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Onan Generators Restoring, operating and maintaining vintage Onan generators.

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New Proud Owner of an Onan JC


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  #1  
Old 10-03-2017, 02:45:11 PM
JT240Z JT240Z is offline
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Default New Proud Owner of an Onan JC

OK, wish me luck because it's a done deal. I'm now the proud owner of an untested 1988 15kw JC extended stack dual fuel genset. I did pay more than I would have liked but $1700 and 5 miles from the house will have to do. I'll pick up the unit next week after I get back from a trip. Worst comes to worst, I have a lot of parts to sell along with a transfer switch. Plan on selling the transfer switch anyway since I won't be using it. I had a chance to inspect it and all checked out. The unit has been in storage for about a year indoors. Hours show 47 on the transfer switch. Original oil filter for sure. Betting it's original oil as well but looked super clean. Couldn't spend too much time inspecting it. Does have the dual fuel carb (NG and gas) which was a plus. Was used as a standby generator since new in the basement of his business.

Now the next step is testing it. My plan is to do a more detailed inspection for any possible mouse interference, replace oil and filter. I'll turn her over by hand first (not sure how to do it yet, still learning) just to make sure nothing is locked up. I may mist some oil down the cylinders as well. Not sure how I want to go about fueling her up on the initial start. It has never been run on gasoline but I was thinking of going that route since I will have to plumb for NG. Always been run on NG since new. Any suggestions? Will I have to do anything to get power generation? Field flash? With so few hours it obvious that it hasn't been run very often.

---------- Post added at 02:45:11 PM ---------- Previous post was at 02:37:09 PM ----------

Almost forgot. Here is that MN and SN and options list:

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Old 10-03-2017, 03:11:22 PM
nothingbutdarts nothingbutdarts is online now
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Default Re: New proud owner of a JC

You have lots of good ideas already, make sure to check for mice damage as you suggested, pull cover off the voltage regulator and the voltage regulator to check for damage, also pull end bell cover and look for mouse damage in the generator end. 2 flat blade screws hold on end bell cover. Also once it is off you can use a 5/8" wrench or socket on the thru shaft and try to turn the engine.
I would pull the plugs, leave in the oil that is there, crank the engine over till you get oil press on gauge (while cranking for oil pressure also lay the plugs on a good grounding surface and watch for them sparking) Once you have seen good oil press. reinstall plugs and try to fire it.
No brushes on the YD generator end, it should produce elctricity as soon as it comes up to speed. MAKE sure the output wires are taped up for YOUR protection!!! You could wire it to and outlet then take voltage readings.
Best money you could spend is on one of these, you can find them cheaper or more expensive at a hardware store or walmart:

https://www.amazon.com/P3-Internatio...+watt+ez+meter



On starting a JC, you hold the start switch on till the engine comes up to atleast 900 RPM, (the controls in the control box will then kick out the starter when it sees 900 RPM), if you let off the start switch before the 900 the set will just die.

Once running and warmed up then change oil and filter. I don't remember if it has a fuel pump on it ot not. if it does it could leak or not. You could gravity feed it gasoline if you have a way to get a tank above the carb. height to test it. Lots of people who use gasoling on theses "J" series just use a low pressure electric fuel pump. No more than 3 or 4 PSI.

More pictures are always NEEDED!

Nice looking set from previous pictures.

Last edited by nothingbutdarts; 10-03-2017 at 03:19:23 PM. Reason: added info.
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Old 10-03-2017, 04:09:17 PM
JT240Z JT240Z is offline
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Default Re: New proud owner of a JC

Thanks a ton for your rapid response and fine information. Yep, this is the one that was on eBay that started out at $3,500. He dropped it to $2,500 and then, after some back and forth, took my final "make offer" offer of $1,700. Hopefully, there are no huge surprises. Right now it's wired for 208 3 phase but will return it to 240/120 single phase for standby use at the house. Wife will be sooooo happy. Once I get it home I'll take more picks and do a complete assessment. Right now I'm pulling together all the manuals. Currently, I have the operators manual, parts list and engine manual. I still need to download the generator manual and wiring diagram.
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Old 10-03-2017, 04:51:52 PM
Wayne 440 Wayne 440 is offline
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Default Re: New proud owner of a JC

IF it were mine, the first thing I would do to it is to get that 30 year old oil filter off of it, before you crank it over even once. The last thing you need is for a deteriorated piece of that filter media to go for a trip into the engine- oil filters are cheaper than engine overhauls. Wix 51084 fits it.
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Old 10-03-2017, 05:08:49 PM
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Default Re: New proud owner of a JC

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wayne 440 View Post
IF it were mine, the first thing I would do to it is to get that 30 year old oil filter off of it, before you crank it over even once. The last thing you need is for a deteriorated piece of that filter media to go for a trip into the engine- oil filters are cheaper than engine overhauls. Wix 51084 fits it.
VERY good advice!!! I would also suggest looking or putting a long flat blade screwdriver into the oil fill and scrape the bottom of the oil pan to see if it has a layer of any sludge.
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Old 10-03-2017, 05:33:23 PM
JT240Z JT240Z is offline
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Default Re: New proud owner of a JC

Keep it coming. I'll be picking up a WIX 1084 oil filter and some Rotella 15w40 oil as soon as I can.
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Old 10-03-2017, 05:44:28 PM
Handyhiker1 Handyhiker1 is offline
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Default Re: New proud owner of a JC

That oil may be a little heavy. I would go 10w30 or 5w30. Also a Baldwin B2 filter fits and is just a bit longer then stock.
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Old 10-03-2017, 05:47:50 PM
JT240Z JT240Z is offline
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Default Re: New proud owner of a JC

Have several gallons of the 15w40 and some Rotella T6 5w40 sitting at the house for the motorcycles.
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Old 10-03-2017, 05:52:30 PM
Handyhiker1 Handyhiker1 is offline
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Default Re: New proud owner of a JC

I have a JC that has a few thousand hours from what I can tell and with 15w40 the oil pressure guage burys itself at start up. If it were me with that few hours, the 5w40 would be a better choice.
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Old 10-03-2017, 06:09:32 PM
Wayne 440 Wayne 440 is offline
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Default Re: New proud owner of a JC

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...a Baldwin B2 filter fits...
Yes it does, and both B2 and B163 are listed in the Baldwin application catalog for the JB and JC.

