Bucher CityFlex® 205-C50 with Jacob Amrine

CityFlex® 205 sewer cleaning combination truck

Bucher CityFlex® 205-C50 combination sewer cleaning truck

Jacob Amrine, Regional Sales Manager joins host Matt Starnes to discuss Bucher Municipal’s mighty CityFlex® 205-C50 sewer tanker.

Learn about the CityFlex®‘s:

  • Telescopic boom
  • Agility in urban areas
  • Performance and mobility combination
  • Numerous storage cabinets
  • Jetting and sucking capabilities
  • One-person operation
  • COVID-19 friendly wash sink

And more!

Listen to the podcast episode and read the full transcript!

Jacob Amrine explains the versatility of the CityFlex® 205-C50!

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Read the full transcript of the podcast all about the CityFlex® 205-C50 sewer tanker!

Announcer:

Welcome to The Sweepers and Tankers Podcast, sponsored by Johnston Sweepers, a Bucher company, providing endless sweeping solutions; and by Bucher Municipal North America, powered by innovation and specializing in the development and manufacture of world-class recycling sewer cleaners for over 30 years.

Announcer:

This podcast covers topics on the street sweeper and sewer cleaning equipment market. Now let’s welcome our host, Matt Starnes.

Matt Starnes:

We’ve got a special show lined up for you. Earlier this year in Indianapolis, we were there for the WWETT Show. We had a lot of folks asking about the CityFlex® 205, C50. So I’ve asked Jacob Amrine, our Bucher Municipal North America Regional Sales Manager to jump on. He’s been doing roadshows lately with the CityFlex® unit and getting a lot of good feedback. He was in town, and I thought we’d just do a little quick podcast about the benefits and features of the CityFlex®.

Matt Starnes:

All right, well, Jacob, thanks for joining me live from the Bucher Studio, if you will. So we kind of want to talk about the CityFlex® 205, C50. But before we get to that, can you just tell us a little bit about really that this business is kind of in your blood. It’s been a family affair.

Jacob Amrine:

Yeah. So I started in the sewer cleaning business, I would say four or five years ago. I got brought in by my oldest brother who had originally started about 15 years ago and then brought in our other brother. So we’ve gone from combined, the three of us, we’ve worked for dealers and manufacturers in this business. So now I’m working on my fifth year now in sewer cleaning.

Matt Starnes:

Wow. That’s awesome.

Jacob Amrine:

Yeah.

Matt Starnes:

It was really fun at the WWETT Show, at this recording, WWETT Show 2020 in Indianapolis to walk around with you, and it’s like, “Oh, this that’s my brother.” “Oh, okay. Okay.”

Jacob Amrine:

Yeah, it’s always fun to get together. People would think that because we both work for different manufacturers that it would cause headaches, or confusion, or argument. But no, it’s all chill. We don’t talk a lot about business when we’re at home. So we keep business, business.

Matt Starnes:

Just the usual sibling rivalry-

Jacob Amrine:

That’s right. That’s right.

Matt Starnes:

Good. I think, when we were at the show we had the CityFlex® out there, as well as the Recycler. We’ve really been talking off the mic a lot about how the recyclers have been getting a lot of our love because it’s very popular and people are trying to understand the technology.

Jacob Amrine:

That’s right.

Matt Starnes:

But we were like, “You know what? This darned CityFlex® needs some TLC.”

Jacob Amrine:

Yeah, for sure. A lot of the guys see a small truck like that, especially on the contracting side of it. They look at the size of it, the different components, and they look at it and think, “Well, this isn’t going to work for us because we do large pipe and everything.”

Jacob Amrine:

A big thing on the CityFlex® 205, or C50, is that it’s targeting smaller municipalities that use like an all in one if you want to say. So it’s really small, it can fit into a lot of tight areas, and it’s an overall nice little unit.

Matt Starnes:

Well, what was kind of interesting, being on the huge floor there at the convention center during WWETT, was the people that would come up. For some, it was like the big municipalities, and they’re looking to kind of pull that into almost like a first responder type of unit. Then you had… What was more interesting was like… I just call that real human guys. Guys with like ZZ Top beards coming up. And they had, like you were saying, a more targeted use for the CityFlex®. Can you talk about how that would work for those types of folks that are just kind of… I guess you can really say they’re more of a smaller business-

Jacob Amrine:

Right. Well, one huge thing’s that we’ve really been putting out with this CityFlex® 205 is, one it’s non-CDL required. It’s under 26,001 pounds. So empty weight’s just over 19,000 pounds. So you don’t need a CDL to use it, even though most municipalities have all their guys that have CDLs.

