MODERN FIRE FIGHTING TOOLS
POWERFUL FIRE STREAMS
Frequently mention has been made in these columns of the necessity of all fire departments being equipped with appliances for throwing big streams of water with the least possible delay. There are many devices for this purpose now in use, but not one quarter the number in service that there ought to be. There is little need to shut the stable door, after the horses have been stolen, so is there little use for an efficient fire appliance, after the conflagration has destroyed property. The cost of Deluge sets is trilling and no one doubts their efficiency where a fire threatens to become serious. The application of a good stream of water in time may save thousands of dollars of property—to say nothing of the live* of persons in extreme peril. It is well, therefore, to be provided with these efficient tools with which to meet any fire emergency. The Deluge sets made by the Kastman company, of East Concord. N. H., seem to be in favor in a great many fire departments, as is shown by the long list of places in which they are being used. These apliances do not take up much room; they are easily andled by one man; and they may be had up to the three-inch Jumbo nozzle, which is a very powerful fire tool. The Eastman new nozzle system is well known throughout the country, and. in fact, nearly all foreign countries, so that a general description of it here is not necessary. Its adoption in all the larger cities is an acknowledgment of its worth. It can produce thirty odd different sizes of streams, from the smallest in use up to three inches and over in diameter. Those streams reach very long distances and arc produced from low pressures. This system has been the means of reducing the fire risk to the extent of making lower rates of insurance in many cities—notably in Boston, where the premium rates since these streams have been adopted, now exceed $1,000,000 annually in favor of the insured.
FIRE PROTECTION OF VALUABLE PROPERTY.
Time and again it has been demonstrated that destruction of valuable property and loss of life have occurred through the neglect of owners to procure needed protection against fire. In storehouses, manufactories, grain elevators, on wharves, and. in fact, in all places where goods are manufactured or stored there is an absolute demand that they shall be properly equipped with automatic, positive, fireextinguishing devices to prevent their destruction. Tall office buildings require such appliances, as fire on each floor could be more easily reached through a standpipe and a reliable and automatically working nozzle, than by any efforts to reach high places with long lines of hose. The late chiefs. Swenie, of Chicago, and Foley, of Milwaukee, described a device that had been in operation in Pabst’s brewery— one which confined the fire to the place where it originated with very little loss of property or delay in carrying on the business of that concern. This appliance was called the Judge nozzle. It is automatic in action end operated by pressure from a standpipe connection or other means affording the moderate power necessary to operate it. In the case of the Pabst fire two of these nozzles were installed, and they confined the flames to the room and tower, with small loss. The nozzle throws a stream of water in a circular form, covering a large area, and of such diameter as is provided by the tip used. It is capable of discharging 1.200 gallons every minute, so that it will be seen that this water thrown in all directions and covering space of 4.000 feet, renders the spread of a fire almost impossible. The illustration shows where a Judge nozzle stopped fire in the tow’er of the drying house of Pabst’s brewery without the aid of any fire apparatus. If such an appliance had been used in the great dock fires of Hoboken, there is scarcely a doubt that they would have been extinguished with very little loss to the steamboat companies and with the saving of the lives lost. Small streams may be useful on certain occasions, but, where large risks are at stake, there must be provided large positive streams covering great areas. It seems that, with such a contrivance as the Judge nozzle, owners of large inflammable properties may easily reduce their risks and save great losses by installing these reliable and eminently effective appliances.
The Firemen’s home at Hudson. N. Y.. is richer liv $200 through the liberality of the Saugerties firemen. At the convention of the Hudson Valley Volunteer firemens association, recently held at Saugerties, $100 was also voted for the same object.
THE SEAGRAVE TRUCK.
