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#17446 - 10/18/16 12:56 AM Generator Status.
Doc Offline
MBN Old hand
Registered: 02/12/10
Posts: 1204
Loc: Beryl Jnct. SW Utah, Mdl Nowhe... ***
Have to report a failure of HF 4k generator.... after roughly 2800 hours! Was running along smooth and strong last Wednesday night when the output suddenly went to zip. Engine was still running just fine, just no power. Was below thirty outside and I didn't feel like messing with it so I just let it run out of gas. Thursday I pulled new spare out of box, oiled and fueled it up. Started first pull right out of box.

Turning to old gen I discovered to my suprise that it actually has a set of brushes and a rudimentary AVR (just a FWB and a varistor feeding feild coil.) Not much there to fail. Likely the brushes. Doing a bit of Internet digging I find that nearly all the 4-6kw use the same brush block. Can dig that! Got three brand new ones on order from Aliexpress for under $5 shipped!
Will post an update when I swap them out. Meanwhile... Where did I put those new inductive pickup hour meters?
Doc
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#17447 - 10/18/16 06:34 AM Re: Generator Status. [Re: Doc]
bunkclimber Offline
MBN Old hand
Registered: 02/14/10
Posts: 1101
Loc: Maryland *****
Im kinda surprised that you haven't gone brushless after all this time..but I guess if it works for you then go with it..especially if you have a parts source to maintain the gens with.Ive serviced and parted many brushed gens with melted brush holders and brushes hanging on by a thread..literally.Most aren't worth repair with manufacturers designs changing so often,repair parts not available..when I quote a customer with $500 for a new 5500w generator end,most just say scrap it.
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#17448 - 10/18/16 07:57 PM Re: Generator Status. [Re: bunkclimber]
Doc Offline
MBN Old hand
Registered: 02/12/10
Posts: 1204
Loc: Beryl Jnct. SW Utah, Mdl Nowhe... ***
All my smaller gens are brushless, which is what led me to think the HF 4k was. But basically there are only two types of non-permanant magnet generators: Self or "harmonically" excited and brush type field coil excited.

In all truth I prefer the brush type, as they are much easier to modify. The harmonically excited gens are restricted to 3600 RPM. You can't run them much below that or they simply don't work. Whereas you can run a brush type at almost an idle and still get them to produce voltage (though obviously reduced). Thus you can modify a brush type into a DIY inverter gen.

Don't understand your difficulty in finding parts. As I said my researches showed most all mid sized gen brush assemblies were pretty much identical. I just went for best deal. First I looked for a set for my specific model, then I just matched their specs on Aliexpress.

Now I will have a spare to play with I think I'll try coming up with a working DIY inverter gen design. I'm thinking of running output into a big 240VAC variac core with an added secondary winding. Recify the secondary and run to a cap bank that feeds an inverter. Sense voltage feeding inverter and feed an RC servo on the throttle to throttle up under heavier loads, or thottle down under light loads. Will have to play with it I suspect as nearly all inverter gen designs I've seen so far use PM based multi pole generators. Lower freq from lower RPM might prove problematic. (Just how many caps needed to compensate.)
That's my plan and I'm sticking to it...
Doc
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#17469 - 10/28/16 12:18 AM Re: Generator Status. [Re: Doc]
bunkclimber Offline
MBN Old hand
Registered: 02/14/10
Posts: 1101
Loc: Maryland *****
when we repair a genset regardless of size we have to put back OEM parts if available,unless the customer approves substitute.I get your sourcing idea with Aliexpress,they do have a lot available but the customer has to approve that with us,then we still have time invested in a small POS worn out briggs or tecumseh at 75/hr.Usually by the time they get brought in to us for repair the brush holder is melted and the brushes have eaten up the slip rings/stator.Sometimes its just the cap,I'll let em go with $30 and make a future customer.People dont understand the time and effort that goes into repairing something and then want to bitch and complain when it doesnt start on its 2nd or third pull after its been sitting for a whole year with ethanol fuel in it..
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#17471 - 10/30/16 07:25 PM Re: Generator Status. [Re: bunkclimber]
Doc Offline
MBN Old hand
Registered: 02/12/10
Posts: 1204
Loc: Beryl Jnct. SW Utah, Mdl Nowhe... ***
Brushes arrived. Haven't tried them yet, but quality looks good.

I never run ethanol fuel. Says right on top of gen not to run E85.
Doc
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#17472 - 10/31/16 02:01 PM Re: Generator Status. [Re: Doc]
bunkclimber Offline
MBN Old hand
Registered: 02/14/10
Posts: 1101
Loc: Maryland *****
got 5 more brushless watercooled diesels coming in end of next week..5kw and 10kw.Its always a crap shoot as to what could be wrong with 'em..an adventure for sure.
Best fuel we came upon for gassers is aviation gasoline,100octane low lead..it even acts a solvent to clean out the carburetors believe it or not.Engines run cooler on it too.We routinely get 2years storage on it,no issues.
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#17473 - 10/31/16 10:38 PM Re: Generator Status. [Re: bunkclimber]
tom Offline
MBN Old hand
Registered: 02/14/10
Posts: 1747
Loc: kodiak alaska *****
with the 100 octane are you seeing any burnt valves.
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#17474 - 11/01/16 03:46 AM Re: Generator Status. [Re: tom]
bunkclimber Offline
MBN Old hand
Registered: 02/14/10
Posts: 1101
Loc: Maryland *****
havent seen any burnt valves,the engines do run a bit leaner on the avgas but havent seen any damage as of yet..the airport where we get the gas runs two pressure washers and the escort golfcart(runs all day every day) on the 100LL avgas and haven't killed em yet after years of service. $4.50/gallon,but compared to a complete carb job its still cheap.Not to steal Doc's post,Doc if you can keep a harbor fright gen running for that long,you'll definitely hold the record.Maybe there's something in that 'moly voodoo that you do'
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#17479 - 11/01/16 07:01 PM Re: Generator Status. [Re: bunkclimber]
mdlawnguy Offline
MBN Enthusiast
Registered: 03/07/10
Posts: 878
Loc: maryland *****
OK how come race fuel costs 10.00 gal and aviation fuel is 4.50
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#17480 - 11/01/16 07:38 PM Re: Generator Status. [Re: bunkclimber]
Doc Offline
MBN Old hand
Registered: 02/12/10
Posts: 1204
Loc: Beryl Jnct. SW Utah, Mdl Nowhe... ***
Originally Posted By: bunkclimber
Maybe there's something in that 'moly voodoo that you do'


