Jump to content

Too cold for convertibles


lew
 Share

Recommended Posts

I've been retired from the Fire Dept in Toronto for 15 years now but I still enjoy wandering through the internet reading about things pertaining to fighting fires.

 

I was looking at some trucks this morning and came across this picture and this truck is identical to one I drove for many years, a 1960 King Seagrave.

 

Great truck and nice to drive in the good weather, but as you can see it was a convertible which made it a beast in the winter. There'd be as much snow & ice inside the cab as there was outside and even though there were windshield wipers on the outside, there were no defrosters so you still couldn't see out. Tough driving a big truck with one hand while using an ice scraper with the other LOL

 

After being at a winter fire all night your soaking wet and froze solid and 1/2 the time I was driving back to the hall I couldn't feel the steering wheel or gear shift and & my poor old frozen feet didn't know when they were on the pedals.

 

I loved every minute of my 32 years on the job, but sure don't miss the frozen nights cruising around town in a convertible when it's -20 :lol:

 

Chantilly-first-T15-1964-Seagrave-85-ft-

Edited by lew
Link to comment
Share on other sites

What was the logic behind those machines Lew? Was it for better visibility? I can't think of a good reason but there must have been one.

 

That was the thinking Roy and it worked well for that, but just not really feasible in our climate.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 

On another note, just curious, did that beast have power steering?

 

Nope, guess they figured if we didn't need a roof or heat, we didn't need power steering either Phil

Edited by lew
Link to comment
Share on other sites

With the way you guys keep those trucks clean; I cannot imagine the job it would have been, getting them back in shape after one of those bad nights???

Try getting a modern vehicle soaked through the inside; your wet/froze feet would warm up pretty good; because you'd be walking back to the station house. LOL

Electronics and water don't mix well.

The only thing electronic in the truck pictured, would possibly be the wrist watch on your arm. LOL

 

Dan.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Nope, guess they figured if we didn't need a roof or heat, we didn't need power steering either Phil

Weren't too many big vehicles with power steering at that time. Step father was driving Gray Coach and TTC back in the early 70's and they still did not have power steering. He let me try to steer one at the Lansdowne barn as a teen and almost went through the fence. With cars power steering was still an expensive option, as were automatic transmissions. Oh, and seatbelts were still optional.

Edited by bigugli
Link to comment
Share on other sites

After looking at that picture I am glad I am not old! Our commercial trucks had roofs! even the fire trucks I recall seeing as a kid did too! LOL

 

How many people fit in the cab of that thing? Maybe is was for speed of entry and exit? Less doors and other er... luxuries reduce costs? Mayors and other politicians need raises more than city workers in the cold need heaters?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 guys in the cab Paul, then 2 jumps seats directly behind and if there were extra guys they hung off the side on the steps.

 

We had another truck just like this one, early 50's LaFrance aerial, and there were full sized oxy-acetelene tanks strapped to the side near the back. Always had a guy hanging on back there and the idea was if the tanks come loose he had to hold onto them....yeah right, while the trucks going down the road at 50-60 MPH.

 

Thankfully things have changed in the past 50 years.

 

5249.jpg

Edited by lew
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I remember when I first started driving 18 wheelers, no power steering, I thought I was getting arthritis in my shoulders, chest and upper arms, it just took a while to develop new muscles! Most of the tractors they used for city work were gas and way under powered, if you hit any kind of a grade you were breaking down the gears and hoping you didn't wind up in first!

 

LOL, back in the day a 35hp outboard was a big motor!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hey Lew my ex next door neighbour had 1949 Le France similar to the one in the picture.He drove it to a Santa Claus parade one year in below zero weather,it took him 2 days to thaw out !!!!!

 

vance

 

He's lucky he thawed out so fast vance LOL

 

And FloatnFly, it for sure wasn't a truck suited to Canadian winters.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...