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Old 11-22-2021, 11:03 AM   #1
1972K20
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Generators

Any advise when shopping for generators? I want to be able to run 220. Are the Harbor Freight generators any good?
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Old 11-22-2021, 11:16 AM   #2
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Re: Generators

Would need more information to make any recommendations.

Every day use or a few times a year use?

Is there a certain piece of equipment that you would like to run on 220 or is there a few pieces of equipment you want to run? What is the wattage of what you would like to be able to run.

Do you already have propane or natural gas? If not what are your plans for fuel storage? Larger units can consume quite a bit of fuel.

With that being said there is some good YouTube videos on all of the different generators with a few people testing them out. The harbor freight predator series to seem to get good reviews but I have no first-hand experience. For occasional use I would probably give them a shot. If you plan on running things weekly I might looking to something with a little better reputation?
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Old 11-22-2021, 11:23 AM   #3
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Re: Generators

This would be occasional use at a barn with no power available. The 220V items are a compressor and a welder. Other than that, basic shop tools. I'm not sure which fuel I would use...I do have a propane tank on site.
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Old 11-22-2021, 11:40 AM   #4
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Re: Generators

Would you need the compressor or welder at the same time? Compressors and welders can be tough on generators with inrush and start up current.

Do you generally store gasoline at your place? If so fuel storage and occasional use should be fine.
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Old 11-22-2021, 12:02 PM   #5
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Re: Generators

The welder and compressor would not run simultaneous. Storing fuel should not be an issue. What's the best fuel propane, gas or diesel? Or a combo?
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Old 11-22-2021, 07:03 PM   #6
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Re: Generators

I don't have an answer to that. To me the best fuel is the one I already have or use. If I needed something to run for weeks at a time it would be propane or natural gas if I had it. Diesel is great and personally think it stores better (all petroleum products should be in rotation). For occasional use gas is fine in my humble opinion.

As I said type generator into a you tube search. I've watched hours and have learned a lot.
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Old 11-25-2021, 08:46 AM   #7
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Re: Generators

Use the propane thats already on site. I have a Honda tri fuel generator that has yet seen gasoline so not to gum up the works and starts beautifully every time.
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Old 11-30-2021, 02:44 PM   #8
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Re: Generators

I would not buy a HF almost anything, especially a generator.

We had a ice storm a few years back and alot of low priced generator made it into our area some were HF, some were other cheap ones.

Many many problems to name a few I had direct contact with.

(1) the valve train was completely shot after about 20hours of use. the recoil busted also but this could have been from misuse
(2) the rectifiers went out in less than a week

I would stick with name brand items with briggs/honda/kholer engines
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Old 12-01-2021, 01:29 AM   #9
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Re: Generators

The Harbor Freight generators work fine. I have an 8750w and have used it for years, has hundreds of hours of use. Due to "public safety power shut offs" two to 4 times a month for the last few years. I am careless about maintaining it. Last time I changed the oil it only drained a few ounces. It is noisy, but most all higher output portable are. One drawback is I use the 220v to power my entire house. 220v output is limited to 30a when it could be more. Looking for a 10-11k myself with 50a 220v. Need to get it soon as Ca banned sale of small gas engine devices here as of next year. Note wattage output with fuel type. Propane output is less than FF and natural gas output is even less than propane. Something that is not normally pointed out.
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Old Yesterday, 06:44 PM   #10
1972K20
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Re: Generators

Quote:
Originally Posted by Richard View Post
The Harbor Freight generators work fine. I have an 8750w and have used it for years, has hundreds of hours of use. Due to "public safety power shut offs" two to 4 times a month for the last few years. I am careless about maintaining it. Last time I changed the oil it only drained a few ounces. It is noisy, but most all higher output portable are. One drawback is I use the 220v to power my entire house. 220v output is limited to 30a when it could be more. Looking for a 10-11k myself with 50a 220v. Need to get it soon as Ca banned sale of small gas engine devices here as of next year. Note wattage output with fuel type. Propane output is less than FF and natural gas output is even less than propane. Something that is not normally pointed out.
Good points.

So, with the ban on the sale of small engines in California, will folks be making purchases from out of state or on-line?
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Old Today, 02:28 PM   #11
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Re: Generators

What type welder? Old school transformer or newer inverter?

I have a 3kw military inverter generator(MEP 831A) that is supposed to provide 31A @ 120V. On a static load it does real good. If I try to use my Lincoln 140C welder(120V), the disconnect on the generator often opens. Guessing the inverter generator doesn't like the instant short the welder provides any time you have an oops with the wire distance.

Something to test before you buy an inverter type generator.
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