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Author Topic: Portable generators are these OK what do I look for ?  (Read 23608 times)
W8JX
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« Reply #15 on: January 11, 2014, 07:11:00 AM »


Even the generator head was no good due to the fact that you couldn't couple it to another motor except the motor the generator came with.


There is a bit of truth to this but factually untrue.
Generator motors have a tapered output shaft to mate to the tapered hole in the generator armature.
You can hang a generator head on a different engine, if the engine is for a generator and has the correct shaft taper.

No you can't simply take to motor off your tiller or lawnmower and bolt a generator head to it.

If you had access and ability to operate a metal lathe, you could take a standard shaft motor and cut the taper into the shaft.  Mind you it would require removing the crankshaft from the engine. 

Units that use Briggs motors are easy to re power because they have a standardized pattern for bolt up and you need to match shaft size. Generator builders that use briggs, subaru,  yamaha, etc  use off shelf engines which are easy to replace.
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W1JKA
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« Reply #16 on: January 11, 2014, 09:18:28 AM »

Anyone brought up in farm country knows how relatively easy it is to connect most any generic generator to the PTO of most any type of farm tractor.
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W8JX
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« Reply #17 on: January 11, 2014, 09:34:25 AM »

Anyone brought up in farm country knows how relatively easy it is to connect most any generic generator to the PTO of most any type of farm tractor.

Not unless it is made for that as the PTO standard is 540 RPM with 1000 RPM available too on bigger tractors. You can buy ready built PTO / 540 units of 15 kw and more starting under 2k. Figure on at least 1.5 hp drive per kw here with 2 hp more desirable due to drive coupling loses.
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W1JKA
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« Reply #18 on: January 11, 2014, 11:55:49 AM »

JX: You've been off the farm to long friend.
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W8JX
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« Reply #19 on: January 11, 2014, 02:52:36 PM »

JX: You've been off the farm to long friend.

Not really. There is approx 746 watts in a hp at 100% efficency.  A generator can reach o
90% give or take. Then there is a bit of loss in the conversion from 540 to 3600. Lastly tractors have 3 hp ratings and from highest to lowest they are flywheel, PTO and drawbar.
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WB4M
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« Reply #20 on: February 03, 2014, 11:09:31 AM »

Hi gang!  in my area there are a couple of generators on sale both are in the 6.5 or 7 KW size one is made by Ipower sold by DX engineering  The other is sold by Harbour Freight tools and is named Predator and also is similar size and cost One of the things is they look almost the same , same Chinese company ?   My question is are these two suitable for running ham radio equipment on Field day or emergency and can I run my computer off of it ?  What am I looking for in a generator I think it is one that does not generate noise along with power ?  is this right ?  will either of these work ?  These both run 6 to just over 700 bucks.  thanks for your help John kb2huk
Another question is can you move a 6-7 kw generator by yourself?  Even with a wheel kit?  Can you put up with the noise of those things?  I'd go with a small Honda generator; light weight, quiet, usable with sensitive equipment.   
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W8JX
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« Reply #21 on: February 04, 2014, 04:31:30 AM »

Hi gang!  in my area there are a couple of generators on sale both are in the 6.5 or 7 KW size one is made by Ipower sold by DX engineering  The other is sold by Harbour Freight tools and is named Predator and also is similar size and cost One of the things is they look almost the same , same Chinese company ?   My question is are these two suitable for running ham radio equipment on Field day or emergency and can I run my computer off of it ?  What am I looking for in a generator I think it is one that does not generate noise along with power ?  is this right ?  will either of these work ?  These both run 6 to just over 700 bucks.  thanks for your help John kb2huk
Another question is can you move a 6-7 kw generator by yourself?  Even with a wheel kit?  Can you put up with the noise of those things?  I'd go with a small Honda generator; light weight, quiet, usable with sensitive equipment.   

