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Author Topic: Texas in a state of emergency  (Read 1792 times)

kgbsquirrel

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #25 on: February 17, 2021, 11:40:54 AM »

130-150ish.  Most newer ones will have the voltage regulator installed on them already.  I honestly don't know if they need a field current to get working or if they will self start when spinning, as I haven't played with a newer (after 2006-ish) one in a while.  Some of the older GM alternators I used to work on needed a field current to start actually charging.

That's probably good.  If I was buying a generator that I knew I was going to store long term, I'd look for a 2-stroke powered one so I could just drain the fuel and carb and call it cool, but it's better to actually run them every now and then to keep all those fluids moving around and the internal parts coated in oil.  My gen sits in the shed in front of my lawn mower and I just wheel it out ever month or so when I start mowing the lawn and start it.  When I finish mowing and go grab the weed whacker I turn off the fuel and let in run dry, then I put it away when I am done with yard work.  No real added time and it runs through maybe half a gal of gas a year that way.  Keeps the battery charged as well.

which reminds me.....I need to start the generator this weekend.

So for a hypothetical, if you wanted to put one away in a barn for a decade or more, would it be enough or is that tear down and cosmoline time?

dogmush

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #26 on: February 17, 2021, 12:05:22 PM »

For a decade or more?

I don't think you can expect it to work without serious reconditioning. 

I would say fill the crankcase with oil to the top.  That will keep the inside from rusting, but every seal and rubber piece in it will crack or fall apart in that timeline.  Certainly fuel lines, fuel pump diaphragms, and probably the carb float and seat will be deteriorated.  Plastic pieces will crack (like the recoil starter pawls).

You'd want to find some way to seal the generator portion, ideally with some desiccant.  Also some way to make sure small creatures don't remove your wire insulation (as they love to do).

But that's probably pissing up a rope.  After 10 years expect to have to recondition and replace a bunch of stuff, no matter how you stored it. 

zxcvbob

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #27 on: February 17, 2021, 12:13:15 PM »

Aside from removing fuel, lube oil and coolant (if any), and protecting from dust and rust, what else should be done to a small genset to prep it for proper long term storage?

Convert it to propane or NG. 

I have a Yamaha inverter genset.  I used to start it every other month to keep the carb clean.  I missed one time, and it wouldn't start after that; it's jetted too lean to begin with (probably for California) and not adjustable, and any clogging at all is enough to take it out of commission.  If I squirt a little gas in the air cleaner (which is very hard to get to) it will start but it won't keep running.  Someday I will take the carburetor off and see if I can open the main jet just a little.
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charby

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #28 on: February 17, 2021, 12:27:19 PM »

So for a hypothetical, if you wanted to put one away in a barn for a decade or more, would it be enough or is that tear down and cosmoline time?

I'd be looking at a PTO driven generator then and find a reason to own a small tractor that gets used regularly.
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kgbsquirrel

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #29 on: February 17, 2021, 12:55:18 PM »

I'd be looking at a PTO driven generator then and find a reason to own a small tractor that gets used regularly.

We've already covered that, get and inverter for your car.  My question is about long storage.

charby

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #30 on: February 17, 2021, 01:00:05 PM »

We've already covered that, get and inverter for your car.  My question is about long storage.

and I answered that, this is a PTO generator FYI, it's not an invertor.



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kgbsquirrel

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #31 on: February 17, 2021, 01:01:34 PM »

For a decade or more?

I don't think you can expect it to work without serious reconditioning. 

I would say fill the crankcase with oil to the top.  That will keep the inside from rusting, but every seal and rubber piece in it will crack or fall apart in that timeline.  Certainly fuel lines, fuel pump diaphragms, and probably the carb float and seat will be deteriorated.  Plastic pieces will crack (like the recoil starter pawls).

You'd want to find some way to seal the generator portion, ideally with some desiccant.  Also some way to make sure small creatures don't remove your wire insulation (as they love to do).

But that's probably pissing up a rope.  After 10 years expect to have to recondition and replace a bunch of stuff, no matter how you stored it.


So yeah, near total disassembly, removal of anything rot or ageable, and packaged durably against moisture, oxygen, and vermin.  Very good to know.

