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Large Diamter Hose

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  • Large Diamter Hose

    With the elimination of an engine comapny our department is planning the purchase of new large diamter hose. Currently, our apparatus is equipped with 4" hose. Both 5" and 6" hose are being considered. Any input on this subject is welcome. If you have 6" hose in service now please let us know what brand name and type of hose you are using in addition to any thoughts. Thank you.

    Ed at Swarthmore FD

  • #2
    I would have to say if you are running 4 inch and your people are comfortable with working with it and you haven't had problems why change? You should consider the cost of each, look at the stats for each such as how many gallons it takes to fill a section of equal length of each, how much a equal length section of each weighs and price. You may also want to look at what the other companies you run with use. If they are using the same size as you are now than you would have to get adapters to hook into there units if you happen to have to supply them. Last but not least ask the other members what there opinion is on the subject. Remember they are the ones who will be working with it.


    • #3
      our dept is in the process of getting some used 5in hose to change out our 4in. My opinion would be if you are going to change, change to 5 in. I know adaptors for 5" hose are more common, or at least you hear about them more. I am willing to bet they are also alot cheaper than 6in adaptors. This is just my 2 cents and opinion. Take it for what you wish


      • #4
        You mwill see an improve using 6" over 5" when you have long lays or when you are using a super strong hydrant. with average hydrant systems 5" usually does a good job of maximizing the available water. Don't get me wrong there will be an increase however It will probably not be worth your while. Get sme of each and do flow tests. Get the hose companies to supply you with demo hose.


        • #5
          I am from PA also and all the depts in my run area all have five inch on there trucks. I would see what your mutual aid has on there trucks so you dont have to keep buying adapters to hook up to them five inch is the most coomon used.


          • #6
            We use 5" supply hose on our skid load. It works great.

            I haven't done any research on the matter. Maybe someone could answer my questions.

            Would a 6" compromise a hydrant system?
            I know that in our rural distrcit we have "suburban areas" that have hydrant access, unfortunately these systems cannot even handle the 5" supply and we wind up running a shuttle operation anyway.

            The 6" over the 5" is naturally going to move more water, but after friction loss so on and so forth, is it a NOTICEABLE difference?

            Like I said, the 5" does a good job for us, but any input would be appreciated.

            Your Brother In The Service,
            Rob Herpel
            Vice-Pres./Asst. EMS Coordinator
            Fremont Rural Fire Department


            • #7
              5" or 6" IN A RURAL SETTING?


              //The 6" over the 5" is it a NOTICEABLE difference?

              The water will go almost three times further, or 6" off hydrant pressure be the same as a pumper in relay with 5".

              I can't think of any way soft hose would compromise a water system.


              • #8
                We have found that 6" hose will move about twice the water as 5". And 6" is a friction loss stopper. Angus Hi-vol 5" hose has 13psi loss over 100' at 1500 gpm. Where Angus Hi-vol 6" hose has only 5.7! Other companies have similar differences. I can't see a technical reason not to go to it. I do see many other realistic problems however. First, how are firefighters going to move it around? How does it compare to moving 5" around? What about the weight? The Angus differnce is 26# per 100' [5" is 109# and 6" is 135#] But, Niedner Tidal-wave is only 125# per 100' length. I'm sure couplings and adapters are going to be more expensive. But we are already making a change. From 4" to either 5" or 6" inch. Is the cost going to differ that much? We are surrounded with companies that have 3", 3.5", 4", and 5". So, adapters-r-us already! Will the 6" hose even fit down a hose chute on a ladder truck? My question is - Does the decrease is friction loss make up for the back breaking additional 16# of a 100' length of hose? [Angus 5" being 109# and Niedner 6" being 125#] Thank you for your input.

                Ed at Swarthmore FD


                • #9
                  check out this flow test .
                  4" vs 5" vs 6"

                  This was a simple test and it only involved 100' because that is all the 6" I could get.

                  Hydrant was considered better then average . The static pressure was 75 psi. It was supplied by a 8" main. We did not do flow tests on the hydrant to find out what was in the ground. In all tests the pump came down to 5 psi residual.

                  4" 975 gpm
                  5" 1053 gpm
                  6" 1189 gpm
                  I feel that a stronger hydrant would have made the 6" shine more. Longer lays would have also proved the 6" more worthy.

                  I think one of the problems we get into is relying on statistics from formulas to evaluate with . Although these numbers are acurate they are in a perfect world. There are no intake valves or plumbing to deal with and the hose is in a perfect straight line. Lets face it it's difficult to lay out big hose fore flow tests and alot easier to just work with numbers on paper.


                  • #10
                    One of the things I haven't seen mentioned...or if I missed it I'm sorry, is how big is your hose bed and how much hose do you want to carry? Obviously 5" takes up more room in the hose bed than 4" and 6" takes more room than 5".

                    We have used 5" for about 5 years and it has never left us short of water. I guess if we were going to lay out farther than 1000' at any point it may, but we never have to in our situation.

                    My choice would be 5" hose.

                    Good luck,



                    • #11

                      Regarding the comprimising the hydrant.

                      I still don't understand it either, but we had a double structure fire and when we were about hot and heavy into it, the hydrant was not suppling enough for our pumper and we had to goto shuttle operation. We lost one, saved one.

                      We then had a problem at a residential area to our West as well, where the hydrant was not taking as good care of us as we would have liked.

                      THAT IS REMARKABLE, the difference in the 1". I guess I should READ more huh? I get so into being a grunt and letting the officers and engineers worry about flow rates and friction loss that I loss perspective in that I ALSO need to keep current. I have been caught a couple of times not. I am glad I started the forums. I have learned a LOT since I have.

                      Kind of sad though, 12 years doing this stuff and needing to go back to Kindergarten.
                      Well, I learned me lesson I hope.

                      Your Brother In The Service,
                      Rob Herpel
                      Vice-Pres./Asst. EMS Coordinator
                      Fremont Rural Fire Department


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