Jacob Amrine:

It’s nice, it’s easy, and it’s simple. There’s not a lot of complicated things going on with the unit. Even still being a smaller unit, just like our larger trucks, we’re able to use the lengthy back hose that feeds the pipe down into the hole, instead of having to set up all these extra tubing and these other steps, like you would on a competitor’s truck. So, with it being smaller, and the smaller scale, it’s perfect. Instead of having to bring in this huge monster truck in for smaller pipe, like six and eight-inch pipe, you can bring in the CityFlex® 205, a little five-yard truck, and it’s going to be right up their alley. It’d be perfect.

Matt Starnes:

It’s almost like, when I think about it, I watch a lot of MASH TV show reruns with my wife. And it’s like the different specialties a surgeon has. And actually last week, we were watching an old episode, and it was a doctor with smaller hands, so he was able to get in there. I always kind of think about the 205 like that. That’s what you really want for certain applications, to get in there, in those tight spaces, and do the job right.

Jacob Amrine:

Exactly. Talking about these larger units that have one inch, and then when you get into our Recycler 315, it’s got an inch and a quarter hose. This smaller three quarter inch hose is the perfect size for a small pipe. It’s easier. Instead of sending a huge hose down the small pipe, and having to worry about blowing toilets and stuff like that, you’re only pushing 33 pounds a minute with a small hose, and with a variable water pressure. So you go in and use any water pressure to get enough through those smaller pipe systems.

Matt Starnes:

We were talking earlier, and you were talking about how the contractor’s side is perfect for like a solopreneur. One of those types of things, like a smaller job. Also the fleets on the municipality side, some of these folks have numerous vehicles. But this one kind of fits in there for a different purpose.

Jacob Amrine:

Right. A lot of people look at our units and think, “Well, this is something that we can use to replace a lot of our other trucks. Or something we could use for this or that.” Well, the way that I market our units to our customers is that it’s not something that’s going to take over your entire fleet. It’s another tool to add to your tool back.

Jacob Amrine:

So, you get a small job out there, instead of having to worry about taking your huge 10 yard or 15 yard truck out, you can take the small CityFlex out and get through the blockage that you got or anything like that. I’ve talked to a lot of guys overseas and they use it as a first responder like we were just talking about earlier. They’ll take these units out and they’ll have a guy that’s going through and just busted blockages all day, and continuing on to go all around the city. He could do 15, 20 blockages in a day. Then they’ll bring in a larger truck to finish the job.

Matt Starnes:

That’s cool. It kind of reminds me, I had to have Roto-Rooter come out years ago with this house had. I just couldn’t clear it myself and I didn’t know what was going on. So they had something that could bust through and clean it. Then they said, “Hey, I don’t have it, but when it’s daylight, because it was on a night off, I’ll just come up tomorrow with a camera and take a look and assess if you need some root work done.”

Jacob Amrine:

Yeah. Well, that’s another thing that adds another plus to this size unit. It’s a perfect size for a smaller contractor, like a Roto-Rooter that does tiny pipe. You can fit it in anywhere, especially when you’re getting into guys that do grease traps, and such like that. And they got to go through and clean those pipelines after. It’s perfect all in one for them, because they’ve got enough water to clean it, and then they also have enough debris space to suck up all that grease.

Matt Starnes:

Like you said, I’ve read a lot of… Even locally here, around Charlotte and really all over, more articles I’ve seen online about like you mentioned earlier, the blown toilets. Because they’re not using the proper equipment to clean the lines. That’s not a good picture.

Jacob Amrine:

One of the biggest things that I’ve learned since I’ve been in this industry is a lot of guys misconstrue pipe cleaning. They think that the higher pressure you have, the more it’s going to move your material. Well, that’s false. Your flow is what controls how much debris that you’re going back.

Jacob Amrine:

So if you’re going out and you’re blasting 25 or PSI, you’re just blowing tons and tons of air in there, because it creates a vacuum system. So as you’re going out, and going past all of the service mains that come in, you’re pulling all the water out of the toilets and stuff like that. And then as you’re coming back, it’s got so much air behind it’s just creating a Geyser. And it just gets messy and it gets nasty.

Matt Starnes:

Yeah. One of the things, I think, in the future, we’ve got plans to do some different video walkarounds, as we’ve done at the shows and stuff like that. But on the 205, it’s just got so many storage spaces, cabinet spaces on this thing.

