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Reliance Fire Company Fire Truck Museum and Antique Fire Truck Restoration Facility

Pirsch Tillered Aerial and 75' Pitman Snorkel

The museum owns examples of 2 modern aerial types, the tillered aerial and the Snorkel.


This 1958 Pirsch 100' tillered aerial was owned by Beverly Hills, CA.  It was delivered after being shown on the floor of the International Fire Chief's Convention in LA that year after taking almost a year to build.
Pirsch was a small builder in Kenosha, WI and built their own ladders with a unique latticed aluminum design.  This truck was originally powered by a 6 cylinder gas engine but was upgraded to a 550 hp Detroit diesel engine in 1972.  The polished aliminum wheels and radial tires were added at some point as well.  The truck originally was equipped with a waterway and fixed ladder pipe at the end of the bed section but this was removed during it's service life.


A Snorkel is an articulating platform.  It was originally developed by the Chicago FD by modifying a tree trimming truck.  Snorkels were popular in the 1960's and 70's but fell out of favor due to several factors including limited capabilities and the length of truck required to carry a useful length.
This example is a 1968 built for Parsons, Kansas by the Snorkel Corp, of St. Joseph, MO.  Snorkel built the 75' boom and outriggers on an International chassis with a Cinncinatti cab.  The engine is an International V-8.  The body work was done by Pierce.  It has a 1000 gpm Waterous pump and carries no water.