Since my original topic was lost (now displaying a SQL error) when the forums were corrupted, I’ve gone ahead and recreated it. This topic is for personal pictures I have taken of fire alarms and general signaling devices (e.g., bells) in my area. Both old and new systems will be covered.
The first set of pictures comes from Beaumont Hospital - Farmington Hills. I already talked about the campus in a previous post when I visited with my clinical affiliation group on a tour. However, several weeks prior, I visited the campus on a separate, unrelated trip and decided to take some pictures of the alarm system inside. All devices are rebranded by Siemens unless stated otherwise. All pictures come from the North Professional Building, built in 1977.
FP-11 addressable detectors or the equivalent make up most detectors in the building.
This FJ-303 phone jack is used for firefighting communications for this elevator and others.
Some spots have ZR series strobes in place.
Here is where things get interesting. The original system most likely included 10" or 8" bells for signaling devices; then, at some point, there was a second system installed. Both horizontal and vertical devices were used, and the white paint scars still appear in many places. I was unable to determine what the older systems consisted of.
Unknown ion detectors for elevators
I want to share an update from Beaumont Hospital - Farmington Hills. I was visiting the campus a while ago for a volunteer orientation, and while waiting in the main lobby, I came across this:
Next to the speaker/strobe is what appears to be a Faraday incandescent light! I suspect this was an original installation when the main hospital building first opened. It may have been used as part of an original Faraday system installation. This was the only such device I saw anywhere on the hospital campus.
Hello, once again. I’ve been meaning to update this section for a while now, but I haven’t got around to it.
I’m changing my process for posting pictures to this topic. Ever since the incident at St. Mary Mercy Hospital regarding photography, I am no longer taking nor uploading any pictures from medical facilities. The same applies to all other systems I see–I will only take pictures and upload them here if the devices in question are rare/interesting/unusual. I will, however, document anything interesting or unusual in writing on other topics.
This post consists of a set of pictures from various places in my area.
This picture is of the Dollar Tree in Farmington. Shown here is a Yale 2100 push bar with a retrofitted Yale 2116 exit alarm. Most modern Dollar Tree stores tend to use Yale SDA16-1 exit alarms now, so I thought it was neat to find an older, less-common device still in use.
This is from the University of Michigan - Flint’s Harding Mott University Center. This is a very old annunciator/panel, I believe from the late 1970s (around the time this building opened). I suspect it is a National Time device, but without any sort of identification, I have no way of knowing the model number or anything else.
There are several of these scattered throughout the building, on both walls and ceilings. I believe there used to be National Time 411 horns or possibly P806 bells behind these grilles for this reason: The design of the setup is the exact same type I’ve seen at Cass Elementary in Livonia, St. Robert Bellarmie School in Redford Township, Dearborn Heights City Hall, and some other locations, all of which have National Time systems installed.
The rest of the system is a mixture of Simplex and Wheelock products, mostly TrueAlarms, E50 and E60 speaker/strobes, and 2099-series single-action pull stations.
This 2" bell, I believe, is used for general signaling as a doorbell (it is located next to a back door and garage). I don’t know for sure who manufactures this bell, but judging by the electrical cover design, it may be a NuTone. I did a little research online and discovered that Ace Hardware has also sold a signaling bell with a very identical design to the one shown.
There are some of these located throughout the store as well. I don’t know who manufactures/brands this device, but it’s similar to an older ESL/System Sensor photoelectric detector. This one just happened to be installed high on a wall, and the wiring, as you can see, is exposed.
This 1970s-era store still has a few Notifier fire bells in service. This one might be used for a fire exit close by.
Other signaling devices include older and newer Detex ECL-230D exit alarms (one of which replaced a vintage ECL-230K, most likely original to the store), a SpectrAlert Advance horn/strobe replacing an original Fire-Lite 450 fire horn above a stockroom entrance, a round Ansul fire suppression pull station behind a Stopper II cover in the now-closed cafe, and a very rare Autocall Executive chime in a clothing section at the front of the store.
Up until one or two years ago, most of the emergency exits used vintage Alarm Lock exit devices that have since been replaced, here, by SirenLock-series exit alarms of the same company. There were Detex devices on the ground floor, but they were too modern to really grab my attention.
Comparing the covers of the CAT 13 bell to the hardware store bell, the Hunt’s bell doesn’t have those arrows that the CAT 13 does, even though the gong and striking hammer are similar. I did an eBay search some time ago for a device I used to have (bought from a flea market) that looks just like the one at Hunt’s, and the first relevant item I could find was made by NuTone, and looked just exactly like the device I bought.
This building has always been a university, and not some former grade school that was converted into a place for higher education. I don’t know what the original National Time P806 bells could have been used for in regards to class change (severe weather, perhaps?). I’ve never heard them ring during my times there. The silver plate next to the bell was the spot of a former National Time 411F horn that accounted for most of the NAs here. They would almost always be paired with the bells. There are 1980s additions to the building that also have P806 bells, but those are all located behind silver grilles and have different labels on the gong.
An Edwards Adaptahorn is located outside one of many mechanical rooms throughout the building. Notice the scars on the brick wall to the left of the horn–this could have been an older double-gong setup, possibly as an alarm or telephone signal.
This horn shown here is what I believe to be a National Time 541 unit. There were several of these installed in the 1980s addition (all flush-mount). One horn in the Kresge Auditorium has no flush-mount, but instead, is housed behind a silver grille, similar to the P806 bells I described earlier. With the exception of this horn (in a stairwell) and the horn in the Kresge Auditorium, all of the others have identifying labels on the flush plates.
