MAPLETON - This is a story about the little engine that
could. The engine, a green 1980 Mack CF, which belongs to the Mapleton
Fire Company, has been chosen by Code 3, a California based company
that produces collectibles, to be replicated as part of a special release
for St. Patrick's Day.
The Mapleton Fire Company acquired the 1980 Mack CF, also
known as Engine Rescue-2, in 1997 after it had served over a decade
with the New York City Fire Department. While in New York, the truck
was the second on alarm to go to the World Trade Center.
The engine was purchased after being removed from reserve
status and disposed of by the city of New York and, upon it's arrival
in Mapleton, was refurbished to deal not only with fire calls but medical
emergencies and motor vehicle accidents as well.
Some of the work included new tires, pump gauges, couplings,
nozzles and land ladders. A local industry, U.S. Silica Corporation,
also aided in the vehicles makeover. The company installed a deck gun
on the unit and made various brackets for holding equipment. It also
made an aluminum, diamond plate extended bumper for storage and deployment
of the "Jaws of Life." This placement allows the Jaws of Life
to be used instantly.
To add style to the vehicle, driver's side "high side"
compartments and a "dresser drawer" type of roll out compartment
under the main hose bed were added at an Amish welding shop in a neighboring
county. A white. New York hose bed cover was fabricated, not only to
allow for additional storage space for equipment, but as a tribute to
the truck's previous service in the "Big Apple." These additions
are what made Mapleton's fire truck stand out from the crowd.
Jennifer Kauffman, Code 3's marketing manager, explained
the process. " Collectors (of our products) send us photographs
of what they believe would make good models, which gives us a very extensive
library to chose from '' ,- this was a special release for St. Patrick's
Day, the color certainly helped, because it was one of only a few green
trucks in our library," she said.
Kauffman also talked about the graphics on the Mapleton
"The graphics were so interesting," stated Kauffman.
"They really made it stand out."
Once a vehicle is chosen, the fire department must give
the company permission to replicate it. Depending on the quality of
the pictures given to the company, more photos might be necessary to
capture all views and to make sure nothing has changed. A representative
from Code 3 was sent to the fire company to take additional pictures.
According to Kauffman, the truck was chosen last summer.
It usually takes 8-12 months for the replicas to be produced.
Michael Corbin, chief of the Mapleton Fire Co., was excited
about the whole process. "We're such a little town and to be selected
is such a honor. It's such a morale thing," he said.
The trucks, which are limited edition and numbered, sell
for around $39. They will be available near the end of this month. Only
1,500 trucks will be produced. Anyone interested can purchase theirs
directly from Code 3 website or by calling 1-888-635-2333. The website
can be accessed through a link at www.mfd-f2.com