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New Rig Purchase Commision

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It had an LED Night / Shock light. I haven't seen an ambulance with a shock light since we had a 70's rental back in '99.

Blue "Shock" lights? Let's do the time warp again! As I recall, the blue lights were to be easy on the vision of a patient you cardioverted back to life. Don't recall them being on any American make ambulance following the 1980 model year.

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I've seen several remounts; and new builds that had them installed just b/c it's in long-ago expired specs for apparatus. Like the services who insist on having a bench seat on both sides, etc.

Edited by 4c6

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Told ya I'd get the information. Just got my tickets today.

Nassau County Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Uniondale, Nassau County (Long Island) New York, for "Long Island's Fire, Rescue & EMS MEGA SHOW 2011", Saturday and Sunday, February 26 and 27, 2011, 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM.

Go to Exit 4 of the Meadowbrook Parkway (Hempstead Turnpike).

Tickets will be $13.50 each, per day, plus additional cost for the parking field. They have, as I already mentioned, Engines, Ladder, Rescue, Airport Crash Rescue, Ambulance, and even mobile Command Post vehicles, as well as the equipment to put in them, and dress your troops in, when they use them.

I almost forgot: There is usually a competition for vehicle dismemberment with hydrolic cutter/spreader tools, or should I say "Patient Disentanglement and Extrication".

As of this point, I don't know which day I'm going, but I'm going! Perhaps I'll see a few of my EMT City buddies I've never eyeballed before, at the show. If the batteries hold out, Lady J and I will be on General Mobile Radio Service/Family Radio Service Channel 6, privacy code 3.

(For more information, go to www.liproductions.net . I am not one of their employees)

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Thanks for the heads up Richard. Unfortunatly I will be out of state during that show. Wish I wasn't but I am.

Here is an update thus far. I know they come few and far between but as some may know its a long process.

Right now we are in the chassis stage, just the basic platform, dimentions and the like. We spoke with PL Customs (thanks for the heads up from the poster that reccomended them) They are really a professional bunch. They brought a demo rig with them and some techs. As we were given the sales pitch while looking in the spaceship errr rig(ok when did touch screens and bluetooth start showing up in rigs LOL) the techs were measuring our old rig and also our bay. They took all the dimentions and did there thing. We came up with one of their F350 chassis and a custom sized 150" box. It is based on their "Standard III" series of rigs. Seems to fit the bill. In about 10 to 14 days from now we should be getting actual blueprints (generic interior) to show our Corp.

In two weeks Horton will be coming over and doing the same (moved the demo day back 3 times already so I am not holding my breath) that way we can compare between the two and be able to better notify our Corp of the information. Still looking for a third company but from what we have found out through the town administrator as long as we stay below the budget cap they will offer (still haven't found out, guess they want to see what numbers we come up with) it can be our decision.

Have to admit this is a daunting task. The 4 of us have spent numerous nights pouring over plans, napkin sketches, coffee and the like just brain storming. What we have done is hash out an outline of steps to follow. That way we dont get overwhelmed at any one step and it helps the Corp in general see the direction we would like to go and they can discuss changes with us and vote on everything each step of the way. That way we all get something we want, I know we can't please everyone with everything but at least the comprises we come to will be agreed upon by the majority of folks.

We are starting with the chassis and box size. Followed by layout, we are thinking exterior first, interior next (apperently PL has several configurations for both as does Horton) The third step will be drivers compartment laying out the gauges, switch type, switch positions, radio positions, ect (again here there are numerous choices). It is the drivers compartment where I think we will have a few snags. We have several "steady" drivers, that is memebers that are EMTs but are close to retirement that they mostly just drive so their input will be needed more then others.

BTW those full function multilayered touch screens look awsome but I don't see it happening, I can't picture fumbling with them to pull up the right layer while running L&S somewhere. In the back maybe, PL had a nice multifunction display screen. It can show ECG, pulse ox, ect and relay to the ED via Bluetooth while also being seen by all (except pt). Then switch the screen and see your M tank levels, suction psi, ect. Finally hit another button and the sceen does a split screen so everything is sceen. OK probably wont happen due to cost but it did look cool though. Even the front one looked cool, did everything from engine diag, navigation, light control, patient status, and had some programable features as well. But like I said, seems way too much for the drivers compartment.

Ok I am getting ahead of myself but as you see there are things we see in demos and brochures that I have been thinking ahead and trying to think of problems before we get there. I think with our step by step guide and keeping to it we will get through realitvely sane.

I will keep everyone posted.

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Ugly: You can get the trucks without the touchscreen interface. That is called multiplexing. We had some of the same issues when we were shopping for a new truck.

Tell the PL folks you want a "Ron Morin " type truck design. They will know what you are asking for :-} Ron is a 30+ year Paramedic and also a long time sales rep

Manual switching with ALL LED's for warning lights, very user friendly in front & back compartments.

The "H" rep brought a demo truck out to see and when the fire chief asked him to show him how the controls in the drivers compartment worked , it took the sales rep three tries to get all the emergency lights turned on. Needless to say that's not what most folks want. A lot of the problems with multi-plexing is in how it is programmed. A computer input down a node tells the light or piece of equipment to turn on or off. It can be programmed however you would want it to , BUT there are still issues with reliability.

