Your genset

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11 years 6 months ago #1094 by John Meskauskas
Your genset was created by John Meskauskas
Lew, your genset (described in your refrigeration comments) sounds great. Could you provide details as to what you did, photos, dimensions, the issues that vexed you, etc. I got a never-run 30-some year old Westerbeke 2.5KW unit powered by a Petter diesel. I've not been able to get the Petter to run but the generator section should be OK (or I can go with Harbor Freight). To make this work, I would need an engine of around 5 HP which runs at 3600 if it's direct drive or some other speed that I can get a proper combination of pulleys for. Commercial gensets seem to have a lot of electrical controls which I would not plan to try to duplicate. I would imagine maintaining engine speed in the proper range to be tough to do? True?

The major users of the current would be two 120 VAC refrigeration units. When these die, I will replace per your recommendations but since they work, I want to run them. In your experience, are these fussy about voltage variations?

Thanks..John

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11 years 6 months ago #1095 by Lew Streeter
Replied by Lew Streeter on topic Re:Your genset
I used a 12 hp Yanmar diesel that is no longer available. I purchased it from a friend that had marineized it meaning he had made a heat exchanger to replace the radiator and a stainless exhaust manifold that I did modify as to direction of discharge it already had a fitting for raw water to enter and cool the muffler and hose.
I used Gates Rubber's web site for a calculator to tell me what size and how many belts and then I went with one more belt as it was not that much different in price for the pulleys. You can purchase sheaves from Manufactures Supply on line.
I did use a 5500 Watt belt driven generator from Harbor freight and it has preformed well.
You will need to make a steel frame to mount an engine on and the generator making sure that one slides to adjust the belts.
Kubota does manufacture a industrial diesel that is a single cylinder that will do the job. Make sure to oversize your engine for trouble free operation.
Now that you have done all this work and spent all this money why not instead add 4 135 watt 12 volt solar panels with a 40 amp mppt controller.
Then use the generator space for 1 six golf cart battery bank in a battery box with a lid and good ventilation and another bank under the floor where the companionway steps are. 6 more golf cart batteries. This should be enough to run a 4000 watt invertor that should operate your antique refrigeration.
But taking it a step further change out the 110 volt units for 2 12 volt with evaporator plates and do away with generator noise and fuel consumption.
Make sure your main engine has a large enough alternator for those cloudy periods and use enough belts to drive it. Mine will put out 100 amps continuous which charges it up quicker than the battery charger that only puts out 50 amp.
So in conclusion learning from my mistakes can save you money and grief in the long run. Keep in mind that you can't air condition for very long with the battery set up but who needs that we are sailors.
Good luck
Lew
PS If you decide to go with the generator your peeters is too small to do the job and that's why it is worn out.

Lew Streeter
Free N Clear
Hull #70

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