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noganav Sat Aug 03, 2013 4:06 pm

photogdave recently posted pictures in the fires and wrecks thread of his beautiful Tiger Van burned to the ground. In that thread he also posted a video of the Blazecut fire supression system. I had never seen this product before, and thought it was a great idea. So, no time like the present.

Here's the thread with photogdave's original post on this product:
http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=440675

Blazecut is a tube of pressurized fire suppressant (Kyoto compliant). When the heat gets above 120C, the tube ruptures and puts out the fire.


It cost $200 including shipping from JOGR, and arrived in 2 days.
http://jogrusa.com/products/blazecut-fire-suppression-system

Here's what you get:


There's a nifty little pressure gauge on one end of the tube:


I installed mine directly on the engine cover. Drilled small holes 6 inches from the edge, every second rib and strapped it down with the included zipties.


The swirly pattern maximizes coverage of the engine, avoids interference with the air filter housing in the upper right of the engine bay, and makes checking the gauge easy.


Here's a shot through the license plate door.


This is certainly no replacement for changing and maintaining your fuel lines, or a full blown fire suppression system like some folks have installed: http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=521827

But it's a small price to pay for a little peace of mind. Maintenance free, small and unobtrusive and installs easily in just a few minutes.

insyncro Sat Aug 03, 2013 4:10 pm

They had an ad in the classifieds section for about a day :-k

noganav Sat Aug 03, 2013 4:26 pm

insyncro wrote: They had an ad in the classifieds section for about a day :-k

I didn't see their ad, but for the record I'm just a customer. I have no association with this company whatsoever. I just like the idea.

Edit: Yup, here's a link to their ad:
http://www.thesamba.com/vw/classifieds/detail.php?id=1482463

insyncro Sat Aug 03, 2013 5:05 pm

It was in the Vanagon section and now switched to the General Parts sections.

Cool device.

Upgrade your fuel lines, fuel rails and add this feature so your van wont burn to the ground :!:

Ahwahnee Sat Aug 03, 2013 5:19 pm

noganav wrote: ...I installed mine directly on the engine cover. Drilled small holes 6 inches from the edge, every second rib and strapped it down with the included zipties...

I like the way you installed that. Do you recall what size holes you drilled? I looks like one hole per zip tie and the fastener bit of the zip tie is large enough to hold it in place - right?

noganav Sat Aug 03, 2013 5:36 pm

Exactly, the fastener holds it in place. I drilled two small 1/16 holes side by side the width of my zip ties and connected them. Just big enough for the strap to come back up through the same hole. I also sealed them up with a dab of silicone. It leaves the fastener heads exposed, but they are in the recesses of the engine cover, and it's under the mattress most of the time anyway.

photogdave Sat Aug 03, 2013 6:04 pm

Nice work Steve. I was going to start a separate post on this product to see what the forum thinks.
Here's an interesting discussion I found on another forum:
http://www.speedsterowners.com/topic/an-interesting-fire-suppression-system?page=1
I feel ready to invest in this too. I had two questions:
Is it possible that conditions could occur to get the engine bay hot enough to prematurely set it off? 248F doesn't seem that out of reach on a hot day.
IF the chemical is accidentally released, could it damage the engine?

PS I didn't learn any more specifics about the Tiger Van's fire. The driver heard a bang, saw smoke and got out of there! It had new fuel lines maybe three years before I sold it. :(

Ahwahnee Sat Aug 03, 2013 6:41 pm

Okay - I'm in.

Some fires are no doubt due to neglect but more than a few seem to happen to owners who have done their best to avoid them.

vw7266 Sat Aug 03, 2013 7:49 pm

I got mine from member widefive hes a distributor too

purplepeopleeater Sat Aug 03, 2013 8:33 pm

Im more worried about electrical fires in my dash now, suby improves alot of fire issues.

Might get one of these installed in each of my aircooled buses tho!

BillM Sun Aug 04, 2013 8:18 am

I don't like the holes drilled into the engine cover. I also think this is one of the things that could be improved and maybe extend the time one has to extinguish the fire before it breaches the interior. Once that engine cover gets soft it drops down in and the fire takes off. It gets a surge of Oxygen and medium to burn. Its really difficult and dangerous to fight fire now with just a
extinguisher.
An engine lid that was fire resistant or maybe made so it would not drop down
when hot could not only give more time to save van but to also get your kids/family out. I know when my Westy caught fire in the engine compartment
if it wasnt for my son removing the dog and camera gear. He tied the dog to a tree safely away and tossed the gear far away. I would have never gotten the
fire out. The lid was just starting to get soft. I was able to focus on the fire and my son had even put the extra extinguisher at my side just in case.
While I think the suppression system is a great step in the right direction there is more that needs to be done.


1) All power should be fused at the battery.
2) a switch that will shut off all power sources
3) extinguishers need to be placed so than its in your hand while exiting the vehicle and a back up that can also be grabbed.
4) a way to slow the fires ability to pass from the engine compartment to interior.
5) a plan and practice on how to respond. The wife,kids,etc should know what to do.

