Choosing a good generator

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Comments

  • papapapa Solar Expert Posts: 51 ✭✭
    Re: Choosing a good generator
    swmspam wrote: »
    At a price point of $4000, the EU6400iS is one of the most expensive gasoline generators on the market and comparable to a good natural gas stationary unit (ones with non-Chinese engines).
    Just an FYI - Many Honda generators are now built in China. The parts are coming from Thailand.
  • westbranchwestbranch Solar Expert Posts: 5,183 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Choosing a good generator

    Yes, our Honda fire pump is from Thailand... runs like a top and lots of water!
    One pull start, .....when you remember to use the On/Off switch...:blush:
     
    KID #51B  4s 140W to 24V 900Ah C&D AGM
    CL#29032 FW 2126/ 2073/ 2133 175A E-Panel WBjr, 3 x 4s 140W to 24V 900Ah C&D AGM 
    Cotek ST1500W 24V Inverter,OmniCharge 3024,
    2 x Cisco WRT54GL i/c DD-WRT Rtr & Bridge,
    Eu3/2/1000i Gens, 1680W & E-Panel/WBjr to come, CL #647 asleep
    West Chilcotin, BC, Canada
  • ChrisOlsonChrisOlson Banned Posts: 1,807 ✭✭
    Re: Choosing a good generator
    papa wrote: »
    Just an FYI - Many Honda generators are now built in China. The parts are coming from Thailand.

    The Honda engines and electronics are built in Japan. The generator heads for Honda generators were outsourced and have been built in China since the early 90's. Honda opened a new factory in China in 2010 and all the portable generators are now built there.
    --
    Chris
  • papapapa Solar Expert Posts: 51 ✭✭
    Re: Choosing a good generator
    ChrisOlson wrote: »
    The Honda engines and electronics are built in Japan. The generator heads for Honda generators were outsourced and have been built in China since the early 90's. Honda opened a new factory in China in 2010 and all the portable generators are now built there.
    --
    Chris
    What's the first 5 digits (letters) of the model & serial on your EM4000SX engine? Should start with "GCxxx" immediately followed by the serial #.
  • ChrisOlsonChrisOlson Banned Posts: 1,807 ✭✭
    Re: Choosing a good generator

    You should be able to see it in this photo - I think it's either BHT or RHT

    Attachment not found.

    It says right on the specs decal on the engine "Honda Motor Kumamoto Made In Japan". The starter is also Denso and it says right on that "Made In Japan". This is the manufacturing locations for the various small engines Honda builds. All the iGX engines are built in Japan at present:
    http://engines.honda.com/oem-resources/manufacturing-locations
    --
    Chris
  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: Choosing a good generator

    Just because something is built in China does not automatically mean it is no good. Honda has a well-deserved reputation for quality products, and they'd be more than foolish to let that slip by relaxing quality control standards. This is not the same as the "no name" Chinese knock-off goods sold for considerably less than the "real thing". I've seen some generators at Princess Auto that were made in China and priced very cheap indeed. They look as though they might fall apart upon starting, if not before. I wouldn't buy one.

    You can buy one good, 'expensive' generator or you can buy a succession of cheap ones. Your choice. Same money eventually.
  • papapapa Solar Expert Posts: 51 ✭✭
    Re: Choosing a good generator
    ChrisOlson wrote: »
    You should be able to see it in this photo - I think it's either BHT or RHT

    Attachment not found.

    It says right on the specs decal on the engine "Honda Motor Kumamoto Made In Japan". The starter is also Denso and it says right on that "Made In Japan". This is the manufacturing locations for the various small engines Honda builds. All the iGX engines are built in Japan at present:
    http://engines.honda.com/oem-resources/manufacturing-locations
    --
    Chris
    Thanks Chris, that helps. I don't have enough info to determine where your generator was assembled, but your image confirms where your engine was made - Thailand

    The location code is the last digit in the 5 digit prefix. In your case, GCBHT, it's a "T". Here's the location codes:

    JPN = K
    USA = A
    ITA = E
    THA = T
    CHN = H


    Re: Parts, The only electrical part I have in stock for your EM4000SX is the ign coil. The image below should speak for itself.

