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Thread: Light towers.

  1. #1
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    Default Light towers.

    My department is currently designing a new rescue truck and I'm looking at different light tower options. I see Will-bert and Command Light towers common on new trucks.

    Both have multiple light configurations available.

    Some differences:

    Will-bert - up to about 40'. Air powered tower.

    Command Light - 10' above vehicle, all electric. Ability to shine down the side of the vehicle.

    Any feedback on either tower would be appreciated.


  2. #2
    Let's talk fire trucks! BoxAlarm187's Avatar
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    We use 6kW Will-Burts at work, and have a couple at the volly house too. On the new rescue-engine we're spec'ing, I have included Command Light in the spec versus the W-B lights.

    I have the opportunity to use both lights, and leaned towards the CL for it's ease of use, no pneumatically operated parts (which can freeze and fail, see it happen), speed with which the CL lifts and retracts, the great number of options (light heads, etc) that the CL offers, and simply, the Command Light fit our needs better.

    You won't go wrong with either light, but the Command Light is a better fit for us.

  3. #3
    MembersZone Subscriber osh599's Avatar
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    Question Will-Burt Lightmasts

    We have 2 NightScan 3000w lightmast's. One is on our rescue engine and the other is on our squad.

    I think we have the worst luck with fire service related products. I will say that Will-Burt makes a good product however, we have had our share of problems with them.

    Masts that won't raise, lower, nest in the cradle or are ripped of by our personnel when raising inside the station. This was actually the firefighter's fault for he forgot that the mast was in the raised position when he opened the bay door resulting in the mast being sheared off the base (oops). $2700 later and a rebuilt mast.

    Besides the problems that we have seen, they are a good product. We like the 6' model with the twin 1500w Appleton lamp heads. The auto stow feature makes it simple when putting the lightmast away after an incident.

    If I were to order another one it would be with the newer HID fixtures. One nice feature about their newer towers is the ability for individual fixtures to rotate in different directions. So instead of being committed to one angle, you can light up two different angles with one tower.
    Jim Shultz
    Oshtemo Fire Dept
    Fleet Maintenance Specialist

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    Forum Member Weruj1's Avatar
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    Default Rescue Engine...................

    Box ........what are you specing ............we are too going to start a new one also.
    Last edited by Weruj1; 08-23-2007 at 08:57 PM.
    IACOJ both divisions and PROUD OF IT !
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    I'm sorry, I haven't been paying much attention for the last 3 hours.....what were we discussing?
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    http://www.firehouse.com/forums/show...60#post1137060post 115

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    Off the thread subject, but Weruj, I was looking for an e-mail address for you. I don't have it. How are you all making out with the flooding just east of you? Is it also affecting your area?

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    Forum Member Weruj1's Avatar
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    Hey Sam ...............it is rfd201@bex.net the primary problem is in our southern bordering county. http://www.sentinel-tribune.com/ scroll on down ..,.........we are ok here no flooding to speak of and we have had breaks in the rain. When are you passing through here again ?
    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

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    MembersZone Subscriber npfd801's Avatar
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    Don't foget the Tempest Fireco option as well. I've only seen them at shows and on a couple of demo rigs and they at the very least seem like another viable option for a light tower.

    Warranty wise I think the Command Light comes with a better warranty, but I would research that prior to taking my word on that with 100% certainty. Command Light has a 5 year warranty, but I don't know on the Wil-Burt.

    Sam - I hear you'll be in the big city of Amboy this weekend, you coming to the party Saturday night?
    "Share your knowledge - it's a way to achieve immortality." - Stolen from Chase Sargent's Buddy to Boss program

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    Quote Originally Posted by Weruj1 View Post
    Hey Sam ............... When are you passing through here again ?
    Got it, Josh, and entered in my book. My last part of the quint gig is next week. After that, if a dealer wants to hire me to deliver a truck for him, then whenever, wherever.

    I expect I'll be there, Joel. I'm coming in to Midway during the afternoon. Someone is supposed to pick me up and bring me to either there or Dixon. Anywhere I can find you?

  9. #9
    Let's talk fire trucks! BoxAlarm187's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Weruj1 View Post
    Box ........what are you specing ............we are too going to start a new one also.
    I'll shoot you an e-mail with some info, rather than taking this thread any more off track than it already is.

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    MembersZone Subscriber evfd3100's Avatar
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    We use a 6000 watt Wil-Burt Night Scan on our walk-in rescue, speced a 3000 watt Night Scan Chief on our new tanker/pumper. They are worth it, I promise you. We will never spec another rig without one.
    Assistant Chief
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    Quote Originally Posted by evfd3100 View Post
    We use a 6000 watt Wil-Burt Night Scan on our walk-in rescue, speced a 3000 watt Night Scan Chief on our new tanker/pumper. They are worth it, I promise you. We will never spec another rig without one.
    Did you look at any other brands? If so, what was your reason for picking the Wil-Burt again?

