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Author Topic: tri-fuel adapter for the Honda EU2000i generator  (Read 7277 times)
N8TTR
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« on: September 17, 2017, 11:06:10 AM »

Anyone have experience running the Honda EU2000i generator with a Tri-fuel adapter (say from US Carburation)?  Mayberry's in New Jersey says Honda does not recommend using such an adapter, that the generator using such an adapter will run full trottle and not cycle down to the eco-mode.  Anyone have experience with tri-fuel adapters?  Thanks.  73's
     Mike, N8TTR
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KC2MMI
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« Reply #1 on: September 17, 2017, 12:04:05 PM »

Not the Honda, and no idea why it wouldn't cycle modes or how it does that.

But a friend picked up a gasoline genset a couple of years ago, and after ignoring the advice to stockpile some gasoline, he found out about why that was necessary. Then he found out about cleaning carbs. Then he finally found a dual or tri-fuel adapter (adds LPG or propane, so you could call it tri) and set it up to run off the gas line for his bbq and furnace. He never looked back. Said it was a bit twitchy to set up, that he needed to buy an inexpensive tach to get things set properly, but hasn't has any issues or regrets since.

Running off bottled gas might be a PITA between supply and refills, but if you have piped gas...damn nice way to go. Good way to "clean out" the carb after running afield on gasoline too, if need be.
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K6BRN
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« Reply #2 on: September 18, 2017, 10:40:14 PM »

On Gensets and Tri-Fuel use in emergencies...

With power down, finding propane will be difficult, unless you already have a 300 gallon tank attached to you home for heating/cooking.  In some parts of the country, this is common.

Natural Gas supplies become unreliable in emergencies, especially out here in earthquake-land.

Gasoline, however, can be found in the tank of almost every car on the road - a rolling supply, if you've thought to pack a siphon.

And gasoline can be stored for a decent period if it is in a sealed, air-tight container with Sta-Bil added.  Then it can be cycled through your car and replaced with fresh fuel at least once per year.  But the genset tank must be drained before storage, as should be the engine fuel lines and carb, or gum deposits will form and block carb jets, resulting hunting and stalling.  Especially with ethanol mixes. If worst come to worst, and you can't clean the removable jet assembly in the Honda EU2000i yourself, a shop will usually do it for about $75 in my neighborhood.

Brian - K6BRN

Brian - K6BRN
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W8JX
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« Reply #3 on: September 19, 2017, 05:38:38 AM »

Anyone have experience running the Honda EU2000i generator with a Tri-fuel adapter (say from US Carburation)?  Mayberry's in New Jersey says Honda does not recommend using such an adapter, that the generator using such an adapter will run full throttle and not cycle down to the eco-mode.  Anyone have experience with tri-fuel adapters?  Thanks.  73's
     Mike, N8TTR

When you change fuel supply and type all bets are of with automatic speed controls. Propane and natural gas require not only a different air/fuel ratio but also how fuel is mixed. It is a lot more difficult to make a bolt on trifuel adapter on a small air cooled engine that can properly meter fuel and air over a wide variety of RPM and loads. If you want this feature (idle down) you want it on a unit designed from factory for propane not just a add on. Further more some unit made exclusively for propane or natural gas have a much higher compression ratio because those fuel have a octane about 20 points higher than pump gas. Propane has about 30 less energy per gallon than gas so you will use a lot more of it with a adapter. A unit designed exclusively for propane with higher compression will use less propane than a bolt on conversion.

All that being said, it is better to simply keep 10 or 15 gallons of gas on hand for emergencies in tightly sealed containers and rotate it ever 6 to 8 months (pour it in car or mowers and replace it with fresh gas). One really big plus of propane is that it has a indefinite shelve life so if you buy a unit designed for propane you can have a few 20 or 30 lb bottles for it that can sit for years and not degrade. Also no carburetor to gum up with fuel from sitting either as no need to run carb or tank dry for extended storage. Just shut it down and put it away till next time it is need. Also is a crisis I do not think propane would be hard to find for a bit because many places have stockpile of exchange cylinders and very few have generators that run on it.
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Ham since 1969....  Old School 20wpm REAL Extra Class..
K5PHW
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« Reply #4 on: September 19, 2017, 11:51:48 AM »

 Unless the supplier of your conversion kit supplies you with an emission label you will be out of compliance.
I realize very few care about this, but it's the reason you have to convert it yourself.
Most OPE repair shops will not do this for you due to EPA regulations. The fines are very steep.
You will also void any warranty coverage.

