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Onan Generators Restoring, operating and maintaining vintage Onan generators.

Onan Generators

What Have You Done to Your Onan Generator Today?


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  #3481  
Old 11-10-2017, 08:24:06 PM
wxyoung2008 wxyoung2008 is offline
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Default Re: What Have You Done to Your Onan Generator Today?

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Originally Posted by Motorhead View Post
I have a 1939 Willys pickup stored down the road at a neighbors barn. Went and checked on it the other day and I saw a bunch of the seat stuffing (Kapock I think) in nests in the bed of the truck. I haven't restored the truck yet though it runs. Just darn hard to keep the little critters out. Picture of it is in my back yard.
MotorHead
Your pickup is very nice. I did not know that Willys ever made a pickup.
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  #3482  
Old 11-10-2017, 08:52:22 PM
len k len k is online now
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Default Re: What Have You Done to Your Onan Generator Today?

Went to walmart, they had a spray active ingredients cloves and garlic oil and 1% egg.

Called Home depot , they said they only had poisons, no repellents.
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  #3483  
Old 11-11-2017, 10:11:31 AM
jnjvan jnjvan is offline
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Default Re: What Have You Done to Your Onan Generator Today?

I finally got around to replacing the pepper pot muffler with an RV muffler on my 4.0 CCK. I didn't mind the sound before, but it is nicer now. From some angles, mechanical noise is more apparent than exhaust.

John Van
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  #3484  
Old 11-11-2017, 10:23:31 AM
JohnnyC JohnnyC is offline
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Default Re: What Have You Done to Your Onan Generator Today?

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Originally Posted by jnjvan View Post
I finally got around to replacing the pepper pot muffler with an RV muffler on my 4.0 CCK. I didn't mind the sound before, but it is nicer now. From some angles, mechanical noise is more apparent than exhaust.

John Van
Nice muffler! No more harsh noise from the pepper pot muffler.

JohnnyC
New Jersey

Last night it got down to 23 degrees. This morning I did a cold start of my JB on gasoline at which temps were 30 degrees in my garage. Since I am trying to dialin the electric choke I need to test especially since the JB is starting via an ATS and there is a possibility for the circuits to be loaded when the ATS transfers from the utility to the genserator.

The tests were good. The ATS woke up the stone-cold JB, allowed it to run for about a minute to stabilize and then banged it by transferring 25 amp loads on each leg. It took about 20-30 seconds for the JB to stabilize on the cold startup which I suspect is the time it take the electric choke to fully open. On vapor, it starts up ready to take on a load immediately. The JB is currently running as I type this message and will let it run for at least 30 minutes since I assume a short 5 minute run in freezing weather from a cold start is not good (best ot let the oil reach normal operating temps to avoid moisture build up inside the machine).

JohnnyC
New Jersey
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  #3485  
Old 11-11-2017, 01:28:55 PM
len k len k is online now
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Default Re: What Have You Done to Your Onan Generator Today?

I used to work on lot of car chokes. Simple non-electric ones mounted on intake casting. I tried to change length of linkage to make it work and never could get the range of motion to be right. Turns out old choke springs somehow "wear-out" and don't move as much as new ones. I finally gave up and replaced with new choke springs when cars had that problem.
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  #3486  
Old 11-11-2017, 01:49:17 PM
JohnnyC JohnnyC is offline
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Default Re: What Have You Done to Your Onan Generator Today?

What I've been experiencing is that my Onans require only choke closed during the first 2 seconds on startup then they like full open choke. I would like to have the choke on the JB to fully open during the first 10 seconds or less, but I guess that won't happen no matter how I adjust the choke's outer casing.

JohnnyC
New Jersey
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  #3487  
Old 11-11-2017, 02:08:15 PM
len k len k is online now
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Default Re: What Have You Done to Your Onan Generator Today?

Little info on other engine chokes.
On Tecumseh small engines (ie.... lawn mower/snow blower) for a "choke" they attach a rubber squeeze ball (push ball) to carb bowl. When squeezed it pressurizes bowl and gas squirts up into intake thru carb's main jet. So once running , they have no choke effect. Sounds similar to way you say your engine wants to run.

