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Generators & Electric Motors General Discussion Antique Generators and Old Electric Motors: Questions and answers about restoring and showing old power generation systems.

Generators & Electric Motors General Discussion

Home Propane Generator


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  #11  
Old 10-29-2017, 07:44:27 PM
Gary Barber
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Default Re: Home Propane Generator

Opus A couple of options you might consider (both options using the gen set she already has) You can find a small engine on demand regulator that senses engine vacuum to flow propane without any other sensors required (this is a second stage regulator so it would have to get propane AFTER the main regulator on the tank) You can find them on e-bay in the $60-70 range OR stop in and talk to your local propane dealer about a propane conversion for her existing gen set If you don't want to do the conversion with the e-bay regulator I bet they would know a person nearby who might step up and help you with it. Gary
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  #12  
Old 10-29-2017, 10:40:01 PM
opus opus is offline
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Default Re: Home Propane Generator

Her current one is a construction type and not that great of shape. She pretty much wants to give it to me and just go new with a "home backup" style. So she tells me....like I need more generators.
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Old 12-30-2017, 02:49:12 AM
dkamp dkamp is offline
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Default Re: Home Propane Generator

All three of my backup generators run on propane from a pair of 1000-gallon tanks... but a 500 would do just fine too.

ANY spark-ignition engine can be run on propane, just add proper fuel stub, adapter plate, or mixer to provide an introduction point, a proper demand regulator (zero governor, or negative pressure regulator), and proper regulator(s) from the tank... or if you're running a liquid withdrawl, an evaporator with regulator stages...

I prefer big, older machines over the new automatic/fancy ones, simply because the older ones are slow, silent, tough, simple, and easy to maintain, and when something really bad happens, they're not as likely to be disabled.

My dad's modern electronically-controlled is a perfect example- it seemed to be perfect and easy, until the day a storm came through, and his utility feeder took a direct lightning event, which roasted the whiz-bang processor-based control module. Generator would crank, engine would start, would not generate, but continued cranking until it self-destructed before he could get the battery disconnected.

My smallest unit is a Kohler 7.5Rsomething... a late '50's era 60ci four-cylinder liquid cooled flathead, running 1800rpm, 120v. I use a transformer to flip phase to yield 120/240, and it's more than strong enough to run my house lighting (all LED), both sump pumps, furnace, ceiling fans, computer systems, TV, microwave oven, water heater controls and well pump.

If I need more power, there's a Kato 35kw driven by a Hercules JXLD inline six... but I switch to the smaller one to conserve fuel when we don't need the extra power.
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  #14  
Old 12-30-2017, 01:44:18 PM
Arkie Arkie is offline
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Default Re: Home Propane Generator

Quote:
Originally Posted by opus View Post
Not sure this is the right place to ask but.....

I have an elderly woman that is needing an electric start, propane generator for backup power. She currently has a 5500/8500 surge Troybilt generator, that is pull start, gasoline.

Anyone have experience with what she is needing and could offer some make/model suggestions?

Thanks!
Elderly woman wants a electric start, propane gen in the 5 to 8KW area. (and maybe gasoline option)

Just a thought:
You might take a look at the US carb site to review your specs or give them a email.

I think they sell tri-fuel gens. They send me a email sale ad every once in awhile.
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Old 12-30-2017, 04:52:30 PM
opus opus is offline
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Default Re: Home Propane Generator

She went with the 12kw Briggs Standby, Boss went with the 20k Briggs Standby.

The generator dealer did both installs. Pretty nice units but far too electronic for my liking.
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  #16  
Old 12-31-2017, 11:36:10 AM
Arkie Arkie is offline
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Default Re: Home Propane Generator

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Originally Posted by opus View Post
She went with the 12kw Briggs Standby, Boss went with the 20k Briggs Standby.

The generator dealer did both installs. Pretty nice units but far too electronic for my liking.


Yes about the electronic control on EMERGENCY gens.
If the electronic module type control fails in an emergency situation you are usually SOL and in addition usually it's after the warranty has expired and then after around 10 years the electronic control is obsolete (and that is planned by the maker of the unit) and you need to upgrade to a newer unit. (that has more electronic controls)
AND I'm a electrician and electronics tech

Welcome to the modern age of EMERGENCY eq.
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  #17  
Old 01-30-2018, 12:44:49 AM
dkamp dkamp is offline
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Default Re: Home Propane Generator

Yes, the generators that have 'modern' controls, particularly the 'homeowner' market type, will be very dependant upon electronics, and in my experience, that dependancy makes them at substantially high risk of unrecoverable failure...

in this case, if she's elderly, though, it's not likely SHE will be able to go out and do a manual lock-over of a transfer switch, defeat the ignition kill, then hand-crank the engine to life... but that's what I would do (if it had a flywheel magneto, a hand-start option, and a manual feature on the transfer actuator).

One thing that 'big box/home' market manufacturing has done, is make the 'emergency power subpanel', so that when the gen is installed, only IT'S panel gets emergency power, and only the circuits wired TO it, are applied load. This assures that someone plugging a couple electric space heaters into OTHER outlets doesn't result in an overload.

It would be NICE if SOP for homes (and utility panels) would be to have a dedicated busbar segment reserved for EMERGENCY POWER, so that a simple bypass circuit through the E-power source would be sufficient for emergency lighting, sump pumps, heat, and a light convenience load. For elderly or shut-ins, E-power for medical equipment is imperative.

One of the best things a homeowner can do, when they're considering E-power options, is to fit the bulk of their lighting to LED, and then make a very detailed list of their loads, and identify the highest priority, and limit the E-loads to that.
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