The manufacture of firefighting apparatus was begun by the Seagrave company, of Columbus, Ohio, twenty years ago, and is based on originality and efficiency. There seems little to presage the transfer of its success to those who have come later into the field. History repeats itself; in turn, every advanced and meritorious step has been ridiculed, then copied, then claimed as original. The Seagrave company produced the Seagrave trussed service ladders; they were made of the right kind of materials and by skilled workmen. The claims set forth were justified, and now more than forty thousand are in service in the United States. A positive demand exists for such ladders. For more than thirty years fire departments were compelled to use cumbersome and inefficient aerial trucks, until three years ago, when the Seagrave company produced and placed upon the market the Seagrave aerial truck, which may be raised by one man in six seconds. Other trucks required from six to eight times the number of men and a corresponding amount of time to raise, notwithstanding the fact that it was proclaimed impracticable to do so, and that such a truck would not be durable. The Seagrave aerial is in successful service in New York city (two) ; Kansas City (two) ; Chicago (three) ; Wheeling (one) ; Louisville (two) ; and others in Cincinnati, St. Paul, Salt Lake City, Paterson, Passaic, Gloversville, Washington. Shreveport, Pueblo, Ocean City, New Ulm, Paducah, St. Louis, and Columbus. The Luna Park Amusement company, Coney Island, in its daily exhibition, operates the first model built, and it has l.i t n used oftener this summer than any one aerial ladder in the United States. This piece of apparatus has never been out of service for one minute on account of defective construction. It possesses the highest merit; is sold on merit and not on probation. The same degree of efficiency is found in the Seagrave chemical engines, service hook and ladder trucks, combination hook and ladder trucks and chemical engines, hose wagons, combination hose wagons and chemical engines, hose tenders and hand hose reels, made for the largest cities or the smallest villages. The Seagrave product is right, because it is made right. The apparatus is of easy draught, because it is well balanced the load being in the right place. It requires “Know-how” to make anything right, and this is particularly true of this class of apparatus. There has long been a demand for a reliable automatic tiller-lock for the rear gear of “double-ende r” trucks. It is “The Lee patent.” owned and manufactured by this company. It is safe and sure, and would work just the same as the regular tiller without lock, if it could be injured. It is in use on trucks in New York city, Passaic, N. J., Cincinnati, Louisville, Kansas City, Pueblo, Colo., and other places. This company is not connected with any fire apparatus concern nor in any combination or partnership with any company building fire apparatus, and is the only company engaged in the manufacture of fire apparatus exclusively that is not so allied.
EFFECTIVE FIREFIGHTING TOOLS.
The Combination Ladder company, of Providence, R. I., and New York, has been making some very effective fire tools, illustrations of which accompany this notice. The Baker cellar-pipe and Neptune Deluge set are well known appliances. The former has been on the market for some years and is in use in a great many departments throughout the country. The Neptune holder is also a good and reliable fire tool for directing large streams. The company claims that its Neptune pipes and sets cannot be equaled in long distances, smoothness of stream or mechanical simplicity and excellence of construction. The Neptune holder is fitted with an electric grounding device, with rubber vulcanised handles and reducer fitted with Hopkin’s stream shaper. Complete two, three and four-way sets are made, with patent automatic valve Siamese. The company has extensive works at Providence, where it manufactures fire apparatus and appliance of the most improved types and good workmanship.
This company, controled by C. N. Richardson, has made rapid strides in the production of fire apparatus and appliances during the past year. It represents the Seagrave company and the Nott Fire Engine company in the New England section, and it turns out a considerable amount of apparatus at its works in Providence. All of this work is accomplished through the great energy of Mr. Richardson, who personally looks after the business of his Providence and New York offices. The list of apparatus sales from January to August i last, was as follows: Seagrave trussed trucks to Clearfield, Pa., Weedsport, N. Y., Milford, Pa. Houlton, Me., Mianus Conn., Worcester, Mass, (two), Norwich, Conn.. Newport. R. I., Weehawken. N. J.; Seagrave aerial trucks, to Passaic, N. J.. New York city and Bayonne. N. J.; Holloway type of chemical engines to Tamaqua, Pa., and Hanover, Pa.; Holloway type of combined wagons to Shenandoah, Pa., Nyack. N. Y„ Peekskill, N. Y.. and Wilkinsburg, Pa.; steel frame hook and ladder trucks to Dover Me., and U. S. government; hose wagons to Peekskill N. Y., New London. Conn.. Dreamland and Luna Park (three). Altoona, Pa.. Englewood. N. J. (two). Lakewood. N. J.. and R. I. Veteran Firemen’s association; hose carriages to U. S. government (six). Dreamland and Luna Park; Gleason and Bailey trucks to Pascoag, R. I., and Wrentham. Mass.; a Babcock type of chemical engine to East Providence. R. 1.; a Button band engine to Camden. Del.; a sporting hand engine to Lowell. Mass., Veteran association; a gasolene engine to Dongan Hills, borough of Richmond (S. 1.), N. Y.; a combination wagon to Stoneham, Mass.; a combination chemical truck to Taunton. Mass.; a chemical truck to Holyoke, Mass.; three steamers, two aerial trucks two chief’s buggies, two hose carriages and one hand engine to Dreamland and Luna Park, Coney Island; two hose carriages to Pascoag, R. I. This long list is printed to show the variety and quantity of apparatus which has been handled by this company in about seven months.
