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Some of you think I only work on the Dodge Cummins trucks. Far from the truth. I work on just about anything with wheels under it.

 

Like my favorite truck from the Fire Dept. I've got to rework the battery cables on this beast. Cummins Big Cam 400, Eaton Fuller 10 speed. This thing is a beast and packing 4,000 gallons of water, 80,000 pound truck. I'm one of the few that can drive this truck. 

 

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Shocker there is a Ford in my shop. Yup a 5.4L V3 Triton. Has a coolant leak in the crossover manifold. Rather good challenge to do but not fun.

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Then tomorrow morning I've got a Ford 7.3L diesel coming for a cooling system flush and then refill with coolant. I'll grab a photo of this in the morning. 

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I could drive that KW in a heart beat.  I have probably driven over 500 different semis.  Because I worked on my days off I got whatever they needed to go out of the yard and whatever was there so a lot of different rigs over the years.  More than once I was in the yard, started in one rig, moved into another and before I got out of there was finally in a third!  I drove every combination they had.  Included Truck/trailer, semi, doubles, live floor.  I didn't have my "own" rig until I worked 4 years for Pacific Car Crushing.  There I always had the same one which was really a nice change.  BTW, I know you know this mike but the 80,000 lbs is gross with 5 axles and enough wheelbase.  I am guessing in the neighborhood of 46.000 the way she sets.  This was my rig at PCC.  About 100,000 lbs.  Some of the leasers hauled more but I told the loader/crusher guys I always haul legal.0706181201b_Burst02.jpg.bcb51a4061bba1ba9e77250c5dd35e9e.jpg

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I sure would take that 80’s model W9 KW over what I just got, nowadays trucks are designed around steering wheel holders, I just got a new semi recently, had to give up a 2000 model pre emission freightliner FLD, with series 60 Detroit and 18spd. Drove that thing daily for the past 12 years. Put 600k on it. Now I got a 2019 sloped nose Cornbinder truck with a 565 Cummins x15 backed with an 18 speed. It’s got the power but I hate it,  :shifty:  It’s kinda like putting a Cummins 24v. In a Toyota Tundra,  aerodynamic styling sucks  and just wrapped in plastic 

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Not sure which model Cornbinder you have but a couple I saw at a truck event about a year ago were pretty nice and fit me really well.   One of those would surely have been on my short list.  My brother said the same.  We ran into a couple of his buds and they checked them out an agreed too.  Neither of us have been big fans of KW's or Petes.  He drove for a mostly Mack fleet and I worked years there part time. Once the CH models came out those were really great rigs.  Would have been my pick back then.  Now not so sure.  They got Petes on their last go round of new rigs  becasue they were light enough to meet the required net on the haul contract.  Macks too heavy and KW wouldn't dicker on price.  Mack said they had  Volvos that would meet the need but that was a huge NO.  I don't drive anymore but do go to truck shows,  Here is one we were at last Saturday.  Not a mask in sight.  Check out the marquee.

 

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Posted (edited)

Yeah I'm one of the lucky ones, being I'm part of the fire dept I'm not required to have a CDL for fire dept equipment. Most of our crew can handle the idea of floating gears. I've gotten fairly good at it. 

 

Finally got rid of the 5.4L Ford today. Crappy design on the manifold to have the vacuum port in the rear of the manifold and the hose slipped off after doing the manifold and coolant gaskets. 

 

Then just did a coolant flush on a 7.3L Ford Diesel... Another one down...

Edited by Mopar1973Man
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Thanks Russ Roth for the pics. I enjoyed that. Makes a guy want to own any one of those rigs as they so cool looking. 

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Posted (edited)

Dang... I forgot to get photos dow at the Fire Station. I just ran 80 miles to install batteries in two fire trucks. Now I've got to gear up and head up and do a battery cable replacement on the water tender in the yard.

 

Edited by Mopar1973Man
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11 hours ago, JAG1 said:

Thanks Russ Roth for the pics. I enjoyed that. Makes a guy want to own any one of those rigs as they so cool looking. 