Jacob Amrine:

Oh yeah. There’s so much opportunity for storage on this unit. You got long enough toolboxes to fit rakes, or shovels, or anything like that along each side of the unit. So there’s two of those. There’s two very large cabinets that you can almost put a rack in there and hang your coat. You can hang your work clothes, you can hang your boots, or whatever you want in there. Then what’s another plus to those cabinets is those are actually heated. So you can dry your gloves out, you can dry your coat out if you have a rainy day.

Matt Starnes:

Well, that’s what we’re dealing with right now here, as we record this. That’s important, isn’t it? Does it also have the washing sink-

Jacob Amrine:

Yes. Yeah. So right behind the driver’s cab. Most of you have seen on our Recyclers, we have an onboard sink system. This truck has the same. It’s an outside sink, but it also has the capability of getting more water in there. So you got your soap dispenser along with your little sink there.

Matt Starnes:

As we’re recording this, we’re all hopeful that COVID goes away really quickly.

Jacob Amrine:

Oh yeah, for sure.

Matt Starnes:

But in the meantime, this is great to have.

Jacob Amrine:

Absolutely.

Matt Starnes:

So you’re out in the field. You don’t have to go to some unknown place. So I think that’s really good.

Jacob Amrine:

For sure.

Matt Starnes:

Let’s talk a little bit about the tank size. Because this is compared to our larger Recycler units here in North America. I think it’s kind of the perfect size for the job it needs to do.

Jacob Amrine:

Right. So it’s a five-yard tank, and a lot of the guys have seen our Recyclers, it’s all one tank. We don’t do any kind of separate water tanks or anything like that. We have the tank itself can hold a thousand gallons. So if you’re going out one day and you’re just jetting or popping blockages, or anything. You can hold a thousand gallons in that tank and have just very, very minimal space for debris. If you get into a space where you might need to vac some things.

Jacob Amrine:

So with that five yard, we have a movable partition in there. That’s on a hydraulic arm that can be moved to control either side. If I’m going and doing catch basins one day, I can move that partition forward and carry a couple of hundred gallons, enough to spray down the actual CV itself and have enough debris space to be able to collect all the material that’s in there.

Matt Starnes:

Wow. Yeah. And some of those catch basins can get quite gnarly.

Jacob Amrine:

Oh absolutely. For sure. So with ours, as the average… The average sewer cleaning truck that you’re going to see out there is an eight-yard suction system. So their back hose is eight-inch. This unit with it being smaller scale, it’s a three-inch hose. But you also have enough wrapped up around the truck to be able to drop about 20 feet with one intake tube on it. So as I’m going through and cleaning hole to hole, I don’t have to break down several tubes to do either sewer cleaning that’s 8/20 feet deep or catch basins that’s five/60 anything like that.

Matt Starnes:

So you’ve got plenty of a length on it. And it’s like you’re talking about too, it’s not a pain to worry about a stop constantly and change out adapter and hoses.

Jacob Amrine:

Absolutely. On the 205 or the C50, we use a Uraca P3-10. It’s a 33 gallon a minute pump, with max pressure 2,300. With that we use a three-quarter inch jetting hose instead of a one inch that you see on many other sewer cleaners. We carry 500 feet of three quarter inch hose on that. And then we also have your Y straining filter to fill out all your water that’s going through the system.

Matt Starnes:

We always like to give the chassis a little bit of love. So the Freightliner in this one, like you said, it just gets this combined… With the tank unit under the CDL requirements.

Jacob Amrine:

Right. So were you using the Freightliner M2 106. It’s a very small chassis. You’ll see it a lot on street sweepers and stuff like that, for small-scale things. It’s a 260 horsepower is what we use to power our systems. With that, you get a nice tight turning radius. It’s very small, everything’s compact. And it’s a nice working unit.

Matt Starnes:

You’ve been doing a little… Or started a little bit of a roadshow here lately with one of our CityFlex® 205, C50 units. What’s been your action so far when you’ve been going out. I mean, is it mainly been contractors or municipalities? Or a little bit mixed?

Jacob Amrine:

A little bit of both right now. What’s nice about this unit, then being able to refer to one of our bigger trucks, one of the recyclers, to contractors especially, is that we can go into these smaller contractors, like a Roto-Rooter or something like that. We have the perfect size unit that’s not too big for them. And then they don’t have to worry about getting a CDL and going back to the chassis. They can get any of their guys that they trust enough to put in a unit like that.

Jacob Amrine:

So it opens up our targeting market for you to go in with a large truck, you’re thinking bigger cities, big contractors, stuff like that. Well, now we have a small scale unit that’s perfect for the smaller cities, small contractors, and stuff like that, who may not exactly be able to afford a big, huge unit. It’s nice. It’s a perfect size. It’s small. Like I said, everything’s compact. It’s just overall a nice little unit.

