Review
Code 3 Collectible's
Fort Worth, TX. Truck 8
A Visit to Station 8

Fort Worth Fire Department's Mission:
"To serve and protect our community through
education, prevention, preparedness, and response"

Reviewed by Larry Lorance
November 2003

Background

The Fort Worth Fire Department was founded on May 2, 1873 as a volunteer fire brigade.  It is now made up of over 745 full time professional firefighters.  The Fort Worth Fire Department responds to over 57,000 incidents per year with over 60% of these calls being emergency medical calls.  The department does not offer EMS transport.  MedStar provides exclusive emergency and non-emergency ambulance service to the citizens of Fort Worth.  The Department serves a population of 534,694, located in a 313 square mile area.  The department has a 2003 operating budget of 63.5 million dollars

Fort Worth is one of the first departments to paint their apparatus white.  How did this come about?   Retired Battalion Chief Jim Noah writes in an article that it came about around 1903 or 1904 when the city was preparing for the "Pumper Races" at the Texas State Fair in Dallas.  The race required that each wagon drop a nozzle and lay a 2 1/2 inch line 150 feet to the hydrant.  The company presented the fastest time would represent Fort Worth at the State Fair. 

Hose Company 5 won the contest.  However, as time approached they were informed that they would not be able to use their regular wagon for the race but would have to use their reserve wagon.  However, this wagon was in appalling condition and needed repair.  A bid of $45.00 was submitted by E.E. Lennox Reliable Carriage Works.  The bid was submitted to the council for approval and it was denied.  The members of Hose Company passed the hat and collected the funds. 

When Mr. Lennox asked what color they wanted the wagon painted they replied they really did not care just as long as it was the prettiest wagon at the fair.  Mr. Lennox painted the wagon white with gold trim.  The citizens loved it and the Chief declared that all new and refurbished fire trucks would be painted white.

The color remained until the early 1980's when a blue stripe was added.

For more history on the Fort Worth Fire Department click here.

The Station

Truck 8, along with Engine 8, work out of station 8 in Fort Worth.  This three bay station is located at 1301 W. Rosedale in Central Fort Worth.  However, plans have been submitted to move Station 8 to new quarters.  The station covers a large area, including one of Fort Worth's largest hospitals; Harris Methodist.  In 2001 Station 8 apparatus responded to 3761 calls.  Truck 8 runs 3 or 4 firefighters depending on the shift.  There are three shifts. 


Fort Worth Station 8


Entrance to Stations 8's Quarters


Review

Since Conrad released their LTI aerial, I've always hoped Code 3 Collectibles would release a model of a Fort Worth apparatus.  Finally, by popular demand, they released three 1:64 scale models: 

The real Truck 8 was manufactured in June 2001.  It displays the typical Fort Worth white with reflective blue stripes color scheme.  For those of you who really want to know the information on this apparatus click on the image below to see a copy of the truck's door panel information.


Click on photo to see door panel information


ALF Mid Mount Tower Ladder, Truck 8, Officer's Side


Truck 8 in Action
Photo Copyright 2003 FortWorthFire.com

Used with permission

The model measures 8.25 L x 2.25 H x 1.74 W inches.  It comes attached to a plastic display stand inside a plastic display dome.  The display stand has the logo of the Fort Worth Fire Department.  On the back of the display dome is a history of the department.  Each model includes a numbered certificate.  Only 3000 of these models are available world wide.  This is the fourth Texas City to be reproduced by Code 3 Collectibles.  Others are Plano's ALF Eagle Pumper E-180, Dallas Fire Departmentís Rescue 17 and Cedar Hillís Pierce Dash Top Mount Engine 211.   Additionally, in 1997 Code 3 released five Houston Seagrave Pumpers that are no longer available.

If I were to single out one single task that Code 3 Collectible's does extremely well, it would be the reproduction of  graphics on their models. Truck 8 is no exception.  Code 3 Collectible's authentically reproduces the graphics displayed on the real apparatus.  Like all models produced by this company, these pad printed graphics are clear and crisp. 

The front of the model is almost an exact duplicate of the real truck.  All the graphics are there; the longhorn steer head (the City of Fort Worth's logo), ALF logo, and the words "Fort Worth".  The overhead emergency lights are done in exacting detail and the headlights are lenses, not painted.   Even the siren has a grill on it.

The only thing I can see that is a different is the arrangement of the horns on the bumper; a very small detail as far as I am concerned. 


Front view of Truck 8

Front view of model

The officer's and driver's sides  are done in great detail.  On the real apparatus, the very first thing I noticed were the yellow breathing air bottles located on the aerial boom; these do not appear on the model.  Come to find out, these were added in July 2003,  long after Code 3 Collectibles did their final photos of the apparatus.  Adding these would be very easy.  Even I could kit bash this! 

Code 3 Collectibles also did a very good job reproducing the truck's pump panel. 

The real truck has 1 1/2 lines amidships, the model does not.  The model has an electrical box at the end on the truck that the real truck does not.  The lighting is accurate as well as the "bucket".  The wheels appear to be accurate.  The handrails are there but do not protrude past the model's body.  


Truck 8, Driver's Side
Click on photo to enlarge

Conclusion

I live in the Dallas - Fort Worth area and have been waiting for the release of the Fort Worth set for a long time; it was well worth the wait!  FWFD Truck 8 is an dazzling reproduction from Code 3 Collectibles.  Granted, there are a few "flaws".  However, all things considered it will become a valued part of my collection.  The only thing I would recommend would be a Fort Worth Diamond Plate!

Freebee: You can download, from American LaFrance,  wallpaper of Truck 8 by clicking here

Special Thanks

You can order by clicking on the Code 3 Collectibles Icon below

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