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KB2FCV
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« Reply #5 on: September 19, 2017, 11:56:28 AM »



All that being said, it is better to simply keep 10 or 15 gallons of gas on hand for emergencies in tightly sealed containers and rotate it ever 6 to 8 months (pour it in car or mowers and replace it with fresh gas).

This is what I do now. I simply rotate my gasoline 1-2 times a year. Since i have to take them out of my shed every time I cut the grass I start them up and let them run while I cut the grass. In the winter I drain the lines/carb. Still going strong.

I have thought about a natural gas conversion kit.. but I would have to run a line out. I was originally going to run out a line for a permanent gas grill but then I discovered charcoal grilling / bbq... so no line run.
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W8JX
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« Reply #6 on: September 20, 2017, 04:38:12 AM »

I have thought about a natural gas conversion kit.. but I would have to run a line out. I was originally going to run out a line for a permanent gas grill but then I discovered charcoal grilling / bbq... so no line run.

IF it was a backup I rarely used I would buy a unit made to run on propane because there are no long term storage issues and while you have to tether to a tank to use you can move tank and generator were it is needed, With natural gas is pretty much fixed site/location.
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Ham since 1969....  Old School 20wpm REAL Extra Class..
KD8MJR
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Posts: 5053




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« Reply #7 on: September 20, 2017, 08:07:44 PM »

On Gensets and Tri-Fuel use in emergencies...

With power down, finding propane will be difficult, unless you already have a 300 gallon tank attached to you home for heating/cooking.  In some parts of the country, this is common.

Natural Gas supplies become unreliable in emergencies, especially out here in earthquake-land.

Gasoline, however, can be found in the tank of almost every car on the road - a rolling supply, if you've thought to pack a siphon.

And gasoline can be stored for a decent period if it is in a sealed, air-tight container with Sta-Bil added.  Then it can be cycled through your car and replaced with fresh fuel at least once per year.  But the genset tank must be drained before storage, as should be the engine fuel lines and carb, or gum deposits will form and block carb jets, resulting hunting and stalling.  Especially with ethanol mixes. If worst come to worst, and you can't clean the removable jet assembly in the Honda EU2000i yourself, a shop will usually do it for about $75 in my neighborhood.

Brian - K6BRN

Brian - K6BRN

I agree with Brian 100%
After surviving a CAT5 hit from Hurricane Gilbert when I was living abroad in the Caribbean. I found the only generators on the island that where operational for the 3 months that it took electricity to be restored were Gas powered units.  The Propane ones went down within days because no one could get a supply.  Diesel was difficult to get but Gas was available in limited quantities on a daily basis.  I would head out every morning and secure about 5 gallons of Gas that could run the generator for about 12 hours.  Sometimes we would buy Gas from people that had hurricane damaged cars. We siphoned everything we could find, the rest came from joining long lines and getting your quota.

Lessons learned:

1) Gas is the way to go if you might be without power for several weeks or months.

2) A Large generator is a bad idea as it burns a lot more gas even if it's not being used heavily.  A 2KW Generator is a perfect solution.  It can run all your lights and your Fridge, fans plus TV with power to spare and it sips Gas.

I also purchased a Honda EU2000 about 10 years ago. It can run for 12-14 hours on about 3.5 gallons of gas.  Sure there is no hot water heater or AC but that is the least of your problems when your in survival mode.

Rob
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W8JX
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« Reply #8 on: September 21, 2017, 05:20:29 AM »


2) A Large generator is a bad idea as it burns a lot more gas even if it's not being used heavily.  A 2KW Generator is a perfect solution.  It can run all your lights and your Fridge, fans plus TV with power to spare and it sips Gas.


