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Posted: 6/4/2007 7:07:48 AM EDT
Are the sub $300 generators any good or not. You know they are chineese made. I am really thinking about getting some batteries and inverters for things and would just want to have a small genny to run part of the time to power battery chargers and whatnot. I do need a deivce to turn chemical energy into ele energy, but I dont' need one that is all big. The smaller the better in fact so I don't have to use so much fuel.

I thought I heard someone talk about a big ass thread about these genny's somewhere, but I can't find it here.

Link Posted: 6/4/2007 7:58:28 AM EDT
link?
Link Posted: 6/4/2007 8:06:20 AM EDT
You get what you pay for. The Chinese have poor quality control, if any.
Link Posted: 6/4/2007 9:35:54 AM EDT

Originally Posted By txalan:
You get what you pay for. The Chinese have poor quality control, if any.


The same thing was said about the Japanese 40 years ago.

I'm just say'n... Paradigms shift eventually.

With that said I have no experience with Chinese generators.
Link Posted: 6/4/2007 9:45:23 AM EDT
I have one I got at Costco. The engine is supposed to be a Honda clone. It certainly looks like it from the outside. I've never had occasion to actually use it but it starts right up and easily supplies its full rated power into two heaters I use for testing.
Link Posted: 6/4/2007 9:56:49 AM EDT
I just nabbed a Honda EM 2500 Honda off Craig's list for $400, look around.
Link Posted: 6/4/2007 10:20:02 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 6/4/2007 10:21:23 AM EDT by warlord]
From past thread on PRC generators, I think they have an uneven record at best. Some people has had good luck with them, some not so good. The weak part seems to be the actual generator head, quality is variable and is prone to failure.
Link Posted: 6/4/2007 10:52:01 AM EDT
All you ever wanted to know about Chinese gensets and more.....

www.rv.net/forum/index.cfm/fuseaction/thread/tid/15131645/page/356.cfm
Link Posted: 6/4/2007 11:03:50 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 6/4/2007 11:07:37 AM EDT by TomJefferson]
Link Posted: 6/5/2007 5:37:49 AM EDT

Originally Posted By TomJefferson:
Interestingly enough, the Chinese quiet gens are starting to make a big dent in the RV market traditionally dominated by Honda, Yamaha, Kipor, and Onan. This is considered the toughest gen market since these guys use their gens over a week at a time typically and often more than once a year.

Where a couple years ago the forum discussions centered on quality as the pro or con, now they typically push the sound level since the quality gap is narrowing. The Chinese models are a little louder than the Honda or Yamaha but much quieter than the typical Home Depot contractor models.

Most prevalent in the market is Champion, Max-tool, and Power-source/Power-pro. Champion gets the edge of the three for customer service, however parts are available for the others.

I personally have experience with MaxTool and Powerpro and found them surprisingly quiet compared to my older model Coleman 1850. None of these are inverter types so not reallly suitable for say computer use. I typically run my delicate elctronics on 12vdc and let the gen charge the batteries while it powers my fans, lights, and fridge.

I can't attest to run life since I only use these for emergencies and have no where near the use on them say an RV user does. For the once every five to ten years the power goes out here for more than a day, they more than do the job.

Tj


What do you mean when you say that "none of these are inverter types?" Are you just saying that they don't have the best wave form???
Link Posted: 6/5/2007 5:52:08 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 6/5/2007 5:53:01 AM EDT by TomJefferson]
Link Posted: 6/5/2007 8:56:24 PM EDT
I just bought a Champion generator last Friday from Home Depot. Ran it about 2 hours today and it ran fine. Mine has what looks like a small car muffler on it. when running, it was more quiet than my lawn mower, but still loud enough where you would'nt want to stand all day next to it without hearing protection. Still a decent generator for the money.
Link Posted: 6/5/2007 9:21:19 PM EDT
This topic is right on time. How are the Troy-built variety gens? I just received a Lowe's 10% discount coupon in the mail since we just moved into the new home, & have been pondering brands. Honda & Yam always seem to be on top quality-wise, but I haven't priced them yet, either.
Link Posted: 6/5/2007 10:12:04 PM EDT
I am schemeing on getting one or two big inverters and some golf cart batteries to run stuff mostly w/ the genny for charging batteires and stuff. I wound't want to power my ele w/ one.

Yes this topic is timely, there is a hurricane sale tax brake in FL till the 12th.
Link Posted: 6/5/2007 10:13:57 PM EDT
When you say Honda genny, do you mean one w/ a honda motor or one that is Honda Motor and generator unit? Where would be one of these top of the line but very small size honda barnd generators be to look at in person or on the internet?
Link Posted: 6/5/2007 10:58:25 PM EDT

Originally Posted By rightwingnut:
When you say Honda genny, do you mean one w/ a honda motor or one that is Honda Motor and generator unit? Where would be one of these top of the line but very small size honda brand generators be to look at in person or on the internet?



