OZ9607 known as 'Whizzy' is a Dennis F17 Metz TLP. New in 1954 it served with Belfast Fire Brigade until the late 1980's when it was purchased by the present owner directly from the Brigade. It is powered by a Rolls Royce B80 8 cylinder petrol engine which also drives the ladder and the mid-mounted Dennis No. 2 pump. The Metz ladder was originally 125' when extended ,but was shortened to 100' to improve stability. All ladder operations are directly mechanically driven by drum type winches, although a hydraulic system is used for the engagement of the ladder drive clutches.
The crew cab was fully exposed on this type of appliance, which presented a safety problem to the exposed third man during the riots on the streets of Belfast during the 1970's. The Brigade workshops therefore very neatly enclosed the open crew cab. Whizzy came out of service also with other useful accessories such as bomb proof secondary glazing to the windscreen and side windows.
Pictured with Whizzy above, is PDK717 from the Manchester Fire Museum. This appliance is a F21 Metz, and is virtually identical apart from an uprated braking system. PDK still has all of its 5 ladder sections still in place, and is believed to be the only fully operational 125' TL still surviving.
......And of course you can never be certain of anything. David Miller (email@example.com) from New Zealand has sent this picture of their 125' F21 Dennis TL. It was still in use during the 1980's at Christchurch and is now back in Auckland. The five sections of the ladder can clearly be seen.
..and now in 2009 OZ9607 has her sister come to join her in the shed.......