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  • Engage the pump issue

    We have a new used engine that has a pump issue, I think.
    When the pump lever is engaged in the cab, the "ready to pump" light sometimes comes on in just a couple seconds, sometimes it takes 5 minutes. It seems like a standard pump shift mechanism, see image.
    Any leads for the non-mechanic guy to figure out what the issue is?
    Last edited by hinesfire; 03-02-2011, 10:54 AM. Reason: removed inaccurate photo

  • #2
    Ok, so what does the pump actually do? Not the light. The pump.
    Even the burger-flippers at McDonald's probably have some McWackers.

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    • #3
      At the pump panel the pump delays engagement.

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      • #4
        Ok, here's the thing. You're describing a problem with the pump shift LIGHT not coming on right away. Who cares what the light is doing. Is the problem you're trying to describe actually the pump not shifting right away? The light should come on when the transfer case shifts. It sounds like the light is working fine and its the shift that isn't working properly.
        Even the burger-flippers at McDonald's probably have some McWackers.

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        • #5
          Yes although the light is what we were focused on it is in inconsistant on when in fact the delay in the pump to engage that is the issue. Seems very odd that sometimes it goes right in, other times we wait. Its that mechanical action we are asking about.

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          • #6
            Trying not to be simplistic, but here are our pump shift procedures for a shift like yours:

            1. Shift transmission to "Neutral"
            2. Shift pump lever to the center position
            3. Wait for sound of air shift as it disengages the transfer case
            4. Shift pump to "Pump"
            5. Wait for sound of air shift as transfer case engaes
            6. Shift transmission into "D"

            We had a similar issue and found that people were either rushing the shift in the transfer case, or they were not disengaging the transmission. Not putting the transmission in "N" before shifting from road to pump will normally cause a very unpleasant (and expensive) grinding. Sometimes, however, if the transmission was in neutral and the transfer case was in neutral, the operator would place the transmission in drive and then shift the pump. That would cause a delay.

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            • #7
              The neutral position for the transfer case has always been one of those he-said-she-said things. 50% of the people tell you "OMG never stop the pump shift in neutral, it will screw it all up". Just throw it right to pump or road. Then the other 50% will say "OMG you have to stop the pump shift in neutral or it will screw it all up."

              I was always taught not to stop the pump shift in neutral and it always engages flawlessly.

              To original poster, when you throw the lever, do you hear the air?
              Even the burger-flippers at McDonald's probably have some McWackers.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by hinesfire View Post
                Any leads for the non-mechanic guy to figure out what the issue is?
                Don't be offended by my answer....but based on the line above...have it checked out by someone who is mechanically inclined for the apparatus. Last thing you want to do is possibly cause more damage.
                "This thread is being closed as it is off-topic and not related to the fire industry." - Isn't that what the Off Duty forum was for?

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by HuntPA View Post
                  Trying not to be simplistic, but here are our pump shift procedures for a shift like yours:

                  1. Shift transmission to "Neutral"
                  2. Shift pump lever to the center position
                  3. Wait for sound of air shift as it disengages the transfer case
                  4. Shift pump to "Pump"
                  5. Wait for sound of air shift as transfer case engaes
                  6. Shift transmission into "D"

                  We had a similar issue and found that people were either rushing the shift in the transfer case, or they were not disengaging the transmission. Not putting the transmission in "N" before shifting from road to pump will normally cause a very unpleasant (and expensive) grinding. Sometimes, however, if the transmission was in neutral and the transfer case was in neutral, the operator would place the transmission in drive and then shift the pump. That would cause a delay.
                  DIDDo for us. We had some speedie petes who would get all flustered and not wait for the shift.

                  When it does not work right off the bat, we go back to ground zero, take a breath and slowly pop through the steps.
                  A coward stands by and watches wrongs committed without saying a word...Any opinions expressed are purely my own and not necessarily reflective of the views of my former departments

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                  • #10
                    Have someone get on a creeper and observe the shaft and linkage moving when you operate the road/pump lever.
                    What we found on our hale pump is that road crap would get on the exposed end of the shift shaft and slow it's movement down or keep it from moving far enough to engage fully.
                    Or it could be an air supply issue to the shift valve.