    Hondacoil.jpg
  • papapapa Solar Expert Posts: 51 ✭✭
    Re: Choosing a good generator
    Just because something is built in China does not automatically mean it is no good.
    Yes, I certainly agree. However, as a certified Honda technician, I can say first hand, that some of Honda's Power products I've seen and wrenched since early 2011, doesn't reflect the finish or the workmanship as the earlier OEMs from Japan. Still, there's not enough evidence with this new breed to accurately gauge failures or long term reliability.

    Not to imply that early Honda's are completely without fault. I had a HT3813 show up one day that had a severe engine knock. This riding mower has the water cooled GX360K1 twin, and was less than one year old. The owner was meticulous and the mower looked virtually new having seen only one season of grass. One connecting rod bearing was completely missing, literally, and the connecting rod & crank was toast. All other bearings in this engine were pristine. It was warranted. Just so you know, I do NOT wrench anything but Honda's and own several.
  • swmspamswmspam Solar Expert Posts: 57 ✭✭
    Re: Choosing a good generator
    Just because something is built in China does not automatically mean it is no good.

    I spend a lot of time in China. I can usually access how well the factory is running within the first few seconds of walking through the door. About 75% of my manufacturing audit takes place in the first 5 seconds. The rest of the audit is usually a formality. The Chinese are also fabulous at faking. When they expect an auditor, the entire workforce shows up, dresses in white lab coats, polish the floors, and everyone is busy working on big machines that look impressive. Arrive unexpected, more than half of the machines are usually idle, workers are smoking cigarettes, throwing parts around, and have the doors of the clean room open to the outside air (yes, I've seen this). You have to see through the smokescreen as an auditor. Read Poorly Made in China, my favorite book about the topic. I really empathize with the author of the book, I've walked in his shoes!

    Attachment not found.

    That being said, serious factories have imported Quality Control. There's a full-time manager in the plant around the clock. He's usually Japanese or Western and represents the parent company. You can bet the Honda factory in Jailing has a small army of Japanese guys that patrol the factory floor around the clock. Their clipboards have the status and maintenance needs of each machine, which operators are qualified to use it, and the expected yields. They are easy to spot. They usually have a giant whiteboard or computer monitor that has that day's yields, incoming materials, and outgoing product. First thing I look for is the "hot screen", which is the real-time process flow, tact time, and yield monitor. Would I trust a product coming from this factory? That's usually why I'm there auditing it. In some rare cases, the factory is actually fully owned and operated by the parent company, such as Deka Battery in Wujiang. Deka has exceptional quality standards. Anything they make has to be fully owned, or they couldn't guarantee their promised quality.

    So would trust Honda parts and pieces not actually manufactured in Japan? In short, yes. Long answer is I'd assume Honda is following the procedure described above, rather than sourcing parts from the cheapest Chinese bidder. Read Poorly Made in China.
  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: Choosing a good generator

    British Columbia, where I live, is a "dumping ground" for Chinese goods. Nearly everything we get here is made there. Much of it is as you say: trash. But by the same token plenty of it is perfectly good and lasts a long time. It all depends on how well the particular company keeps an eye on things. This was true when you could purchase goods made in USA, Canada, Germany, Japan, et cetera. How well I remember complaints from owners and retailers about the "poor quality of stuff made in America". In these times manufacturing is centered on China, which focuses attention and blame on the country rather than on the practice.

    I used to work for a very large electrical/electronics firm. My job was to analyze things that had failed and come up with an explanation for why. I got to point the finger at Engineering, Quality Control, or Manufacturing. I was the least popular guy in the place. Some of the things failed, btw, because they were designed to meet the contractor's specs. Whenever chief among those was "keep the cost down" you invariably got poor quality. There were some things that were cheaper to toss out if defective new than to repair.

    Don't blame the country. The social attitude of "not my problem" crops up everywhere. And it seems the more prosperous the society becomes the more pervasive the attitude.
  • swmspamswmspam Solar Expert Posts: 57 ✭✭
    Re: Choosing a good generator
    swmspam wrote: »
    3. Moving the generator indoors. Use Diesel and install a catalyst directly on the exhaust manifold to minimize CO and vent to outdoors using a fan-assisted induce.

    Here's the mathematics:

    I started with the idea of using a Kohler 686cc 16hp liquid-cooled two-banger with a catalytic converter followed by an exhaust heat exchanger. This would maximize heat capture.

    Attachment not found.Attachment not found.

    Then I used some Diesel energy conversion data from a University of Alaska heat recovery study combined with the generator efficiency spreadsheet data from Chris (found earlier in this thread). I created my own spreadsheet to understand how much heat is available for capture. I used the 2.292kWh Yanmar data from Chris as a basis.

