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Author Topic: Need helpful Ideas Please Help  (Read 5730 times)
KG4RUL
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« Reply #15 on: November 07, 2011, 01:49:59 PM »

I have never had a problem with RFI from a Honda inverter generator.  With other generic models, the ignition systems often create a large noise fingerprint and they suck fuel compared to an equivalent rated Honda.  Also, the generic operating generator noise will become a problem over a 6 day event.

I do not think you have used many generics because Honda does not have a exclusive hold on noise level or fuel usage. They do make a quiet unit but other are nearly as quiet and unless it is right under your feet this is not a big issue. I would place generator some distance away anyway. Also I was without power for 36 hours last month and got on air for a bit using generic power and had no detectable RFI from it. Honestly if this is a big long event you are going to want more than 1 KW at times and not want to refuel it 4 or 5 times a day too as this could get very old over a weeks time. Get a generic 3K or so with a 4 gallon tank and you will fuel it every 12 hours at most and even then it will not be close to empty unless unit is heavily loaded. (so for one way you refuel about 35+ times vs a dozen at most running 24/7) Also consider if this is in summer and hot, a 3k unit will loaf even in extreme heat under a 1kw load while a 1k unit will be straining. What ever you choose do plan for a few oil changes during event and if new do break it in before event and start event with fresh oil. People that have short life with generator motor never bother to change oil every 2 or 3 days tops in 24/7 usage.

Point is we are not talking about a occasional use single or small party short term event. We are talking maybe 24/7 for 7 days and I would get a bigger unit and generic too for much less money. Also consider this, if you use several batteries to power other things at this event, a 3kw unit can run a few big chargers to rapid charge several deep cycle batteries while still powering radios and lights. Not possible with a 1k unit. Nothing is more frustrating than having a generator but then finding its capacity lacking and wishing you had bought bigger.

To be clear my use of "generic" refers to the run of the mill, contractor grade generator or the 900W, 2 Cycle engine special from someone like Harbor Freight.  Honda, Yamaha and others make great inverter generators.  Over a several day period, you won't appreciate the high noise levels often associated with "generic" generators.  The "generic" generator often has no protective circuitry to closely regulate line voltage and frequency or things like low oil level protection.
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K1CJS
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« Reply #16 on: November 08, 2011, 11:50:44 AM »

Adam,  When you go over to the campsite, to begin with, see if there is a close enough tap into the camp power.  Maybe you will not even need to bring or get a generator.  Also, see if you're able to set up near that power tie-in--or at least close to it.  What you may find useful (depending on the distance involved) is a heavy duty electrical extension cord if you can set up withing a hundred or so feet of the electrical source.  The one thing you have to remember is that you'll need at least a twelve gauge cord--a ten gauge will be better--for that distance.

If that is possible, you should be all set.  All you'll need is a power strip at the end to accomodate your gear.
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K9KJM
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« Reply #17 on: November 10, 2011, 08:52:27 PM »

I agree with most all comments here for the scout operation. A small generator is the way to go.
However, For the low cost of a small solar panel set up, For a scouting operation, That would be a great demo to show the scouts how to get free power from the sun on bright days:

http://www.harborfreight.com/45-watt-solar-panel-kit-90599.html

That Harbor Freight 45 watt panel set up will provide almost enough power to run your radio on a bright sunny day, Is available as low as 139 bucks if you find the good discount coupons on the back of many magazines, And would be a GREAT demo to show the kids!   
In any event, A decent deep cycle, Or as mentioned even better an AGM type battery would be good to keep the communications going during generator refueling times, etc.
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