I believe he was referring to the Honda gensets with the inverter/electronics package that allows them to run very quiet, with low fuel consumption.

I have seen them at RV stores. Not sure if they would fire one up for you. Theyare very nice, but expen$ive!

Honda inverter genset
Link Posted: 6/5/2007 11:01:54 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 6/5/2007 11:06:34 PM EDT by Skibane]

Originally Posted By TomJefferson:
Its also very good to keep in mind the real limitation of any generator isn't the size of the generator but how much fuel you can store for a given event. In general, the smaller the gen, the less fuel it uses over time. It doesn't take much to run a gen just long enough to keep a fridge cool for example.


Words to live by, folks!

The "80 percent rule" definitely applies to SHTF power: Maintaining 80 percent of your normal standard of living requires only a relatively modest amount of generator power and fuel. However, getting that last 20 percent is a b*tch!

SUGGESTED STRATEGY:

1. Pick the smallest generator that will operate your basic appliances,
2. Plan on running it for just a few hours at a time - no more than several times a day - for the power-hungry items (such as refrigerators, freezers, water well pumps, air conditioners, etc.), and
3. Use battery power for operating everything else (i.e., lights, entertainment electronics, computers, communications equipment, etc.) during the other 16-20 hours of the day when the generator isn't running.
Link Posted: 6/5/2007 11:09:16 PM EDT
What he said.
Link Posted: 6/5/2007 11:16:36 PM EDT
I picked up one of the Champion 6500's...

I ran that for 12-16 hours a day for 9 days powering my house during our Ice storm last year. Not a glitch! I bought that thing 2 years ago for $320.00 at the local Automotive store because I wanted something to power a ARFcom camp out for the weekend. I did not expect it to be as good as it turned out, and Im glad I got it. I take real good care of it, but I will be looking into a Honda for the main needs for SHTF around here as we lose power for at least a week every winter. I will use this one as the beater, but honestly It is not let me down and was the best $$$ I spent. Heck my kids got to keep playing the X-box when it was in the single digits and the neighbors were all without power. ( Glad I live out in the sticks)
Link Posted: 6/6/2007 9:30:40 AM EDT
Look at it this way , you can save money and buy that chinese model. Or you can save a troop who will get hit by the mortar round you bought for the chinese. China will not be our trade partner forever, investing in their economy only fuels their military.
Link Posted: 6/6/2007 11:24:17 AM EDT
Link Posted: 6/6/2007 2:03:39 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Skibane:
Words to live by, folks!

The "80 percent rule" definitely applies to SHTF power: Maintaining 80 percent of your normal standard of living requires only a relatively modest amount of generator power and fuel. However, getting that last 20 percent is a b*tch!

SUGGESTED STRATEGY:

1. Pick the smallest generator that will operate your basic appliances,
2. Plan on running it for just a few hours at a time - no more than several times a day - for the power-hungry items (such as refrigerators, freezers, water well pumps, air conditioners, etc.), and
3. Use battery power for operating everything else (i.e., lights, entertainment electronics, computers, communications equipment, etc.) during the other 16-20 hours of the day when the generator isn't running.


That was a good post. I am getting my decision narrowed down. I am going to use the batteries/inverters most of the time and run a genny intermittently to run certain things and recahrge batteries. Now it is just down to whether or not I am going to get a small one like this:
HondaEN2500

or Like this: HondaRV Generators

HOw many watts does a guy need to charge golf cart batteries and run a fridge for exapple?
Link Posted: 6/6/2007 2:56:53 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 6/6/2007 2:59:24 PM EDT by TomJefferson]
Link Posted: 6/6/2007 4:28:56 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 6/6/2007 8:39:11 PM EDT by Skibane]
REMINDER: Don't neglect the battery charging part!!!

Many folks buy an inverter without realizing that all those amps they are pulling out of the battery bank will have to be replaced eventually. Without a good battery charger, NO amount of generator run-time may be enough to fully recharge the batteries.

The 12 volt "battery charger" output on almost all generators only puts out around 10 amps, which is woefully inadequate for recharging all but the smallest batteries in a reasonable amount of time.

So, a more powerful battery charger (either an AC-powered stand-alone model, or the kind that is built into some big inverters) is almost a necessity for minimizing generator run-time and fuel consumption.

(TOPIC FOR ANOTHER THREAD: Best stand-alone battery chargers for SHTF applications)
Link Posted: 6/7/2007 8:35:10 PM EDT
SkiBane, thanks for pointing that thing out about the 12volt output of the generator being too slow. Another thing one could say is that if you want to take good care of your batteries and make sure that you are not overcharging them, you would want to use a battery tender, which itself takes a 120 ac input.