Although on other small engines I've found they like a little choke untill warm. At least I've noticed that on snow blowers ( winter, so frigid engine), haven't noticed that on lawn mowers ( summers , warm weather).

Also heard they change the gas mix over the year, in winter gas has more volitiles to evaporate and start easier. So if you filled up gas cans in summer and try to start in winter .......
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  #3488  
Old 11-11-2017, 02:27:19 PM
Vanman Vanman is offline
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Default Re: What Have You Done to Your Onan Generator Today?

On my Automatic Kohlers (1920's - 1940's) they have an electric solenoid choke that operates only during cranking. On the earlier plants this is the only choke. It is released once the engine reaches around 1/2 speed.

The later ones have a bimetallic spring (in the exhaust manifold) operated choke in addition to the electric choke. The manual states that the electric one may need to be disconnected unless the operating environment is particularly cold.

The problem with the electric one is it would come on during every cranking cycle, even if the engine is fully warm.

But, used in conjunction with a temperature switch, that arrangement seems exactly like what JohnnyC's JB wants, in place of the thermal one.
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  #3489  
Old 11-11-2017, 07:44:26 PM
Troll Troll is online now
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Default Re: What Have You Done to Your Onan Generator Today?

Well, looked over at my lowly 12.0DJC thinking, "man I haven't started that in a while" so decided to fire it up. Gave it about 30 seconds of glow plug heat, hit the starter switch while still holding the glow plugs on, and she fired right up. Kinda dead giveaway this is an indirect injected diesel as it takes a while to smooth out to even firing. Plenty of smoke, (33 degrees here and furnace is off) with summer fuel, but it was nice to hear it rumble right up to 1800rpm and stay there. Really had no use to power anything so just let it recharge the battery while I fired up a couple old Mack trucks that haven't been started in a couple of months either. I do need to get either a battery maintainer, or a float charger, (which I have) installed onto the set as it was a bit sluggish while cranking due to the colder weather.

Still ain't quite nuthin like the smell of diesel smoke in the morning.
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  #3490  
Old 11-11-2017, 09:40:54 PM
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Default Re: What Have You Done to Your Onan Generator Today?

Fired up my first Onan, a 12-1972 5.0CCK that I bought some years ago as just the engine, gen end and intake manifold with carburetor. The exhaust system was half hacked off. I did a number of things to this old hunk of iron such as the high compression heads, made up a dual fuel carburetor, electronic ignition that uses the points but with no current across them and found a NOS CCK conversion control panel that got rid of the solid state controls that was missing from my unit anyhow. I used the 2 stage battery charge regulator and wired it into the single stage charging system and added a led volt meter for the battery voltage. Put about 25-28 amps load on it for a half an hour and put it away.
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  #3491  
Old 11-11-2017, 09:50:27 PM
JohnnyC JohnnyC is offline
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Default Re: What Have You Done to Your Onan Generator Today?

This afternoon my 7.5 JB, 6.5 NH, and 4.0 BFA had a THREESOME Yes, together - I ran them for their load exercise (see pictures below). I did all three together to save time otherwise I'd be running each for an hour one after another.

The last time I ran my NH and BFA on gasoline was either July 4th weekend or Labor Day weekend (I can't remember), but regardless they should be ran monthly to keep the residual gas in genny fresh. I did not load the gennys heavily, just enough to get them warm in the near freezing temps we had today. The JB has been started almost daily while playing with the choke and ATS. All three gennys performed wonderfully during the threesome .

JohnnyC
New Jersey
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  #3492  
Old 11-12-2017, 10:43:54 AM
JT240Z JT240Z is offline
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Default Re: What Have You Done to Your Onan Generator Today?

Nice looking family you have there.
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  #3493  
Old 11-12-2017, 05:26:28 PM
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Default Re: What Have You Done to Your Onan Generator Today?

Decided I really didn't like the way the DJC cranked yesterday after setting a couple of months idle since last use. "Farm and Fleet" had both a sale on batteries going, along with a 10% off for veterans day so decided the welding truck could use a couple new batteries as the current installed pair are five years aged. Nothing wrong with them at all but don't like to be stranded much anymore...... Think it took longer to find my DD-214 proving I was a veteran than the decision to spend money on batteries.