A 2kw is really too small for long term backup. It lacks surge power to start heavier loads. A 3kw is a better compromise. Good on gas with better surge reserve and not maxed out with no reserve with a 2kw load like 2kw Honda would be. I powered two refrigerators and a upright freezer, lighting, TV/Home theater all at same time without maxing out for 5 days. Would of never happened with a 2kw. Try and start a 8 or 10K window AC on a 2kw. I will likely never happen. They start hard.
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Ham since 1969....  Old School 20wpm REAL Extra Class..
KD8MJR
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Posts: 5053




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« Reply #9 on: September 21, 2017, 04:01:47 PM »


2) A Large generator is a bad idea as it burns a lot more gas even if it's not being used heavily.  A 2KW Generator is a perfect solution.  It can run all your lights and your Fridge, fans plus TV with power to spare and it sips Gas.


A 2kw is really too small for long term backup. It lacks surge power to start heavier loads. A 3kw is a better compromise. Good on gas with better surge reserve and not maxed out with no reserve with a 2kw load like 2kw Honda would be. I powered two refrigerators and a upright freezer, lighting, TV/Home theater all at same time without maxing out for 5 days. Would of never happened with a 2kw. Try and start a 8 or 10K window AC on a 2kw. I will likely never happen. They start hard.

I can run 2 fridges on my EU2000, one being a 26cu/ft fridge. The other is smaller.  I also can run all the house lights, but those are now LED so no big deal.  Other things like a water pump for the tank and Fans in every room plus TV's including 55" Plasma and I am using about 1.5KW of the 2kw.   If I need to use the microwave I have to unplug the fridge but that's not a big issue considering how efficient the system is.

I agree with you, that AC and hot water heaters are out of the question.   Your mind set is geared towards having absolute comfort and your not thinking of survival and the trade offs that are needed.   Trust me after a CAT5 storm having a hot bath is the last thing your thinking about.  AC would be nice but it burns too much gas!  Keep in mind that getting Gas is a major issue when a big storm rolls by.   Just watch what happens in Puerto Rico, they will be rationing Gas and having super long lines to the pumps for months.  In the next few weeks hundreds of thousands of Generators are going to be flown into Puerto Rico  and the people will all be looking to the gas stations for the supply.   Trust me I have been through it and know how it plays out.

Propane is never an issue, we got out our barbecue grill and used wood from the the downed trees and broken up house planking to cook everything.  Nobody in the country complained about a lack of propane because the supply Plants were totaled and everyone knew it so we just used firewood.  Water was gathered from the rivers and filtered and boiled.   It was one heck of an experience, the most difficult part was finding food during the first two weeks.

Rob

« Last Edit: September 21, 2017, 04:04:25 PM by KD8MJR » Logged

“A lie can travel half way around the world while the truth is putting on its shoes.”  (Mark Twain)
W8JX
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Posts: 12081




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« Reply #10 on: September 21, 2017, 06:20:43 PM »


2) A Large generator is a bad idea as it burns a lot more gas even if it's not being used heavily.  A 2KW Generator is a perfect solution.  It can run all your lights and your Fridge, fans plus TV with power to spare and it sips Gas.


A 2kw is really too small for long term backup. It lacks surge power to start heavier loads. A 3kw is a better compromise. Good on gas with better surge reserve and not maxed out with no reserve with a 2kw load like 2kw Honda would be. I powered two refrigerators and a upright freezer, lighting, TV/Home theater all at same time without maxing out for 5 days. Would of never happened with a 2kw. Try and start a 8 or 10K window AC on a 2kw. I will likely never happen. They start hard.

I can run 2 fridges on my EU2000, one being a 26cu/ft fridge. The other is smaller.  I also can run all the house lights, but those are now LED so no big deal.  Other things like a water pump for the tank and Fans in every room plus TV's including 55" Plasma and I am using about 1.5KW of the 2kw.   If I need to use the microwave I have to unplug the fridge but that's not a big issue considering how efficient the system is.

