Reviewed by:  Larry Lorance

For the first time in years, First Gear with support form the  Clinton, Maryland Volunteer Fire Department released a new fire apparatus mold.  The mold is a 1976 Kenworth / Pierce open cab engine. 

Clinton is located Southern Prince George’s County, Maryland, about 15 miles south of Washington, DC. The department was created in 1936 and is well known throughout the east coast for its impressive and innovative apparatus designs dedicated to moving big water.

Clinton Water Supply Model
Photo by Larry Lorance

This 1:34 scale highly detailed models is, without question, the best model ever produced by First Gear.  Using the original blue prints, First Gear, again with guidance from the Clinton VFD, have produced and exact replica of the now retired Clinton's Water Supply 25. 

Water Supply 25 is probably the most well-recognized rig operated by the Clinton VFD. The open cab 1976 Kenworth / Pierce pumper is equipped with a single-stage, 2000 gpm Waterous pump and carries 2000 feet of 5-inch hose with dual supply line capability. The rig also is equipped with four 10-ft hard suctions (6”) with Storz connections. This Big Water rig is truly one of a kind.

Clinton Water Supply 25
Photo supplied by Clinton VFD

This model was issued in honor of Aubrey A. Schultz, Sr. who was the Chief Emeritus of the Clinton, MD. Volunteer Fire Department and a retired Maryland State OSHA Inspector.  Mr. Schultz was was a lifetime resident of Clinton and devoted nearly 50 years of service to the Clinton V.F.D.  His leadership in the capacity of Chief and later President, was inspired and innovative in all aspects of fire protection, from apparatus design to fund raising.  He propelled the department to the modern efficient organization it is today.


Without question, if there were a beauty contest for apparatus this apparatus would be one of the top three finalist. 

You have got to hand it to the department, it was a very big step to take on this fund razing project.  It was the first time, that I know of, a department had contacted ANY company about producing an exact replica of one of their apparatus.  For the most part, most departments would use standard molds of apparatus that never existed in their departments.  This is truly a bold and encouraging step taken by this department.

The buzz was that First Gear was in the process of designing something new and innovative.   My contact at First Gear could not confirm or deny these rumors.  But the story got out, which made this model the most highly anticipated model of 2007. 

I have reviewed the photos of Water Supply 25 many times and  thought there was NO WAY anyone could build in the detail needed to make this model a success.  However, after talking with Richard Small, Clinton's oversight manager for this project, I knew he wanted the best model that could be produced. 

Pre-release photos of Water Supply 25 and a previously released Clinton Mack
Note:  The Mack was not released by the Clinton VFD

I received the model and was surprised to see the department went way beyond an other department had done by designing a box that displays the model, apparatus, Clinton VFD seal, and a dedication to Mr. Schultz.  A real class act!

I opened the box and took a look at one of the greatest looking models I have never seen in over ten years of collecting.  Folks, they did not miss a single thing!  You could tell Mr. Small and his group wanted to produce a model that was as close to 100% accurate as possible.  I know they went through a number of prototypes before deciding on the final production model.

Photo by Larry Lorance

I found myself going to photos and trying to find one single detail left out, but couldn't.   The rookie bars even have the green lights that are on the real rig!  Take a look at the seat covers on the photograph above, 100% accurate!

The model's pump panel is about as detail as you can get.  The diamond plate is perfectly scaled.  The deck gun rotates.  Most lights are not painted but done in clear or colored plastic, another classic touch.

Photo by Larry Lorance

Photo by Larry Lorance

The graphics are outstanding.  Even the famous Roadrunner is displayed in exacting detail. 

Photo by Larry Lorance

I can not way  enough about the beauty and detail built into this model.  Zoom into the officer's and driver's side of this model by clicking on the photograph below.  There is one detail that needs to be addressed with all First Gear models, the hose bed.

Photo by Larry Lorance

OK, folks I could go on and on about this great reproduction.  However, I would encourage EVERYONE to purchase one of the models before the 2500 limited edition are gone forever!  This will be the model to have in the coming years,  I feel confident collectors who already have this model will back me up on this!   Besides, not only are you getting a great looking model, you are helping a department in their fund raising activities, what more could you ask for?

If this is a success, I hope we can expect more from this great department!

Available directly from the Clinton VFD for $80.00.  Click here to order.

On a WOW factor of 1 - 5, I give this model an overwhelming 5 stars.