This is inside of an engine with over 4,000 hours on it. Failure was due to rivets on the cam compression relief pall working loose and letting weight beat the crap out of camshaft drive gear on crank. But the rest of the engine sure didn't look like it had 4,000+ hours on it. Treatment? One time addition of one teaspoon pure molybdenum disulfide powder. I got the bottle when I was a sophmore in high school (1967). Still has about a dozen treatments left in it.
Doc

Oops, wrong computer. Will upload pics later.
here: Molytreated engine


Edited by Doc (02/11/19 08:36 AM)
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#17483 - 11/01/16 07:49 PM Re: Generator Status. [Re: Doc]
Doc Offline
MBN Old hand
Registered: 02/12/10
Posts: 1204
Loc: Beryl Jnct. SW Utah, Mdl Nowhe... ***
Here, try this....


Attachments
PHOTO_20150525_161503.jpg

PHOTO_20150525_161755.jpg


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#17484 - 11/01/16 10:20 PM Re: Generator Status. [Re: Doc]
tom Offline
MBN Old hand
Registered: 02/14/10
Posts: 1747
Loc: kodiak alaska *****
am I looking at a hole in the top of the piston.
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#17485 - 11/01/16 10:56 PM Re: Generator Status. [Re: tom]
Doc Offline
MBN Old hand
Registered: 02/12/10
Posts: 1204
Loc: Beryl Jnct. SW Utah, Mdl Nowhe... ***
Originally Posted By: tom
am I looking at a hole in the top of the piston.


No, think that's shadow of direction arrow.
Doc
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#17486 - 11/02/16 03:17 AM Re: Generator Status. [Re: mdlawnguy]
bunkclimber Offline
MBN Old hand
Registered: 02/14/10
Posts: 1101
Loc: Maryland *****
well you said the word 'race' and thats what drove the price up to 10.00/gallon.The Cam2 and Sunoco fuels are good stuff,but for my money the 100LL is all of it. And if you need more octane than 100 then you can afford the 10.00/gallon

Originally Posted By: mdlawnguy
OK how come race fuel costs 10.00 gal and aviation fuel is 4.50
Top
#17488 - 11/02/16 07:10 AM Re: Generator Status. [Re: bunkclimber]
Lincoln Offline
MBN Enthusiast
Registered: 03/25/11
Posts: 651
Loc: Parry Sound Ontario Canada *****
You're sure right about that Doc!! No way that looks like 4000 hrs! From the pics it looks like a new engine.
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If you can't weld well.....weld lots...
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#17489 - 11/02/16 08:21 AM Re: Generator Status. [Re: Lincoln]
cjmac Offline
MBN Enthusiast
Registered: 05/08/10
Posts: 560
Loc: Canada *****
The top picture is difficult to interpret, but there does appear to be a ridge at the top of the cylinder. It is impressive how clean it is.

Chris
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#17495 - 11/02/16 07:26 PM Re: Generator Status. [Re: cjmac]
Doc Offline
MBN Old hand
Registered: 02/12/10
Posts: 1204
Loc: Beryl Jnct. SW Utah, Mdl Nowhe... ***
Having trouble posting pics from new tablet computer. Android 5 "Lollipop" seems to have an aversion to multitasking, which is particularly odd as they tout it as one of it's strengths. But I'll try getting a pic of the rod journal up.
Doc

Nope, just trying to select a pic to upload android media server crashes. Will have to swap SD to old tablet.
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#17497 - 11/03/16 03:27 AM Re: Generator Status. [Re: bunkclimber]
ktmtragic Offline
MBN member
Registered: 07/04/10
Posts: 235
Loc: Sydney Australia
Av gas is smokeless paraffin. Brother was doing his pilots license so we got it cheap! Car loved it ! Great stuff engine loved it and went faster than an F16 fly by
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#17498 - 11/03/16 03:32 AM Re: Generator Status. [Re: ktmtragic]
ktmtragic Offline
MBN member
Registered: 07/04/10
Posts: 235
Loc: Sydney Australia
Doc
You need to check out who is busy in the background on android and KILL THEM ! Main culprits Goog and FB and MESSENGER ! Check out battery usage as a start.
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#17500 - 11/03/16 04:08 AM Re: Generator Status. [Re: ktmtragic]
ktmtragic Offline
MBN member
Registered: 07/04/10
Posts: 235
Loc: Sydney Australia
Doc
You need to check out who is busy in the background on android and KILL THEM ! Main culprits Goog and FB and MESSENGER ! Check out battery usage as a start.
Top
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