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Multi-Cylinder Stationary Engines and Power Units Waukesha, Buda, Climax, LeRoi and others.

Multi-Cylinder Stationary Engines and Power Units

Lister SR2 with Dunlite Generating Plant 1974


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  #1  
Old 08-17-2018, 09:52:40 PM
Tassie Tassie is offline
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Default Lister SR2 with Dunlite Generating Plant 1974

I have an option to buy a 1974 Lister SR2 generating plant fitted with a 5kW Dunlite 240vac head unit directly coupled. Itís been on a farm since new on an offshore island in Tasmania. The farm was switched over to grid power 25 years ago and the generator has not been used since although I am told it was maintained and started regularly by an on farm relative who passed away 15 yrs ago. So for all intents and purposes I can safely assume itís been unused for quite some time. I have not seen it yet and the owner has agreed to bring it back to the mainland in mid October and will cover freight to his house. On the face of it, he is asking top dollar but considering the freight is covered it becomes more attractive. Freighting these things around Australia is expensive.
His lack of knowledge about its operation is concerning. While the owner is a respected member of the community he may be looking at this with rose coloured glasses given the long family association with the farm where he was brought up. I have no reason to mistrust him, just his emotional connection.
Iíll attach all the pics I have in the hope someone can assist with my questions.

The Ac output of the generator was appearently cut by the electrician who connected grid power and you can see In one of the photos where this is evident.
Inside the switchboard there is clearly DC output from an alternator (labelled bottom right) but there does not appear to be an alternator on the engine.
However I recall reading somewhere that some Lister SR2 engines had a combined alternator/starter motor. Is this even possible? Iím hoping the picture will give someone a clue.
There is clearly battery cables lying on the ground but no sign of a starting circuit or box that I can identify at least. Some insight into how the electric start is positioned would be helpful please.
Back to the control panel, Iím not sure of its function. It shows an hour meter top centre and left and right toggle switches. The bottom of the cabinet shows inputs from the Ac generator, alternator and perhaps something else. Hard to determine. Any ideas how this circuit would be supposed to function?
There is a box to the right of the generator terminal box on engine side that has cables coming in and out and clearly, to me at least, has something to do with that starter/alternator.
The installation looks like it was professionally done in accordance with Lister instructions in the there appears to be a block of concrete similar to what I have seen in Lister documentation which is a good thing I believe.

Hoping you can give me some insight before I part with my hard earned cash.
Thank you
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  #2  
Old 08-18-2018, 05:09:32 AM
Combustor Combustor is offline
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Default Re: Lister SR2 with Dunlite generating plant 1974

Hello Tassie,
Your SR2 appears to have a very conventional starter motor and battery leads on it, although you may find that many of these Listers were reverse rotation when it comes to starter repair/replacement.
What you have could possibly be one of Lister's "Start-O-Matic units which will start up when a load greater than say 60 watts is turned on, and will shut down again when load goes off line. Someone here may recognise the control panel setup.
Your Dunlite alternator looks like one of their earliest solid state regulated units.The electronic regulator can be a problem, but if it produces correct voltage it may well have some life in front of it. Those AVR's can be replaced with external after-market models by an electrician who is truly familiar with alternators. (Many are not). Worth lubing or replacing alternator bearings as they dry out when stood for years. Good old unit, but would not pay top dollar unless I could see it producing power under full load. Read the nameplate on the alternator terminal box to find its rated load. Good luck.
Combustor.
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Old 08-18-2018, 08:38:01 PM
Tassie Tassie is offline
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Default Re: Lister SR2 with Dunlite Generating Plant 1974

Thank you Combuster.
You have confirmed my suspicions and added issues I was not aware of. Ordinarily I wouldnít mind taking on a project like this but considering the asking price which is non negotiable and no way to test the generator output I have decided to back out of the deal.
I think I will go with my original plan to seek out a single cyl CS 6/1 Lister and put a new generator head on it. The slow thump thump of 650rpm really appeals to me.
Cheers
Neil
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Old 08-19-2018, 02:51:35 AM
Combustor Combustor is offline
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Default Re: Lister SR2 with Dunlite Generating Plant 1974

Hello Tassie,
Yes, the Lister 6/1 can be a good choice, or you may find a later 8/1 also a good option. There are even a few VA's about, which are an aircooled version of an 8/1.
If you are really brave you can get an Indian "Listeroid" clone, but quality is variable and most buyers get them in kit form and check them out and assemble them with extra care and minor modifications. Indian spares however are quite good and will fit the 6/1 and 8/1's allowing them to be rebuilt and maintained. Worth going to listerengine.com for a look around.
Seems like no easy answer to reliable off grid power. You will likely end up with a mix of solar, wind and diesel backup.It can be quite an adventure. Regards,
Combustor.

---------- Post added at 14:51 ---------- Previous post was at 14:47 ----------

Hi again Tassie, I may have assumed wrongly that you are looking at going off grid. If so, my apologies. Combustor.
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Old 08-19-2018, 03:03:24 AM
Tassie Tassie is offline
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Default Re: Lister SR2 with Dunlite Generating Plant 1974

Thanks Combuster
Yes it can be a challenge. Iíve been off grid for seven years and have a hybrid of hydro and solar. The hydro is best by far but only reliable for about six months. The creek levels have been deminishing steadily since we arrived here. I live at altitude and even summer is often heavy cloud so solar not really that good at this latitude (42deg Sth). Generator reliability is therefore important for at least summer. Iíve always wanted two slow diesels. One for direct battery charging to my 48v bank and the other to provide constant domestic ac via inverter/batteries bypass to remove the single point of failure that the inverter is. Iím half way there. Iíve got my 1946 Ruston 1VTH in perfect running order for the direct 48v charging (just about to take delivery of a 3kW 48vdc PMa - sourced from Cyprus and supplied from China. Go figure) and hopefully soon will have the Ac generator sorted. Iíve already got small gas genset but not economical to run those little screamers for the solution Iím looking for.
So, almost there. Yes I will consider a Listeroid. Utter power refers to the Lovson LG6 as a good option for quality so I might investigate that.
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Old 08-19-2018, 09:12:25 AM
Combustor Combustor is offline
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Default Re: Lister SR2 with Dunlite Generating Plant 1974

Hi Tassie,
Worth looking up the ozlisteroids.com site. They are based near Coffs Harbour NSW and their site quotes prices for engines, spares, alternators etc and they will quote on assembling one of the kit form engines to correct specs.
Inclined to favour the 8/1 engine style, as they are closest to original Lister design and specs, but I guess you have an output range in mind to fit your needs. Seems you have a good handle on your situation there. Regards,
Combustor.
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