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Onan Generators

What Have You Done to Your Onan Generator Today?


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  #121  
Old 02-18-2013, 03:45:01 PM
len k len k is offline
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Default Re: What have you done to your Onan generator today?

This all assumes a gasoline engine, for diesils with glow plugs I think it starts to become a gray area ,couple minutes of med draw of amps.

---------- Post added at 02:45 PM ---------- Previous post was at 02:41 PM ----------

At least for the glow plug bat, which I assume is a separate electrical circuit from the starter. At least it was on a friends Volvo back in high school.
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  #122  
Old 02-18-2013, 08:12:46 PM
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Default Re: What have you done to your Onan generator today?

ok fellows got me a question ? on my BF and My BFA today i had to take the the generator cooling fins off to get to the generator bearings to grease them. now the specs shows to torke the armature thru-stud nut at 45 to 50 ft lb that seems kinda tight? any input fellows?? i did get the slip rings cleaned up. took off one brush block. worked out nice.changed some brittle spade connects. thx
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  #123  
Old 02-18-2013, 08:42:05 PM
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Default Re: What have you done to your Onan generator today?

I use Mexican Torque on the thru stud. Never had a problem.
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  #124  
Old 02-18-2013, 08:53:00 PM
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Default Re: What have you done to your Onan generator today?

Billy not sure what that is mexican torke? just a quessamation?lol
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  #125  
Old 02-18-2013, 08:53:26 PM
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Default Re: What have you done to your Onan generator today?

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Originally Posted by Billy J Shafer View Post
I use Mexican Torque on the thru stud. Never had a problem.
What do you think about that onandan ol Billy's pretty strong to after eating a big pot of beans
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  #126  
Old 02-18-2013, 09:11:11 PM
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Smile Re: What have you done to your Onan generator today?

Okie Dokie Billy i can do that i got me a mexican torque wrench. thx pal
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  #127  
Old 02-18-2013, 11:48:49 PM
ETN550 ETN550 is offline
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Default Re: What have you done to your Onan generator today?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Leon N. View Post
Not to continue the discussion but for ETN550's sake, note that almost any 12 volt battery will initially supply the required amperage. It is simply Ohms Law that the amps equates to the voltage divided by the resistance. The point I was trying to emphasize, and you hit upon it by stating the Onan manual requirements is that you need a 12 volt battery source that has the endurance. Endurance meaning to be able to supply 12 volts for however long the exciter cranking cycle has to run. Obviously Onan built in a safety margin when stating the requirement. Just as important is the cabling and the cable lugs and cleanliness and tightness of the connections to minimize voltage drops. I am sure the Onan manuals cover all this.

Today, there are many 12 volt batteries that will meet the Onan requirements. If I were you, and reliability is important, I would use 2 new six volt batteries which meets the Onan specified requirements and install a temperature compensated float charger to maintain the batteries in top condition. That will minimize battery sulfation over time. For example, I can take a worn out 5 year old automobile battery and by keeping it on float charge get another 6 years of use on my JB. Your battery requirements are more severe, but with new batteries, and on the proper float charge regime, you should be able to easily get a dozen years of use.
Acknowledged. Packaging the unit on a cart would lend itself to a pair of the long / narrow style 6 volt batteries on each side of the unit beside the gen end.

Leon,

What do you think about a solargizer as a maintainer on an otherwise well charged battery? I have no problem bulk charging or providing a maintenance charge off line before or after operations but I always worry about what will happen if I leave the unit sit for a period of time. That is why I'm considering a solargizer mounted on top of the cart.

And speaking of charging it appears that there is zero regulation of the charge from the generator while it is running. It appears mannually adjustable via a band clamp on a power resistor for a 2-5 amp range. For extended runs, say 10 - 48 hrs should I be concerned about the existing charging system. BTW the manual and decals warn that the machine should never be run without a battery connected to it. so I assume removing the battery from the system while running is a no-no. I'm planning on having enough of a fuel tank to run it a full weekend while boondocking my camper from Friday night to Sunday night, if need be. Should I be concerned about overcharging?