Matt Starnes:

It’s good. Good feedback so far?

Jacob Amrine:

Oh yeah. Yeah, for sure. For sure.

Matt Starnes:

Yeah. I think it’s interesting. The unit kind of sneaks in there as far as solving some needs. Like you’re talking about a lot of lesser experienced folks might recommend, “Oh, just go in there with the larger hose.” And like you said, it can cause some real damage.

Jacob Amrine:

Yeah. Oh yeah. For sure. Especially if you’re trying to push a lot of pressure in a small pipe. You got the average, I won’t say a main, but as all the servers are coming in, it’s on a small eight, 10, 12-inch pipe, and you still got to worry about housing services that are coming in. When you get to the larger water mains, they’re anywhere from 24 to 60-inch pipe, and that’s where your larger trucks are going to come in and take care of that.

Matt Starnes:

The canvas on this is, I hate to use the word simple, but it’s easier to use from a user perspective. For a person like me who really doesn’t get out on the field on a day to day basis to use it.

Jacob Amrine:

With our CAN bus system, we have one control panel for the unit. A lot of the other units you’re going to see out there are all… I don’t know if you want to call them toggle switches or levers and stuff like that. Well, we use a push-button system. So every function, except when you go to dump, is the push button function on this small nine button panel. It’s perfect. It’s simple, it’s easy. Anybody could use it.

Matt Starnes:

Yeah. I don’t want to knock the competitors, but a couple of these I’ve seen. They might be older units, but it almost reminds me of creating the Frankenstein Monster where the Doctor of Frankenstein is flipping all these levers-

Jacob Amrine:

Oh yeah.

Matt Starnes:

I’m like, “Oh my gosh, this is like the industrial age or something.

Jacob Amrine:

Yeah. You get some operators out there that aren’t experienced like some of the older guys out there. It could be a real disaster when you get into start flipping switches, and pulling handles, and all those wonderful stuff.

Matt Starnes:

All right. Well, Jacob, thanks for joining me today. I really appreciate it. Glad you were in town so we could do this face to face.

Jacob Amrine:

Yeah, for sure. I appreciate the time Matt.

Matt Starnes:

Absolutely. And we just want to remind folks we’re offering a free educational report. The Five Things You MUST Know Before Purchasing a Sewer Tanker, Truck. Again, it kind of explains the different conditions and different vehicles for different applications. What we really want to do, and we’ve had a lot of success with this over the years, is let people just know we’re not trying to sell you something. We just want to make sure, like with any stuff, that it’s a huge investment. Whether you’re a contractor, or whether you’re a huge municipality. The amount of research you have to do… But we want to help you with that research process, and you make sure you get the right vehicle, whether you buy from us or not. The correct-

Jacob Amrine:

That’s exactly right. A lot of stuff out in the field that I’ve seen is… There’s several guys that purchase a unit and it’s not the right unit for them. So what we want to do with this report is to go in and show these guys that, “Hey, this is the kind of stuff that you want to look for when you’re purchasing a sewer cleaner.” Like you said, whether it’s ours, whether it’s one of our competitors. We want to get the right unit for the right application for you.

Matt Starnes:

Yeah. I think a lot of us, we are of course very competitive, but at the same time, it just breaks my heart. For both… Recently on the sweeper side, this last year, there was a fairly major metropolitan area that purchased a fleet basically of street sweepers from a competitor, and they didn’t fit on the street. And it’s just… It’s not wragging on the competitor, but it’s again, we want to make sure you get the right fit.

Jacob Amrine:

That’s exactly right.

Matt Starnes:

A lot of times people try to sell off the paper and we’re just trying to say, “Hey, slow it down. Let’s make sure this is the right thing for you.”

Jacob Amrine:

Exactly. Going forward, you’ll see a lot of that on the sewer market as well. A lot of guys, they purchase some of these units and they’re like, “Ah, this thing’s huge. It’s not going to fit where we need it.” So that limits a lot of stuff that they could do with it.

Matt Starnes:

Right. Good. And basically we go, like we mentioned before, the big recycler units, which are 30 feet plus, all the way down to an easement reel, all the way down to a remote reel. It can get in. Basically it’s treads with a sucking line. So that’s great. But definitely check that out. We’ll put in… Just check the show notes for this podcast and we’ll have a link to get your free report from Jacob.

Jacob Amrine:

Yeah. Absolutely.

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