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Thread: Roll up doors

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    Forum Member ltkeith25's Avatar
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    Question Roll up doors

    Has anybody replaced their doors on their trucks with roll up doors? Any problems-good/bad, cost issues,etc. Might suggest it to my dept to replace our rescue's doors with roll up. Any comments would be great.


  2. #2
    Forum Member SmealLadder1's Avatar
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    Are you trying to put rollup doors on as a replacement on an existing unit?

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    MembersZone Subscriber osh599's Avatar
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    Default Roll Up Doors

    We have roll up doors currently on our rescue engine and we have not been happy with them from the start.

    The biggest complaint that we have is after rolling them up, any moisture that was on the door is then deposited into the interior of the compartment. I'm sure there is a fix or solution to stop this from happening but the OEM did nothing.

    These types of doors are great when you do not want a door extruding from the width of your apparatus. They take up minimal space at the top interior portion of the compartment to be installed in.

    I won't spec any roll up doors in the future unless it is the only option afforded to the design of the truck.

    Everyone will have their opinion on roll up doors and all will have a different viewpoint.
    Jim Shultz
    Oshtemo Fire Dept
    Fleet Maintenance Specialist

  4. #4
    Forum Member ltkeith25's Avatar
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    The doors would replace existing doors on our truck. Its an '85 3-D walk-in body remounted on a 01 Inernational 5 man chassis. We do have roll up on our 2005 Pierce Enforcer, and we like how they work, not any problems with them. We did buy a pressure washer to help clean them better. We are a Wi. dept.

  5. #5
    Let's talk fire trucks! BoxAlarm187's Avatar
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    osh599,

    I wouldn't let one bad experience with roll-ups convince you that they're the worst option out there. I have the luxury to ride on rigs with both roll-ups and hinged doors (at work and the VFD), and will continue to spec the roll-ups.

    There are certainly different grades and brands of doors out there, and it appears that ROM probably offers the best door now. From it's ease of use, construction, and durability, I'd choose these over Gortite, POK, and Amdor (personally, I have been very disappointed in the Amdor products I've seen).

    You're also correct that there are many, many options available for keeping the moisture off the items within the compartment. Our 2000 Pierce Encore rescue was also delivered without trays for moisture protection, so we added our own for about $10.00 and it's worked great since then.

    If you take a look at the attached photo, it demonstrates how we did this...

    Good luck with your project....
    Attached Images Attached Images  

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    Default Retro Fit Rollups

    Quote Originally Posted by ltkeith25 View Post
    The doors would replace existing doors on our truck. Its an '85 3-D walk-in body remounted on a 01 Inernational 5 man chassis. We do have roll up on our 2005 Pierce Enforcer, and we like how they work, not any problems with them. We did buy a pressure washer to help clean them better. We are a Wi. dept.
    You, most likely, can easily replace your traditional doors with roll-ups. You will have to check on a few things first. I am not familiar with the 3D rescue door jambs and headers. You will have to be. The roll doors require 1 to 1-1/2 inches depth for the side tracks and will need a couple inches on the top to hide the "nose" roller / pennant plate assembly. The header area may present some challenges. The installation is relatively easy and the tension is usually pre-set by the roll door manufacturer. The roll-doors come with many "door ajar" switch options, so hijacking your current switch wiring will be pretty easy too.

    Go to one of the roll-door manufacturer web sites and download a ordering guide / form. Check your rescue's measurments against the worksheets for compatability. Since you are in Wisconsin, you may want to check into Gortite. I think they are out of the Milwaukee area. Or go with some other manufacturer. They all are pretty much the same with small differences. Of course, I realize that for some people, these differences can make all the difference in the world.

  7. #7
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    wet tools in the compartment sure beats having to tell the Chief you torn the door off the truck because it wasn't shut properly!

    And then having to drive around with it missing until it gets fixed.


    Last edited by ctxffman; 11-13-2007 at 10:28 PM. Reason: icon

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    Quote Originally Posted by BoxAlarm187 View Post
    osh599,

    I wouldn't let one bad experience with roll-ups convince you that they're the worst option out there. I have the luxury to ride on rigs with both roll-ups and hinged doors (at work and the VFD), and will continue to spec the roll-ups.

    There are certainly different grades and brands of doors out there, and it appears that ROM probably offers the best door now. From it's ease of use, construction, and durability, I'd choose these over Gortite, POK, and Amdor (personally, I have been very disappointed in the Amdor products I've seen).

    You're also correct that there are many, many options available for keeping the moisture off the items within the compartment. Our 2000 Pierce Encore rescue was also delivered without trays for moisture protection, so we added our own for about $10.00 and it's worked great since then.

    If you take a look at the attached photo, it demonstrates how we did this...

    Good luck with your project....
    Nice idea BoxAlarm.

    I know a nearby dept that spec's a "cover" plate to protect the door from physical damage while rolled up. When removing and replacing equipment, it's easy to scratch the painted doors. The cover plate also helps collect any moisture that accumulates.

    I've had more than a few people tell me, "If you're going to use roll up doors, don't use anything but ROM."

    C6

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    Default Roll ups

    Keith,

    From the neighboring state of Mn. We have roll ups on our rescue, engine, and tanker and have had no problems. The engine and tanker are only a couple months old but the rescue is 3 or 4 years old. CustomFire out of Osceola, Wi built the all 3 of the apparatus for us. They have what they call "Encapsulated Roll up Door Protection" which is a piece of sheet metal bent to protect the door when rolled up from being struck by equipment that we, gentle firefighters, take out of the compartment. The protection is easily removed to clean the doors and to replace. I tried to cut and paste the link below to the engine which shows it the best. Hopefully it works.