    Attachment not found.

    This spreadsheet references a Diesel study to break down the various heat elements. That's where the "Percent" column comes in. Then the 2.292kWh data from Chris is applied, along with destination of where that energy is going. This spreadsheet isn't exact - it's pulling in too much information from too many different sources - but it should be a good approximation.

    The end result is an indoors Diesel generator delivering 2.292kWh/hour of electricity will create 38,440 BTUs of usable heat burning 0.358 gal/hour. The remainder of the energy is discarded exhaust heat.

    Attachment not found.

    My house requires about 135,000BTU of heat. This means Diesel cogeneration would produce 28% (38,440BTU) of my overall heating needs (130,000BTU) while burning 0.36gal/hour of fuel while supplying a 2.3kW average electrical load. This would roughly scale with higher or lower average electrical load, along with fuel consumption.

    This system would be useful to heat the basement, or another contained area of the house, but not significant as a whole-house solution.
  • ChrisOlsonChrisOlson Banned Posts: 1,807 ✭✭
    Re: Choosing a good generator
    papa wrote: »
    Thanks Chris, that helps. I don't have enough info to determine where your generator was assembled

    Honda Mindong in China. Same place that's been building the Honda generators heads since like 1994.

    Attachment not found.

    --
    Chris
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 31,463 admin
    Re: Choosing a good generator

    Something does not look right with the numbers regarding fuel flow and heat...

    135,000 BTU per hour? per Day?

    0.358 gallons of Diesel would have a BTU content of ~147,000 BTU per gallon * 0.358 gallons per hour = 52,626 BTU per Hour (if 100% of fuel burn went into heat).

    If you recovered 1/2 the heat of burning fuel, you would get ~25,000 BTU per hour... Not sure where the 135,000 BTU number fits in here.

    Do you have a really well insulated home? Is it very cold where you live?

    I have a reasonably insulated home (retrofit to a 1930's home) in a moderate climate--And probably average ~133,000 BTU per day heating (40's-50's F in winter, only heat the home to ~65F during the day, no heat at night (really set to 58F, but it never cools down that fast over night).

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • ChrisOlsonChrisOlson Banned Posts: 1,807 ✭✭
    Re: Choosing a good generator

    The BTU heating requirement for a home will depend on square footage as well. 80,000 BTU/hr will easily heat our small 1,200 square foot home at -30 ambient.
    --
    Chris
  • swmspamswmspam Solar Expert Posts: 57 ✭✭
    Re: Choosing a good generator
    swmspam wrote: »
    This means Diesel cogeneration would produce 28% (38,440BTU/hr) of my overall heating needs (130,000BTU/hr) while burning 0.36gal/hour of fuel while supplying a 2.3kW average electrical load.

    I made an edit to clarify. Naturally, the numbers increase as the generator runs harder. Unless I'm doing a lot of things, my average won't run higher than 2.3kW. I have 3000 square feet and live in the midwest, in the green band of the climate zone map. Last winter was "warm", but the previous winter ran below -10F for several weeks. We set our thermostat at around 67F in normal freezing weather, and lower when the temperature drops below 0F. I'm sure 38kBTU/hr would keep the house livable on a freezing day, but not when it gets "really" cold.
  • ChrisOlsonChrisOlson Banned Posts: 1,807 ✭✭
    Re: Choosing a good generator

    38,000 BTU will slow the temperature drop in your home with outside temperatures near freezing. But if the temperature drops to lower than acceptable levels it will not recover it, even for a well insulated home. The minimum requirement for a furnace for a 3,000 sq ft home in the green "temperate zone" of the US is 135,000 BTU.
    --
    Chris
  • nielniel Solar Expert Posts: 10,300 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Choosing a good generator

    moving a generator indoors is not a good idea because of exhaust fumes which includes co.

    bill,
    as to the high btus, that is possible with older large homes in cold latitudes to need greater than 100,000 btus/hr. my original boiler had a 220,000 btu input. (or was it 240,000, don't remember for sure?) i replaced it with a 160,000 btu input boiler and probably should've taken it down another notch like around 130kbtu, but my place isn't fully remodeled yet which allows for drafts, even though most walls and ceilings are insulated, so the extra comes in handy for those below 0 degrees f days.

