THE HAYES EXTENSION LADDER.
An exhibition of the Hayes Extension Ladder was given in Brooklyn on Tuesday last, on one of the tallest buildings in that city, near the City Hall. Herewith we give an illustration of this ladder. The Hayes ladder is well known on the Pacific Coast, the home of Mr. Haves, the inventor, being in San Francisco. There it is a pronounced success, and Mr. Hayes is now on a visit in the East for the purpose of introducing it in those Departmentswhere it is most needed. The Hayes Ladder is an extension ladder in two sections (a third may be added if required), mounted on a turn-table on a truck. It is elevated by means of a powerful screw, the extension being thrown up in the ordinary manner by an endless chain when elevated, it is inclined in any direction by means of the turn-table.
The ladder exhibited Tuesday was built by Buckley & Merritt of this city, and is a piece of most excellent workmanship. This is the sixth truck built under the eye of the inventor, and contains all the modern improvements. It is not neccessary for us to enter into all the details of construction, but simply say that every point has been covered, and the ladder is a complete success practically. In addition to the Extension Ladder, the truck carries six other ladders, varying in length from 18 to 40 feet, extinguishers, axes, hooks, and the full equipment of an ordinary truck. It weighs a little over 6000 pounds, and is easily drawn by two horses.
At the exhibition on Tuesday, the Truck was run into position parallel with the sidewalk; four men at the crank easily raised the ladder to an upright position, while two others projected the extension; the turn-table was then brought into use, and the ladder quickly laid against the cornice of the building, one of the tallest in Brooklyn; three heavy men then mounted the ladder and in a moment were on the roof. From the curb to the top of the rung of the ladder was 88 feet. Subsequently the extension was drawn in, and the ladder laid into the third and fourth story windows was swung around by the turn-table in all directions, and, the extension being all taken in, the ladder became an aerial ladder some forty-one feet high. Mr. Hayes does not, however, claim an aetial ladder, for, being an old Fireman he does not see the advantage of such a ladder nor believe that they can be made safe and trustworthy. Attached to the upper part of the ladder is a pulley by means of which a line of hose can be quickly elevated, or a basket raised and lowered for life saving purposes. The exhibition was witnessed by the authorities of the Brooklyn Fire Department, many other public officials, and a large promiscuous crowd of interested citizens. There was but one opinion regarding the ladder, and that was that it is the best and most serviceable long ladder they had ever seen. Mr. Hayes labored under the disadvantage of not having trained men to manipulate his ladder, consequently did not attempt to work on time. The ladder has been elevated, however, and a man placed on the roof of a tall building in 45 seconds, by a crew that had been trained to handle the ladder. It will be noted that the Hayes Ladder reached to the height of nearly 100 feet—it can be made so or 30 feet longer if desired—and that it carries the full equipment of an ordinary Hook and Ladder Truck, in addition to the extension ladder. It is also arranged for a fire-escape and life-saving apparatus. This is the only safe and practicable long ladder that we have ever seen, and although there are several other styles that have been much lauded, none have been satisfactory in actual service, while the Hayes Ladder has been used several years in San Francisco and other cities on the Pacific coast with entire success and satisfaction. Buckley & Merritt are entitled to much credit for having so skillfully carried out the ideas of Mr. Hayes in the construction of this Truck. The Truck now goes to the paint shop, and in thecourseof a couple of weeks will be exhibited in New York to the Commissioners and other fire authorities.