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About ex98thdrill

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  1. Yup. It's getting harder for regions that are willing to host national activities. If the Auburn meet is closer to me than the Eastern Spring meet, I'd most likely choose Auburn. The traffic heading out west isn't bad at all.
  2. I agree with you 100% but if you can't find someone to host the AGNM, do it in Auburn so at least we have an AGNM.
  3. A great event. Been there before, will be there again. It wouldn't break my heart if they used that on alternate years for the western AGNM. I know it isn't across the Mississippi, but it'll do. I didn't get to see much other than Saturday because when you haul a big truck on the back of an open truck it doesn't give you much time to do anything other than clean. We really didn't sightsee until after the judging team put the "Judged" sticker on the windshield truck. Of course we didn't do the awards picnic only because we had to bum a ride to the picnic and in the event you don't, you've spent that money and not gotten there. RM provides a great facility for an AACA Meet. I did manage to buy a gas pump while I was out there. It hasn't arrived home yet, but I paid for it. I had planned on buying one at Hershey but now I don't have to wait for it.
  4. I have a class B CDL with air brake and tow truck endorsement so I'm covered either way. As for the project. With the AGNM over now, we're not going to another meet until Hershey so we'll have the time and money to build the new truck. With any luck we'll have it ready for Hershey.
  5. Auburn is a great event / venue. This year was my second trip out there for a meet. Unfortunately I wasn't able to see much, but I have seen it before. If you've never been to Auburn for the meet, GO!! It's the best hidden secret of all AACA. The one time I went was when Auburn was closer to me than the spring meet so we chose Auburn and glad we did. I won't go every year but would definitely go back. The only thing I won't do is haul another fire truck all the way out there. It's hard hauling those trucks all the way out there, and then once we get out there, most of our time is spent cleaning the truck getting it ready to be judged. It's been a long time since we've taken something in an enclosed trailer to where we can unload the car and have it all clean and ready to go. From the time we arrived in town, we worked on that truck until it either got too dark or was judged. …..Never made it to the venue or any of the museums until Saturday afternoon.....
  6. First of it's pronounced Lie-muh because you don't go to the grocery store to buy a can of Lee-muh beans. The truck is in East Bloomfield, NY and it is an AACA DPC award winner. As for the CDL I couldn't tell you because there are many different interpretations of the law in several states. It doesn't apply to my dad and I because we both have CDL's anyways, but from what I interpret the law is that as long as it's your own stuff, and you're not using the vehicle for business purposes there aren't any issues, but each state and every person you talk to has their own interpretations. When we're travelling, we pull onto the scales, usually the guy at the scale house gives us the green light after his jaw drops and he waves us on. They haven't even given us any crap for having red lights and siren on a fire truck hauler. The only reason why we're selling it is because we picked up a bigger truck. So now we're in the process of building a new hauler. The new hauler weighs 68,000 lbs. Personally I like the looks of the Seagrave better, but the LTI we just got will be a better truck for travelling. $60,000 might be a little steep, but you can't buy a truck with a diesel engine with under 15,000 miles on it for the price we're selling the truck for. The other advantage is that the Seagrave has the older pre-emissions diesel engine in it that will run forever where a lot of the new diesel engines are junk (that's why UPS and FedEx went to gas engines). Speaking of price, I was in Philly last month for the annual meeting, took advantage of going to the Auto Show and the pickup that I looked at that would do the job, was priced at $71,000. The nice thing about the Seagrave is that it's old enough to put the historic plates and insurance on it so it doesn't cost you a bundle in plates. I had a Gooseneck trailer that was costing me $169 a year for license plates, the Seagrave costs me $28. With the air brakes, that Seagrave stops better than any pickup / car trailer combination that we've ever had, and when we're going to a meet, that truck allows us to pull into a truck stop where the semis go versus having to threat the needle with a pickup truck and car trailer trying to get to the gasoline pumps. To those of you who go to national meets, you'll all be able to attest that a lot of these gas stations are not car trailer friendly is you're running a truck with a gas engine. Speaking of gas engines, that Seagrave gets as good as or sometimes better gas mileage than what our Chevy pickup used to get hauling the same truck. If someone is serious about buying the truck, the price will drop in June after the Grand National. If I can sell the truck now I'll sell it, but if it sells I'll need the money to hire someone to take the '41 Ford to Auburn for the Grand National and then bring it back. If I don't sell the Seagrave, she'll be in Hershey to where someone can buy it there and take it home. Below is our next fire truck hauler.
  7. I'm late getting back on here. but understand that the Annual Awards Committee have done NOTHING wrong. This was a hiccup on the end of the hotel. I've been going to the annual meeting the better part of 9 years and never seen what we saw this year. When the same committee has been doing things the same time, in the same place, it's very seldom you see issues. As for the banquets, I know AACA preaches how they want the younger folks to get involved, but there are a lot of things you cannot resolve due to costs. A $50 or $60 per meal banquet ticket makes it cost prohibitive for a younger person with a family.
