1920 Ahrens-Fox Firetruck

1920 Ahrens-Fox Firetruck

The Ahrens-Fox Fire Engine Company was an Ohio-based fire truck manufacturer. The company was founded in 1910 by John P Ahrens and Charles H Fox and built its first motorized fire engine in 1911. By the end of the following year production of horse-drawn fire apparatus ceased completely. Since then, over 1500 pieces of fire apparatus were built until 1977. Ahrens-Fox fire engines were recognizable by the chromed sphere above the pump that held air and smoothed the outgoing pressure fluctuations from the piston pump.

During the year 1913 only, Ahrens-Fox built a 44 hp (following then-actual rating practice) automobile. Like at rival American LaFrance, the idea was to sell these cars to bigger fire brigades as a car of duty for their chiefs. Also like at ALF, it was not successful for Ahrens-Fox either, although for Ahrens-Fox the results were more consequential; there was only one model, a huge six-cylinder called the E-C Battalion Roadster. It was guaranteed to go faster than 50 mph, and featured a four speed gearbox. A small pickup bed was added for some items that were thought to be useful for the head of a fire brigade, and was included in the base price. Only six of these roadster-pickups were built during 1913; it seems all stayed in Cincinnati. Ahrens-Fox abandoned the idea and never returned to it.

Today, Ahrens-Fox and all of its assets, parts, and paper is owned by W. Kenneth Menke III, president of the Fire Products Company (Powerarc), Webster Groves, Missouri. The Ahrens-Fox name is licensed to HME, Incorporated, which also manufactured Hendrickson Trucks.

The old Ahrens-Fox factory at 214 East 14th Street in Over-the-Rhine has been converted into luxury condominiums.

The Firetruck with additional information

Known as the "Rolls-Royce of firetrucks," the Ahrens-Fox was simply the best piece of equipment a fire fighting team could have had at its disposal in the early 20th century. This machine is incredibly well engineered and provided departments crucially important features to help get the job one. One of which was the chrome plated ball which was perched atop the 4-cylinder pumping engine. At the time, firefighting was not just a dangerous job due to the proximity to roaring infernos but because the tools themselves were potentially harmful. Uneven pressure movement could cause surging strong enough to break arms and limbs. This priming ball fitted to the Ahrens helped to regulate this pressurized water into an even stream, drastically reducing potential accidents. This innovation was combined with the step-down nozzle to make larger, lower pressure flow of water out of the hose possible.

The task of propelling this rig down the road was handled by a 6-cylinder gas powered internal combustion engine capable of moving the vehicle to speeds of 50mph. As reliability was a main point of concern for the firefighting teams, levels of redundancy were employed to keep things moving. Dual ignition systems, double spark plugs, and many other systems were done in duplicate making this one of the most expensive motors of its day.

The Ahrens-Fox presented here was first delivered to the Minneapolis Fire department and served as a trusted tool of the city for many years.

Descriptions & pictures by wikipedia & bonhams & buy.motorious & theoldmotor & other

Production Start 1920
Country of origin USA