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Originally Posted by len k View Post
I'm no expert, but I suspect the issue here is: years ago bats may not have had group size or CCA ratings. Amp-hr rating may have been all there was to specifiy how big of a battery to use. And it was assuemed you would use a "starting" bat and not a "deep-cycle" bat.

For a given physical size of bat, a "starting" bat had many more thin internal plates (~twice as many). For lots of surface area, so it could produce lots of amps, (but not for hours).
And a "deep-cycle" bat had fewer thick plates, so it could produce a lower amount of amps for a long time (hours) without fully consuming/disolving the internal plate. For uses like boat lighting.


For a given amp-hr bat, a deep cycle bat can't produce as may starting amps as a stating bat, so using amp-hrs to "size" it is really not a proper way to spec a bat. I believe these days Onan engineers would specify CCA not amp-hrs.

(I've been told they may not list bats as starting or deep-cycle anymore.)
In my case I have a 1981 printed DJA manual (My DJA is a 1984 model). The spec for the battery as called for in that manual is (2) 1H 6 volt in series. Zero degrees F rated at 450 Cold Cranking Amps. There is no mention of an Amp-Hrs requirement. So maybe by that time in the '80's Onan had got away from the Amp-Hr spec and moved on to the CCA spec.
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  #128  
Old 02-19-2013, 12:38:48 AM
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Default Re: What have you done to your Onan generator today?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Billy J Shafer View Post
I use Mexican Torque on the thru stud. Never had a problem.


I have a Japanese torque wrench. When the bolt or nut is perfectly torqued it goes "crick"...

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  #129  
Old 02-19-2013, 01:06:18 AM
len k len k is offline
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Default Re: What have you done to your Onan generator today?

Mine is a calibrated arm, just before I think the torque is right, the bolt breaks.
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  #130  
Old 02-19-2013, 07:16:27 PM
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Default Re: What have you done to your Onan generator today?

well fellows i got my nuts torqued . i used my tiawan torque wrench. . got all 4 of my onans bearings greased and slip rings cleaned. good for another decade hopefully.
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  #131  
Old 02-19-2013, 09:31:44 PM
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Default Re: What have you done to your Onan generator today?

Quote:
Originally Posted by len k View Post
Mine is a calibrated arm, just before I think the torque is right, the bolt breaks.
Oh, the trick to those is you have to back off the torque a little right after the bolt snaps
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  #132  
Old 02-19-2013, 10:01:46 PM
len k len k is offline
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Default Re: What have you done to your Onan generator today?

I do, I back it down to zero. Works every time!
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  #133  
Old 02-20-2013, 03:58:20 PM
Leon N. Leon N. is offline
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Default Re: What have you done to your Onan generator today?

ETN550 You bring up some good points, thank you. I am not familiar with the Solargizer. I will have to google it and let you know. Your observations about running the generator for a long period of time and the concern about over charging it is a real possibility. I had to run my JB for two weeks back in the blizzard of 78. I had set the Onan charger to deliver just 1-2 amperes for that very reason. Batteries are very rugged and can take some abuse so Ihad no TR but I like you was concerned. You can get away with a very slow recharge rate if and an important if you have a good float charger connected at all times. If you use your stby gen only intermittantly, you would set the recharge rate somewhat higher unless you employ a temperature compensated float charger. By temp comp, I mean a charger that will deliver only 1 or 2 hundred milliamperes (0.1 -0.2 amps) necessary to keep the battery terminal voltage at either 13, 14 or 15 volts. My charger is not automatic but I use those 3 settings for Summer, Spring/Fall and Winter, respectively and I easily get 6 + addition years from a worn out car battery.

