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30EK Convert to Gasoline from Natural Gas


I have an Onan 30EK 30.0EK-15R/1562G serial F760138086 with a Ford 300GF. About 200 hrs on the...

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Old 02-18-2010, 11:38 AM
Robert 1838 Robert 1838 is offline
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Default 30EK Convert to Gasoline from Natural Gas

I have an Onan 30EK 30.0EK-15R/1562G serial F760138086 with a Ford 300GF. About 200 hrs on the genset.

What would be the process of converting to gasoline?
Operation manual would be nice too!

This unit will be installed in a gooseneck trailer. I would rather have diesel but this unit is available at a good price. Any input would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 02-18-2010, 01:19 PM
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Billy J Shafer Billy J Shafer is offline
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Default Re: 30EK Convert to gasoline from NG

If you have the dual fuel carb. Just block off the NG line. Might need to change the plug gap. If it has a choke plate in it,it will be a dual fuel carb. Should just have the mixer for the NG mounted on top of the carb.
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Old 02-18-2010, 01:21 PM
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Billy J Shafer Billy J Shafer is offline
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Default Re: 30EK Convert to gasoline from NG

Wrong engine. If it has the mixer mounted on top. Just remove it and install the air filter back onto the carb.
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Old 02-18-2010, 02:32 PM
Dave Edmonds Dave Edmonds is offline
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Default Re: 30EK Convert to gasoline from NG

Someone correct me if I'm wrong, but I think some of these units made for natural/propane had a mixer with the equivalent of a "throttle body" under it (not a complete carburetor), while others did have the complete carb with choke and all. Some of the "throttle bodies" looked like carburetors, but did not contain the float, idle and high-speed jets, choke, etc.

As Billy stated, if yours has a complete carb, just remove the gas mixer, connect the fuel supply, adjust the choke, and have at it! If you don't have a complete carb, you would need to find the one that would have been used on a gasoline-fueled unit and install it. Hope this helps.
Dave Edmonds
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Old 02-18-2010, 03:52 PM
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Default Re: 30EK Convert to gasoline from NG

Dave is correct some did come as propane or NG only.
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Old 02-18-2010, 07:45 PM
Dave Edmonds Dave Edmonds is offline
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Default Re: 30EK Convert to gasoline from NG

Man, you can cook a lot of geese with that beast mounted in a gooseneck trailer!
I was doing some work at an out-of-town hospital that had acquired the nursing home next door for the land, and was having the building torn down. I missed getting one like that, with a transfer switch, for FREE, if I had gone two days earlier. They had sold the building to a demolition company, and could have held the generator out if they had known I wanted it. The hospital didn't want it because it wasn't big enough to satisfy any of their needs. Kicked myself all the way back home!
Dave Edmonds
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Old 02-18-2010, 09:22 PM
Robert 1838 Robert 1838 is offline
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Default Re: 30EK Convert to gasoline from NG

OK. This is really good news. I'll look at the unit in the morning and see if it has a complete carb or not. I'm feeling better already.

BTW Dave, this unit is coming out of a situation similar to what you described. A good friend is a project manager for a large construction firm. In the basement of a building to be demo'd sat this lonely unit that everyone forgot about. I called him out of the blue three days ago to see if he knew where I could find a 30kw. Needless to say, I bought him lunch yesterday.

Thanks again for the help!
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Old 02-18-2010, 09:51 PM
Gunny Gunny is online now
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Default Re: 30EK Convert to gasoline from NG

Robert:
Gasoline is not a good fuel for generator sets. Having said that, consider using propane. Would require minimal modifications, if any. Nobody steals propane, too hard to carry a bucket of it far.
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Old 02-18-2010, 10:13 PM
Robert 1838 Robert 1838 is offline
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Default Re: 30EK Convert to gasoline from NG

Gunny,

I did think about that but was concerned about the tank set up for the trailer it is going in. I've talked to a local LP dealer and am waiting for feedback from him. I have to have a large enough tank to vaporize the propane but only have so much room (and money) in the trailer.

Also, I was a little perplexed about fuel consumption. I extrapolated from the FAQ about consumption and came up with some pretty big numbers for LP. If anyone has more precise consumption numbers for this unit I would love to hear them.
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Old 02-18-2010, 10:15 PM
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Default Re: 30EK Convert to gasoline from NG

Also, what mods would need to be done for LP conversion?
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Old 02-19-2010, 03:28 PM
Dave Edmonds Dave Edmonds is offline
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Default Re: 30EK Convert to gasoline from NG

I think that all you have to do is feed the existing mixer with 10-15" WC pressure from a propane tank with primary regulator that gets it to that pressure, and then adjust the mixture. Others will verify this. I know that there are "other" rules about having a large enough tank so that the liquid vaporizes properly, etc.
Dave Edmonds
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Old 02-19-2010, 03:53 PM
K D Redd K D Redd is offline
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Default Re: 30EK Convert to gasoline from NG

Call Rob at Molden Supply in Jackson MS. 1-800-221-8467 You might be able to change the demand regulator you have now to a to a Impco Vaporizer/ Demand Regulator Model E or L. You might find these used on Ebay. Plumb the engine coolant through the vaporizer. Then you can feed the fuel system LIQUID LP from any tank. The ONLY thing about this is the Impco vaporizers require 1 1/2 inch water column vacuum to open supplying fuel. I do not know if the carb you have will generate the 1 1/2 inch water column vacuum. You most likely have a Garrettson Model KN regulator. They only require 1/2 inch water column vacuum to open supplying fuel.

Kent
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Old 02-19-2010, 04:46 PM
Jim Rankin Jim Rankin is offline
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Default Re: 30EK Convert to gasoline from NG

Gasoline may well be the most convenient fuel for you if you use the set regularly, but liquid feed LPG could work as well if you have a convenient source to refill. Some locations already have a tank and pump for forklift tanks etc. Tank for a liquid feed setup needs to be only as large as you need for run time/refills etc, no need for a large tank to vaporize the fuel.

A 300 Ford will work just fine with either of the IMPCO E, L (or even the little J, if the load isn't full capacity all the time) The Natural gas carb or mixer already in place connects to the vaporizer/regulator with a wire reinforced cloth wrapped hose and the coolant is plumbed into the vaporizer. You probably have the natural gas Maxitrol regulator and a low pressure electric solenoid valve still on the set. These have to be removed and a nipple screwed into the mixer to connect the suction hose to.

To connect the coolant lines, I remove a 1/2" pipe plug on the right side of the water pump next to the governor for one outlet and use the block drain at the right rear of the block just above the starter for the other connection. You may find that there are already over temperature switches installed in either of these locations and you may have to use T's to allow the outlets and the switches to both mount there. No other convenient spots to access the cooling system that I am aware of, though surely the automotive versions of this engine had two convenient ports to use for the heater core......I haven't looked at one in a car or truck in a long time to see what they did use. I don't think it used the block drain fitting, but could have been. Mount the vaporizer lower than the top of the radiator and ensure it purges the trapped air when you start it up, before loading the set. Once the air is purged, with it mounted low, it will usually stay clear of air as long as the coolant doesn't run low.

In additon to the vaporizer/regulator, you will need a solenoid valve that turns off the liquid LPG from the tank line when the generator shuts down. The vaporizers are available with this installed as an option, or it can be a separate valve connected by pipe fittings or a short piece of high pressure hose.
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