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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

Wisconsin/Winpower Need Help Pricing a Generator


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  #1  
Old 09-23-2018, 05:51:39 PM
scotty scotty is offline
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Default Wisconsin/Winpower Need Help Pricing a Generator

Hello, I have a generator I would like to sell but I don't know what it's worth. I was hoping to get some help here to find out an approximate value. Some info on the unit:

Age, 1974
Wisconsin powered
Engine model VG4D
Engine serial 5387992
Engine spec 318349

Winpower generator
Generator model GRW15W4DN
Generator serial FF-848-3
Volts 120/240
Watts 15,000 continuous, 17,500 peak
Amps 52 continuous, 61 peak
3 phase

Engine runs great, has dual fuel (LP/NG or gasoline). I don't know how to test the generator to see if it works or not, but I assume it probably does work because the unit only has 578 hours of run time and it has spent it's whole life indoors. I was told the unit came from a fire department, and was removed due to it's age. Tax dollars bought the fire station a new unit, so they decided "out with the old, in with the new" type of thing.

If I missed any important info, please let me know and I will try to get it and post it up. Here are some pics. Thanks!
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  #2  
Old 09-23-2018, 06:04:33 PM
scotty scotty is offline
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Default Re: Wisconsin/Winpower Need help pricing a generator

Also, the tag on the generator says it weighs 940 pounds.
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Old 09-23-2018, 08:09:33 PM
Newoldstock Newoldstock is offline
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Default Re: Wisconsin/Winpower Need help pricing a generator

Very thirsty engine, good reliable powerful but thirsty ( design goes back to the 30s ).
The generator head is a good to, but its also archaic like the engine that drives it.
Together these are perfectly reasonable parts for a perfectly reasonable machine in 1970.
But its not 1970 and your going to be hard pressed to find people to fix it and parts to service it.
The voltage regulation, harmonic distortion on it will be higher than a modern unit simply because of the inside out design.

I like old cars and tractors and machines of all kinds but the number of people in regular circulation that are good at fixing stuff like this is in rapid decline.
So you have to retire these old machines when they are serving critical places like fire stations, police, hospital water treatment facilities.

Another thing to consider is even if the insulation tests good it is still almost 50 years old.
That is about as good as a life expectancy as you should ever hope for in a machine like this.
It may run without indecent for the next 30 years without fail, but its past its best years and from 40 years on every day sees an increasing possibility of failure unless its gets dip in the varnish tank and has some detailed testes done to confirm it will work.
Most people will not stand behind something this old and say it will last in a critical application because they are scared of liability.

How was it stored for all these years?
I see rust and dust on the transformers and would worry about moister and fungus attacking the organic parts of the insulation.
Rust causes things to expand and distort.
How often did it run?
All the time in short runs with many cycles?
I have seen machines worn out by just getting a little too much exercise.
I have also seen machines that were never turned off and stayed hot most of the time that are almost like new.

My reply has almost nothing to do or say about your question of value.
I am just trying to help you understand why something with only 500 hours on it could be considered no longer fit for use.
Maybe your tax dollars were well spent replacing it.
You just don't know without a detailed history and maintenance logs.
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Old 09-23-2018, 08:46:02 PM
Vanman Vanman is offline
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Default Re: Wisconsin/Winpower Need help pricing a generator

Are you *sure* it's 120/240 and not 120/208? The numbers aren't adding up for 120/240, single or three phase. 120/208 and 52 amps does work out to 15 kW, at 80% power factor, which would be a very typical rating for such a machine.

I'm not quite as pessimistic, but do have to concur with the points that Newoldstock has stated.

New stuff isn't anywhere nearly as well made as old stuff, and will not be anywhere nearly as reliable, or as long lasting as the old stuff was, when it was new. But old stuff does need TLC to continue serving faithfully because, well, it is old.
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Old 09-23-2018, 09:13:55 PM
jack0 jack0 is offline
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Default Re: Wisconsin/Winpower Need help pricing a generator

I see 3 C.T.s.

Looks like 3 phase. Most people don't need 3 phase. So their out.
I would try to find out what the engine is going for these days and go from there.

Its still a popular engine with the Stonies and Bobcat crowd.
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Old 09-23-2018, 09:53:27 PM
scotty scotty is offline
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Default Re: Wisconsin/Winpower Need help pricing a generator

Here is a hard-to-see pic of the plate on the generator reguarding the voltage. I will try to get a better pic of that plate. I do understand that this is a very old unit, and I don't expect it to be worth a lot, but I seriously don't know if I should ask 100, 500, 1000? No clue. So hoping to get some input on that. Thanks!
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Old 09-23-2018, 11:16:01 PM
Vanman Vanman is offline
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Default Re: Wisconsin/Winpower Need help pricing a generator

Well, now we know it's definitely 120/240 A little further down and we could see the phase, amps, etc.

