Interesting Streethawk California Spec

bpollard

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USA, SC
Our department just purchased a brush fire rig that came from a department in California. It is a 1997 model F450.

It has a Streethawk halogen bar on top. Basic bar with 3 rotators. The somewhat unique thing is, it has a single red steady burn on the driver's side. I've seen a lot of different bars with the CA Spec configuration, but never before a streethawk with just the one forward pod populated. All of the rest of the lower lighting locations are blank
 

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Probably the most rudimentary way to make a StreetHawg CA compliant. Probably the cheapest as well..

I too have never seen the lowers totally blacked out on the front, are there lamp assemblies behind them, or just blanks?
 
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Hi,

When I was in New York State and working on VFD equipment (1977-94) I saw a few Streethawks with blank pods all the way around. Not many, but a few here and there.

I never saw one with only one pod populated. It was a case of something in each pod or none at all.

Stan
 
Can we see some pics of the F Super Duty. in 1997 they were just the super duty not F450
 
My FDs old chiefs car had a street hawk (white base) all lowers blanked out. Three rotators up top with intersection sweeps… on a white crown Vic… wish they woulda put some strobes in the lower pods. Woulda really rounded the bar out. Agreed pretty rare to not see any of the lowers populated.

Seth
 
Thanks for posting this. I am always interested to see "lopsided" CA steady burn setups. The most common configs seem to be:

  • Driver side only (blackout or other feature such as takedown on pass side)
  • Both sides (both red)
  • Both sides* (Passenger side blue in LE cases)
  • Centered (common on ambulances replacing center clear sometimes)
I have to say I have a soft spot for the driver side only style, probably from CTS and CTS copies.

Cool bar here though, it's like a minimum spec NFPA bar plus CA red.
 
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Thanks for posting this. I am always interested to see "lopsided" CA steady burn setups. The most common configs seem to be:

  • Driver side only (blackout or other feature such as takedown on pass side)
  • Both sides (both red)
  • Both sides* (Passenger side blue in LE cases)
  • Centered (common on ambulances replacing center clear sometimes)
I have to say I have a soft spot for the driver side only style, probably from CTS and CTS copies.

Cool bar here though, it's like a minimum spec NFPA bar plus CA red.
We are going to upgrade all of the lighting to modern LED's, but I really like this bar and almost hate to remove it!

That big current sucking bar works really well, and I LIKE the lopsided steady burn!
 
Hi,

So, just keep it. Actually, I have zero experience with any department bothering to switch out whatever was still working for something new. Keep them going until there is some reason why you can't seems to have been the standard mode of operation.

No one even swapped out single Beacon Ray type lights for bars, which would have made sense. And, when the equipment moved on, all anyone ever did was change the name on the doors.

Except for this one time.....

When I was rescue company captain, I scored an mid 1970s Dodge rescue truck from a department which was treated to all new equipment. There was a big old shopping mall being built nearby and the mall upgraded the nearby station and all their equipment.

Anyway, One Dollar later I had us a 'new' rescue truck. And you know exactly what that Dodge utility looked like. I couldn't resist making it look as closely to the famous TV squad as I could. Especially as we used a two digit department ID number and the equipment had uniform two digits after that denoted what the equipment was. In this case, the first rescue truck is 51.....

It was pretty easy to make that Dodge look 'right'. Except, it didn't sport a TwinSonic. And so I found one and redid it to the California style and there we were. And, everyone in the County wondered what I wanted with a TwinSonic in 1993.....

I traded a member of one of the departments my AeroDynic model 25 for his TwinSonic. He thought I was nuts, but went for it anyway. Once I had my job done, everyone figured out exactly what I was up to. ;)

That's how I switched to a Sireno 4-bulb single beacon on my truck.

Anyway, here's hoping you can talk the Powers That Be into just leaving this one as-is.

Stan
 
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Keep the Hawk! I have a 1997 F-250 that I built an MX7000 for because I wanted to keep the lighting period-correct. I am a big fan of OBS Fords and yours looks pretty neat! There are not too many 4x4 F-Super Duties out there.
 
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HI,

That's new to me. OBS. I had to look that up. Old Body Style seems to be a fit here.

I have one as well. F350 crew cab dually diesel. Bought it new July 1997 when Ford was extending the 1997 run and skipping 1998 and going to 1999 with the NBS (New Body Style). I didn't like the NBS all too much once I saw pics of what was coming.