FYI, a B34 looks identical to B163 except for the number painted on the can. I phoned Baldwin about this a few years ago, and was told that a B34 will in fact work and at that time was identical internally. The difference being that Baldwin will reject any damage claim due to failure since B34 isn't approved for the application. At the time, the B163 cost about $2 more.
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Old 10-03-2017, 06:39:49 PM
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Default Re: New proud owner of a JC

Quote:
Originally Posted by Handyhiker1 View Post
I have a JC that has a few thousand hours from what I can tell and with 15w40 the oil pressure guage burys itself at start up. If it were me with that few hours, the 5w40 would be a better choice.
I agree with Handyhiker1 about the 15-40 being a bit heavy especially in Georgia and winter weather. I would not run a synthetic such as the Rotella 5-40... YET, until you get some hours on the set. Best to put some straight 30wt or 10-30 and run it for 1-5 hours with a load then drain it and change the filter.
I would still wait for a while before you put full synthetic for such a low hour engine. Older engines that weren't designed initially for running synthetic from day one, should be run on conventional oil until FULLY broken in before switching to full synthetic oil. I waited a year with several extended runs on my low hour JB before switching to Rotella-T, 5-40 full synthetic. If you switch too soon, I have heard that an older engine type can then burn oil.
Just my opinion.
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Old 10-03-2017, 07:34:55 PM
Leon N. Leon N. is offline
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Default Re: New proud owner of a JC

Motörhead what do you mean by saying the oil pressure gauge burys itself at startup? In all my 47 plus years of running my JB I have never seen the oil pressure exceed 50 pounds. I have been using 5W20 full synthetic all year ever since it became available. My cranking oil pressure is the same as the running oil pressure @ 45 psi.
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Old 10-03-2017, 07:43:35 PM
Handyhiker1 Handyhiker1 is offline
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Default Re: New proud owner of a JC

Leon, that is my JC that burys the guage at start up and for the first 5-10 minutes with 15w40. I can't remember what the guage goes to but it is a factory guage. After it warms up it drops but again I don't remember the pressure but it is about 3/4 on the guage.
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Old 10-03-2017, 07:50:15 PM
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Default Re: New proud owner of a JC

Here is some info on your unit.
Attached Files
File Type: pdf 15JCL1681AB.pdf (26.0 KB, 13 views)
File Type: pdf 612-5559.pdf (284.5 KB, 12 views)
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Old 10-03-2017, 08:06:59 PM
Leon N. Leon N. is offline
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Default Re: New proud owner of a JC

Handyhiker1 if you mean your oil pressure is pegging the gauge on start up, that is not a good situation in my opinion. You could damage your oil pump! Problem is you do not know how high it is. There are several things that could cause this. There is nothing gained by using hi viscosity oil. What is most important is the film strength and that oil is getting to all the places, Right From The Get Go. If not as Onan once told me, 90% of the wear occurs in the first 15 minutes of operation.
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Old 10-03-2017, 08:30:00 PM
Handyhiker1 Handyhiker1 is offline
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Default Re: New proud owner of a JC

Leon, I totaly agree with you. When I got my JC this is the oil I just happen to have on hand. I used it but had no idea it would cause this to happen. I plan on changing it to a 5w30 as soon as I start working on the JC again. It has just been on the back burner for now as other projects have come up. I did put it on a cart and got a panel mounted but have not had it running for some time.
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Old 10-03-2017, 08:47:25 PM
Leon N. Leon N. is offline
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Default Re: New proud owner of a JC

Handyhiker1 well I feel a bit better. You know, there are several different opinions about what oil to use and what viscosity to select. All I can say is that I came to the realization after several years concerned about the proper libricating of my JB which sits cold soaked at or below zero sometimes that "thinner (low viscosity) is better" since the advent of synthetics which have excellent film strength at high temperatures as well as good cold flow properties. Just look at what the newer cars require. For example, our little 4 cylinder Honda requires 5W20 full synthetic Summer and Winter. Same goes for my newer Camry.
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Old 10-04-2017, 10:49:36 AM
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Default Re: New proud owner of a JC

If this unit has lived its entire life on NG, then I would be suspicious of the diaphragm in the fuel pump. It could likely be compromised.
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Old 10-04-2017, 11:50:22 AM
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It is kind of funny how many JCs are coming up for sale right now. Seems like it goes in a cycle, for a while it is other sizes and then changes.
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Old 10-04-2017, 01:50:45 PM
Leon N. Leon N. is offline
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Default Re: New proud owner of a JC

Just curious but why would you be suspicious of the diaphragm in the fuel pump? My JB is of the tri-fuel design and the fuel pump remains in tact with no oil leaks so far. It has never operated on gasoline, hopefully never.
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