The EU2000 looking pretty good. Are there any other makes that are just about as good but are less $? Whatabout a unit that can run electronics directly but that doesnt' have its own 12v output b/c frankly, I would almost rather not have that for the reason mentioned above.

Could a 2000 watt unit run a normal type refrigarator and a big fan, a few lights and good battery charger?

SkiBane, did you actually start a best battery charger thread?
Link Posted: 6/7/2007 8:45:35 PM EDT
I found this table of average wattage comsumpution for differnt stuff: Power Consumption Table

TJ, or whoever, this may be a stupid ? but coud a guy sink up a EU1000 and a EU2000, or do the parrallel units have to be the same size to begin with?

Finally, does not anyone make little units like the Honda RV ones but that run on diesel?
Link Posted: 6/7/2007 9:12:26 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 6/7/2007 9:22:53 PM EDT by TomJefferson]
Link Posted: 6/8/2007 4:30:16 AM EDT
My wife and I just purchased a cabin on 15 acres of land. I've been powering the camp and my power tools with a Honda EU2000I. It's a great genset and very quiet. After doing some reading in the RV forums, Honda, Kipor, and Yamaha seem to be at the top of the game. Many like the Kipor because it is an quiet inverter generator at several hundred dollars less than a comparable Honda. After doing some shopping I found www.wisesales.com who had fantastic prices on Honda generators with free shipping!
Link Posted: 6/8/2007 4:59:05 AM EDT
They're pretty good stuff. I picked mine up at PepBoys about a year ago. Best thing to do when you get it is open it up, make sure all connections are tight. I replaced my AC recepticle with a 20A hospital grade one and added a hour meter that I picked up at a hamfest for $4. It's a 3000 watt unit and it's great...one pull and it starts. I had a friend with one that needed some adjustment on the throttle linkage, but easy enough to adjust/fix. They are relatively quiet as well. Very cheap insurance if the power goes out and you need to run a sump pump or whatever.

Look for the sales and pick one up for sure!
Link Posted: 6/8/2007 5:31:22 AM EDT
I have one and it works great. I paid $269 at Menards. It is a good backup Geny for the cabin and living quarters horse trailer. Surprisingly quiet.
Link Posted: 6/8/2007 6:11:42 AM EDT
Link Posted: 6/8/2007 9:12:50 AM EDT
Yes, PepBoys does sell the PowerPro now...they used to sell the ELIM brand which is what I had picked up. From my understanding, either one is a good deal...it's a clone of the Honda engine and as far as I'm concerned is fantastic...it had been sitting in my garage for over a year unused. I added gas and on the FIRST pull it started and purred like a kitten..... :)
Link Posted: 6/10/2007 7:58:45 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Dave2006:
I just bought a Champion generator last Friday from Home Depot. Ran it about 2 hours today and it ran fine. Mine has what looks like a small car muffler on it. when running, it was more quiet than my lawn mower, but still loud enough where you would'nt want to stand all day next to it without hearing protection. Still a decent generator for the money.


I can't find a champion generator no the home depot web site. WTF?
Link Posted: 6/10/2007 8:22:53 AM EDT
Holy Sh*t! Look at this web site. Has anyone heard of them?

Dexan

Link Posted: 6/10/2007 3:46:37 PM EDT

Originally Posted By txalan:
You get what you pay for. The Chinese have poor quality control, if any.


Generalizing gets you no where, I have a Kipor th3500. I rocks and is kitten quiet.
Link Posted: 6/10/2007 5:10:57 PM EDT
They're basically the same general deal as the PepBoys PowerPro, ELIM, etc...different importers have slightly different models...
Link Posted: 6/10/2007 5:16:10 PM EDT
On a related note, our home inspector told us that we could connect a generator to the RV plug-in to feed power back through it into the home. Is there a particular protocol to do this, or is it a straightforward plug-&-play operation?
Link Posted: 6/10/2007 5:36:21 PM EDT
you have to pull the meter or put in three way manual switch , or else you feed power back to the utility lines and fry the power company workers fixing the power lines
Link Posted: 6/10/2007 5:59:06 PM EDT
ost for later
Link Posted: 6/10/2007 6:32:03 PM EDT
Link Posted: 6/18/2007 10:17:07 AM EDT

Originally Posted By snakeshooter1:
you have to pull the meter or put in three way manual switch , or else you feed power back to the utility lines and fry the power company workers fixing the power lines


How about shutting off the main breaker & then plugging in the generator?
Link Posted: 6/18/2007 12:30:28 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Master_Blaster:

Originally Posted By snakeshooter1:
you have to pull the meter or put in three way manual switch , or else you feed power back to the utility lines and fry the power company workers fixing the power lines


How about shutting off the main breaker & then plugging in the generator?


Typically, some outlets are wired around the "main breaker" - particularly if they were added after the house was built. You can't back-feed the rest of the house through them, because they are connected to the utility power through their own breakers.

