Fire Department

Discussion in 'Scratchin' & Bashin'' started by FrankG, Oct 9, 2005.

  1. FrankG

    FrankG Member

    I'm going to start scratchbuilding a large city fire department. The illustration attached is based on the combination of 2 prototypes. One in NY and the other in IL. Basically, I've doubled the width of the 2-story NY one (had only 1 truck door) and added the tower from the IL one. Then just modified the tower for architectural consistency.

    I'd appreciate any thoughts, feedback etc. I plan on doing some animation around the firehouse with the trucks, so it will probably be a focal point. Any comments or ways to improve this (or start over) would be great. Thanks.

    Attached Files:

  2. jim currie

    jim currie Active Member

    whats the side view look like ? the front view looks ok if there is enough space for the tower in the building as the tower was often used to dry hose making a lot of dead space under it .
  3. ezdays

    ezdays Out AZ way

    That's a good looking and very ambitious project. Who's to say if it's correct or not? Like an architect, you can design what pleases you and gets the job done. Like Jim says, the towers were used to hang hoses, putting it where you have it won't interfer with the trucks.
  4. FrankG

    FrankG Member

    I did a little more research and only found a handful of towers in the middle of the structure. I think I'm going relocate it to one side as it seems to be more prototypical. Won't be starting this one for a while, but I'll post progress when I get to it. Can't decide if I'm going to start this or a Greyhound bus terminal first.
  5. Davehawk

    Davehawk New Member

    I designed a fire station while in school (a long time ago). Since the trucks back in and the hoses come out the back, the drying tower will usually be to the back left or back right of the truck bay. Newer fire stations use drying rooms and don't have towers.

  6. zedob

    zedob Member

    It seems like a drying tower would be a more practical solution to drying hoses. Less area taken up and for reloading a hose into a truck. I'm sure there are reasons they don't build them any more, but...

    I'll have to ask my bro-in-law. He's a FDNYman and a model railroader.
  7. revandy

    revandy Member

    Hose jackets are made of different materials today, and most stations have hose dryers that the loosely rolled up hose is placed in saving the cost of building a tower. The tower was also used for ladder and pompier training, (that would create a nice modeling scene lending some activity around the station!) there was a window on each level, the tower was approx 5-6 stories in height, approx, 70 ft in total. Hoses are 50' lenghts.

    Rev. Andy
    retired smoke eater
  8. Pitchwife

    Pitchwife Dreamer

    Hi Frank. One thing I don't believe you mentioned and no one has asked, what time period are you modeling? An older station would definately have a tower, but a modern one would probably have a drying room like Davehawk suggested.
  9. FrankG

    FrankG Member

    I'm modeling the very late 40s, early 50s, but geographically, I modeling a fictitious city somewhere between Philadelphia and New York, where many buildings would have much older architecture.
  10. zedob

    zedob Member

    Here's what I recieved from my bro-in-law.
    Hey Russ,

    Yes, you are correct, hose towers have become obsolete. The reason being is that the fire hose that we used when I first came on the job was cotton jacketed rubber hose with heavy brass couplings. It was a real b___h to haul up and down the staircases in the old tenements. When it got wet, it's weight doubled. It had to be dried out after each use, so we would haul it up into the hose tower when we got back to the firehouse. You could not pack this hose if it was wet.

    Today's firehose is made of a polyester material with lightweight aluminum alloy hose couplings. When it gets wet, we can simply repack it on to the rig and it will not rot from mildew like the old stuff.

    The city was putting hose dryers in the firehouses after they stopped building hose towers, but with the newer hose, they are not used that often either. They looked like giant pizza ovens.

    The hose towers were always in the rear of the building. When you backed the rig into quarters, the hose bed on the rear of the pumper could be unloaded directly into the hose tower. We would take the dry stuff out as we loaded the wet stuff in.

    The guys coming on the job today wouldn't have a clue of how to haul and hang the hose like we had to. That cold and drafty hose tower was the last place you wanted to be after returning from a multiple alarm fire on a winter night. The hose was hauled up from the male end and suspended on brass hooks that latched around the lugs on the male coupling. You couldn't hang from the female end because you would damage the swivel from all the weight being suspended from it.

    Hope that was informative.

  11. FrankG

    FrankG Member

    Wow...thanks for the great info!
  12. Delamaize

    Delamaize Member

    you might want to reconsiter the placement of the tower, if it is what I think it is, a hose tower, they usualy are to one side of the building or the other, in the rear quater of the station. but that is just my 2 cents.
  13. jim currie

    jim currie Active Member

    frank I worked in a older fire station in the 70's that we still used the hose tower till the late 70's the fire deperment started going to the moderen jackest on the hose and the tower was torn down in 1980.

    ps we also used ours for pompier training still have the spots in my underwear when the ladder would slip a bit :eek:

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