THE WIRELESS IN FOREST FIRES.
Richard E. Follctt, vicepresident of the Forestry, Fishing and Game association of America, is interested in the forest fires now prevailing in the West. He said that these fires form one of the problems which have absorbed the attention of the association. “The association and government (he adds) have worked in harmony to devise means which will lead to a reduction of the conflagrations which are yearly not only reducing vast tracts of timber, but destroying game and its natural haunts. The plan of a system of wireless telegraphy is one of several now under consideration, and it is intended to put a few experimental stations in operation to test them. The idea of these stations is to give warning of these tires and enable them to he located when they arc in their incipiency. The news of the fire would be transmitted by a system of signals produced as a result of the heat. The idea is by no means impracticable, and it is not so expensive to establish as may appear upon the surface. The cost of maintenance is slight, after the recording instruments are once in place, while the saving to property would more than justify the expense, if after a thorough trial it is found feasible. The loss of the timber is not the only loss to mankind through forest fires. Game and fish are destroyed and driven away, and we know the effect that is produced through the unequal distribution of moisture.
AMERiCAN*LA FRANCE FIRE ENGINE COMPANY.
The shops of the American-La France Fire Engine company have for some months oast been running nights in order to fill the unprecedented orders on hand. The company’s shops at Elmira are devoted largely to the production of hook and ladder trucks, water towers and general chemical apparatus. The company recently perfected a quick-raising aerial truck, the main ladder of which can ]>e raised and extended by two men within ten seconds. The principal feature in the design of this truck is embraced in one word—”simplicity,” and the company has been highly complimented on its general fine construction, as will be seen by the illustration below, After the company had made a crude model they invited several chiefs of large cities to inspect it at the Elmira shops, the result being that the company received orders for five of these trucks, two of which were ordered by Chief Swingley, of St. Louis. One of these trucks will be exhibited at the convention at Chattanooga, at which time the company will also exhibit the Weston patent trussed ladders, of which they control the exclusive shop right to manufacture. The company reports an unusual demand for water towers, which type of apparatus has proved so largely efficient in handling fires in large cities. The Seneca Falls and Cincinnati shops are devoted to the manufacture of the company’s famous “Metropolitan” engines, and the fact that two of the largest factories in the world devoted to this line of work, employing together in the neighborhood of 700 men, can be devoted exclusively to the production of this famous engine is an illustration of the great popularity of this machine. The high standard of workmanship and design has won a reputation for this engine in practical fire duty service covering a period of many years and in the fire departments of all of the large cities throughout the United States.
The company recently delivered a second-size Metropolitan Engine to the City of St. Paul, and a copy of the official test of the engine is given below :
Time of generating one hundred (100) pounds of steam from cold water from time of lighting fire in engine.
Two lines of two hundred and fifty feet of 2½ inch hose, siamesed into one line of fifty feet of 2½ inch hose; one and one-half inch nozzle (l’/j inch nozzle), to work 10 mintes.
300 1 rich nozzle to work four (4) hours, steam and water pressure taken every ten minutes, also distance of stream thrown.
Engine tested from River Aug. 12 with 42 feet suction hose, 18 feet lift.
The above is a copy from the official records, and is a record-breaking showing, demonstrating the high efficiency of the fire engines which are used at the present time.
THE HAYWARD EMERGENCY COUPLING.
S. F. Hayward & Co., of 20 Warren street, Manhattan, New York, are bringing out what is termed the “Hayward Emergency Coupling,” which is the invention of Frank Walters, master mechanic of the Rochester, N. Y., fire department, and for many years connected with the American Fire Engine company. This is called an emergency coupling, as it is not intended to substitute it for the couplings regularly used in a department. As the name implies, it is a coupling for an emergency. It overcomes the absence of a universal thread. Two couplings of entirely different threads can be connected in a moment by means of this emergency coupling. Fire departments can assist neighboring cities, when necessary, without regard to any difference of thread in the hose couplings of the two cities. The crossing of threads is also overcome, as there are no threads to cross. The illustration explains itself. The hooks catch on the lugs of the connecting coupling, and a quick turn of the lockknot makes a tight joint. The other end of the coupling has a screw thread to fit the couplings in the department in which it is used. The other illustrations on this page show the coupling attached to a hydrant. This coupling is not only made in the fire hose size, but also for suction-hose, and it is anticipated that its advantages will prove to be such as to make it a necessity on all steam fire engines. For fire engine work, the coupling would be permanently attached to the suction connection, and the engine would then be able to connect with any suction-hose, regardless of the thread. By actual experiment, it has been found that the suction-hose can be connected to the engine in quicker time by means of this coupling, than by the ordinary screw connection, as now used. This coupling, as will be seen, is not simply a quick-connecting coupling involving a complete change of couplings in a fire department. A few of these in each department will answer all purposes, and will place a department in a position either to receive help from, or to render assistance to another city in an emergency. The coupling is very compact, and there are no adjustments of any kind to be made, or any delicate parts to be lost or injured. The experience at the Baltimore fire and other similar fires, where outside aid was called for, suggested afresh the need of such an appliance, and Hayward & Co. have placed it upon the market, only after thorough experiments, and with the knowledge that the problem has been solved in this device. Hayward & Co. have made a specialty for some years of securing and placing upon the market novel and ingenious firefighting devices, as instanced by the Hayward automatic tiller-lock, which has been one of the greatest successes of its kind in the history of fire apparatus. This company, however, does not take up everything new that is brought to its attention, and of the hundreds of patents that are monthly submitted to it, very few are found to be sufficiently meritorious to bring before the fire chiefs of the country. The conservative policy of the Hayward company in this respect makes it probable that it has thoroughly satisfied itself as to the advantages of this coupling, before deciding to undertake its manufacture and sale.