Most generators of this size have wheels and are not hard to move except for loading in a vehicle for transport. Given you can get a decent 6 or 7 k unit for far less money than say a 2 k Honda why waste money on Honda when you can power house for less. BTW my 6+ year old 3k Chonda produces no noticeable RFI when used for field day and easily powered a 600 amp too. It is a big myth that you have to spend big $$$ for a Honda to get reliable power.
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K4JJL
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« Reply #22 on: February 04, 2014, 10:59:41 AM »

Hi gang!  in my area there are a couple of generators on sale both are in the 6.5 or 7 KW size one is made by Ipower sold by DX engineering  The other is sold by Harbour Freight tools and is named Predator and also is similar size and cost One of the things is they look almost the same , same Chinese company ?   My question is are these two suitable for running ham radio equipment on Field day or emergency and can I run my computer off of it ?  What am I looking for in a generator I think it is one that does not generate noise along with power ?  is this right ?  will either of these work ?  These both run 6 to just over 700 bucks.  thanks for your help John kb2huk
Another question is can you move a 6-7 kw generator by yourself?  Even with a wheel kit?  Can you put up with the noise of those things?  I'd go with a small Honda generator; light weight, quiet, usable with sensitive equipment.   

Most generators of this size have wheels and are not hard to move except for loading in a vehicle for transport. Given you can get a decent 6 or 7 k unit for far less money than say a 2 k Honda why waste money on Honda when you can power house for less. BTW my 6+ year old 3k Chonda produces no noticeable RFI when used for field day and easily powered a 600 amp too. It is a big myth that you have to spend big $$$ for a Honda to get reliable power.

I'll take my 10KW Onan over anything.  It's on wheels, runs on propane or gasoline, electric or hand start (hand crank, not a recoil), has shielded plug wires, and a muffler off a small car.  Only thing you hear is the fan blowing and the valves clicking.
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W1JKA
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« Reply #23 on: February 04, 2014, 11:32:00 AM »

 I find it difficult to believe that upper management of both Chonda and Honda have not taken notice and advantage of this topic to recruit obviously knowledgeable and pre qualified candidates for their sales teams (Rat Shack take note).Truthfully, if I needed another generator and was just some dumb A$$ who walked in off the street I could be easily persuaded to buy either one.
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W8JX
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« Reply #24 on: February 04, 2014, 12:15:00 PM »

I'll take my 10KW Onan over anything.  It's on wheels, runs on propane or gasoline, electric or hand start (hand crank, not a recoil), has shielded plug wires, and a muffler off a small car.  Only thing you hear is the fan blowing and the valves clicking.

You can keep it. I would hate to feed the beast as it would be very thirsty. The 18 HP Onan in my 318 drinks a lot of fuel compared to modern engines. Moderm OHV small engines has redefined portable power in size, power to weight ratio and fuel consumption.   

As far as hand crank, it would be very hard to recoil start. BTW I have a 27 HP 1954 JD 40 that is electric and hand crank start too. It has a modern vertical stroked two cylinder overhead valve design though. It idles down to about 300 RPM and max no load speed is about 1800 RPM. Puts a Onan to same in smoothness. Pulls well from about 700 to 1300 RPM.
 
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K4JJL
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« Reply #25 on: February 05, 2014, 06:07:39 AM »

As far as hand crank, it would be very hard to recoil start.

Actually it's not bad at all when using vapor fuels.  My regulator has a priming button that blows propane in the carburetor.  3 times turned over and it usually fires off.  And it's not recoil start.  It's a hand crank, like a Model T.

Besides, living in "hurricane land" I'll take dependability vs fuel efficiency.  I can hoard at least 2 weeks worth of propane.
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W8JX
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« Reply #26 on: February 05, 2014, 02:57:04 PM »

As far as hand crank, it would be very hard to recoil start.

Actually it's not bad at all when using vapor fuels.  My regulator has a priming button that blows propane in the carburetor.  3 times turned over and it usually fires off.  And it's not recoil start.  It's a hand crank, like a Model T.

Besides, living in "hurricane land" I'll take dependability vs fuel efficiency.  I can hoard at least 2 weeks worth of propane.

