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Posted: 11/4/2009 7:46:04 AM EST
I bought a used Kubota B7100 this year to replace my POS box store lawn mower. First and foremost I bought it to be a time saver, it has cut down my mowing time significantly but I also bought it with future utility in mind (FEL's, snow removal, back hoes, etc...)

One of the next things on my list was always to get a whole house generator that I can use in power outages. It seems to me that it doesn't make sense going out and buying a complete generator when I now have a nice diesel engine on wheels. The mower makes 15hp at the PTO and I am wanting a generator I can have sitting tied into my household power and then just roll up the tractor and hook it up if the power goes out. Does anyone have any recomendations on any of the PTO generators out there that would fit the bill?




p.s. I got this thing for $2000 w/60" deck and only 750 hours on it, which is maybe half of what I had seen them go for anywhere else in my research. It was from a New Holland dealer that took it on trade in so just make sure to shop around for a deal because there is no reason to buy just a riding lawn mower when you can get a good small utility tractor at prices like that.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 8:22:50 AM EST
I'm not sure how small they make PTO genny's, but the ones I've always seen were big (at least 15 kw). With 15 HP at the PTO shaft, I doubt you'll be able to get much more than 10 kw out of the tractor (1 hp = 746 watts, minus your inefficiency) and you'll be working it pretty hard if you pull that much. As long as you carefully watch your power draw, you should be fine, but running your engine at full load for extended periods of time is pretty hard on it.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 8:29:34 AM EST
[Last Edit: 11/4/2009 8:30:31 AM EST by Brandon_Lutz]
After Rita, my father got a large PTO generator for my parents house. I don't know it's rating but we hook it up to our old Farmall 806. It produces enough juice to turn everything in the house, and that is including both Central AC units, all freezers and refrigerators. Sure beats the hell out of having to constantly run 2 smaller gas powered portables.

Now we can use the portables for my grandparents house. Before we were having to keep running up and down the road with the portables going between us. Now we can give them both and they be set for a few days.

I'll have to check out the brand and wattage next time I'm out in his neck of the woods this weekend.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 8:38:39 AM EST
[Last Edit: 11/4/2009 8:40:13 AM EST by Quarterbore]
I was curious so I did a couple quick searches...

http://www.lsuagcenter.com/en/lawn_garden/commercial_horticulture/equipment/Compact+Tractors/PTO+Generators+for+Tractors.htm

Note that indicates the maximum generator is your PTO HP * 0.75 or 11.25 KW for your 15HP at the PTO tractor.

So, I looked and here is a 7200 Watt unit for $929.99 at northern tool that says it needs 14 PTO HP:

http://www.northerntool.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/CatDsp?storeId=6970&N=36+182378+4294941495&cm_ven=natural&cm_cat=netconcepts&cm_pla=Google&cm_ite=pto%2Bgenerator

Trailer kit for the generator:

http://www.northerntool.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/product_6970_247530_247530

Similar unit ($930):

http://www.shop.com/NorthStar_PTO_Generator_151_7200_Watt,_14_HP_Required-10730892-16556376-p+.xhtml?sourceid=298

––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
I like the idea but wow at that kind of investment ($1600 or so for generator and trailer setup) I would be more inclined to just buy a stand alone generator
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 9:42:00 AM EST
GREAT deal on the tractor!! I have a B7100 and turn a 15kW PTO gen with it.

The Kubota will pull about 11kW by actual test at the house here. I'd rather have more generator than tractor HP, if we overload it the tractor just lugs instead of overheating the generator. Look around for a used gennie, they do show up at auctions and some equipment dealers take them as trade ins.

I'll post a vid later, got stuff to do right now. Ask any questions that you have, I've used ours quite a bit since 1999.

Ops
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 10:06:37 AM EST
[Last Edit: 11/4/2009 10:21:13 AM EST by SageEBR]
Originally Posted By Quarterbore:
I was curious so I did a couple quick searches...

http://www.lsuagcenter.com/en/lawn_garden/commercial_horticulture/equipment/Compact+Tractors/PTO+Generators+for+Tractors.htm

Note that indicates the maximum generator is your PTO HP * 0.75 or 11.25 KW for your 15HP at the PTO tractor.