Onarga, N. Y., is installing a waterworks.
THE OAKES-GARLAND NOZZLE.
This new fire appliance seems to have a field not yet covered in fire service practice, and no doubt it will find favor with everyone interested in fire-extinguishment on account of its undoubted excellence for specific purposes. In the lower part of the illustration a general outline of the nozzle is given and the upper: sections show Garland’s improvement in a combination and cut-off valve. The nozzle is intended for fires among coal, hay, in basements, in holds of vessels, lumber piles, baled cotton and for similar purposes. It can be driven through a partition in a burning house, where it would not be safe to open a door, or through the roof or outside of a house. By lengthening it, a solid stream can be played on a fire that would be too hot for firemen to work with ordinary hose. The following is a brief description of the appliance: A B is a Y, with an angle-passage from H to E shut off by the valve D C, which is operated by a common fireman’s spanner. E is the driving nozzle, which is screwed in the Y A B. In the end of this nozzle there is a point F, which is held by a slight spring, while the driving into the wall or through the coal is being done. As soon as the shut-off C D is opened, and the water is allowed to flow through the point E. the point F is blown off. G is a driving handle, which screws in the Y A B. H is a common hose coupling, which couples on to the hose and is of standard ior any ordinary fire hose. E. W. Oakes is the inventor, and it is manufactured by the M. Garland company, both of Bay City, Mich,
Menominee, Mich., will probably buy the present waterworks system.
NEW APPARATUS FOR NEWARK.
Our Newark, N. J., correspondent writes that “at a meeting of the board of fire commissioners held on September 6 contracts were awarded for the purchase of a “Kaiser” aerial truck at a cost of $5,850. The new truck will be equipped with an eighty-five-foot aerial ladder, to be raised by either hand or pneumatic pressure, three-horse hitch, tiller-lock, rubber tires and the usual equipment of other ladders and appliances. The American La France Fire Engine company was the successful bidder. The board also ordered a new combination chemical engine and hose wagon of the “Babcock” type at a cost of $2,225. with rubber tires. The new truck and wagon are to be delivered within ninety days after signing of contracts. The truck will he placed in the quarters of hook and ladder co. No. 1 and a general shifting of the other trucks will probably be made. T he new chemical wagon; is for the new engine company No. 18, which is‘to be placed in service within a month. The new truck co. No. 6 has been placed in service, with quarters on Washington avenue, near Arlington avenue and covers the entire Northern section of the city on the first alarm. A glazier nozzle has been placed on the hose wagon attached to No. 7 engine, and one is to be placed on No. 8 hose wagon. Engine No. 9 is now being fitted with rubber tires at a cost of $400. A new form of cellar nozzle has been added to the equipment of No. 1 truck.
The Everett, Wash., Herald of August 27, prints a laudatory editorial about Fire Chief P. Hoyt. who. it says, is now filling his first term in office and has “already demonstrated his ability to do so ably and well. Chief Hoyt, since he has been in his present position, is giving Everett today one of the best fire services in the Northwest. Every detail of the service is given his personal attention and from the work he is doing he has made us proud of our gallant fire chief.”
THE CLAV APPLIANCES.