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    MembersZone Subscriber evfd3100's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by prnancoz View Post
    Did you look at any other brands? If so, what was your reason for picking the Wil-Burt again?
    I didn't look at any other brands when I did the specs on the new truck. The tower we have on our rescue has been nothing short of excellent and reliable, so I figured I would go with what we know works. I couldn't compare it to any other brand for you, due to the fact that I haven't checked out any others. I can just say that I think it is an excellent product based on my department's experience. Same thing with the Onan generator.
    Assistant Chief
    Elberta Volunteer Fire Department
    http://www.elbertafire.com

    "Find a purpose in life so big, it will challenge every capacity to be at your best."

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    Maybe someone with experience with Command Lights can chime in here. We were leaning toward the Commande Light for our new Rescue pumper, but after seeing how much the thing weighed and rocked the stand it was mounted to at a show, we were a little skeptical. The Willburt towers seemed to move smoother and cause much less torque on the mounts. I figured the Command light would end up tearing the holes or loosening the bolts that hold it down, over time. Thoughts, comments, issues?

  14. #14
    Forum Member rschultzjr's Avatar
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    My department will be signing a contract next month on a heavy rescue, and we spec'ed a Wilburt Light tower, mainly after we took a tour of 6 different rescues with light towers some had Command Light and some had Wilburts. After watching the Command lights and Wilburts in action the Wilburt definatly looked more stable and versital then the Command Light. Command light does bounch and jerk a lot more than what we noticed with the Wilburt's. It also appears to me that Command Light definatly has alot more moving parts than Wilburt.
    Just my 2 cents.

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    Default Light Towers

    We have a 9000W Will Burt on our rescue. We had issues with it soon after we put it into service (4 years ago) and Will Burt sent a factory tech out to rebuild it. Since then, it's been fine. We also have a 3,000W Command Light on our engine we just received. The Will Burt seems to move alot smoother but the CL is much faster. The "auto stow" feature on the WB is alot better than the CL.

    Good Luck and be safe!!

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    Forum Member evtrandy's Avatar
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    I have installed Wil-burt and Command Lights on several different brands of emergency vehicles. The Command Lights do seem to bounce around more when you deploy them, but I have never had to go out and work on a Command Light after the dept. took delivery of the vehicle. Wil-burt"s seem to operate smoother than the Command Light, but you can count on having to visit the dept. once or twice a year to adjust the thing because it will not bed, or fix an air leak because the mast will not stay up. as far as warranty, I do not know who's is better.

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    A Department we run with has a Will-Burt light tower and I am not impressed. Just about every time they put it up it will not come back down. They carry a rubber mallet and block of wood so they can tap on it to get it down. Imagine going through that at 3:00 am in the freezing cold. (It wont bed in nice weather either) I know they have had it serviced many times so itís not a lack of maintenance. We have a new Rescue-Pumper on order and we went with a Command-Light.

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    I can recall only twice in the last 4 years we've had problems with out WIll Burt. Once while operating at am MVA with the temp being about -10. Once we turned one set of heads down for about 3 minutes, the unit restowed. And we had an issue of it not nesting and that's when they sent a factory tech out to rebuild it. They said there was something with the way the cords coiled in the mast when it was stowed. We do love having the 9,000 watts of light power. Our rescue is out most used vehicle so the tower had been exposed to almost every type of weather.

    We have a CL on our new engine that we just put into service in July and we haven't used it much but I'm gonna stick to what I stated in the previous post about the jerky movements and so forth. But, it is a much smaller unit than the WB on the rescue. Also, the WB has a much better "Auto Stow".

    Lastly, the builder of our engine and rescue (CustomFire Apparatus) did not have a preference on which tower to go with. Ask some of the dealers/builders you communicate with and see what they have to say!!

    Good luck and Be Safe to all!!

    We just took delivery of a tanker and I wanted a small tower on it just because but, money talks. Anyways, I highly recommend

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    Quote Originally Posted by rpierce View Post
    A Department we run with has a Will-Burt light tower and I am not impressed. Just about every time they put it up it will not come back down. They carry a rubber mallet and block of wood so they can tap on it to get it down. Imagine going through that at 3:00 am in the freezing cold. (It wont bed in nice weather either) I know they have had it serviced many times so itís not a lack of maintenance. We have a new Rescue-Pumper on order and we went with a Command-Light.
    Heh, one of ours decides to auto stow whenever it feels like it...

    In defense of Wil-Burt, I don't think our apparatus guy has made much effort to have anyone figure out why it does it, so it could be something very simple causing it.
    "Share your knowledge - it's a way to achieve immortality." - Stolen from Chase Sargent's Buddy to Boss program

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    Forum Member Dave1983's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by osh599 View Post
    I will say that Will-Burt makes a good product however, we have had our share of problems with them.
    Same here, although we've yet to raise one in the station . Its our first light tower and frankly, were not that impressed with all the "issues". We will probably look at another brand next time.
    Fire Marshal/Safety Officer

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