  8. For Sale: 1972 Seagrave Ladder truck converted into a fire truck hauler. Engine: 8V71 Detroit Diesel with dual exhaust. Transmission: Manual. Mileage: 15,600 miles. Brakes: Air. GVW: 38,000 lbs. Deck: 22 feet long, 48" above the ground, with fold down ramps. New Tires, New Battery. Generator Air Conditioning Price: $47,500 OBO. e-mail me at pathorpe@rochester.rr.com or call (585) 657-6358
  9. It makes you wonder how many people will get socked and won't catch it. Again it's nothing against the Annual Meeting Committee, but definitely something that they need to be aware of. I like the location, I like the facilities, but when you have people being overcharged by the hotel and high banquet prices it can change your opinion really quick. For several years I was going to the region president's dinner. I'm glad I'm not a region president anymore, but if I was I wouldn't be going. For years that meal was horrible and from what I heard Friday night nothing has changed. I feel bad for the National Directors who are expected to go, adhere to a dress code and pay good money at those banquets when they can eat for a whole lot less by walking down the street.
  10. Hey guys, to everyone who went to the Annual Meeting, CHECK YOUR HOTEL BILLS. We arrived Thursday afternoon and left Saturday afternoon. When we got there, we found out that you either had to pay for valet parking, or park in the garage across the street. I was told that the valet parking was $20 a day, the difference in price between the valet parking versus going across the street was minimal, so we took the valet parking. After reviewing the bill, THE HOTEL CHARGED US $150 FOR PARKING!! We called the hotel and got it straightened out, but if you parked at the hotel, you might've got socked. They overcharged us $100. Check your statement.... This has nothing to do with the Annual Meeting Committee, but watch the hotel. Had I not caught it, we'd have gotten socked. If anyone wants a copy of my bill let me know and I can point it out.
  11. Thanks Tommy. I was tore up really bad and I was torn up for a long time. It took every ounce of strength I had to get through it, and then on top of it was a nasty lawsuit. The lawsuit didn't get wrapped up until this past August, but it's all water under the bridge. Taking that stage last year to get that award allowed us to close the book and put it on the shelf to not a long story, but to a living, breathing nightmare. During that timeframe, my entire life was devoted to fighting my way back out of this. As for the hauler?? I was looking at a new pickup over at the Auto Show and the one I liked was $71,000, the Suburban I saw over there was $77,000 and it wasn't even a 3/4 ton. We bought that Ladder truck and converted it into a fire truck hauler for way, way less. The fire department had tried to sell it, no one wanted it so they called me up and offered it to me for a price I couldn't refuse. At the time I was out of work, my dad bought the truck, I sold my Gooseneck trailer, paid my dad back, and the money I made selling parts off the truck went back to pay for the steel. As I write this today the truck has not quite 15,000 miles on it, and you couldn't buy a brand new gooseneck to haul that fire truck, let alone the truck to pull it for what we have in that rig. We still have the truck, we still haven't sold all the parts and we kept the 10kw generator that was on it when we got it. In terms of travelling, she doesn't pull hills real well, but it stops better than any truck or car trailer we've ever owned, it doesn't sway and when it comes to fuel stops, it's easier to get in because we pull in where the semi's go. Oddly enough the truck gets the same gas mileage as the Chevy pickup we used to use for pulling the trailer. The best part of it is we have a lot of lockable storage down both sides of the truck and that back compartment goes all the way across to the other side of the truck. It allows us to store 8' planks in there. We won't overload it, and instead of shelling money out for a new truck I drive a 17 year old Toyota Avalon that gets better mileage than that new truck would get. Ironically we're looking at buying another ladder truck to build another one. This one has a tandem axle and a six man cab. If we get it we'll turn the back section of the cab into a sleeper and the tandem axle will take more weight. Right now we're kicking tires. If we get it fine, if we don't, we've still got a good truck capable of getting the job done.