WLJ

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #32 on: February 17, 2021, 01:44:05 PM »

Add Missouri to the list

Quote
Ford Motor Co. is shutting down production of its highly profitable 2021 F-150 pickup trucks and Transit Vans for a full week in Missouri, the company confirmed Monday.

"Due to unseasonably cold temperatures in the midsection of the United States, Ford was warned that the availability of natural gas could be restricted in the Kansas City area in the coming days," said Kelli Felker, global manufacturing and labor communications manager.
Quote
Pleas to conserve
Natural gas companies in Missouri have urged all customers in recent days to reduce their use of heat as much as possible. Bitter cold has sent both gas demand and gas prices soaring, while also creating supply issues such as frozen gas wells, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported.

Its just straining the entire system, said Scott Carter, president of Spire Missouri, the St. Louis-based natural gas utility.

Ford stops F-150, Transit Van production at Kansas City Assembly plant due to gas shortage
https://www.freep.com/story/money/cars/ford/2021/02/15/2021-ford-f-150-transit-production/4487837001/
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Ben

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #33 on: February 17, 2021, 02:22:48 PM »

My irrigation wheel line is run by a Honda small engine, one of the lawnmower sized ones, and every October, I just throw some Stabil in, start it up, turn the fuel off after a couple of minutes and let it run out the fuel. It stays outside all Winter with just a plastic cover and starts right up the next April after 3-4 pulls.
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zahc

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #34 on: February 17, 2021, 02:56:47 PM »

How many amps for a basic alternator on a four banger?

Nowadays cars put out more than they used to. Figure 70 A minimum, or about 1 kW. Most probably, it will be more like 120A or closer to 2kW.

You can store engines for a decade successfully. Just copy what outboard motor and snowmobile winterizers do. Shouldn't be a problem and usually the hazards are more like mice build a nest in it, or wasps colonize it or something.
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Jim147

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #35 on: February 17, 2021, 04:38:26 PM »

If i was doing a long storage generator I would buy some of the canned gas and have stabile for all the fuel I had at home or purchased as the event came on.

The older alternators like the big subarc's I used to run and work on needed an exciter. For the alternator it was just a momentary 12 volt zap.
Sometimes we carry more weight then we owe.
And sometimes goes on and on and on.

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Nick1911

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #36 on: February 17, 2021, 04:47:01 PM »

If i was doing a long storage generator I would buy some of the canned gas and have stabile for all the fuel I had at home or purchased as the event came on.

The older alternators like the big subarc's I used to run and work on needed an exciter. For the alternator it was just a momentary 12 volt zap.

Had an interesting one on my old massey ferguson: it was converted to 12 volt at some point, and had a GM alternator.  It wouldn't charge until I revved the rpm up to 2000ish.  At that speed, it would self-excite and be fine.  Before that, no charging.  Not ideal.

Simple alternator with a built in regulator, it had a big battery output post terminal, and two spade connectors.  One was to sense battery voltage, and could be tied directly in to the output lug.  The other was for the charge indicator lamp.

I looked and looked, and finally found documentation on the internals of the alternator.  As it turns out, it uses the small amount of current passing through the charge indicator lamp as startup excitation current!  I replaced the missing bulb in the charge indicator lamp holder, and it started working right from low rpm startup.  I couldn't decide if I thought it was ingenious or really stupid.

Jim147

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #37 on: February 17, 2021, 05:13:06 PM »

Mine is the same way.
Sometimes we carry more weight then we owe.
And sometimes goes on and on and on.

BAH-WEEP-GRAAAGHNAH WHEEP NI-NI BONG

kgbsquirrel

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #38 on: February 17, 2021, 06:12:38 PM »

If i was doing a long storage generator I would buy some of the canned gas and have stabile for all the fuel I had at home or purchased as the event came on.

The older alternators like the big subarc's I used to run and work on needed an exciter. For the alternator it was just a momentary 12 volt zap.

Propane pretty much never goes bad, right?

Jim147

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #39 on: February 17, 2021, 06:17:06 PM »

That's true I just don't have a propane generator and it seems every February I'm running low in the big tank.
Sometimes we carry more weight then we owe.
And sometimes goes on and on and on.

BAH-WEEP-GRAAAGHNAH WHEEP NI-NI BONG

charby

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #40 on: February 17, 2021, 06:19:01 PM »

Propane pretty much never goes bad, right?