Ten years ago I had the use of a demo Braun Rig at a major racetrack venue. It was the first time I'd dealt with multi-plexing. It took three different screens to scroll through , every time we wanted to "light em up" to pull onto the race track. Not user friendly at all.

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speaking of multiplexed control systems , this is the kind of thing most kit in the Uk is being fitted with

http://www.carnationdesigns.co.uk/18way.html

or the very similar Woodway optilink

http://www.woodwayengineering.co.uk/top.html ( click on control )

now i'm not suggesting you should even consider the two above ( unless Whelen will support the opti-link as Woodway is the UK Whelen main agent/ type approved assembler) but multiplex doesn't mean pain in the ass - also could some of the touch screen systems not be installed/ programmed with custom 'frontpages' which replicate the functions of something like an optilink with big clear 'respond' 'scene' 'leave scene' 'arrive' 'clear' etc 'buttons'

as cost is all ways an issue you might not go with touch screens but it doesn't mean that multiplexed isn't an option if you chosen builder can provide you with a simple® control panel or 2 for the cab and saloon and door-way repeater panels for lights / steps / ramps and panic alarm.

I know I mentioned livery in my first post but people have been quite since - how much 'passive' warning via livery does your existing vehicle have and would you be open to looking at a livery with more passive warning capability. Even if it were just chevrons to the rear rather than the whole battenburg cake deal increasingly common in Europe ?

Edited by zippyRN

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speaking of multiplexed control systems , this is the kind of thing most kit in the Uk is being fitted with

http://www.carnationdesigns.co.uk/18way.html

or the very similar Woodway optilink

http://www.woodwayengineering.co.uk/top.html ( click on control )

now i'm not suggesting you should even consider the two above ( unless Whelen will support the opti-link as Woodway is the UK Whelen main agent/ type approved assembler) but multiplex doesn't mean pain in the ass - also could some of the touch screen systems not be installed/ programmed with custom 'frontpages' which replicate the functions of something like an optilink with big clear 'respond' 'scene' 'leave scene' 'arrive' 'clear' etc 'buttons'

as cost is all ways an issue you might not go with touch screens but it doesn't mean that multiplexed isn't an option if you chosen builder can provide you with a simple® control panel or 2 for the cab and saloon and door-way repeater panels for lights / steps / ramps and panic alarm

Multi-plexing can work well if it is set up properly. It operates by using the same wire to send impulses to "nodes" which operate multiple devices depending on the signal sent in impulses on that wire. The problem is getting it programmed to operate the way YOU want it to work, instead of how the factory engineer decides it should work.

Unlike a hard wired system where a single wire goes from switch to device by way of a power relay, and only controlling a single device or sequence of devices such as warning lights.

Instead of using a test light or multimeter to test a circuit , you need a laptop computer and the appropriate software program to troubleshoot the system.

At this time multi-plexed systems are becoming compatible in price with hard wired systems.

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Hey guys. Yes we are looking at the multi-plex system. PL takes away the touch screen version and opts for a regular switch style butr each switch can run different things with either a toggle switch or rotator switch to set the "level" of the keys.

In our rigs currently we have one with old style rockers and one with a multi-plex style. While its nice to have less switches with the multi-plex training new recruits is sometimes a pain. We have it set up as the "top" layer is all the emergency lights, second layer is all the scene lighting, and the final layer is just some random stuff like self tests and diagnositcs. Basically set up very well, like scene lighting being on the seond level due to the infrequent use or non priority use. its ok to take a few seconds to remember where it all is. Our switches have the "top" layer imprinted on them with the secondary and tertiary labeled on the side next to the switch.

Right now our big concern is the actual platform, the rest is just details. I just happened to mention the top of the line they sent us with every bell and whistle as I couldn't believe how advanced things are getting. I made the joke about needing an aerospace degree just to sit in the rig LOL I get that as technology improves so do we but some of it seemed more suited for a nurses station with multiple patients then the back of a rig. OK it was nice to see an ECG display right from the LP12 so all in the rig know whats going on but honestly, it only takes me a second to move my head to read the LP's display.

Horton again canceled so whenever they decide to show I will post an update otherwise so far so good. I will keep you all posted.

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I have to throw my suggestion behind PL Customs as well. I've been in just about every possible kind of ambulance during my long career and for the money, the value, and most of all the service, PL was the best. It's pretty strange for me to say that because I was a pretty die hard fan of the Horton until one of my former companies took delivery of one of PL's ambulances. They converted me.

Sounds like you're off to a great start. This is a long process, it's some serious brand of hard work, and it will wear you out. Good luck!

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Thanks EMS. Yes we just started the process and its already pulling me in every direction.

We are following our steps and hopefully that will help keep us organized.

Just wish the other companies would keep appointments. Its bad enough to get the other people together on their days off only to get a call that the dealer can't show. If ti keeps up PL will win just by customer service alone.

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