    i know it's hard for you to fully grasp the needs we have in colder climates, but with temps like you experience i too would practically have no gas bill from heating. often times the heat created from appliances, cooking, lights, etc. is enough to maintain my place down near 50 degrees prolonged. just below that i might nudge it on for a short spell to take out the chill and shut it back down. when it gets near -20 degrees f the new boiler can cycle as much as 50%. any defects in a home really shine through under these conditions. at one point with the old boiler in a prolonged below 0 f period i had seen that 220k btu boiler struggle and the cycling was about 65% on to 35% off. they made these old houses drafty on purpose because of fireplaces, gas lamps, and wood stoves. those flames needed oxygen and lots of it and all of those flames were expected to be going fully to keep a home warm. that doesn't bode well from many angles nowadays.
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 31,463 admin
    Re: Choosing a good generator

    Niel,

    I know that--What was not making sense was the amount of heat from the diesel engine running on 1/2 GPH of fuel (something like 3-6x the amount of heat I would have expected). I was using my numbers from a moderate climate to set a level of usage--And compare with what was posted.

    I realize I am in a temperate climate compared to many others--That was why I listed the assumptions/comparisons.

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • ChrisOlsonChrisOlson Banned Posts: 1,807 ✭✭
    Re: Choosing a good generator

    Small cogen setups are mostly a red herring anyway and I hate to see somebody waste money on one. Polar Power, for instance, makes these:
    http://www.polarpowerinc.com/products/generators/cogenset.htm

    They have an advertised BTU output with a 20 hp Kawasaki engine. But in reality in 30 below weather when a cogen setup would be most desirable to have, most small engines can barely make enough waste heat to heat their own generator shed to a level that is comfortable for the engine in extreme cold operation.

    It is one of those things that sounds like a good idea, but in practice needs to be much bigger in order for it to work.

    "In theory there is no difference between theory and practice. But in practice there is".
    --
    Chris
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 31,463 admin
    Re: Choosing a good generator

    That has always been my concern... When I researched the co-gen systems in the past, they do not have a lot of excess heat they can supply in very cold conditions with risking damage to the engine/system itself.

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • swmspamswmspam Solar Expert Posts: 57 ✭✭
    Re: Choosing a good generator
    ChrisOlson wrote: »
    Small cogen setups are mostly a red herring anyway
    The math speaks for itself. I figure it would supply about 25% of my heating needs. Since my furnace is Natural Gas, adding a cogen system could produce electricity alongside the NG that I’m already burning. But I’m looking for a backup solution if the grid/gas fails. So an NG system doesn’t address my requirements. So the system would be either Diesel or Gasoline. To get the heat, the system would need to run continuously at approximately 1 gallon every 3 hours, for a total of 8 gallons a day. Tractor Supply sells a nice steel 36 gallon fuel storage tank. That would last 4.5 days. That’s a whole lotta work for not much benefit!

    In my case, cogeneration for emergency or backup space heating is a red herring.

    However, hot water heating may be a different story. How does one get hot water in a backup situation?
    ChrisOlson wrote: »
    38,000 BTU will slow the temperature drop in your home with outside temperatures near freezing. But if the temperature drops to lower than acceptable levels it will not recover it, even for a well insulated home. The minimum requirement for a furnace for a 3,000 sq ft home in the green "temperate zone" of the US is 135,000 BTU.

    Chris, thank you for verifying the BTU/hr estimates are ballpark for my situation.
    niel wrote: »
    moving a generator indoors is not a good idea because of exhaust fumes which includes CO.

    And a ventless NG or propane fireplace or stove doesn’t? What about propane refrigerators? The ventless fireplaces use catalysts and oxygen sensors to control emissions. I was modeling a Diesel (low CO emissions) generator with catalyst directly on the exhaust manifold and positive-pressure exhaust induction to outdoors. That’s a belt-and-suspenders approach. If the exhaust leaks or fails to vent outdoors, the catalyst would remove any unburnt fuel and by-products. If the catalyst fails and the exhaust leaks, then the CO detectors in the basement would activate. That's two layers of safety plus a third layer of detection. Do the DFMEA. Because of my natural gas furnace and water heater, my basement already has three CO detectors in strategic locations.
  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: Choosing a good generator

    It's a question of how much noxious gas is emitted vs. how much air exchange is occurring. No one vents a gas stove, because it does not produce large quantities of CO and the air in a house normally has sufficient turnover to off-set what it does. Since this is difficult to determine in advance there are CO detectors. But there's differences in them as well, so they can give a false sense of security - or a false panic attack.