Ran over to Farm & Fleet and picked up a new pair of group 29 top post batteries for installation into the truck and will place the existing batteries onto both the DJC, and the 5.0CCK. They both have group 31 top post batteries installed, but are about seven years aged IIRC so probably time anyways.

Out the door cost with the sale and veteran's discount was $175.31 with junk core batteries turned in. Not too bad I didn't think. These are 1150 cranking amp w/175 reserve capacity. Although only rated at two years, I typically get at least twice to three times that lifespan from them. All the manufacturers have cut back coverage lengths on starting batteries over the last several years.
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  #3494  
Old 11-12-2017, 07:02:31 PM
turtmaster turtmaster is offline
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Default Re: What Have You Done to Your Onan Generator Today?

why not take a engraver and date the batteries?

---------- Post added at 05:02:31 PM ---------- Previous post was at 04:52:52 PM ----------

fired up the 2.5 lk that has at least 900 hrs on it, since i didn't prime the carb with the priming lever on the fuel pump, or use the primer bulb on the fuel line, it took at least 30 seconds of cranking to refill the carb bowl, i need to replace the carb bowl gaskets, as the bowl drips a bit. when the gen finally started, i was greeted with quite a fair bit of oil smoke out of the muffler, it smoked up the shop
it has never done that before, the only thing I can think of why it did that is from the oil bath air filter, but its mouunted way lower then the carb, and the engine has not been tipped, and as far as i know the engine is in good shape any ideas?
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  #3495  
Old 11-12-2017, 08:59:39 PM
Troll Troll is online now
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Default Re: What Have You Done to Your Onan Generator Today?

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why not take a engraver and date the batteries?
They have the lift out date codes on the battery case(s) which are accurate. They also have decals affixed annotating date of manufacture and I always purchase batteries less than two months since manufactured.

These will be placed onto an equalize charge for a few hours and installed tomorrow afternoon.

Thanks,
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  #3496  
Old 11-12-2017, 09:18:25 PM
turtmaster turtmaster is offline
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Default Re: What Have You Done to Your Onan Generator Today?

i was looking at that, but i seen that they weren't out yet.
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  #3497  
Old 11-12-2017, 09:53:28 PM
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Default Re: What Have You Done to Your Onan Generator Today?

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i was looking at that, but i seen that they weren't out yet.
Yes, I lift them out upon installation. Also have a log book for the vehicles as there are at least 15 starting batteries in various trucks and implements, (all inclusive) around here. Usual starting battery rotation is four years for something relied upon such as personal vehicles and work trucks. These generators are a hobby so they warrant getting the used ones with service life left in them.

I have a 1000ADC carbon pile load tester for starting batteries and when they start to show weakness, I rotate them out rather than invite trouble.
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Old Today, 01:19:39 AM
yellowlister yellowlister is online now
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Default Re: What Have You Done to Your Onan Generator Today?

Well it's not a onan.. but I got myself a 3600 rpm old kohler for 50 bucks.. was in the same family since new and looks to be in very good shape considering it's age and lived the first half of it's life in upstate ny so I was told.. he said he had it running the other day but would not fire today.. not really worried about it as it's just going to be a conversation peice.. but it does have the idle down option when no load is applied.. also got the honda from another guy on my way from key largo to west Palm beach for 50 as well
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Old Today, 10:18:27 AM
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Default Re: What Have You Done to Your Onan Generator Today?

I put the new diaphragm in the garretson regulator and got the jb running.
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Old Today, 11:23:44 AM
Leon N. Leon N. is offline
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Default Re: What Have You Done to Your Onan Generator Today?

I purcased a new daighram but never got around.to installing it. Original KN2 is about 50 years old. Subsequently found out my problem was a pluged vent port. Since then my JB has never run better. What a beautiful machine.

BTW I wonder if those folks who run there JB strictly on natural gas could comment on when or how they determine when to change the oil? What criteria does one use? Is it strictly accumulated hours or the "color" of the oil? I notice the oil becomes an almost orangey collar. The oil dos not turn black like that in gasoline fired engines.

Since my JB use profile is very low,, usually short run periods of at least 30 minutes over a 3-5 year period, I wonder if it is even necessary to change the oil? After all, the oil does not wear out, only the additives.

Appreciate at thoughts BTW, a happy thanksgiving day to all our Shakers!
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