I had a 1993 same thing that I moved to NC from NY with in 1994. I got into the Legends Car racing in 1995 and found the old IH 444IDI wasn't liking the NC summers all too much. Ugh. It was either buy a new IH T444E or just buy a whole new truck. New truck cost about 2x of the new engine and all I would need to convert over. And I already had 250k miles on the old one. That made the decision Easy, Just buy the new one. Sell the old one. And, it's Still Going. I see it every so often.

Anyway, yes. I prefer the OBS myself. Been out of racing since the 2005 season and the truck is now a mobile communications unit. All sorts of stuff in it and antennas on it. And the back is always loaded with masts and HF antennas and radios for field use.

Stan
 
We are going to upgrade all of the lighting to modern LED's, but I really like this bar and almost hate to remove it!

That big current sucking bar works really well, and I LIKE the lopsided steady burn!
If you have to remove it I'm sure it could find a good home with someone here.

That said, usually older trucks are lacking in intersection coverage, mid-ship lights, and rear lighting; not lightbars. That hawk is absolutely still NFPA complaint (minus clear to the rear) there is nothing saying it is too old to be effective. Usually trucks are grandfathered in when a dept chooses to adopt one of the standards like NFPA anyway, but the lightbar isn't where you'd fail anyway..... that fireray intersection strobe should go, no argument there.

Also, I'd put a streethawk rotator up against a cheap LED anyday for reliability and visibility. Yeah it is blocky looking, but it works.

If it gets removed I'd be interested in it.
 
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If you have to remove it I'm sure it could find a good home with someone here.

That said, usually older trucks are lacking in intersection coverage, mid-ship lights, and rear lighting; not lightbars. That hawk is absolutely still NFPA complaint (minus clear to the rear) there is nothing saying it is too old to be effective. Usually trucks are grandfathered in when a dept chooses to adopt one of the standards like NFPA anyway, but the lightbar isn't where you'd fail anyway..... that fireray intersection strobe should go, no argument there.

Also, I'd put a streethawk rotator up against a cheap LED anyday for reliability and visibility. Yeah it is blocky looking, but it works.

If it gets removed I'd be interested in it.


Well, guys, you talked me into it. It's going to stay in service. I just spent most of the day restoring the domes (they weren't too bad to start with). I must say I am PROUD of the results, this thing looks about as close to new as you can get.

I had to hurry home from the station, I'll get some good pictures and video outside tomorrow.

Question for you pros: The truck has FedSig GS-2 strobes on the front grille and side fenders. they are crazy bright, but the lens on them are completely faded, they are almost white. I have not been able to find replacement lens anywhere.

Can plastic lens be re-tinted? advice?

Bob
 
Well, guys, you talked me into it. It's going to stay in service. I just spent most of the day restoring the domes (they weren't too bad to start with). I must say I am PROUD of the results, this thing looks about as close to new as you can get.

I had to hurry home from the station, I'll get some good pictures and video outside tomorrow.

Question for you pros: The truck has FedSig GS-2 strobes on the front grille and side fenders. they are crazy bright, but the lens on them are completely faded, they are almost white. I have not been able to find replacement lens anywhere.

Can plastic lens be re-tinted? advice?

Bob
Generally once plastic is "faded out", cracked, crazed, or damaged in a way that using an abrasive to remove the top layer can't fix ; they are done. The Fireray was one of those products that never caust on based on timing and footprint. They were too small to replace 9x7 lights and too big to work in other places. They "stuck out" a lot too, which was actually due to a pretty interesting reflector design that made the off-angle visibility pretty good. But they never really found their niche and were also plagued by the problems that other Federal strobes suffered. For that reason, lenses are hard to come by.
 
Generally once plastic is "faded out", cracked, crazed, or damaged in a way that using an abrasive to remove the top layer can't fix ; they are done. The Fireray was one of those products that never caust on based on timing and footprint. They were too small to replace 9x7 lights and too big to work in other places. They "stuck out" a lot too, which was actually due to a pretty interesting reflector design that made the off-angle visibility pretty good. But they never really found their niche and were also plagued by the problems that other Federal strobes suffered. For that reason, lenses are hard to come by.
Yeah, I think we will replace the strobes with LED.
 
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i would love it old school. But if you guys are going to upgrade go with a whelen freedom with the colored lenses
 
I just updated the original post to include some outdoor pictures of the results. I am pleased. Can someone tell me how to post a video? I know I've done it before but can't seem to get them to upload?!?!?
 