    Propane 'friges these days have specific venting requirements. There was a time when they were outfitting them with CO controls to shut off the flame, but they were so problematic I'm not sure they do this anymore (haven't looked at one lately: the $1,500 cost buys a lot of solar electric power these days).

    A running engine can flood a small room/garage with enough CO to be dangerous in a fairly short time. Again depending on the size of the engine, how fast it is running, how "clean" its emissions, and the size of the area.

    It is also possible to seal up a house to the point where you get in trouble with anything.

    Welcome to Vegas: put your life in the square of your choice and spin the wheel. :roll:
  • ChrisOlsonChrisOlson Banned Posts: 1,807 ✭✭
    Re: Choosing a good generator

    I don't really know how one would address hot water in an emergency backup situation when you have natural gas water heating. I would suspect the best would be to hope the natural gas does not get shut off. In the event it does, all you have is the generator, and it can drive an electric water heater if you manage loads while the water is heating.

    We heat all of our water with electricity off-grid and I can tell you how we do that. But without a fairly large RE system to power it it can get quite expensive to heat water with a generator. However, the final step in emergency hot water for us, assuming we don't get enough incoming RE power to heat it on a daily basis, is the generator/inverter powering the top element in our primary water heater to keep us with ~25 gallons of hot water at 125 degrees until we can get more RE power to heat water again.
    --
    Chris
  • inetdoginetdog Solar Expert Posts: 3,123 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Choosing a good generator
    swmspam wrote: »
    And a ventless NG or propane fireplace or stove doesn’t? What about propane refrigerators? The ventless fireplaces use catalysts and oxygen sensors to control emissions. I was modeling a Diesel (low CO emissions) generator with catalyst directly on the exhaust manifold and positive-pressure exhaust induction to outdoors. That’s a belt-and-suspenders approach. If the exhaust leaks or fails to vent outdoors, the catalyst would remove any unburnt fuel and by-products. If the catalyst fails and the exhaust leaks, then the CO detectors in the basement would activate. That's two layers of safety plus a third layer of detection. Do the DFMEA. Because of my natural gas furnace and water heater, my basement already has three CO detectors in strategic locations.

    The major difference is that a burner designed to just produce heat will be run with a high enough air to fuel ratio to provide for complete combustion. There will be essentially no CO in the exhaust unless the air blend is incorrectly adjusted (yellow flame) or the air intake is somehow restricted during operation (very tight enclosure, etc.) which would not be seen when checking the flame while you are in the space.

    But a gasoline engine will be deliberately set to a low air to fuel ratio to improve starting (choke), protect the exhaust valves, control pre-ignition, and improve either efficiency or maximum power output. Unless you use a CO detector or an exhaust oxygen sensor in conjunction with the engine, it will not be obvious for any given operating condition just what the CO output level is.
    SMA SB 3000, old BP panels.
  • CDN_VTCDN_VT Solar Expert Posts: 492 ✭✭✭
    Re: Choosing a good generator
    inetdog wrote: »
    Unless you use a CO detector or an exhaust oxygen sensor in conjunction with the engine, it will not be obvious for any given operating condition just what the CO output level is.

    HO2s (exhaust oxygen sensor) measure Oxygen in the stream flow ONLY .The mapp / fuel trimming is done by many algorithm's .There is also 3 different types of Oxygen sensors for different parts of the exhaust stream. The MAIN reason for the HO2s is for the catalyst system , there are 1,2,& Three way catalyst with compounding or not,plus direct air feeds(PAIR). The HO2s it's job is to supply the catalyst with the correct fuel / air ratio for the catalyst to burn the rest of the fuel so CO,Nox ,HC plus the rest (depends on catalyst) . The emissions is for the engine to run rich enough to supply the CAT. Not for fuel efficiency , but exhaust outflow .

    Installing an HO2s in an exhaust must be engineered Plus +++, distance /temp/gas flow ETC. to store enough fuel & air to support complete combustion in the catalyst..

    from Cars to medium Stationary , there there are re-burners for the large heavy's .
    JFYI

    VT
  • basewindowbasewindow Solar Expert Posts: 63 ✭✭
    Re: Choosing a good generator

    Just thought I'd add my 2cents worth to the forum and for those interested in my Generator experience.