On a minor technical note, the danger of back-feeding AC power is overblown under most circumstances: Accidentally connecting your generator to every other house on the same utility distribution line would kill your generator so fast it'd make your head spin!
Link Posted: 6/18/2007 12:58:41 PM EDT
ost
Link Posted: 6/18/2007 3:50:03 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Skibane:

Originally Posted By Master_Blaster:

Originally Posted By snakeshooter1:
you have to pull the meter or put in three way manual switch , or else you feed power back to the utility lines and fry the power company workers fixing the power lines


How about shutting off the main breaker & then plugging in the generator?


Typically, some outlets are wired around the "main breaker" - particularly if they were added after the house was built. You can't back-feed the rest of the house through them, because they are connected to the utility power through their own breakers.

On a minor technical note, the danger of back-feeding AC power is overblown under most circumstances: Accidentally connecting your generator to every other house on the same utility distribution line would kill your generator so fast it'd make your head spin!


What are you talking about Skibane. If the bus is fed by the mains through a two pole back feed breaker, no individual circuit can have power if the back feed breaker is open, unless a circuit is saddle tapped on the service prior to the breaker. I don't think anyone would do that. Even if they did, those circuits would isolated from the generator output.

Yes you can back feed power to your panel w/ a suicide cord through the dryer or stove outlet/breaker if the utility input is bonded to a backfeed breaker rather than to the bus lugs; but this can be very dangerous. If both power sources are present and you close both breakers at the same time (turn both to "on" position so both circuits are closed) then shit blows up, perhaps including the SOB at the panels. If you do this and a line man is on the pole, you can electrucute him. That is why it is against code to do this.

It is safer to remove the meter, but somethimes the pwr co. doesn't like that b/c you have to cut their little lock, But I suppose they would like that better than you electricuting their man and blowing up the transformer on the pole.
Link Posted: 6/18/2007 9:42:29 PM EDT

Originally Posted By rightwingnut:
What are you talking about Skibane. If the bus is fed by the mains through a two pole back feed breaker, no individual circuit can have power if the back feed breaker is open


Wrong.

As I previously stated, it is not uncommon for new circuits to be added to an existing home without connecting them to the "Main Breaker". Instead, they are directly connected to utility power through their own, small breakers. In order to shut off power to the entire house, you have to flip the "Main Breaker" AND these other breakers off. This is probably a lot more common wiring practise than most folks realize.


Yes you can back feed power ... If you do this and a line man is on the pole, you can electrucute him. That is why it is against code to do this.


Yep, we're all familiar with the popular internet yarn about electrocuting linemen - Again, as I previously posted, the danger of this actually happening is exagerated, since every other home, business and factory that happens to be on that phase will attempt to draw power from your lil' generator, killing it almost instantaneously.

Q: How much voltage does a 10KW generator produce when you accidentally put a 10,000 KW load on it?

A: Not very much, and not for very long.
Link Posted: 6/18/2007 10:52:09 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Skibane:

Originally Posted By rightwingnut:
What are you talking about Skibane. If the bus is fed by the mains through a two pole back feed breaker, no individual circuit can have power if the back feed breaker is open


Wrong.

As I previously stated, it is not uncommon for new circuits to be added to an existing home without connecting them to the "Main Breaker". Instead, they are directly connected to utility power through their own, small breakers. In order to shut off power to the entire house, you have to flip the "Main Breaker" AND these other breakers off. This is probably a lot more common wiring practise than most folks realize.


Yes you can back feed power ... If you do this and a line man is on the pole, you can electrucute him. That is why it is against code to do this.


Yep, we're all familiar with the popular internet yarn about electrocuting linemen - Again, as I previously posted, the danger of this actually happening is exagerated, since every other home, business and factory that happens to be on that phase will attempt to draw power from your lil' generator, killing it almost instantaneously.

Q: How much voltage does a 10KW generator produce when you accidentally put a 10,000 KW load on it?

A: Not very much, and not for very long.


Mr Bane, how do poeple do this? Do they intterupt the servie before it comes into the house, making a junction box and running a circuit out to the garage or whatever? Even if they do this, these circuits & breakers are not going to be on the panel in the house; and if you have the main breaker on the panel in the house open and you are back feeding onto that panel, current can't then get on to those circuits that are pulled off the service prior to the main.

I am not wanting to argue or anything, I just don't understand what you are talking about.
Link Posted: 6/19/2007 1:02:15 AM EDT

Originally Posted By rightwingnut:
Holy Sh*t! Look at this web site. Has anyone heard of them?

Dexan


Seems like some awesome deals
Link Posted: 6/19/2007 8:28:24 AM EDT

Originally Posted By justinwb:

Originally Posted By rightwingnut:
Holy Sh*t! Look at this web site. Has anyone heard of them?

Dexan


Seems like some awesome deals


seems
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