So, I looked and here is a 7200 Watt unit for $929.99 at northern tool that says it needs 14 PTO HP:

http://www.northerntool.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/CatDsp?storeId=6970&N=36+182378+4294941495&cm_ven=natural&cm_cat=netconcepts&cm_pla=Google&cm_ite=pto%2Bgenerator

Trailer kit for the generator:

http://www.northerntool.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/product_6970_247530_247530

Similar unit ($930):

http://www.shop.com/NorthStar_PTO_Generator_151_7200_Watt,_14_HP_Required-10730892-16556376-p+.xhtml?sourceid=298

––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

I like the idea but wow at that kind of investment ($1600 or so for generator and trailer setup) I would be more inclined to just buy a stand alone generator


Well, first off I don't need a trailer for the setup I envision - I have an outdoor circuit breaker that comes off of the power line on my property. If I have an electrician put in a generator tie in right there then I can just park the generator by the pole in a weatherproof enclosure (which I should be able to build myself for not too much) and pull the tractor up to it. I would need a tie in for any generator so the cost there doesn't matter.

Second, I found a Harbor freight 15 kw model here and they always have a 20% off coupon in American Rifleman which would put it at about 880 + tax.

It is more than the tractor needs, but thats fine if I can expect to get 10kw or so out of it, my only worry would be that it is a harbor freight generator. $880 + tax seems to be a good price to me for a diesel generator that will put out 11kw.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 10:13:30 AM EST
[Last Edit: 11/4/2009 10:14:03 AM EST by SageEBR]
Originally Posted By Ops:
GREAT deal on the tractor!! I have a B7100 and turn a 15kW PTO gen with it.

The Kubota will pull about 11kW by actual test at the house here. I'd rather have more generator than tractor HP, if we overload it the tractor just lugs instead of overheating the generator. Look around for a used gennie, they do show up at auctions and some equipment dealers take them as trade ins.

I'll post a vid later, got stuff to do right now. Ask any questions that you have, I've used ours quite a bit since 1999.

Ops


Thanks, I looked at the serial number on it and it is one of the last ones they made in the 90's. It seems solid, needed a few small things but I like it so far, frankly I think the guy didn't know what it was worth but I don't feel bad taking advantage of a dealer (he also has an older b7200 with a mower deck sitting there for $2400 that was nicer in some ways and worse in others, I had a hard time deciding between them).

How hard is it to get the deck off so I can get to the blades? I haven't tried it yet but it looks like it might be a roayal pain to do.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 11:28:20 AM EST
I just got a Kubota tractor this year, and I am still thinking about getting a PTO generator for it.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 11:40:15 AM EST
what about a PTO generator for a truck?
350 chevy hooked to a sm465?

would that be possible?
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 1:17:16 PM EST
[Last Edit: 11/4/2009 1:18:55 PM EST by FordGuy]
Originally Posted By Ops:
GREAT deal on the tractor!! I have a B7100 and turn a 15kW PTO gen with it.

The Kubota will pull about 11kW by actual test at the house here. I'd rather have more generator than tractor HP, if we overload it the tractor just lugs instead of overheating the generator. Look around for a used gennie, they do show up at auctions and some equipment dealers take them as trade ins.

I'll post a vid later, got stuff to do right now. Ask any questions that you have, I've used ours quite a bit since 1999.

Ops



Ops, I also have a B7100 and love it. and I spent more than 2k on mine...I got the deck, MFWD, and turf tires for mowing. The zenier diode went out on the gen circuit so I took it out and asked an electronics guru to rebuild it for me. waiting to get it back now.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 2:29:55 PM EST
I have been thinking about this for awhile. I just need to figure which tractor to put it on. Case 930, International 384 with the wonder loader, or that bad luck charm with the flat tire at the back of the property.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 2:50:55 PM EST
Originally Posted By SageEBR:
Originally Posted By Ops:
GREAT deal on the tractor!! I have a B7100 and turn a 15kW PTO gen with it.