Not in your lifetime but seals degrade and leak out the contents, or seal tear when you crack it after sitting for years and don't reseal. I had the later happen to me on a old 100# bottle I found and cracked the valve. At least it was less than 10% full and it was outside.

Propane is heavier than air and will settle, makes for a big kaboom in homes with basements.
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HankB

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #41 on: February 17, 2021, 09:42:06 PM »

I live just west of Austin, TX.
CATV and Internet were out from Sunday evening through Wednesday evening, just under 72 hours.
Landline phone has been out over a week. (Thanks, AT&T)
No loss of electricity yet. No loss of water, either.
No newspaper delivery since 2/13
No mail delivery since 2/13
Both continuous and rolling blackouts in Austin . . . Austin Energy buys a lot of it's electricity from wind power producers, and a lot of the wind farms' windmills are frozen.
The same people who advised homeowners to "drip" faucets to prevent pipes from freezing are now telling people to stop dripping faucets because of potential water shortage.
« Last Edit: February 18, 2021, 05:18:18 AM by HankB »
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zxcvbob

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #42 on: February 17, 2021, 10:25:29 PM »

My daughter lives in Houston proper and has been without power for several days.  They just took off for New Orleans to see the place right after Mardi Gras (the city cleans up pretty good)  I don't know if that's smart or not given the road conditions. 

My parents live north of Houston on US-59; about 10 miles from Humble.  Their power was out for about 14 hours and is back on now.  They had one pipe freeze but it didn't break.  (My outdoor faucets and the pipes leading to them freeze every year; they are fine as long as there's not a hose attached, and the freezing water doesn't get caught between two closed valves or ice blockages.)
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Mike Irwin

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #43 on: February 18, 2021, 04:32:54 AM »

Regarding propane...

Back in 1989 we had a really nasty polar vortex over much of the country that iced the living hell out of the Mississippi. That stopped the propane barges from moving and led to spiking energy prices and shortages throughout a lot of the Southern United States. It might not go bad, but if it can't move, it's of no use to anyone.
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MechAg94

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #44 on: February 18, 2021, 08:43:58 AM »

I heard advice to make sure you vehicle is topped on fuel.  The Gulf Coast refineries are shut down.  It will take time for them to get back online.  There will be a short term gap where no fuel will be produced at least locally. 

The plant I work at is largely able to start back up if we had feed gas and utilities such as service water to refill cooling towers and nitrogen gas.  The biggest limit now is a lot of the utility infrastructure such as river water supply and gases like nitrogen are not available.  In my area, the severe freeze is over (just a little more tonight and maybe Friday night).  There is a great deal more interdependency in the chemical industry than most people realize. 
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charby

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #45 on: February 18, 2021, 08:46:58 AM »

I heard advice to make sure you vehicle is topped on fuel.  The Gulf Coast refineries are shut down.  It will take time for them to get back online.  There will be a short term gap where no fuel will be produced at least locally. 

The plant I work at is largely able to start back up if we had feed gas and utilities such as service water to refill cooling towers and nitrogen gas.  The biggest limit now is a lot of the utility infrastructure such as river water supply and gases like nitrogen are not available.  In my area, the severe freeze is over (just a little more tonight and maybe Friday night).  There is a great deal more interdependency in the chemical industry than most people realize.

Anhydrous plant?
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Mike Irwin

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #46 on: February 18, 2021, 10:07:52 AM »

Crap, never thought about gasoline. I'm down to a quarter tank right now.
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Ben

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #47 on: February 18, 2021, 10:09:12 AM »

Gasoline has already shot up here.
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Jim147

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #48 on: February 18, 2021, 11:09:43 AM »

Up twenty cents in a couple of days here.
Sometimes we carry more weight then we owe.
And sometimes goes on and on and on.

BAH-WEEP-GRAAAGHNAH WHEEP NI-NI BONG

Mike Irwin

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Re: Texas in a state of emergency
« Reply #49 on: February 18, 2021, 11:33:47 AM »

Gas prices have been going up lately because oil has been going up, but this weather is having a big impact on energy prices across the board. I'm really glad that I heat with pellets.
Carbon Monoxide, sucking the life out of idiots, 'tards, and fools since man tamed fire.
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