I think it turned out great. You can upload a video to youtube, then post the youtube URL here.
 
The Streethawk was effective, that's for sure!
 
What was the factory steady burn option for federal on the streethawk? Both lowers steady?
It was which ever you selected. Initially when the base bar came out they made no mention of CA lights, although I know people had them. I have seen early examples of "speaker center bars" with a driver side red and a passenger side takedown, so it was possible but not mentioned in early catalogs. In the early 1990s they had some base models which did include dual CA lights, although they aren't the configs I actually have seen most frequently with CA lights. And you absolutely could "build your own" bar and get one take down or flasher or a blank like on the non-CA side this one.

Before the "all light" came out, the options were very basic. There was a CA option but it was not listed in the catalog.

first opffer sh.png

1990 when there were base models with lower options (you could still custom order)
90s sh.png


The specific bar in this thread is LOOKS LIKE a "firehawk" version from around 1999 (based on the fireray secondary strobes on the truck). However it is labeled streethawk, which wasn't uncommon as there was a lot of crossover and the firehawk came with a red base for a while so that might be factor. I have never seen the 3 rotator and cascade mirror setup offered as anything but a fire/EMS setup, so regardless of how it was labeled, it was a "base fire model" bar. These bars came with one of a few top configs and a blank bottom and you configured the bottom how you saw fit. This was true across all "hawks" at that point, but the fire ones were extra "lean" on the rotator count.


1999 firehawk options were top options only, you then specified the lower (and some other top) options. This is where the bar in this thread would fall time frame wise. It's possible with this bar that the 175fpm rotators were swapped for slower ones, I can't tell. You could still make changes to the top but most options were lower.
99 fire hawk.png


This is basically what is on the truck in the thread (again, they may have swapped in slower rotators though). FHL4856 plus a option CAL x1
firehawk plus ca.png

Notice how the firehawk models all block the center (usually clear) section to the rear so there is no "clear to the rear" to comply with NFPA. The bar in this thread however does not, which is interesting and more argument that maybe it was ordered as a regular streethawk. Either way it had the basic firehawk 3 rotator setup. There was also an option (or at least they would do it on request) to use a half model 14 dome in amber or red to make a rear filter, but that wasn't ever an advertised option. Near the end of production the firehawk was the main version of streethawk offered as law enforcement was not generally using larger bars like the streethawk as much.

Here were your non-fire options around 1998/99. The bar was pretty much not being aimed at any "smaller markets".
clasiic sh.PNG


Here is the bar shown missing mirror section. Since the bar wasn't really visible from the rear it probably wasn't necessary. Also it's worth noting that around the time this bar would have been purchased the streehawk line was on it's way out, and was considered as "classic bar" offering (as shown above). What you could actually order may have varied due to numerous requirements. For example the need to not have 175fpm rotators, a black base, and add a CA light may have made it easier to use a "base bar" that didn't have the NFPA center mirror. Again this was likely during the time when the firehawks had red bases by default and asking for black may have put you back into the streethawk line. There are lots of variables with these, especially in the late 1990s. There is also some crossover between what the term firehawk actually signified near the end of life for these bars.
firehawk plus ca minus a.png


This is a very cool bar that remains 100% usable even in this "bare bones" config 25 years later, and that says something about the overall design of the streethawk and its variants.
 
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The truck is a 1997 model, so you are in the right ballpark as far as production year.

Actually, this bar does have the center clear section blocked to the rear by a mirror/shield, its just hard to see in my pictures.

I love the steady-red single halogen. It is visible a LONG way in both daylight and night.

Last weekend I changed the strobes out and replaced with Whelen Ion and LIN3 LED's.

If anyone has a use for the strobe power supply and the strobe tubes, give me a shout

Bob
 
The truck is a 1997 model, so you are in the right ballpark as far as production year.

Actually, this bar does have the center clear section blocked to the rear by a mirror/shield, its just hard to see in my pictures.

I love the steady-red single halogen. It is visible a LONG way in both daylight and night.

Last weekend I changed the strobes out and replaced with Whelen Ion and LIN3 LED's.

If anyone has a use for the strobe power supply and the strobe tubes, give me a shout

Bob
I always want strobe power supplies...... I'd be happy to take it.

It sounds like you have a solid setup now. I'm glad the streethawk remains a part of it.

It makes more sense that the rear is in fact blocked by a mirror, thanks for the update.
 
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