This is a National Time P810 bell with a protective guard housing outside. There are several more of these.
The current system, which kept the 541 horns (most likely disconnected at this point) and virtually all of the P806 bells, consists of SpectrAlert Advance horn/strobes & strobes; Johnson Controls-branded BG-12LX pull stations; and Johnson Controls-branded photoelectric or heat detectors. This was installed about two or three years ago.
The old system contained National Time 620M pull stations and National Time 641 pull stations (1980s additions) throughout.
One part of the building had Gentex Commander (series 2 or 3) horn/strobes from an earlier renovation, but those, strangely enough, were replaced by Advance horn/strobes as part of the system-wide upgrade.
Another part of the building had two National Time-branded 7002T horn/strobes next to each other. I don’t know what either one was used for, but they were both near a mechanical room entrance.
This break-glass pull station is truly a rarity. It was the only one I could find in this converted building; several walls were built where there used to be common space, and for privacy and security reasons, I stayed only in the hallways. I don’t know which company made this pull station, but I have seen it used in National Time systems. There are at least two National Time P810 bells (with protective grilles) outside, but they were too much of a risk for me to get a picture. The rest of the alarms and bells are unknown–besides the added walls, drop ceilings were put in also, completely obscuring the old devices from view.
This is really an uncommon panel to find. It was manufactured by the now-defunct Moose Products Inc., and is a combination fire/security device. The model number is Z1100. The light-blue square shown was added by me on purpose, because information for programming the panel is below the controls and I didn’t want any security issues raised.
This System Sensor MA/SS-24D horn/strobe is one of only two NAs throughout the entire store. The other one is an unpictured National Time duct detector.
Webster Elementary School (Livonia) - This building was originally another elementary school that closed in 2006, before reopening in 2010 as this school’s second location. The entire system (bells and alarms) is slated to be upgraded this summer as one of the last buildings under the district bond issue to be renovated.
All the notification appliances are National Time-rebranded Faraday horn/strobes and strobes, installed during the 1990s to replace the original system from when the school was first built.
The majority of the building uses National Time P806 vibrating bells for general signaling, completely original to when the school was first built. There are also outdoor bells behind gray, flush-mount grilles.
The only other components here are a National Time panel and System Sensor 2424 photoelectric detectors adjacent to magnetic fire doors.
This latest set of pictures come from Allen Terrace and Water Wheel Centre of Northville.
The system consists of a Simplex 4602-9101 annunciator (not pictured, in the lobby entrance) with a 4602-9202 annunciator next to this vintage Simplex annunciator/panel. Detectors consist of these unknown model photoelectric or heat detectors throughout the building. Pull stations are a mixture of 4251-series pull stations left over from the original system and 2099-series single-action pull stations from the new system. Notification appliances include TrueAlert ES horn/strobes and strobes, along with an unknown model 4" gray bell in one hallway (general signaling?).
Besides the vintage Viking sprinkler bell original to this building, all components have been upgraded and include BG-12 pull stations, along with ceiling-mount Wheelock HS-series horn/strobes throughout.
Northville Shopping Center (Northville Township) - This shopping center consists of several strip buildings and outlot businesses. For these pictures, I will focus mostly on the older/unusual devices discovered.
An older National Time panel inside the entrance to Bed Bath & Beyond.
A National Time-branded Faraday horn/strobe inside REI. Bed Bath & Beyond also uses the same exact devices throughout the store. I believe these two businesses have the only National Time systems throughout the center.
A Honeywell S464A pull station inside Office Depot. Barnes & Noble also uses the same type of devices throughout the store. A Detex EAX-500 exit alarm, replacing an older Detex EA-500 device, is partially shown.
This device can be found outside of an administration office. It appears to be a National Time-branded Wheelock MB-series motor bell, 6" in diameter. Although the front label is faded, I suspect it is a National Time rebrand because there is an unpictured National Time 641 pull station inside a stairwell, visible from outside.
This particular device is interesting. It is a ceiling-mounted installation inside of a gift shop. If I had to guess, it most likely is some kind of smoke/heat/photoelectric detector based on its design, but to be honest, I’ve never seen anything like this before. There are no other alarm devices inside or outside the business.
These devices are from Westchester Square, a miniature indoor mall with a combination of retail and office tenants. The bell appears to be a Wheelock MB-series motor bell, 10" in diameter, while the horn appears to be a System Sensor MA-series device.
This set of three pictures comes from Thurston High School in Redford Township. I don’t know anything regarding the panels, annunciators, and detectors, but the system uses a mixture of Wheelock AS horn/strobes, Wheelock RSS strobes, National Time-branded Gentex Commander horn/strobes, and National Time 541-series pull stations, which are actually rebranded Sigcom devices. There are some oddities here, which will be described in the images below.
The school does have class change bells, but I am unsure of their operating status because there are cover plates in some areas where there used to be bells. The bell shown here is a Simplex 2901-9041 model behind a painted-over grille.
Woah those are very nice! Are those bells from Big Lots part of the fire alarm system?
I’m not 100% sure. I believe there was some type of annunciator below the Edwards bell, but it could have just been part of a security system. There is a SpectrAlert classic horn/strobe outside on one corner of the store, but I believe it acts as a sprinkler alarm. I didn’t notice any pull stations throughout the store. The Tork Alert bells could just be used for general signaling also.