    I purchased an Ebay Chinese 4kw Generator, XG SF 4000 Advanced Silent Inverter apparently made by Fuji Micro, with remote, key and pulley start for $800au.

    Attachment not found.
    It was a bit of pot luck as to what I was going to get, but I figured, for what I was going to use it for and at that price it was worth a gamble.

    My use was going to be mainly to power my tools while I was building and once the shed solar was up and running, to charge the batteries through a 3 stage charger, if the batteries ever needed it.

    It arrived in timely fashion, from an Australian supplier, well boxed, with all the required tools (though basic) and spare spark plug and loosely translated Chinese instructions. It didn't ship with oil, but the digital display had 50minutes of use recorded. I queried this and they stated it was tested for 50mins before shipping, drained of oil and fluid and sent out. When I put in the oil in there was evidence of previous use. Everything seemed ok.

    The supplied battery was of course flat, so pulley start was the only option. It started easily after the 2nd pull and I let it run for about 15minutes. It was reasonably quiet with no load and on 'economy' setting.

    As I was at home in the 'burbs' I didn't want to run it too long and annoy the neighbours. I didn't have anything here to put any real load on it anyway.

    I put the battery on a trickle charger for 4 hours and gave it a crank again with the remote, it barely turned over a few times before I got the flat battery clicking, so I figured the battery that was shipped was stuffed, which later proved to be true after many attempts of charging.

    So after almost two years of use what have the results been?

    Well for a start it hasn't let me down yet, or fallen apart or died a horrible death. Yet.

    As I said, the battery was stuffed, but after replacing it with a better one, which I removed and kept on charge when not in use, it started by remote or key, 95% of the time, 1st time. Otherwise pulley worked every time.

    Noise.
    59db at 4m? I doubt it very much, maybe close with no load and on economy, but once you bump up the load, no way. 2400w bar heater makes enough noise to be annoying inside the shack and 7m away. Mounted it a wood generator shed 8m away and inside the shack is not too bad.

    Power.
    Apparently rated at 4kw, but I've only ever run it at about 3kw and it was working hard and making noise. The maximum time I've ever run it for is about 3hrs continuously.

    Fuel
    On economy and with a full tank and very little load, I think you would get close to the 6.5hrs (14lt tank)

    Servicing and repair
    Well who knows? I don't have much faith in the suppliers holding up their two year warranty, but so far it hasn't needed any repairs. I'm sure these machines are mass produced all out of the same factory in China and re-badged, so in theory there should be plenty of parts available. Will I be able to get a local shop to work on it and get the required bits, who knows. I've done the oil and filters and plugs myself.

    It's done 65 hours use (In 20 months), and I've replaced the oil once, (it still looked good) and cleaned the filter (Still clean) and spark plug (Still good, but a spare was supplied so I thought I may as well). I keep it inside out of the weather and it has been well looked after.

    I usually only get up to the shack twice a month for a couple of days, so it doesn't get much use. Basically it runs the tools, when I'm working and the vacuum. I've used it twice to bulk charge the batteries.

    So is it any good? Well for what I've used it for so it's done the job. Will it last? Who knows. For $800 over the $4000+ for an equivalent Honda/Yamaha, I think it's been worthwhile. If I get another 2 or 3 years out of it then I probably can't complain.

    I'll let you know…

    This is how it was advertised and stats....

    The FUJI MICRO XG-SF4000 Model inverter generator has one of the lowest noise ratings - only 59dB at 4 Metres (less than that of common speech even at rated load), and will run for up to 6.5 hours on a single fill of fuel when used with the Economy Switch feature.

    Based on HONDA Technology, this impressive generator provides 5.0kVA/4000 watts of power at peak and 3700 watts at normal load and weighs only 55Kg. Inverter technology makes this generator ideally suited for use with sensitive electronics and ALL motorized devices (e.g., Worksite equipment, computers, fax, printer, telephone, stereo, microwaves, compressors, all motorized devices) because the generator produces a clean sine wave of energy that results in no surging. To prevent any possible damage, the unit features an Oil Alert which causes shut down when the oil drops below safe operating level or in the event of being tipped over. The Remote electric start allows the ultimate convenience, where the generator can operate unattended at a distance from the application and can be fired up or shut down at the press of a button.