The Kubota will pull about 11kW by actual test at the house here. I'd rather have more generator than tractor HP, if we overload it the tractor just lugs instead of overheating the generator. Look around for a used gennie, they do show up at auctions and some equipment dealers take them as trade ins.

I'll post a vid later, got stuff to do right now. Ask any questions that you have, I've used ours quite a bit since 1999.

Ops


Thanks, I looked at the serial number on it and it is one of the last ones they made in the 90's. It seems solid, needed a few small things but I like it so far, frankly I think the guy didn't know what it was worth but I don't feel bad taking advantage of a dealer (he also has an older b7200 with a mower deck sitting there for $2400 that was nicer in some ways and worse in others, I had a hard time deciding between them).

How hard is it to get the deck off so I can get to the blades? I haven't tried it yet but it looks like it might be a roayal pain to do.


I haven't dropped the deck on mine, I raise it and unbolt the blades. It doesn't look too bad to pull it, I'm just lazy when it comes to teardowns.

Ops
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 3:13:37 PM EST
My concern with this would be the hours put on the tractor and the noise of it running.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 3:56:43 PM EST
The rule of thumb is that you need 2hp to generate 1 kw of electricity (AC). Your 15hp of PTO output should be able to run a 7 or 8 KW PTO generator. They are widely available but I don't know much about features.

Good luck!
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 8:22:32 PM EST
You can run a bigger pto generator, but your tactor is going to lag if you try to draw more than about 7 kw.
Link Posted: 11/4/2009 8:29:59 PM EST
[Last Edit: 11/4/2009 8:32:16 PM EST by txgp17]
Originally Posted By SageEBR:
I bought a used Kubota B7100
Does that model have an engine speed governor?

Also, as was stated, the rule of thumb is 2 engine HP for every kW to be produced. You can purchase a larger generator, and that would help with surge loads, but it won't sustain the high load for more than a second or two.
Originally Posted By thebrassnuckles:
what about a PTO generator for a truck?
350 chevy hooked to a sm465?

would that be possible?
Attaching the driveshaft would not be easy, plus you'll need to add some type of governor to keep shaft speed constant under varying electrical loads.
Link Posted: 11/5/2009 3:07:02 AM EST
We usually run one of our David Brown 990's on the genny. When we aren't using as much power we can kick it into 1000 RPM and run the tractor at about half throttle. The only thing we have found is that it pulls the rpm down for a second or two longer if a heavy load is pulled. There are several models of tractors that offer the 1000 RPM option but if they don't, you could always make a gear reduction.
Link Posted: 11/5/2009 4:17:23 AM EST
One more question regarding this, how much diesel would this consume and if this really a short term solution in a real emergency when fuel supply would be a limiting resource?

Just to be clear, I have thought this is a slick idea myself but we do not have enough land for a big tractor at this point and I am simply trying to work out the pro/con issues myself. The big plus is that obviously the tractor engine will be far more reliable then a smaller gas, diesel, or propane run unit and you could always hook up a different tractor later. The downside I see is cost and fuel consumption but given you have the tractor you have the expensive part of the project.

Good Luck either way.
Link Posted: 11/5/2009 4:22:03 AM EST
Originally Posted By txgp17:
Originally Posted By SageEBR:
I bought a used Kubota B7100
Does that model have an engine speed governor?

Also, as was stated, the rule of thumb is 2 engine HP for every kW to be produced. You can purchase a larger generator, and that would help with surge loads, but it won't sustain the high load for more than a second or two.
Originally Posted By thebrassnuckles:
what about a PTO generator for a truck?
350 chevy hooked to a sm465?

would that be possible?
Attaching the driveshaft would not be easy, plus you'll need to add some type of governor to keep shaft speed constant under varying electrical loads.


SM465 transmission has a PTO

Link Posted: 11/5/2009 4:23:22 AM EST
Link Posted: 11/5/2009 4:41:21 AM EST
[Last Edit: 11/5/2009 4:48:57 AM EST by SageEBR]
Originally Posted By Feral:

Originally Posted By Deanh:
My concern with this would be the hours put on the tractor and the noise of it running.