I agree with you, that AC and hot water heaters are out of the question.   Your mind set is geared towards having absolute comfort and your not thinking of survival and the trade offs that are needed.   Trust me after a CAT5 storm having a hot bath is the last thing your thinking about.  AC would be nice but it burns too much gas!  Keep in mind that getting Gas is a major issue when a big storm rolls by.   Just watch what happens in Puerto Rico, they will be rationing Gas and having super long lines to the pumps for months.  In the next few weeks hundreds of thousands of Generators are going to be flown into Puerto Rico  and the people will all be looking to the gas stations for the supply.   Trust me I have been through it and know how it plays out.

Propane is never an issue, we got out our barbecue grill and used wood from the the downed trees and broken up house planking to cook everything.  Nobody in the country complained about a lack of propane because the supply Plants were totaled and everyone knew it so we just used firewood.  Water was gathered from the rivers and filtered and boiled.   It was one heck of an experience, the most difficult part was finding food during the first two weeks.

Rob


I am sure you have first hand experience. My house has a 240 well pump so if you want water you have to have a bigger unit. While pump only draws about 1100 watts running the circuit length is 400 feet  (200 feet both ways) My 3kw does not have 240 unfortunately so during those 5 days we had to haul drinking water and taking showers at a friends who had no power but lived in town and had city water  pressure and natural gas water heater. I have since bought a 5500 watt unit that can power pump but favorite is still the 3kw.

Point I was making is if you are in market to buy one a 3KW is a smarter buy. Still economical but it has more reserve. Also generally generators are most efficient at 1/4 to 1/2 load so a 3kw would be in the "zone" from about 750 watts to 1500 watts while a 2kw would like being in the 500 to 1000 watt range.   
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KD8MJR
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« Reply #11 on: September 21, 2017, 06:47:02 PM »

Well I really won't argue on 2kw vs 3kw, it's a small enough difference that gas usage will not be hugely impacted  Smiley

I also skipped going for a 240v generator because I wanted a smaller more compact unit that I could move myself and anything that requires 220v is pretty much a luxury item that I would not be using after a real disaster.

If I had a well pump that required 240v I guess I would do the same as you. Water is certainly not a luxury item!

Rob
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W8JX
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« Reply #12 on: September 21, 2017, 07:36:09 PM »

I wanted a smaller more compact unit that I could move myself

My favorite one for that is the Harbor Freight 800 watt unit. Easy to carry and start in any weather. No oil to check or change. I use Amsoil 100 to 1 synthetic 2 stroke oil on a 75 to 1 mix and no smoke too.
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Ham since 1969....  Old School 20wpm REAL Extra Class..
W9IQ
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« Reply #13 on: September 21, 2017, 07:57:37 PM »

I have seen those 800 watt unit at HF, John and they sure look nice for the price. Glad to hear of your good experience with them.

I have a defense in depth approach when it comes to emergency power.

A 22kW LP generator with automatic transfer connected to a buried 1000 gallon LP tank. I need this for the ranching operation including waters and a commercial freezer. This can power everything for a week - two weeks if I load shed.

Then I have a 5 kW gas genset with typically 40 gallons on hand.

Finally I have a stowable solar array with batteries to charge devices, run radios, etc.

I may add an HF 800 watt unit based on your recommendation, John. It would also be nice for quick portable jobs as well.

- Glenn W9IQ
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- Glenn W9IQ

I never make a mistake. I thought I did once but I was wrong.
W8JX
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« Reply #14 on: September 22, 2017, 03:47:08 AM »


I may add an HF 800 watt unit based on your recommendation, John. It would also be nice for quick portable jobs as well.


You sound well prepared. I have had my HF 800 for over 5 years and would buy another. A few tips, shut fuel off when done with it, and not planning on using it again, to run carb. (it can take more than a minute no load and I use choke at end to get all the fuel) When you start it, turn fuel on and wait at least a minute before trying to start it. Also I have never run mine with conventional 2 stroke oil so I have never had any smoke or fouled plug issues that two strokes can have. Amsoil synthetic 100 to one does kinda have a bit of a burnt peanut smell to it in exhaust sometimes. I use mine for trimming trees and fence lines as it will power a electric chain saw and trimmers. Use a 25 ft or longer 16 ga extension cord with chain saw. I use 50 ft as it softens surge load from starting and does not hit generator too hard and give me a long leash. Past 50 feet I use a 100 ft 14 ga one.   
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