While every fire and cause is different practice and prevention always help.
There is also the issue that the best intentions can make things worse. If you don't know how to fuse your batteries or install a shut off switch properly
dont do it. A hot post on the back of a switch that could be shorted by a dropped coin is just as dangerous as a leaking fuel line.

All of the above is stuff I have spent some time working on. I am also
very particular about everything I do to my Westy. Even then I had
a failures that no one could have forseen but being prepared turned what
could have been a total loss into a lesson that I had to do better.

joseph928 Sun Aug 04, 2013 6:30 pm

:bay_blue: http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=521827& I did a post on automatic fire extinguisher. Any system is a good one! Yes I like more fe-36 like 6 LBS. One pound seems a little low. But for the cost and how easy it is to put in, you can't go wrong. And the video seems to show it working well! Do something don't put your head in the sand. Our vans are worth to much to not do something. Yes if you shop well you can find a system like mine used for the same cost. But for $200 this seems like a great choice! And this is from a retired fireman. :D PS I did have an air cooled burn once, never again! :cry:

Gruppe B Sun Aug 04, 2013 7:18 pm

BillM wrote: I don't like the holes drilled into the engine cover. I also think this is one of the things that could be improved and maybe extend the time one has to extinguish the fire before it breaches the interior. Once that engine cover gets soft it drops down in and the fire takes off. It gets a surge of Oxygen and medium to burn. Its really difficult and dangerous to fight fire now with just a
extinguisher.
An engine lid that was fire resistant or maybe made so it would not drop down
when hot could not only give more time to save van but to also get your kids/family out.

Aircooled and Diesel Vanagons came with steel engine hatches and are direct replacements for the fiberglass models.

I think that this is a great idea for the price and even if it doesn't fully put out the fire will definitely knock it down to something more manageable with a fire extinguisher.

Maybe installing 2 instead of just one might give some added capacity...

matkinson13 Thu Aug 22, 2013 10:58 pm

Looking at this thread made me think of these:
http://www.swiftfireprotection.com/Products/Fire_E...vetop.html

We had them (or something similar) when stationed in Germany for over our stoves. They're about the size of a tuna can and magnetically attach to the underside of the stove's range hood; any fire automatically "pops" the can and releases the powder.
I know many engine lids aren't metal, but you could attach steel plates for the magnet to stick on or rig up another attachment method. They're only $55.95 per pair and the agent is (per the website) 93% sodium bicarbonate (=baking soda).
Only problem I can see is that the website says they need to hang 24-32 inches above the stove and I don't think we've got that kind of room.

Anyway, just thought I'd pass that along. May be another fire-fighting option, and would definitely work in a bus engine compartment.

dhaavers Fri Aug 23, 2013 5:39 am

matkinson13 wrote: Looking at this thread made me think of these:
http://www.swiftfireprotection.com/Products/Fire_E...vetop.html ...
Only problem I can see is that the website says they need to hang 24-32 inches above the stove...
I'd assume the headroom is necessary for adequate dispersal of the soda.
Yeah - I'm not confident this is a good application for our vans.

Maybe if you put a dozen of 'em up under there, but now you're out $300...???

matkinson13 Fri Aug 23, 2013 8:17 am

Touche, good sir. How much room DO we have under there?

This one only requires 15-27 inches:
http://www.hallfireprotection.net/html/stovetop_1.html
Looks like the same concept, but designed for lower cabinetry and is $74.50 a pair.

It may not work due to low clearances. But maybe we can figure out a similar concept that will work in our confined space.

Just looking at alternatives to...well...the "interstate campfire".

syncromike Fri Aug 23, 2013 8:36 am

Does anyone know if it has it ever been tested at highway speeds? I'd think with the airflow at 55 mph it'd be a lot harder for that little tube to displace all the oxygen. It seems pretty ingenious otherwise.

Ahwahnee Fri Aug 23, 2013 9:09 am

syncromike wrote: Does anyone know if it has it ever been tested at highway speeds?...

I now have the Blazecut in place. Hopefully I will not be the one to 'test' it under any circumstances.

We can certainly debate if it will be effective protection and what other, possibly better systems could be crafted. But whilst debating I at least have it in there and, I think, most would agree it is better than nothing - which is what I would have if Blazecut hadn't been available.

syncromike Fri Aug 23, 2013 11:24 am

Ahwahnee wrote: syncromike wrote: Does anyone know if it has it ever been tested at highway speeds?...

I now have the Blazecut in place. Hopefully I will not be the one to 'test' it under any circumstances.

We can certainly debate if it will be effective protection and what other, possibly better systems could be crafted. But whilst debating I at least have it in there and, I think, most would agree it is better than nothing - which is what I would have if Blazecut hadn't been available.

true,adding to my wish list...

euromog Sat Aug 24, 2013 8:42 am

It would be a good idea to mount a second system inside the dash. Most of the interior fires start there. Of course installing circuit breakers at the battery would help it not catching fire in the first place as mentioned before.



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