Timeline of equipment

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Aaron W

Aaron W

Established Member
If the lightbar mounted on Squad 51 is a CTS you need to reconsider your date of introduction of 1973- the pilot episode was filmed in the fall of 1971.
Maybe special order vs off the shelf (and then receiving its own ID)?


If anyone lives in California and can access a library. The "California Department of the California Highway Patrol " published a book in 1973 called "Twinsonic Light Study" It can be found at the following library:

San Diego State University
University of California, LA
California State Library, Sacramento
University of California, Santa Barbara
Stanford University Libraries
UC Berkley Libraries
University of California, Richmond, Northern Regional Library

Might have some interesting information and history in it.
I'll look into this as I get time. Maybe my local library can do an transfer, otherwise Berkeley and Sacramento are about 2 hours away, so not out of the question.
 
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Aaron W

Aaron W

Established Member
stansdds it looks like I missed a bunch of your list. I don't know if you've added to it or I just spaced. That was a lot of info and I may have taken it in chunks and not picked it back up at some point.

I do have some questions though.

I could use some clarification on Force 4, these were a separate entity from PSE / Code 3 and later acquired, a sub branding under PSE separate from Code 3, or a sub-brand of Code 3?

Basically I'm not sure how to list these Code 3 / Force 4, just Force 4 or Code 3 with a tag that they were once made by Force 4?

I'm having some trouble with some of the Whelen lights, nothing comes up in a search for the Model 44 and 2300, beacons, light bars?

I completely missed the Signal-stat, Unity and Yankee entries.
 

dmathieu

Premium Member
Whelen's Rota-Beam 22, 44, and 55 were revisions of the Rota-Beam Senior and Senior Deputy. They came out in the mid to late 1960s. I don't recall a 2300 beacon.
 

gtpts27

Site Veteran
I see the Federal Propello Ray came on scene in 1949. Wondering when Federal quit making Model 19s and roughly when they would've stopped being seen in service.
 
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Aaron W

Aaron W

Established Member
I see the Federal Propello Ray came on scene in 1949. Wondering when Federal quit making Model 19s and roughly when they would've stopped being seen in service.
It is hard enough trying to find intro dates, availability can linger on for quite sometime after production officially ends. Sometimes catalogs which seem one of the more reliable sources for introduction, can drop older items with shrinking sales although the item remains available for customers who ask possibly being assembled from parts or NOS sitting on a shelf that is being slowly sold off. Probably less true today with so much more focus on not having stock sitting around with "just in time" supply models.

As far as last used, you can find examples of emergency equipment decades older that the vehicle it is mounted on. Emergency equipment is relatively expensive and durable, so many agencies recycle from one vehicle to the next. Style and tradition seem to be the driving factors. Beacons fell out of favor fairly quickly once lightbars came on the scene, but there are agencies who stayed with beacons well into the 90s, and a few who still favor them (Michigan State Police for example).

Certainly not common but I bet you can still find a few Propello Rays in service on front line apparatus.
 

gtpts27

Site Veteran
Yeah I'm sure one can still be found in service today, but it obviously wouldn't be typical. To clarify, I'm hoping to learn when they quit being a part of Federal's "regular" product line and am only looking for a rough estimate of when they would no longer have been in common use.

To limit myself, I've restricted collection to things in common use from 1980 on (my birth year). Fine if something was manufactured before then as long as it wasn't unusual to see it in service in 1980. A subjective thing and not exactly super-limiting, I know, but it's the rule I have... well that and that I don't collect lights that don't interest me.
 

stansdds

Veteran Member
stansdds it looks like I missed a bunch of your list. I don't know if you've added to it or I just spaced. That was a lot of info and I may have taken it in chunks and not picked it back up at some point.

I do have some questions though.

I could use some clarification on Force 4, these were a separate entity from PSE / Code 3 and later acquired, a sub branding under PSE separate from Code 3, or a sub-brand of Code 3?

Basically I'm not sure how to list these Code 3 / Force 4, just Force 4 or Code 3 with a tag that they were once made by Force 4?

I'm having some trouble with some of the Whelen lights, nothing comes up in a search for the Model 44 and 2300, beacons, light bars?

I completely missed the Signal-stat, Unity and Yankee entries.
Public Safety Equipment was the manufacturer, they are now ECCO Safety Group. Code 3 was initial product line for their lights and sirens. The Code 3 emergency lights originally used sealed beam bulbs. When PSE introduced models with independently driven rotating parabolic mirrors with halogen bulbs, the designation Force 4 was created to differentiate these models from the sealed beam models. The earliest versions of the Force 4 line did not have the Force 4 name, but still used the Code 3 name. I hope that helps to clarify some muddy water.
 
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Skulldigger

Site Guru
Any photos of a Federal 85 siren?
Do no believe I have ever hear of an 80 series siren. They made sirens in Types and Series.
Class Sirens were in series C. 60, 70, Q
Type were A B E D L V W, 8

About 1950 Everything became a Class even the E, W and V.

Some of the series variations had names such as Taffik-King was a class 60 with accessories.

Do you have anything showing there was and 80?
 

Phillyrube

Senior Member
Do no believe I have ever hear of an 80 series siren. They made sirens in Types and Series.
Class Sirens were in series C. 60, 70, Q
Type were A B E D L V W, 8

About 1950 Everything became a Class even the E, W and V.

Some of the series variations had names such as Taffik-King was a class 60 with accessories.

Do you have anything showing there was and 80?
This thread, first post. Federal Model 85 Doubletone, 195x.
 
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Aaron W

Aaron W

Established Member
Public Safety Equipment was the manufacturer, they are now ECCO Safety Group. Code 3 was initial product line for their lights and sirens. The Code 3 emergency lights originally used sealed beam bulbs. When PSE introduced models with independently driven rotating parabolic mirrors with halogen bulbs, the designation Force 4 was created to differentiate these models from the sealed beam models. The earliest versions of the Force 4 line did not have the Force 4 name, but still used the Code 3 name. I hope that helps to clarify some muddy water.
Yes that does, thank you. Confusing when a company has subdivisions within its products of the same industry.

Never heard of an 85 doubletone, the double was the 77. Maybe a typo?
Very weird, I have the full date of 1951 which suggests I had some fairly substantial information on it. When I'm guessing I just list the assumed decade with an x for the year. I've taken information from here and there.

Listed the same year as the Q, perhaps a short lived update of the 77 related to the mechanics of the Q?

Also quite possible I goofed, it is a long list and in many cases I'm just collating information from many sources. Also a lot of copy paste moving things around as I get better info. Also possibly a siren from another vendor and I accidentally slapped Federal on there instead of the correct brand?
 

dmathieu

Premium Member
Whelen Rota-Beam Model 66 came out in 1961
The first automotive Rota-Beam in 1955 was a Model RB10
The first Whelen Rota-Beam light made was an aircraft anit-collision light in 1952
 

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