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  • #31
    What you have described sounds like the move in medium duty trucks toward more "automotive" style construction.

    For instance some companies are now using their own rear axles. The only reason I can tell is so they can control replacement parts. Was there a problem with Spicer or Meritor rear ends? Is there a new feature?

    Mostly the sole source hype refers to electronic gadgets that cannot be made to work with a simple on/off switch, and are of dubious value. I like my on/off switches and wires going to devices to tell you the truth.

    Birken

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    • #32
      Originally posted by NewJerseyFFII
      Smeal buys chassis cabs from Spartan & Ferrara , Rosenbauer buys Spartans , Crimson fire is owned by Spartan chassis co. Etc !....Also Smeal at one time built aerial ladders for " Pierce " and now they build for " Ferrara " & RK Aerials go to " Seagrave for there midmount & rear mount towers.
      Just to set the record straight here, my understanding is that Seagrave is purchasing their new "Towermax" products from RK, not the other way around.

      It is interesting just who is in bed with whom, isn't it?
      "Share your knowledge - it's a way to achieve immortality." - Stolen from Chase Sargent's Buddy to Boss program

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      • #33
        Originally posted by L3Truckee
        Sole source is about the concept of the vehicle and its intended use. Where a manufacturer utilizes an in house engineering department to develop a vehicle that utilizes its own chassis, body, and aerial device into one package. Not necessarily who will turn the wrenches or foot the bill.

        Making sure the vehicle is fully integrated from bumper to bumper is what sole source is all about. Today, there are more integrated systems on a fire apparatus than ever before. Especially on aerial apparatus. Buying a vehicle from any manufacturer that does not build their own chassis and integrates those systems into a complete fire apparatus is a gamble.

        Therefore, sole source needs to include engineering and design and development of the apparatus. Not just buying a cab and building on top of it.

        The odds being what they are... can you risk buying from a non sole source company?
        Pretty good sales hype......who do u sell for? Sounds like whats said in the pierce presentations.

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        • #34
          Originally posted by npfd801
          Just to set the record straight here, my understanding is that Seagrave is purchasing their new "Towermax" products from RK, not the other way around.

          It is interesting just who is in bed with whom, isn't it?
          RK Aerials Inc. is selling to : " Seagrave , Hme , Marion , Rosenbauer , Alexces, Toyne , & other smaller builders ".

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          • #35
            I have read this thread with interest as I have listened to both sides of the sole-source issue for many years. In my opinion, sole-source meant something back in the days when the engines, pumps, axles, etc. were actually built by the fire truck manufacturer.

            Today, all manufacturers are nothing more than assemblers, they all use the same major components. This means that it all comes down to the ability and competence of your local dealer. He/she should be able to obtain the proper permission from whoever necessary to remedy legimate warranty issues in a timely manner. All finger-pointing and manufacturer's reluctance should be dealt with behind the scenes and not involve the customer.

            Regardless of sole-source or not, all major engines and transmissions can only be repaired by their own authorized service center, none will give permission to a dealer or even a manufacturer to remedy the problem. Unfortunately, these centers are not always in tune with the urgency of the fire service and it can sometimes be difficult to handle warranty issues as fast as the fire service requires.
            Last edited by FyreFly; 08-03-2006, 11:06 AM. Reason: spelling

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            • #36
              I only disagree with the assembly part to a point. Sole-source custom cab manufacturers start with flat pieces of metal and machine it into a cab. Most buy the chassis pre-built from elsewhere, but the cab and body structure as well as the wiring are all done in house. Not a reason to pick one over the other, but they do perform more than just bolting/welding things together.

              All finger-pointing and manufacturer's reluctance should be dealt with behind the scenes and not involve the customer.
              Truer words never spoken. But here on this imperfect Earth, it doesn't happen that way unfortunately. Repairs cost money, and without screwing over their customers on the purchase of the trucks the local dealers won't have tons of cash laying around to handle stuff first and bill the parent company later. I wish it was that way, it would be the right way to do business and treat the customer, so if you find such a dealer I wouldn't think of buying from anyone else regardless of badge.
              Brian P. Vickers
              www.vickersconsultingservices.com
              Emergency Services Consulting
              Westlake VFD - Houston, TX
              Proud Member IACOJ - Redneck Division

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