auto gen start

rplarryrplarry Solar Expert Posts: 203 ✭✭✭✭✭
I am considering installing an auto gen start module. Before I buy the module I thought I would ask if anyone has made their own and is it easy enough for a novice to attempt? Outback recommends the Atkinson GSCM at $272. That may be the best choice, just curious if it can be done cheaper.
Larry

Comments

  • stephendvstephendv Solar Expert Posts: 1,571 ✭✭
    Re: auto gen start

    I used one of the DeepSea modules: http://www.deepseaplc.com/home/ cost 50 Euros. It's programmable via their free software over USB.
    My gen already had an autostart system installed, which was broken so it was fairly easy to replace it the DeepSea unit. As long as you have a diagram of where and how the generator start wires go it should be ok to do.
  • rplarryrplarry Solar Expert Posts: 203 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: auto gen start

    Stephen,
    Thanks for that link, I called them and they are very helpful. Also quite a bit less expensive. $167 plus shipping.
  • ChrisOlsonChrisOlson Banned Posts: 1,807 ✭✭
    Re: auto gen start
    rplarry wrote: »
    I am considering installing an auto gen start module. Before I buy the module I thought I would ask if anyone has made their own and is it easy enough for a novice to attempt?

    I have built two in the past using mechanical relays and timers for preheat, crank and run. But neither one was that reliable. For what most of them cost, it's my opinion that you're better off to buy one, rather than try to build one, if it's not built into your standby gen.
    --
    Chris
  • rplarryrplarry Solar Expert Posts: 203 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: auto gen start

    Chris
    Welcome to the forum, and thanks for the info. It is nice to hear from someone that has actually done it.
    Larry
  • ChrisOlsonChrisOlson Banned Posts: 1,807 ✭✭
    Re: auto gen start
    rplarry wrote: »
    Chris
    Welcome to the forum, and thanks for the info. It is nice to hear from someone that has actually done it.

    Thanks, Larry. If you want to roll your own generator auto-starting system the Morningstar RD-1 Relay Driver can do it by activating relays for pre-heat, crank and run:
    http://www.ecodirect.com/Morningstar-Relay-Driver-RD-1-p/morningstar-tristar-rd-1.htm

    I have two RD-1's in my system - one to control water heater elements (240 volt) and generator pre-heat, and the other handles auto-shutdown of my solar arrays and turbines in the event of system over-voltage (either the water heating load not keeping up to turbine output, or heater element(s) burned out).

    Where we live it gets very cold in the winter, sometimes down to -40 and quite regularly -20 F or below for days at a time. Our generator has a thermostatically controlled crankcase heater for cold weather starting but it takes a lot of power to run it all the time. So I have the RD-1 activate a relay that turns on 110 VAC power to the crankcase heater if the bank voltage drops below 24.0 for more than than an hour. If the voltage stays below 24.0 for two hours then the master inverter starts the gen.

    The RD-1 is more of a programmable logic controller (you have to program it with a laptop and serial cable using Morningstar's MSView software) than a simple relay driver. It can handle one, two, or three wire generator starting, including crank and crank lockout, etc.. For the price, they're a pretty versatile unit and can do just about anything that can be done by turning relays on or off.
    --
    Chris
  • enigmasolarenigmasolar Registered Users Posts: 1
    Re: auto gen start

    I have used a few DynaGen autostart modules http://www.dynagen.ca/index2.php?page=products&product=ES52

    ChrisOlson wrote: »
    I have built two in the past using mechanical relays and timers for preheat, crank and run. But neither one was that reliable. For what most of them cost, it's my opinion that you're better off to buy one, rather than try to build one, if it's not built into your standby gen.
    --
    Chris
  • Offgrider9Offgrider9 Registered Users Posts: 7
    Re: auto gen start

    Wiring up an Atkinson GSCM-mini remote auto start to a Honda EM5000xs for an Outback VFX3524:

    I realize the Atkinson schematic for the GSCM should be really easy to follow...and it may be once I'm on site and can follow the wires from the genny to the manual remote start, but I'd like to be a little more prepared when I head out to the remote location. So, can anyone give me a simple explanation about wiring up the GSCM-mini to the genny, specifically what terminals on the GSCM accept the black wire, which ones the red, and which ones the white? Thanks!
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