Yes you should be concerned about overcharging. Monitor battery voltage with a reasonably accurate voltmeter. Overchargeing will deplete electrolyte and if it falls below the top of the plates, you will lose capacity not to mention other problems which could cause some of the internal 2 volt cells to short.

Yes, I bet Onan adjusted there battery requirements as the technology improved.
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  #134  
Old 02-20-2013, 09:49:59 PM
len k len k is offline
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Default Re: What have you done to your Onan generator today?

I was very sceptical of desulfators but people here say they work.
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  #135  
Old 02-20-2013, 10:13:27 PM
Leon N. Leon N. is offline
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Default Re: What have you done to your Onan generator today?

ETN550:I read up on the Solargizer and the idea that it utilizes pulses as opposed to a steady-state direct current to maintain a lead acid battery by reducing sulfation is not new. Yes, I believe this is a good idea. They show dramatic improvements in their comparison tests which I cannot dispute. However, the Solargizer does not recharge a battery but merely maintains the state of charge and slows cell deterioration. It it not temperature compensated for use in environments that go through temperature extremes, best I can tell. I think the Solargizer can remain connected to a battery while in use, for example, while starting and running your Onan generator. But if you have infrequent use off the generator, you may have to up the generator charging rate to replenish energy removed during the start sequence.

In my situation, I built a small battery charger for my JB. It's output is a rectified 60 hertz sine wave that recharges the battery with 120 pulses per second. I do not filter the full wave rectifier therefore I am also employing pulse energy to not only float but also recharge the battery. My charger is simply a step down transformer powered through a small variac so I can have a vernier voltage manual adjustment of the float potential set as I mentioned earlier. My float current runs between 25 and 100 milliamperes. When the JB starts, my charger current increases to about 1-2 amperes and then gradually tapers off back to the float current mentioned. I do employ a relatively accurate voltmeter and ammeter to set and monitor what is going on with the charger at all times.

So that is what I have been employing since 1970 with no problems except one time when the charger fuse blew after a very close lightning strike! The only damage was a short in of all things the neon (NE-51) pilot light socket!
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  #136  
Old 02-20-2013, 10:42:06 PM
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Default Re: What have you done to your Onan generator today?

Do you think a desulfator would bring a dead bat back to life . I have couple dozen bad ones. Car bats, and gel cell types, all 12V.
--- Car +gel-cell bat ~2V won't take a charge.
----Other car bat 10V (one dead cell) will charge to 12V but fades to 10 in a few weeks or so.

All are old. Also 22 old 12V gel-cells from APC UPS computer backups with swelled cases.
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  #137  
Old 02-21-2013, 09:16:37 AM
Leon N. Leon N. is offline
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Default Re: What have you done to your Onan generator today?

Do I think a desulfator will bring an old battery back? I doubt it. The trick is to prevent sulfation or at least minimize it in the first place. As lead acid batteries wear out, the active plate material decreases and precipitate falls off. Not only is capacity reduced, but depending upon how much free space there is between the bottom of the cell plates and the case, eventually the cell may short.
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  #138  
Old 02-21-2013, 09:43:14 AM
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Default Re: What have you done to your Onan generator today?

Quote:
Originally Posted by onan dan View Post
well fellows i got my nuts torqued . i used my tiawan torque wrench. . got all 4 of my onans bearings greased and slip rings cleaned. good for another decade hopefully.

Torqued your nuts. That sounds painful

Mexican Torque is when you and burp.
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  #139  
Old 02-21-2013, 10:11:13 AM
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Default Re: What have you done to your Onan generator today?

I wouldn't bother with the APC batteries, I've taken them apart and added distilled water when I noticed they were low but once they crap out they pretty much stay crapped out.
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  #140  
Old 02-21-2013, 11:07:21 AM
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Default Re: What have you done to your Onan generator today?

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Originally Posted by Billy J Shafer View Post
Torqued your nuts. That sounds painful

Mexican Torque is when you and burp.
Billy
I am not sure which would be worse Torque them or have a Squirrel Cut them
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