  12. I wanted to take the time to thank all of the folks who had a role in this year's annual meeting. Although there was no Friday night event, the Auto Show tickets were great, as well as the AACA Display that was in the Auto Show. As usual the seminars we went to were great and it was nice to see and talk to people we don't always have time to visit with when we're at a meet. It was nice to go down and not get stuck in any banquets and it was the first time in my life I was able to go to Philly, be able enjoy myself, and didn't have to pack a shirt and tie (after 30+ years of wearing a uniform for a living, I HATE SUITS AND TIES!!). On Labor Day, 2016 my dad and I got the cab, engine, transmission, pump and water tank back on the frame of that truck, one week later I was messed up really, really bad in a motorcycle crash that took me out of work for 6 months, I had to endure 9 months of physical therapy and two operations with a very, very uncertain future. At the time there was a fire truck in pieces that also had a very uncertain future and had it not been for my dad, wife and several friends, that truck might not have made it back together. My wife was out in the shop helping my dad hang fenders because at the time I couldn't even pour myself a glass of milk let alone turn a wrench. In 2016 I made it down to Hershey for Friday and part of Saturday, but I couldn't walk, couldn't drive, and at that time I had lost my eyesight in one eye. Ironically in 2017 while many of you were in Philly for the annual meeting, I was on the operating table. I had been out of work a while, medically things were not good, I was on the verge of financial ruin, wasn't sure if I'd ever work again and things were looking pretty bleak for me at best. Even if I could've medically made it to Philly, financially I couldn't. Last year was a total zoo after watching the Eagles win the Super Bowl, but it was a once in a lifetime thing that I got to see and enjoy right out the hotel window. Last year was also the same time my father and I were able to take the stage and accept the Peterson Fire Apparatus Award. After showing 75 cars over the last 17 years from Florida, Vermont, Colorado and everyplace else in between, the award last year meant a lot and it is something that my dad and I still cherish and appreciate very much, one year later. It took all the inner strength that I had to hold it all together because one year earlier I couldn't even stand, let alone walk or drive, yet a year later I was able to not only stand, but to be able to walk up to that stage to accept that award for a truck that made it back together. Like the Eagles, last year it was about the beating the odds for us too. The Eagles were the dark horse, the truck made it back together and turned out gorgeous, while I had not only survived a crash, but recovered from a crash that the doctors and my coworkers all said should've killed me, and recovery wasn't even foreseeable in their minds. Things were bad enough for me that I had found out later that the accident reconstruction time was called out and usually that is only done if they thing the accident will be or is a fatal. To the national awards committee I'd like to thank you all for helping to bring sunshine to both my dad and I after going through a lot of dark days. I'd also like to thank the countless number of folks who approached us last year at Philly who said "congratulations, it was long overdue." In closing I'd like to congratulate the new recipient of the Peterson Fire Apparatus Award, thank Chuck Crane for his year as National President and wish incoming President Mel Carson well. This year's annual meeting was a great event, but it also was a case of where we were able to just be who we are, come and go as we want, and be able reflect on a good event last year instead of a bad event.
  13. Oh and one more thing..... I had almost three years to plan and organize the meet I chaired back in 2010. These folks got into this meet very late in the game and hosted this meet when no one else would do it. Without those wonderful folks from the Chesapeake Region THERE WOULDN'T HAVE BEEN A SPRING MEET IN 2018. I think they did a wonderful job, it was a good location, it was a good event, and no one can control the weather (it was hot). Again, I highly encourage you to contact the Vice President of National Activities and sign up to chair a national meet. After doing one myself I can assure you that if you do you are in for the rudest awakening in your life. You'd never believe the amount of phone calls, e-mails, meetings and knocks on your door you get when you put one of those on. The only reason why I got into doing a national meet was to be able to show our cars and save money on travel expenses by staying home. Our group put on a good meet and beside the planning and logistics, my father and I also put 11 cars on the show field as well. The other shock you'll get to your system?? If you're doing your job and doing it right, you'll also find out how hard the AACA National Board of Directors and the full time staff at AACA headquarters work. Those folks work. I saw enough to know that although I appreciate what the National Directors do, I know I don't want any part of it (especially after one of them tried to intimidate me into going onto the board and failed) because I know that I don't have the time or financial means to put into the job that it deserves. I'm smart enough to know that it would be a huge disservice if I did. All in all I think the folks in the Chesapeake Region did a great job and am thoroughly impressed how well they threw things together based on the short amount of time they had to put on that meet. I first met some of the folks from the Chesapeake Region in Philly back in 2012 and we've been friends ever since. As for the perfection in putting on a meet, bear in mind that even the Hershey Meet isn't perfect and they've had 63 consecutive years of putting one on. It's hard to put on one meet, but to agree to do it again year after year makes the Hershey Region a very special group. The Hershey Region is very financially well off, but they've worked for every penny they have and they've worked very hard to get it. With that saying, if a meet isn't perfect after hosting one for 63 consecutive years, you can't expect a region who is doing one and having less than 9 months to plan it either so with that in mind, none of them are perfect and they never will be.
  14. So do I take it that you're going to chair the spring meet in 2020?? I too required special assistance with things, I contacted the region back in December and those folks bent over backwards for me. As for the hotel, my sister had one night booked at that rate and there was no three night minimum, but she reserved her room back in December. With bike week going on I'm sure that changed a lot of things. As for the distance between camping and the hotel?? For $3 a person you could get an all day pass and go wherever you wanted to go in Gettysburg to include downtown, the battlefield visitor's center, the outlet mall and everyplace else in between. Gettysburg has been doing that for at least four years and at that price it doesn't pay to drive around Gettysburg. I was told by a region member that the registration was left open beyond what they wanted it left open, and because of that they had more cars and less real estate. The best way to avoid problems at a meet?? PLAN EARLY!! By the way, in terms of the 2019 annual meeting?? I"m going and I'm going to do the same thing I did this year, I'm going to book my room on Wednesday and spend Thursday sightseeing. If the Philadelphia Eagles win the Super Bowl I'll already be situated in the hotel a day early and can avoid the mess. …….If the Eagles don't make it to the Super Bowl or if they lose, I"ll cancel Wednesday and come Thursday. It was worth the extra $100 not to get tangled up in that mess everyone else had to deal with in not being able to get into Philly this year.