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                    • #11
                      The engine must be completely stopped with the transmission in neutral, before shifting into pump gear. Any power rotation of either the drive shaft or counter shaft will cause problems with transfer case engagement. The manual for Hale Muscle pumps specifically states go directly from road to pump position with the shift. I am, however inclined to agree with HuntPA's suggestion to pause at the neutral position on the pump shift lever, as I have experienced some difficulties when slapping the lever right down to the pump position. Hale does mention that you should use the operating manual supplied with the engine because some apparatus builders use valves other than that supplied by Hale. Sometimes it is helpful to bump an automatic into drive for a second, and then back to neutral, just to get the counter shaft moving slowly right before shifting into pump gear. This has the effect of preventing the slide collar splines from getting buck toothed aganst the splines for the pump drive.

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                      • #12
                        "Ready to Pump" light....

                        Obviously you know how to put it into pump gear/mode. Stop the rig, count to 2, put in neutral, count to 2, apply parking brake, count to 2, swing lever to "engage pump", count to 2, put transmission in drive. Pump is now engaged, and light is on.

                        With the pic you have, I have never seen a single light pump engagement setup. With the setup that you have with the Hale system, I would look at the switch on top of the transfer valve that activates the "ready to pump" light. More than likely, the switch its self is sticking, and giving you a no-go light.

                        To test this, put it into pump gear/mode, and look at your master discharge gauge. If the light is off, and your seeing pressure on the discharge gauge, then I would look into the switch.

                        You also need to check your throttle up capabilities. If the light is off, you have discharge pressure, do you also have throttle up control. This is dependent if you have a vernier hand throttle control, and not cable operated.

                        Going along with Kuh, sometimes it helps putting it in reverse to stop the motion of the shafts. But I seriously doubt that this will help your issue.

                        FM1

                        EDIT: I see no reason to stop in the neutral position in the movement from road to pump. This is for both waterous and hale pumps.
                        Last edited by FIREMECH1; 03-02-2011, 04:47 AM.
                        I'm the one Fire and Rescue calls, when they need to be Rescued.

                        Originally posted by EastKyFF
                        "Firemens gets antsies. Theys wants to goes to fires. Sometimeses they haves to waits."

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                        • #13
                          Here is the revised, picture of our lever. The original one was the only thing I could find without my camera.
                          I sat in the engine last night and engaged & disengaged the pump several times. I believe I could hear the pump (pto?) engage, each time, well before the indicator lights come on.
                          I appreciate all the suggestions and better yet, help understanding of the mechanics that are going on when you engage the pump. We will continue to explore.
                          Attached Files

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                          • #14
                            With a Hale you should be able to tell if the pump has engaged when you put it in gear. You should be able to hear the whine of the gear box. If your not hearing it there is a shifter issue on the PTO. As said above either low air or the shifter its self is hanging up. If you have limited knowledge on these it might be cheaper in the long run to have a shop look at it.

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                            • #15
                              Pump Shift

                              With the Hale pump, the pump shift is done by an air cylinder and a manual three position air shift valve.
                              Set parking brake
                              Shift transmission to neutral.
                              With the manual air valve, shift to center position. Hesitate for a second or two. This allows the air on the road position side of the air cylinder to vent to atmosphere.
                              Then shift the manual valve to the pump position. This puts air pressure on the pump side of the air cylinder and shifts the gear box shaft to pump mode.
                              Hesitate for a second or two and then shift the trans to drive. If the pump has shifted correctly you should see the speedometer go to around 15 mph at idle.

                              To disengage, Shift trans to neutral and ALWAYS wait for the speedo to go to zero before attempting to shift the pump back to road mode. This is where you'll get the horrendous gear grinding noises if you don't wait. Then hesitate in the center neutral position for the air to vent off the pump side of the air cylinder and then shift to road mode.

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