My gut reaction is more than $100, but maybe not more than $500?

But getting it running and generating so you can say that in your ad and demonstrate it to a buyer is very valuable. A lot of sellers over look this (or are lazy). They are effectively selling "a cold hunk of metal on the ground". Because a buyer just can't know what he's getting.

Timing, location, and plain old luck (storms and power failures) will effect the value too.

Also remember that you can always bargain down but not up. The trick is to not be so high that no one calls.
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Old 09-24-2018, 07:53:32 AM
Newoldstock Newoldstock is offline
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Default Re: Wisconsin/Winpower Need help pricing a generator

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vanman View Post
Are you *sure* it's 120/240 and not 120/208? The numbers aren't adding up for 120/240, single or three phase. 120/208 and 52 amps does work out to 15 kW, at 80% power factor, which would be a very typical rating for such a machine.

I'm not quite as pessimistic, but do have to concur with the points that Newoldstock has stated.

New stuff isn't anywhere nearly as well made as old stuff, and will not be anywhere nearly as reliable, or as long lasting as the old stuff was, when it was new. But old stuff does need TLC to continue serving faithfully because, well, it is old.
I am not pessimistic, more realist.
The build quality is better on older units.
People expected more for their money .
There is a typo on data plate 120/240 three phase is not a thing.
Its 208 but now I am just nit picking.

Today's equipment is not all bad.
Its just really complicated, and for good reason we need to protect our more delicate electronics better.
When this set was made voltage swings of 10% were not uncommon.
People were OK with it so were tubes and motors of the day.
Up to 130 volts and down to 110 did not bother anything or anyone.

Modern stuff is great, but it will not have the charm and simplicity as this old stuff.
We won't be making a 2006 Generac or CAT out to be anything special in 30 years.
They won't likely even run because of a lack of parts.
Where they do shine is lower fuel burn, higher reliability and better regulation.

Smaller lighter hotter running.
There is a reason for this.
We learned to get more from less and in some cases its too our advantage.
I want the alternators smaller and hotter at high flux densities to make them more efficient ( sounds like a contradiction but its not ).
Harder working iron is going to be more demanding of regulator.
All synthetic F and H materials in the Insulation are completely resistant to mold ( and they are not made of soy that rats eat ).
You only need to look at the frame sizes and do the math from Nema, to U to T series and now high efficiency to see how the machines got smaller hotter and more efficient ( just physics ).
Down side they also hum like hell, people do not like the noise...

The machining and engineering that go into a new engine means from new they are going wear less than a design of 50 or more years ago.
They are designed with less of the robustness of older machines because of it.
Not bad just an application of cost saving through better engineering.
Now when the engineering has a screw up there is no wiggle room left.
So you have a choice, forgiving long wearing and tough or efficient, more demanding of lubrication and care, cleaner burning.

What is it worth?
I dunno but my thinking was more than 500 ( at least up here where we just don't have a large pool of stuff to begin with )
Presentation would help.
Give it a good clean.

Need two men for this trick but invert a CO2 fire extinguisher and blow it out with that.
One man throttles the handle and the other points the end of the hose ( remove defuser )
This is poor man's dry ice media blasting to remove dust and dirt.
Just be careful you do not use too much pressure and blast off insulation or loose paint.

Just for comparison Scotty I take you as a man thats on the level with realistic expectations.
I live in nutty town where people have unrealistic expectations of value because they equate scarcity with value/price.
Not even scrap value.
And this is a universal trait of Canadian's we all think crap is worth more than in weight in gold.
You should pack that generator up after you buff it and ask for 1500 dollars ( some brain donor up here might pay more )
https://www.kijiji.ca/v-electronics/...ationFlag=true
https://www.kijiji.ca/v-other-heavy-...ationFlag=true
https://www.kijiji.ca/v-outdoor-tool...ationFlag=true

Last edited by Newoldstock; 09-24-2018 at 10:07:12 AM.
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  #9  
Old 09-24-2018, 10:19:44 AM
Newoldstock Newoldstock is offline
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Default Re: Wisconsin/Winpower Need Help Pricing a Generator

You know I just sent a PM to the guy with the BGM.
I asked him to part it out and then I am going to offer 50 bucks for parts if he is willing to put them in the mail.

Just because....
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Old 09-24-2018, 01:14:14 PM
Vanman Vanman is offline
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Default Re: Wisconsin/Winpower Need Help Pricing a Generator

Lol! A little rabble rousing, eh? Those sellers really are out of touch.

I appreciate what you're saying. But I just don't like modern stuff. It's difficult for me to put a finger on it, but I guess it comes down to design philosophy. With old stuff, it is evident that they were proud of what they were building. Modern stuff appears as if they absolutely couldn't care less.

It *might* be 120/240 three phase, four wire. "Delta high leg". My favorite.
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