For many years John H. Clay has manufactured fire department appliances at 1520 Ridge avenue, Philadelphia. His fire house door springs are in use in all the leading departments the world over. They are made with the greatest care and of the best material. To use a Clay spring is to guarantee reliability in this important appliance. Sir. Clay lias also so improved tlte old Jones coupling that it is exclusively used in Philadelphia ami other large cities. The reputation of the Clay appliances is so well established that it is only necessary to call attention to them here.
On the afternoon of Labor Day. a two-alarm fire, which probably originated among the sawdust in a corner of Pearsalles one-story frame sawmill at 222 North Eleventh street. Brooklyn, N. Y., cost the proprietor $6,000 and the owner of the building. the American Sugar Refining company; $3,000. The flames communicated with a two-story frame structure immediately adjoining, at 224 and 226 North Eleventh street, also owned by the American Sugar Refining company, and leased by David McKnight as a smelting refinery. A considerable quantity of machinery used for the testing of gold, silver and the baser metals was extensively damaged by the blaze, and the estimated loss to McKnight was $18,000: loss cm the building, $7,000. Insurance all round only partial.
FIRE ALARM TELEGRAPHY.
How closely the modern fire department must depend for its efficiency upon the promptness and reliability of its own fire alarm telegraph service is well understood by all chiefs and by fire commissioners, boards of safety and city councils generally. When the installation of new systems or the improvement of old equipments is under consideration, it is rarely that the authorities iu charge act upon any other motive than their desire to learn first what apparatus is the best, as shown by their own experience in the past, and by what they know of actual results elsewhere. This question having been decided, it is rarely that they are led to adopt untried inventions or cheaper apparatus in an effort to make a slight saving in the cost of the first installation. The history of the fire alarm telegraph in the United States and the history of the Gamewell Fire Alarm Telegraph company arc substantially identical. The first fire alarm telegraph invented by Channing & Farmer was installed in Boston in iS51 Four years later Mr. John V Gamewell purchased the original patents, taking up the business when the Boston equipment was the only one in existence. Mr. Gamewell and his associates, the present Gamewell Fire Alarm Telegraph Company, have furnished more than ninety per cent, of all the fire alarm apparatus in use in the United States and Canada. To Messrs. Channing & Farmer are due the fame which justly comes to inventors who have rendered invaluable service to mankind, hut to John N. Gamewell and his successors, will ever belong the credit for equally valuable service which their perseverance, energy and capital have rendered in improving the original inventions, and in extending the benefits of the service into nearly every important city and town in the United States. At the present time there arc only a fewplaces with 10.000 or more inhabitants in the United States which are not supplied with fire alarm telegraph service, and there are nearly 1,000 smaller places which have installed the Gamewell service. The Gamewell company has maintained its leadership by constant efforts to improve the apparatus and methods of fire alarm telegraphy, and it claims to have cither invented or introduced every improvement which has taken place from the original apparatus of 1851 to the very latest in use at the present time. I he same policy continues, and new inventions and new modifications of existing practices will probably always he necessary to meet new conditions as they rise. Every industrial concern must progress or stagnate and recede, and, recognising this, the Gamewell company has not rested on its laurels, but is today as active and aggressive as if it were a new concern, without record or history. While not neglecting the improvement requirements for established municipal plants and the small places which still have no fire alarm telegraph, the Gamewell company has actively entered two fields which offer almost unlimited opportunities, for expansion of business. I hese are the introduction of American fire alarm telegraph apparatus in foreign countries and the extension of the public fire alarm service into the interiors of premises through the auxiliary fire -alarm service. The Gamewell company entered the foreign field about four years ago. and now maintains in Europe a corps of active and efficient salesmen and experts who are successfully maintaining and extending the reputation of American manufacturers in foreign countries. Their success has been large and encouraging for the still further extension of this branch of the business. I he Gamewell company is not engaged in any process of “dumping” its wares on foreign markets, but every success which it has thus far won has been by convincing the authorities that the American fire alarm telegraph is better and worth more money than anything offered by home manufacturers. Every contract taken in England and Germany, in Sweden and Norway and the British colonies has been at higher prices than were offered by home competitors. Large contracts for Gamewell apparatus were pending in Japan and Russia when the outbreak of the war suspended neeotiations. It is interesting to note that all the Gamewell company’s foreign sales of fire and police apparatus have been of their latest and most highly improved types. In recent years there has grown up an extensive demand for interior fire alarm service in factories, hotels, piers, warehouses, educational and penal institutions and. generally, wherever life and property are exposed to fire, and the services of the fire department may at any time he in instant demand. The auxiliary service, by locating in interiors auxiliary stations, from which the nearest street box may be instantly operated, provides facilities for an extension of the public service which is impossible by any other method.