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Roscommon Equipment Center

Firetruck

Roscommon Equipment Center

REC overview

About the programs

Tools for the future of wildland firefighting are being shaped at the Roscommon Equipment Center and Forest Fire Experiment Station. The REC provides fire agencies across the nation with specialized wildland firefighting equipment from its cutting-edge design and fabrication shop. Services include:

  • Technical assistance for efficient and safe conversions of surplus federal equipment (Federal excess property program) for rural fire defense.
  • Developing and adapting equipment or technology for improved wildfire control.
  • Testing equipment to determine suitability for wildfire control.
  • Equipment information services including reports and newsletters, workshops, forums and participation in national fire equipment boards.

Contact: DNR-RoscommonEquipCtr@Michigan.gov, 989-275-5211.

Project proposals

Send us your ideas with a project proposal

Wildland firefighting agencies may submit a completed project proposal form to DNR-RoscommonEquipCtr@Michigan.gov for consideration.
Proposal form »

Email updates

Sign up for workshop and program updates

Annual REC workshop

State wildfire professionals, equipment program leaders and others in the field are invited to attend the annual Roscommon Equipment Center Workshop, featuring a shop tour, equipment demonstrations and networking opportunities.

More information will be made available here regarding future workshops. 

DNR - FRD - REC - Equipment testing photo

Project guides and blueprints

    • Simple electronic sand table
      DNR REC staff developed a simple-to-use electronic sand table that is easy to set up and transport and features the ability to save event scenarios and to show realistic renderings of wildfires and other emergency events.
    • Educational fire prevention "tree game"
      DNR REC staff created an interactive, carnival-inspired game to communicate fire prevention messages. The "tree game" gives agencies a tool to explain forest fire causes to children and show them how they are extinguished; kids will engage in a hands-on activity to put out a mock fire.
    • Campfire embers fire safety awareness game (New!)
      Fabrication and assembly instructions for an educational game to teach participants about the dangers of campfire embers. The game includes a wildland scene and blower-driven fire simulation made from ripstop nylon.
    • Marsh vehicle wiper attachment: Tool to flatten phragmites grass in preparation for prescribed burns

      Wetlands where phragmites typically grow can be difficult terrain to operate heavy equipment in. The DNR uses an amphibious machine called a MarshMaster to  traverse this type of terrain. REC and DNR staff developed a simple and low cost pull-behind device that compacts tall type of vegetation without the need for mowing or chopping.

    • Michigan fireline plow

      This large format report (11-inch x 17-inch) provides complete drawings for fabricating the Michigan Fireline Plow. The Michigan fireline plow is a double bottom, fixed moldboard, hitch-mounted plow designed for smaller crawler tractors such as a John Deere 350 and 450 series.

    • Utility task vehicle roof

      DNR REC staff created a low cost roof design for attachment to Roll Over Protection (ROPS) equipped utility vehicles.The roof design gives agencies a way to fabricate and install a  steel roof over suitable vehicles to protect the operators from debris encountered while operating in wooded locations.

  • Line Handling Equipment
    • Guidelines for designing forest fire engines

      This pamphlet was produced as a handout to rural fire departments who had obtained Federal Excess Personal Property (FEPP) or Fire Fighter Property (FFP) vehicles for modification for fire use. It discusses vehicle loading, water tank construction, and safety requirements for doing this type of work. It also includes a list of available resources including Roscommon Equipment Center reports.

    • 6x6 Wildland fire engines

      This is an update of REC resources for converting a military 6x6 vehicle for wildfire engine use. It includes all 2.5 and 5-Ton models, information about load capacity, and designs for water tanks, metal cab top, brush protection, in-the-cab controlled telescoping emergency light mast and other accessories.

    • Hummer and HMMWV series chassis

      This report evaluates  the Hummer and HMMWV series chassis used in wildfire control. REC spent several years evaluating both commercial and U.S. Military versions of AM General’s Hummer. The report details findings and discusses important points about modifying them for wildland fire use with considerations about water tank placement and capacity.

    • Oshkosh R11 conversion

      This report demonstrates one method of converting an Oshkosh R11 Jet Refueling tanker into a water tender for wildland fire use.

    • Wildfire transport units for grapple skidders

      This report contains information about transport units used by wildland fire fighting agencies across the country. Use the links and information in the report introduction to submit your equipment data for incorporation into the report.

    • Portable fire-fighting unit for grapple skidders

      This REC report documents a water tank design specifically for grapple skidders.

    • Flatbed and water tank design for M1008 and commercial pickups

      This REC conversion plan is for the M1008 CUCV (GM 5/4-ton pickup). The design removes the cargo box, replacing it with a steel flatbed. A slip-on style tank and pump unit can be added. The flatbed is a good compromise for off-road work in the woods. Much of this information will be transferable to other pickup-style fire units of similar weight. Details include the flatbed design, purchasing specifications for the polypropylene water tank and photos depicting a configuration for installing apparatus.

    • Slip-on tank units

      This project includes important considerations for those buying or constructing slip-on tanks for mounting in pickup truck units. Tank material selection, tank construction issues, determination of load capacity, and securing the tank are some topics discussed. 

    • Fire management vehicles

      This report is a truck chassis primer for wildland fire agencies. It will familiarize the reader with definitions used by truck manufacturers. It discusses specification development and has a chart to estimate potential water capacity of a chassis based on the Gross Vehicle Weight rating. The appendices contain a national summary of truck cab and chassis needs done in 1988 and a federal performance standard for wildland engine cab and chassis developed between the NWCG and GSA in 1990.