Thread: Pierce Impel

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    Default Pierce Impel

    We are evaluating the possible purchase of a Pierce Impel and wanted to get feedback from anyone who may have purchased or received an Impel or Velocity.
    - What are your thoughts on the chassis?
    - What would you have changed?
    - What have you come to realize you missed in your spec?
    - What do you not like about the truck?
    - What issues have you had with the truck?
    - Would you purchase another one knowing what you do now?

    I would appreciate hearing from those with Impels or Velocities. PLEASE - If you do not have one, do not turn this into a Kool-Aid battle thread! We are on a short timeline and I need input.

    Thanks to all,

    Dan

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    Question

    While I am not a fan of the Pierce apparatus I will say say it is a pretty nice chassis. The options were kind of limited vs. the Velocity. Pierce bid for our new pumper, but we awarded to Seagrave. Here's my unbiased answers and opinions.

    - What are your thoughts on the chassis?

    A: It's small in the rear, but the officer and driver have loads of room. IDK if that's a concern for you. It has a lot of plastic on the interior... again IDK if that's an issue either. Overall the chassis is pretty decent for entry level Appleton Pierce. I still like the Sabre and Enforcer more though. They don't offer the big block engines in the Impel

    - What would you have changed?

    A: We don't have one, but the whole not offering a big block in the Impel kinda sucks.

    - What have you come to realize you missed in your spec?
    A: N/A

    - What do you not like about the truck?

    A: Well... the plastic interior and the interior front of the cab is too big for me. I don't like the way it looks and the mirrors they are offer. While they're great for viewing the view from them is small and indecipherable.

    - What issues have you had with the truck?

    A: We don't own one, but there's so few on the road they're so new we'll have to wait and see.

    - Would you purchase another one knowing what you do no.

    A: Based on what we evaluated we would never buy one. They're far more expensive than competitors top of the line cabs. When money for a dept. is an issue, budgeting is where it's at. Overall the Velocity is a better alternative for the extra $15K.
    Last edited by CooterRob; 01-23-2008 at 09:23 PM.
    "I don't wanna hear about it... I wanna see results!!!":-P

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    Default Velocity ordered

    We got a PUC ordered on a velocity Chassis.

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    Thumbs up

    I've heard that the interior has changed alot from earlier versions, stainless door panels if you don't like the abs plastic....
    I have't seen one except at FDIC in 07.

    The look is growing - the yellow rig on their website new delivery pic isn't too bad for chrome yellow rig.... not sure if the new solid state MUX is better.

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    I thought they were doing away with the Dash chassis or have they decided to keep it for now? I know of several departments who just placed orders and they are getting built on the Dash chassis? The newer version is already set up for the 07' motors so I don't know why they wouldn't just keep it around untill 2010 as it seems to have been their most popular chassis....

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    More likely they are ordering with 06 engines that Pierce had previously purchased. The Dash was never tested cooling wise with 07 engines.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BFDENG51CAPT View Post
    I thought they were doing away with the Dash chassis or have they decided to keep it for now? I know of several departments who just placed orders and they are getting built on the Dash chassis? The newer version is already set up for the 07' motors so I don't know why they wouldn't just keep it around untill 2010 as it seems to have been their most popular chassis....
    they say the Dash will go the way of the dodo once '06 engines are all burned up.

    I have heard rumors of a mux Arrow in the works though

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    Having visited the Pierce factory last weekend, the committee was extremely impressed by what we saw at the facilities, the manufacturing processes, the work ethic, the organization of work flow, the vehicles in process, and the total scope of manufacturing. We made the recommendation to the department last night and it was voted to purchase the Impel. The decision was made to purchase over the KME Predator Panther.

    Thanks to all for their input.

    Dan

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    We just received four Impel's. They should be in service within a few weeks. I will let you know how well they hold up. Our crews are pretty rough on equipment. Our last Engine is a 2003 and has over 90,000 miles on it.

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    We have taken delivery of our Velocity. I must say that I really like the way the truck is built. It is really user friendly. The truck drives and handles great. Pics are on Pierce's website under new deliveries, tankers(Blades).

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    I was just curious to see if anyone else had ordered or taken delivery of a Pierce Impel or Velocity recently. We are headed to our engineering review in about a month and just wanted feedback as to any issues which you saw, ideas you had after the fact or general input you might be able to provide.

    Thanks All!

    Dan

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    We took delivery of a Velocity Chassis/Rear Mount Rescue Pumper in early Novermber. Rig averages 6-7 runs per day, has several thousand miles on the odometer , so far absolutely zero problems. We dropped the 111 mirror option late in process, at this point after talking to some with the 111's in service, glad we did, if you have selected the 111's, be sure to make some calls. Changes? Really very happy with design at this point, only one future change at this time. Have a large EMS compt. on the rear wall with two outboard forward facing seats, one rear facing outboard on the pass. side and a second rear facing EMS compt. with outside access in the rear facing outboard position on the driver side. If you have two seats in the outboard positions, one forward and one rear facing, foot space is tight due to vent box under the rear facing seat. We normally only run 3 on the engine, so not a problem, however if your run more, it could be. Will look at extended chassis next go round or changing seating position configuration. Other than this small issue, very happy, will continue with Velocity as our chassis of choice.

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    What were the complaints with the mirrors?? We have a Velocity on order and are pretty much at the drawing phase

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    Quote Originally Posted by todd3603 View Post
    We dropped the 111 mirror option late in process, at this point after talking to some with the 111's in service, glad we did, if you have selected the 111's, be sure to make some calls. .
    Are the 111's the bug eye mirrors? Just not familiar with the number. We elected to go with West Coast mirrors as they will be cheaper to replace when our drivers whack them!!!!!

