Hooks

General equipment discussion.
Rescue78
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Hooks

Postby Rescue78 » Fri Apr 06, 2012 11:59 am

The pike pole. Probably one of the most recognized item part of the firefighter's arsenal, along with the axe and ladder, hence the name Hook and Ladder company.

But with today's tools available, isn't a pike pole a tool that is around because of tradition more than for it's usefulness?

It seems to me that a pike pole is not great at anything it does. I know there is technique involved at pulling ceiling and it is not just a matter of pushing and pulling like a mad man. But even with good technique, I think it is time to open our minds and use other tools. Tools that are more efficient and safer.

I will address three different hooks and my limited experience with them.

The Roofman Hook: With it's slight modifications from the Halligan or multipurpose hook, the Roofman hook will do anything a pike pole will do, only better. Plus, it has great prying capability. It is a great tool for overhaul, ventilation, roof operations and forcible entry.

The Plaster Hook: This tool will pull large sections of drywall with little effort. It is also really good at moving insulation. A great tool for the task of tearing down drywall and plaster. It also has it's place for roof operations.

The Trash Hook: We've all been in situations were you are trying to flip smouldering debris in order to extinguish hot spots or to ensure the fire is out. A pike pole does a lousy job at that. A trash hook works like a rake, grabbing material and allowing to lift it and flip it over to expose other burning material.

I would like to know what your department uses. Do you use any of the hooks I mentioned and what is your opinion on them? Do you use any other hooks I have not mentioned?
Most people train until they do it right.
Professionals train until they can't do it wrong.

KnowsBothSides
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Postby KnowsBothSides » Fri Apr 06, 2012 12:41 pm

Tradition is tough to break, especially in the fire service. Although I don't have much experience with the other three tools mentioned I do have many years experience using the pike pole. Long ones, short ones, wooden handles, composite handles, I've used them all. The most effective pike pole that I have used is a 3 foot, composite shaft, D handled one. Excellent for taking interior for pulling, pushing and smashing windows, walls and ceilings. Every tool has it's place and purpose, all in all, I don't mind the pike pole.

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splashover
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Postby splashover » Fri Apr 06, 2012 12:48 pm

On my department, I have only ever seen a trash/rubbish hook in service on one of our rigs. Everyone else has pike poles or closet hooks. Does your department have all these available?

If the roofman's hook has great prying ability, how is the weight? I would guess that it would have to be much heavier than our pike poles and contribute more to firefighter fatigue. I would guess this would become an even bigger problem when you get into some of the longer hooks.

My question on the plaster hook is the moving parts (I've only ever seen pictures and assume the hooks move in during the strike and expand to grab the plaster as you pull). Does the plaster gum up the moving parts and reduce its effectiveness?

Rescue78
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Joined: Wed Dec 31, 1969 7:33 pm

Postby Rescue78 » Fri Apr 06, 2012 1:44 pm

Splashover - historically, the plaster hook was that tool you are describing, which would be pushed through the drywall and flare out on the other side, allowing to pull down. I agree with you with the point you brought up.

People now use the term on what should really be called a Drywall hook. Sorry about that. I was referring to the Drywall hook.

To eliminate further confusion, here is a picture of the hooks I mentioned.

Roofman Hook
Image

Drywall hook
Image

Trash Hook
Image
Most people train until they do it right.
Professionals train until they can't do it wrong.

Rescue78
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Joined: Wed Dec 31, 1969 7:33 pm

Postby Rescue78 » Fri Apr 06, 2012 2:00 pm

Most people train until they do it right.
Professionals train until they can't do it wrong.

GodSpeed
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Postby GodSpeed » Fri Apr 06, 2012 5:14 pm

"KnowsBothSides" wrote:The most effective pike pole that I have used is a 3 foot, composite shaft, D handled one.

We'd call that a closet hook. Not necessarily a composite shaft though.

We also have plaster/drywall hooks on some rigs (same as picture provided).

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Hacienda216
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Postby Hacienda216 » Tue Apr 17, 2012 5:07 pm

We have a pile of pike poles; our standard seems to be a lightweight, extremely flimsy version with a 2 1/2" diametre fireglass handle...I'm not sure what they were designed for but I bet they sure are cheap! We have a few 3 1/2ft. dryway hooks with a D-Handle, I try to use one of those whenever I can.

I've used a 6 ft. all steel roof hook before and really liked it. The weight isn't that bad and more than makes up for it with its increased functionality. Our pike poles are useless when it comes to breaking out new double pane windows; there is no weight to the tool at all and they make more work out of clearing a sturdily constructed frame and sash than a heavier tool would.

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PFD023
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Postby PFD023 » Wed Apr 18, 2012 4:02 pm

Convinced our dept. to order 3 NY Roof Hooks (Farrell hook - Fire Hooks Ultd). 6ft metal shaft with the chisel on bottom.
First fire using them was about 4 days later.....those who used it (including me) will never go back to the standard fiberglass pike pole we seem to be plagued with having to work with throughout much of Ontario.
By the by.....the NY Roof Hook is cheaper than those fiberglass poles....tell your Chief that.
Thanks to the brothers at Brotherhood Instructors for showing us there are alternatives out there.

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FLASHOVER05
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Postby FLASHOVER05 » Wed Apr 18, 2012 4:10 pm

"PFD023" wrote:Convinced our dept. to order 3 NY Roof Hooks (Farrell hook - Fire Hooks Ultd). 6ft metal shaft with the chisel on bottom.
First fire using them was about 4 days later.....those who used it (including me) will never go back to the standard fiberglass pike pole we seem to be plagued with having to work with throughout much of Ontario.
By the by.....the NY Roof Hook is cheaper than those fiberglass poles....tell your Chief that.
Thanks to the brothers at Brotherhood Instructors for showing us there are alternatives out there.


I'm starting to see more people take a look at the NY Hook, they are far more durable than their Pike Pole Counterpart for sure
How the hell did I end up here?????

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LTPVFD
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Pike Poles

Postby LTPVFD » Thu Apr 19, 2012 10:38 am

All we have is the standard pike pole. :( Most have fibreglass handles, and some have wood handles. I find it difficult to maintain a grip on the fibreglass handles, especially when my gloves are wet. I'll be mentioning the NY Roof Hook to the Chief, and asking to acquire a couple to try.

Stay safe !!

LTPVFD
Safety First - EVERYONE Goes Home !!


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