 

Oh you are most welcome and thanks.  I didn't own that and don't want to.  If ya own it ya work on it, or pay big $$ for someone else to.  :( :(  Having said that if I had the room and willing wife I would love to have a play toy semi.  I even know the exact one.  For a few months I drove a '54 KW with 5x3 gear boxes and a 275 horse supercharged cummins .  Only needed a set of Jakes and would have been perfect.  Well the 320 horse model would have been better!  With the back drop manifold to clear the supercharger they had a very unique exhaust sound.  Very sought after engine for collectors.  I don't know what happened to it and I didn't appreciate it as much back then as I would now.  I drove that Pete quite a few different places we hauled out of in OR and WA.  It was an '03, C-15 475 horse Cat and 10 speed.  Load like that would pull Satus pass just under 35 miles an hour.  :burnout:   :woot:I was used to Walsh trucks that only had enough power to pull a hill like that about 22-23 MPH.   :mad::cry:

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Interesting about the 54 KW.... way you talk about it, I would like to have ridin in one. Something about the good older trucks generates an affinity and interest. The new stuff looks way too different.... I feel will never make the level of a classic style.

 

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I did like that '54.  It had been a logger converted to 5th wheel.  Extremely tight cab unlike the '56 I currently had.  It was real junk and the rear axles gave up under the chip bunker after I loaded front of the trailer.  Wouldn't move but driveline was turning.  The '54 is what I got eventually.  I have not driven newest rigs but have driven newer style and like the ones I have been in, mostly Mack CH's.   My favorites, although my brother said I wouldn't like them now becasue of the rubber pad suspension, was the '71 Diamond Reos Walsh had.  New rigs then.  I was already Firefighting and was working days off some and really like it when I snagged one of those.  Truth is rigs today ride like cadillacs compared to any of the old ones.  Very worst was a B model Mack that had an R replacement cab.  That was an improvement but the old camelback suspension was so rough I thought something was broke the first time I was in that one.

 

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7 hours ago, Russ Roth said:

 

  Well the 320 horse model would have been better!  With the back drop manifold to clear the supercharger they had a very unique exhaust sound.      :mad::cry:

 

I agree! I had one of those (320) in a '65 off highway KW, It was an EX Southwest Forest log truck. It had a log loader on it. I bought it at an auction in Redlands, California and drove it home (Lakeside, AZ) it took two days, Lol. It had 60k Rockwells with 10.14 gears, 4x4 trans, topped out at about 42 mph. It was setup for 1200x24's but had 1000x22's when I got it, the front axle did have 1300x24's.

 

The second day it was getting late when I pulled a good grade not far from home and I saw an orange reflection in my right hand mirror, I leaned over so I could see better and it had a foot of fire standing off the exhaust pipe, gave me the chills:thumb1:  They were loud with a 7" muffler, the 9" was a little quieter. The old timers always told me they could break windows in town. 

 

I never was around one but the old timers told stories of the old 1091 Hall Scott gasser, they would out pull anything of that era. They used two fuel pumps with a 5/8" line, lol. 

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9 hours ago, NIsaacs said:

I never was around one but the old timers told stories of the old 1091 Hall Scott gasser, they would out pull anything of that era. They used two fuel pumps with a 5/8" line, lol. 

 
Sounds like that was a fun rig.  The ole timers (not me!) used to have a stack mirror to keep an eye on the exhaust.  Figured they were doing just right when they saw a foot of flame.  Might not have wanted to see what a pyro would have been reading.  I was around a Hall Scott once in my work as a Firefighter.  The first run engine was in for service or something and the reserve rig they got was an oldie with one of those.  One of the guys that had been around them said to be ready after a call.  He said you get off the rig and about the time you walk by the exhaust it backfires.  Boy was he right.  I drove the truck so was in the day room when it went off but I thought we had incoming it so loud !  I heard they pulled hard.

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On 6/25/2020 at 9:49 AM, Russ Roth said:

Not sure which model Cornbinder you have but a couple I saw at a truck event about a year ago were pretty nice and fit me really well.   One of those would surely have been on my short list.  My brother said the same.  We ran into a couple of his buds and they checked them out an agreed too.  Neither of us have been big fans of KW's or Petes.  He drove for a mostly Mack fleet and I worked years there part time. Once the CH models came out those were really great rigs.  Would have been my pick back then.  Now not so sure.  They got Petes on their last go round of new rigs  becasue they were light enough to meet the required net on the haul contract.  Macks too heavy and KW wouldn't dicker on price.  Mack said they had  Volvos that would meet the need but that was a huge NO.  I don't drive anymore but do go to truck shows,  Here is one we were at last Saturday.  Not a mask in sight.  Check out the marquee.