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    Yes, the 111's are the forward cab mirrors. The complaint with the mirrors is the driver not being able to see the rear tires. Sounds as if most problems arise with backing, however if you can't see the tires, I am sure their is a fair share of bent wheels and torn tires from curbing incidents. I have heard one or more departments have sent rigs back for retrofits. The mirrors are great in concept and solve issues with not being able to see past those full figured officers when they are packing out, but if you can't see the back of the truck, that is a whole new issue. Not saying don't buy them, mine was a 12th hour change, just do your homework before you pull the trigger with some dept's that have them, I would hate to see the bill on a retrofit.

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    The mirrors shake at idle, and without an extended bumper you can get a reflection off the chrome. Go with the velocity, its next to impossible to even begin to look into any issues without the command zone pic display

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    I was just wondering if anyone had received either Impels or Velocitys since the last post. We are 3 months away from receiving our truck and still have the opportunity to correct for anyone's findings from their engines.

    Thanks,

    Dan

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    Denver, CO took delivery of a bunch of Impel's to replace most of their engine fleet...might want to reach out to them. More of a small town feel, reach out to Bogota, NJ that took delivery of two identical Impel's about two months ago. The department was forced to squeeze everything out of Pierce due to the tight budget. Might be an interesting department to talk to and see what you can live with/live without.

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    I feel that the Impel is an excellent chasis, and a good comprimise if you can't afford the Velocity.

    It's a comfortable and spacious cab all around, and all the controls are within easy reach of the driver. The Officer's area features plenty of space for radio, laptop, clipboards, etc.

    I also really like the way it handles, and the ease of use.

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    Our 4 Impels have been inservice for 4 months and all the crews like them, but 3 out of the 4 have steering problems. They been in and out of service for the past 4 months and 1 is still out of service waiting on Pierce to send the parts. At high speeds they are hard to control. They have Tak-4 with air ride rear. Hopefully they will be repaired soon. We also had wiring issues inside the drivers side door. Other than these issues we really like the Impel.

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    We took delivery of our Impel the 2nd week in May. It's not in operation yet, just mounting the equipment and have to do some training on it. The day the truck arrived, it was backed into the bay, shut down. Six hours later it wouldn't start. Sat like this for two weeks. Finally got the parts needed to fix it. It turned out to be a PCM for the tranny, it's like the transmission wouldn't recoginized it was in netural, therefore wouldn't start. When the truck finally did start it wouldn't pump, it's like the transmission would go into the proper gear. It would shift into 6-1, it would pump if you reved it up by foot until it shifted into 4th gear. Took the truck into an Allison dealer to get programmed. It wasn't shifting into 4-4 (emergency fire truck mode for pumping).

    As for the truck handling wonky down the road, I did find that a bit. Although, I had 10,000 lbs less weight than normal. Didn't have any of the 750 gal or equipment or men or board, it was pretty light, and it was windy that day. I also found the truck is pretty wide and you don't have a lot of room to weave in the lane (because of the wonky steering).

    If you are specing a foam system on the truck make sure to add a pull out tray at you knees at the operators panel to put the pick up tube for the foam system. Just a handy place to store this, instead of wasting compartment space, for this odd shaped thing.

    As for the One-Eleven mirrors....They're different, it'll take some getting use to. I find you don't see a whole lot of the side of the truck and when your making right hand turns it might be too late and then you rubbing the curb with your rear tire because you can see the rear axel, and I found it hard to judge where it is.

    I would buy another Impel, it has been a good truck so far, except for the tranny issues.

    Any other questions just ask.


    Mike

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    ok color me a little confused .
    quote by mikey
    "We took delivery of our Impel the 2nd week in May. It's not in operation yet,"

    why is the truck not in service after 5 weeks ?? surly it can't take 5 weeks to put equipment on the truck. did you really not need this truck or did it arrive in a condition that wasn't ready to be put in service, ie unfinished?

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    Quote Originally Posted by islandfire03 View Post
    ok color me a little confused .
    quote by mikey
    "We took delivery of our Impel the 2nd week in May. It's not in operation yet,"

    why is the truck not in service after 5 weeks ?? surly it can't take 5 weeks to put equipment on the truck. did you really not need this truck or did it arrive in a condition that wasn't ready to be put in service, ie unfinished?
    I'm not trying to be an a-hole here, but did you acually read his post past the sentence you quoted???

    I think you may find your answer there.

    Besides, some fire departments actually take time to train their drivers on the new piece before it goes in service. This may take a while, especially in a volly house due to schedules and the number of drivers. This would also be drawn out due to not being able to use the rig for several weeks due to the tranny issues.

    Some departments actually get everything straightened out on a rig before they place it in service instead of filling it with water, throwing equipment in the compartments and turning the guys loose with little or no training on the rig.
    I can't believe they actually pay me to do this!!!

    One friend noted yesterday that a fire officer only carries a flashlight, sometimes prompting grumbling from firefighters who have to lug tools and hoses.
    "The old saying is you never know how heavy that flashlight can become," the friend said.
    -from a tragic story posted on firefighterclosecalls.com

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    Default Pierce Steering with TAK4

    Our 2006 Dash pumper rescue with tak4 has pretty squirrelly steering. It feels a little scarey over 55 mph. The truck seems top heavy and sways. Rear suspension is leaf springs. Not as stable as our old CF Macks.

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    Quote Originally Posted by islandfire03 View Post
    ok color me a little confused .
    quote by mikey
    "We took delivery of our Impel the 2nd week in May. It's not in operation yet,"

    why is the truck not in service after 5 weeks ?? surly it can't take 5 weeks to put equipment on the truck. did you really not need this truck or did it arrive in a condition that wasn't ready to be put in service, ie unfinished?
    Did you even read past the first sentence?!
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