Main hassle with the current trucks is the poor quality wiring built to last 20 years whilst mechanical with low millage the engine and drive train will last almost forever. I suppose you call it "built in obsolesence".
    Disclaimer
    These views are my own and not of either my brigade or any other organisation.

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