 

International Lt , its a rebranded pro star with a reworked interior,  and a few other quirks, We got a few of these within the last couple years, ( Pretty much the cheapest trucks on bid)  Some Drivers  love them and some hate them, unfortunately I’m on the latter, I can do without all the creature comforts since most of my work is lowboy and recovery and within a 500 mile radius, A day cab suites me fine, All my away from home work is hotels and Perdium,  I still prefer the KW’s and long nose Petes, guess I’m still stuck on the old school ‘chicken hauler’ truck,  As long as it’s all air ride and long legged gear ratio I’m good with it, I got two more years left where I’m at then be eligible for retirement, Been at this outfit going on 25 years and been slinging chains and dragging cables for the last 15 years and starting to take its toll on me,  but probably just hit the road for another 10 years or so, we will just have to see where this economy going after a couple years 

 

 

 

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I don't recall what model those IH were.  My take from talking with the IH guys that brought them was they were all newly designed.  I liked them at first glance but as you know once you get stuck with something you may not like it so much. 

The crushed cars have 4 cables on each stack so 12 on an A-train.  I sometimes hauled a loader when moving from one yard to another so had a bit of experience with chains too.  Hard work on a daily basis.  I would usually put in maybe 3 days a week but there were times when busy I put in 5.  I was supposed to be off in the winter but you can guess how that worked out.

I have always liked trucks from a little kid watching them go by our house and did drive full time about 4 years until I got in the Fire Bureau.  I drove probably more than 90% of my career so best of both worlds.  I tried to get my brother who did drive to take the test and he said I'm not gettin' on no burnin' roof.  I told him that's my job and that's why I get paid what I do, work the hours I do and why I have a really great retirement.  That shut him up about saying how we just sat around and played cards.  In the end I retired in 1999 while he worked until about 4 years ago.  Guess who the smart one was???  LOL

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Well congrats on a successful retirement, sounds like your decisions paid off well 

 

my youngest son is expressing interest in the firefighting field, hope he follows through, but he would have to move somewhere line a big city to really make a career out of it,  we have a lot of volunteer around these rural parts which is great experience but still got to make a living while your doing it. Their is no shortage of wild land firefighting though, we are constantly surrounded by wildfires every summer  

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Thank you, they did.  However I was not thinking at all about retirement.  My bud and I were in AV class our senior year in high school and near graduation while BS'ing he says we need to figure out what we want to do for a living after we get out of high school.  More to the story but we decided firefighting sounded pretty good because of the 24 on 48 off so we could go screw around.  We both got into it and near retirement we were in adjoining stations, same shift, different departments and responded on several fires together.  Was a great life and job. 

I would urge your son to not give up on his dream.  I nearly did and if not for my bud probably would not have gotten the job.  Tell him to take as many tests as he can.  Don't get discouraged if you don't place well or don't place at all.  Learn from it and keep trying. 

Many years after I was hired I found out about a group of guys that were studying for tests and traveling around the country as a group taking tests all over the US.  As some were hired others heard about them and would move into the group and learn.  Not sure if that is till going on.  A lot has changed since I was hired and more since I retired.  It is not the same but still a pretty great Job.

We were structural Firefighters but because Portland has over 6,000 acre Forest Park, which is pretty much wildland, we eventually received training in that type of Firefighting.  I can tell you it is a LOT more work.  Prior to the training some of our companies had been dispatched to fires at Wenatchee and E-13 crew nearly was overrun at one point in their rig.  They thought they were safe.  The fire jumped about 1/4 mile completely over the top of them and they nearly did not get out.  One of the guys had a video camera and filmed it.  PDX Fire has their own TV studio crew and they showed it and an interview with the crew on our closed circuit.  Pretty impressive and one drill I never have forgotten.



 

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I know a guy that does that for Toyota.  How is it?  Do you like that work?  He seems to and I guess they pay really well although I have not seen him in a lot of years now.

 

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 We are a union company so we do get paid pretty well, can't complain. The worst part of the job for me is weather. On a nice summer day it's great. In the dead if winter for me it sucks. I don't mind the driving in the winter, it's the loading/unloading of the vehicles on the slippery decks that makes it tricky.

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