    Be safe out there!!!

    http://www.customfire.com/d_pumper.php?id=467032e713316

  10. #10
    Forum Member SmealLadder1's Avatar
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    Default

    The reason I was asking if this was a retrofit, was because you may run into some major problems trying to retrofit roll-up doors into a truck that had box pan doors previously.

    1) The height of the compartment header may be an issue. The rollup doors take up more header space, as the door has to roll into that location.

    2) The header of the door may need to be cut off. Typically with a box pan or lap door, the body material or extrusion protrude into the header area to give the top of the compartment strentgh. With roll-ups, the door has to be able to roll past that area. Retrofit may require some major bodywork.

    3) You also will need to look at the electrical switching for the door open circuit and light switching for the compartment compared to the roll-up door you are having installed.

    4) Is the loss of compartment opening width or height going to effect the equipment stored in the truck? Typically, you loose 2-3" in width and 5" in height with the roll-up door compared to the lap type door.

    5) If you do this retrofit, as a minimum, install a drip pan with drain hose routed to the underside of the truck in the compartment you have a load center located in. We build this into every truck as standard, as you do not want that moisture getting into your load center.

    I would suggest ROM or Amdor. There are other doors out there, but none compare to these two manufacturers. They also have some excellent LED light stick options. You may find you can gain compartment space if you have a bunch of old incandescent style of lights in the compartments.

  11. #11
    Forum Member bum291's Avatar
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    Default I know we are in a different situation but...

    We have roll up doors on all our side compartments, I'd never go back to hinged doors, I consider it outdated technology. Number one benifit is that they require no space to open, and you can open them just a little and just get the things in the bottom of the compartment if you want. No problem to drive with open compartments, we try no to

    Our firehouse is sort of tight (the left cab doors on our engine can't be fully opened since there is a wall in the way), since the roll up doors require no space to open, it's still possible to reach all compartments.

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    The county I work for has an 1991 International/E-One Air truck that had their compartment doors replaced with roll-ups(ROM), and they are very happy with them. They have been on the truck for over 9 years that I know of, but not sure when they were installed.

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    We have a 2005 Pierce contender rescue pumper with None Painted roll ups on it. They are Goretite (not totally sure on the spelling) doors we have been very pleased with them so far. No problems to report very easy to maintain.

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    Box Alarm - Just curious, I've used both the ROM products as well as the Amdors, and I've been vastly more impressed with the Amdor construction & operation (we've yet to see on long-term reliability). What specific issues have you had with the Amdors?

  15. #15
    Forum Member TFMBob's Avatar
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    Lightbulb

    Maybe y'all could check with the LFB for Roll-Up ideas, etc,...they've been using them for many years.

    2007 Mercedes pumper - photo courtesy of the London Fire Brigade:
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    "we learn from history...that we do not learn from history"

  16. #16
    Let's talk fire trucks! BoxAlarm187's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BlitzfireSolo View Post
    Box Alarm - Just curious, I've used both the ROM products as well as the Amdors, and I've been vastly more impressed with the Amdor construction & operation (we've yet to see on long-term reliability). What specific issues have you had with the Amdors?
    BlitzFire, I will quickly admit that the exposure that I've had to the Amdor's have been limited to two in-service heavy rescues here in our state, plus looking at them at a number of the trade shows that I go to each year. I've felt that thier construction has been rather "flimsy" (now where did my flimsyomteter go?) and that the slats did not want to roll up easily when operated.

    I've had a lot of exposure to the ROM's and the Gortite (and Dovers when they were around), and I feel like the ROM roller-shutter is giving better long-term performance than some of the other products.

    However, based on some of the posts here, I'll take another look at the Amdor's at the next trade show.
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  17. #17
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    Default Rom

    Got to agree with Box on this one!

    I believe that ROM makes the best roll up doors out there. We have a Dover on an older engine and it is a pain in the back side to open and close. We have ROM's on our 2003 engine and they work just like they where brand new.

    osh599,

    There are several options out there to protect both the stuff in the compartments and the doors. It should not be to much trouble to add any of the options your self.

    Chief1FF

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    Before you buy, inquire whether or not the slats are replaceable in the event of damage. I was told that ROM can replace individual slats where as the other manufacturers require you to replace the whole door.
    I have only 2 allegiances, to my country and to my God. The rest of you are fair game.

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    Forum Member canuck1's Avatar
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    Default dirt

    How about environments with high sand / salt / silt on the roads? Anyone have problems with the road debris getting into the tracks and gaps between the panels - resulting in very difficult to operate doors?

    What is the best way to keep these doors running smoothly in this type of environment? Obviously the answer is to keep them clean...but is pressure washing ok? Any good methods?

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    We have been using roll-up doors on our rigs in Kennett since 1988. On our re-done Bruco/Seagrave Tiller a couple of the doors were about six feet wide and almost as high. Our 1966 Bruco Rescue/Pumper went from 32 doors to eight doors when we had it re-done. The doors were Angus-Secol which were made in Southampton, England. A big part of their business was "lockers" for off shore drilling rigs where conditions are about as bad as it gets. If I recall properly some were non-metal and different colors. Metal slats, when used, were powder coated. We always cleaned everything with something as light as Ivory Soap and wiped all the sliding and rubber parts with a light silicone lube. If your doors are annodized and have any marks on them you can remove the marks by using lead pencil erasers. Never use any harsh detergents on annodized doors.

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