    Features:
    * FUJI MICRO 5.0kVA Sinewave Inverter Generator
    * Exclusive Digital Screen: Volt, Amperage, Wattage, Running Time, Oil Level
    1. Electric Key Start
    2. Remote Start
    3. Easy Pull Start
    * Compact & Lightweight - 2/3 the weight of similar class generators
    * High Quality Electrical Output - pure sinewave
    * Low Fuel Consumption - 20% less than conventional generators
    * Commercial Use Ready
    * Fully Portable
    * Runs on Normal Unleaded Petrol
    * 14 Litre Tank - 7hrs operation
    * Australian Standard 240V Weather Proof Outlet
    * 12V DC Output Socket
    * Low Noise Level for Ultimate Comfort
    * Self Charging Battery
    * Oil Alert Function
    * Full Overload Protection


    SPecifications:
    Generator
    * Model: Digital Inverter/Sine Wave
    * Frequency: 50/60Hz
    * Max. AC Output Power: [email protected]
    * Rated AC Output Power (kVA): 3.7/3.7KW
    * Rated Voltage: 240V
    * DC Output Rated Voltage: 12V
    * DC Output Rated Current: 8.3A

    Engine
    * Model: XG177F
    * Type: OHV/Forced-Air Cooling/single Cylinder/4 stroke Gasoline engine
    * Displacement: 269cc
    * Compression ratio: 9.2
    * Engine Speed: 2200-3600rpm
    * Ignition Mode: T.D.I
    * Recommended Fuel: Unleaded Gasoline
    * Fuel Tank Capacity: 14 Litres
    * Engine Oil Capacity: 1 Litres
    * Starting System: Pulling recoil starting / Electric starting / Remote starting
    * Continuous Work Time: 6.5 Hours
    * Noise Level: 59db/4m

    Standard Features
    * Indicator Light: O
    * AC Overload Protector: Flow Pattern
    * AC Socket: 2 x 240v
    Off Grid shack - Victoria Australia. 480W array, 500Ah AGM at 12V. 30A PWM Manison CC. Trimetric 2030. 300W Pure Sine Inverter. 120lt Dometic Gas Fridge. Composting Toilet. 5000lt water tank with 12v 35psi pump. Bosch Hydropower 16 for nice hot water. 4kw Fuji Micro Generator (dead after 7 years) 5kva Subaru Generator.
  • swmspamswmspam Solar Expert Posts: 57 ✭✭
    Re: Choosing a good generator

    Last week, I visited Polar Power for business purposes. I viewed several of their system including a fully-enclosed Lister-Petter diesel, a free-standing Lister-Petter diesel, and a very nice Daihatsu diesel that had been converted to Natural Gas. They drilled out the injectors, installed spark plugs, and changed compression to convert it to spark-ignition. It was very impressive indeed. I'm sure this engine would last a very long time. It was coupled to a DC generator head and operated at variable-speed. Combine one of these operating at 48VDC with a good inverter and it would make an excellent long-term solution. Polar quoted me $7000 for 14kW (max), so it's not cheap. The heat-exchanger exhaust system was another $1080 if co-generation is wanted. Overall, I was very impressed by the Polar quality, but it's expensive.
  • MangasMangas Solar Expert Posts: 547 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Choosing a good generator

    Attachment not found.Here's my standby unit.
    Ranch Off Grid System & Custom Home: 2 x pair stacked Schneider XW 5548+ Plus inverters (4), 2 x Schneider MPPT 80-600 Charge Controllers, 2 Xanbus AGS Generator Start and Air Extraction System Controllers, 64 Trojan L16 REB 6v 375 AH Flooded Cel Batteries w/Water Miser Caps, 44 x 185 Sharp Solar Panels, Cummins Onan RS20 KW Propane Water Cooled Genset, ICF Custom House Construction, all appliances, Central A/C, 2 x High Efficiency Variable Speed three ton Central A/C 220v compressors, 2 x Propane furnaces, 2 x Variable Speed Air Handlers, 2 x HD WiFi HVAC Zoned System Controllers
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 31,463 admin
    Re: Choosing a good generator

    Your generator has a nicer view than most of our homes here. ;)

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • unicorniounicornio Solar Expert Posts: 217 ✭✭
    Re: Choosing a good generator
    Mangas wrote: »
    Attachment not found.Here's my standby unit.

    is true!...the genset is looking good, and also mounting on the outside is very good ...
    I think you have not any problems with that good cummins genset ... and seem that you have a combined heat exchange, right?...;-)
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