The noise issue is why I decided not to get a PTO generator. I love the idea of using the tractor as the powerplant for a genset, but my tractor is just too darn loud when it turns the PTO at 540 RPM.


This would be far enough away from my house that I won't care about the noise.

Did anyone have any experience with the generator I linked from Harbor Freight earlier?
Link Posted: 11/5/2009 8:24:17 AM EST
[Last Edit: 11/5/2009 8:25:51 AM EST by Ops]






Tractor and generator in operation during a summer power outage. ..

Anyway, operating details:

Fuel consumption is under 1 GPH at a 5 to 7kW load. The tractor will pull almost 11kW before the engine lugs down. Tractors have governors, and this one is responsive enough to keep freqs close to 60 Hz.

It is fairly noisy. Kubota engines are fairly quiet but still make enough noise to be heard nearly half a mile away. My old Deutz could be heard over a mile away.

Generator power isn't 'clean,' it tends to flicker a bit so you may want to use a battery and inverter for your electronics.

The good part is that 7 to 10 kW is enough to run my air conditioning, water pump, WH and one or two stove burners. It's hard to tell the power is out unless we are running in heat mode and my upstairs unit cuts in the 5kW strip heater.

It's the biggest bang for the buck, if you own a tractor.

Ops
Link Posted: 11/5/2009 9:07:20 AM EST
[Last Edit: 11/5/2009 9:10:56 AM EST by Cacinok]
Originally Posted By Deanh:
My concern with this would be the hours put on the tractor and the noise of it running.


the hours are not really going to be a problem as most diesel compact tractors will easily run 5000-10000 hours if properly maintained. the larger tractors a hell of a lot more than that.

noise can be a problem, however. my electric box is mounted on the outside of the house by the master bedroom, so this wouldn't work well. i could connect the genny to the metal building and back feed the house, but then it might be too easy to forget to disconnect from the grid. i suppose i could pay an electrician to create a tie in and grid disconnect at the power pole and run it there, but for me, at least it's still somewhat close to the house.

Originally Posted By thebrassnuckles:
what about a PTO generator for a truck?
350 chevy hooked to a sm465?

would that be possible?

i think your big challenge would be maintaining the 540 rpms that most PTO genny's require. i'm sure it can be done, but you'll have to play around w/ the engine speed/transmission to achieve the right PTO rpm.

Link Posted: 11/5/2009 9:15:59 AM EST
Originally Posted By SageEBR:

Well, first off I don't need a trailer for the setup I envision - I have an outdoor circuit breaker that comes off of the power line on my property. If I have an electrician put in a generator tie in right there then I can just park the generator by the pole in a weatherproof enclosure (which I should be able to build myself for not too much) and pull the tractor up to it. I would need a tie in for any generator so the cost there doesn't matter.

Second, I found a Harbor freight 15 kw model here and they always have a 20% off coupon in American Rifleman which would put it at about 880 + tax.

It is more than the tractor needs, but thats fine if I can expect to get 10kw or so out of it, my only worry would be that it is a harbor freight generator. $880 + tax seems to be a good price to me for a diesel generator that will put out 11kw.


i would not under any circumstances trust a harbor freight genny during an emergency. i've bought a number of things from them, but i buy, especially w/ electrical stuff, knowing that the changes of failure are high. i either buy stuff that doesn't break (e.g., jack stands, hydraulic jacks, etc.) or electrical stuff that i need, but won't likely need much (e.g., sump pump).

the genny you linked to is roughly double the size of the northern tool genny linked above, but at a similar price. there's a reason for that. HF stuff is questionable at best.
Link Posted: 11/5/2009 12:20:28 PM EST
Originally Posted By thebrassnuckles:
SM465 transmission has a PTO
Yes, I'm aware of that. But getting the driveshaft of said PTO to the generator is the uneasy task I was speaking to in my post, as I used the word "driveshaft" and not "pto." The truck would almost certainly have to have a suspension lift, and/or the angles of the U-joints would so severe that they would chatter like mad and not last very long.
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