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Generator Head Alignment


What's involved with aligning a generator head with it's engine?

This would be a two bearing generator head mated end to end with an engine, guessing using something similar to a rag joint in automotive steering.

Seller of the genset advises alignment of the generator to the engine.

Generator and engine mounted on parallel I beam tied together. mounting plates for both engine and generator head have already been drilled but can imagine a small amount of play in the mounting bolts can play havoc with the bearings.

How does one go about aligning a generator head with it's engine? Special tools?


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Re: Generator head alignment

If you really want it to be right, you would need access to a full blown machine shop for the instruments of accuracy, and an "impulse" rated Lovejoy coupling. Otherwise, change the setup to "side-by-side", and use pulleys and belt.


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Re: Generator head alignment

Enter 'Shaft coupling alignment methods' into a search; you will get quite a bit of information.


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The smart way to do this is to use a LoveJoy type Coupling... This doesn't require near as much precision in the alignment as a Hard Coupler....


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Seems heads are usually just aligned by the bolts and / or studs, even on a V8 where the intake manifold must line up as well. Don't think I've seen any with dowel pins... :O

For a shaft coupling between an engine and a generator, it seems the LoveJoy ones make a racket and die an early death due to the constantly reversing torque applied to them. At least when a single cylinder engine is used...

In this regard, a rigid coupling would be best, but then shaft alignment needs to be perfect, and stay that way, even as the engine and generator twist the frame under load.

I'd definitely select a coupling that is specifically designed to handle the impulse loads, as was stated above. :brows:

If your generator is two pole, the belt and pulley set up is the way to go, to get the engine speed down to something less grating on the nerves. I have a Wisconsin driven Winco that runs 2400 rpm, performs quite respectably, and isn't unpleasant to listen to. Like this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6hvpFM8-qiU


It would be a Lister HA2 coupled to a Kato 10kw head.

I'm thinking that would make belt drives a little more difficult unless a guy were to find a cog belt...
Although side by side would make the footprint a little smaller...

Lovejoy coupler... Never heard of one before, Time to google...


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I worked on something similar 35 years ago. It was direct coupled and the alignment was maintained by tapered pins in taper reamed holes in the mounting pads of both generator and engine. I had to remove it to do some work on the engine but it went back into place exactly right.