You can have both efficiency and reliability today.  You would love hand cranking my 40. It will usually start on first crank even near zero. It has two cylinders with a displacement of 60 cu in each and apparently creates a strong suction on updraft carb and requires no priming,  only choke.  It also fires the two cylinders 180 degrees apart so you have a good long intake draw back to back. Easiest starting old tractor I ever used.  I always wanted to try it powering a 15k pto generator. About 1450 rpm yields 540 rpm on pto shaft
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KA5IPF
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« Reply #27 on: February 05, 2014, 10:26:53 PM »

Dream on. At near zero the oil is so thick you would be lucky to turn it over period. Ever wonder why the big rig drivers don't shut their engine off when it goes below about 20-25 deg without a block heater? And at zero they won't run them off at all.
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W8JX
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« Reply #28 on: February 06, 2014, 11:29:33 AM »

Dream on. At near zero the oil is so thick you would be lucky to turn it over period. Ever wonder why the big rig drivers don't shut their engine off when it goes below about 20-25 deg without a block heater? And at zero they won't run them off at all.

Guess again, there is winter oil dah...  I used to use 10w oil in winter in tractor before there was 5w20. I have long used thinner oil in engines it cold. The main reason they do not shut a big rig down is that below 30 or so they will not generate enough heat in compression to start. I have easily started diesel at zero and below with ether but you use it sparingly and apply will cranking. I have seen greater than 40 below and started cars in it. I normally used a block heater below zero and i used dual block heaters in my suburban below 25 below. I used battery heaters too. I also added a bit of kerosene to power steering and about a pint or so to automatic transmissions in extreme cold too. I have long used a bit of kerosene in snow plow hydraulics to keep them working well below zero and a dash of dry gas/alcohol too to prevent ice crystals from condensation forming in fluid and cause spool valves to stick. Use a dash of dry gas in snow blowers and kept them running at 20 below in blowing snow. I extreme cold it is hard to beat a stroke as they will easily start at 20 below and colder.  I know all the cold weather tricks.   
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W5HEH
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« Reply #29 on: February 15, 2014, 07:24:29 PM »

Hi gang!  in my area there are a couple of generators on sale both are in the 6.5 or 7 KW size one is made by Ipower sold by DX engineering  The other is sold by Harbour Freight tools and is named Predator and also is similar size and cost One of the things is they look almost the same , same Chinese company ?   My question is are these two suitable for running ham radio equipment on Field day or emergency and can I run my computer off of it ?  What am I looking for in a generator I think it is one that does not generate noise along with power ?  is this right ?  will either of these work ?  These both run 6 to just over 700 bucks.  thanks for your help John kb2huk

   One thing to consider is if you get a larger 4500 and up get electric start unless you are 45 and under , also do some research online to see many reviews, people resell these all the time , look at a good used one that has clean oil , and runs smooth, , have you considered Solar ? they have Fold up ones now that are up to 100watts portable and others with more - these will power you with batteries thru the night -then charge by day , no noise -clean power look seriously at these -get the Monocrystaline longer wear time . They even have chargers -controllers that will charge Ni-CAd Batteries now , there is a good 12dcV yahoo group to get specific advice -Hams there as well.  We have a Briggs Motor Generator about 5500 hand crank beast, works fine, used it in ICE Storm of '09, still works like new, not a lot of hours on it, and yes i should change the oil , lol, i looked at it looks and smells fine, but for careful sake will change it this week to be sure , i need an hour gauge /meter on it - that is a good thought for your needs get one with it or just get an hour meter ! So you change the oil on time ! lol. Still i am pulling for Solar, i will buy Solar goodies soon for portable use and to build up the home capabilities -Knowlege is Power ! One more thing, consider a diesel Gen, you can store Diesel Gas easier /safer than Petro Gas, i seen an old Lister engine in England avalable - those will run a Gen forever ,if you have the resources to get it here or find one. Best Regards, AJ KF5zyb
« Last Edit: February 15, 2014, 07:34:19 PM by KF5ZYB » Logged
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