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RVing message boards => Boondocking => Topic started by: Lainiest on May 07, 2017, 01:04:36 PM

Title: Portable Generator
Post by: Lainiest on May 07, 2017, 01:04:36 PM
I am looking to get a portable generator for dry camping.  The Yamaha EF3000i  looks like the one.  But it weighs 157 pounds.  Where are you storing your generators?  How are you getting it from your storage place in your truck bed or TT to the ground and back up into storage?
Title: Re: Portable Generator
Post by: donn on May 07, 2017, 01:41:28 PM
Why do you think you need a 3KW generator?  Do you intend to run an AC unit all day?
The EF2800I only weighs 68 pounds.
But if your really concerned about weight and you need to run the AC all day, buy a pair of 2KW and a parallel cable.
Title: Re: Portable Generator
Post by: Rene T on May 07, 2017, 02:04:30 PM
I am looking to get a portable generator for dry camping.  The Yamaha EF3000i  looks like the one.  But it weighs 157 pounds.  Where are you storing your generators?  How are you getting it from your storage place in your truck bed or TT to the ground and back up into storage?

Why not leave it in the truck. Just keep it away from the walls of the bed so you get good cooling.
Title: Re: Portable Generator
Post by: John From Detroit on May 07, 2017, 06:51:44 PM
157 Pounds. for me.. I'd store it anywhere I wished. Truck bed or storage (Vented) compartment..  That's well within my "Load Limit"

Sadly that might not be true of others

(At QZ a few years ago I picked up a 3-wheel mobility scooter and set it on the table.. 250 pounds)  I was nice. Set it back on the floor/ground.
Title: Re: Portable Generator
Post by: Len and Jo on May 08, 2017, 08:49:33 AM
Sounds like you have a big rig with lots of electrical stuff you "need" while dry camping.  We have a Honda 2000i and with solar it is really to big and heavy for our needs (recharging house batteries and one small space heater).  Now I wish we had the Honda 1000.  Lighter to move around (we put the generator out in the woods about 100 feet away from us to reduce the unwanted noise) would also be easier to store.  Recommend you think hard about your needs and wants. 
Title: Re: Portable Generator
Post by: UTTransplant on May 08, 2017, 11:35:50 AM
We use a Honda 2000 for 95% of our charging needs. We have a second Honda 2000 to run along with the first if we need air conditioning. The two Hondas together weight much less than the 3000 the OP mentions. They are very easy to move around or to connect together. I just can't imagine moving 157 pounds around. That is way past single person carry, and leaving it in your pickup all the time might not be the best use of space.
Title: Re: Portable Generator
Post by: captaindomon on May 10, 2017, 10:42:03 AM
We love our Champion Inverter 75537i. Pure sine wave inverter, quiet, eco mode adjusts RPMs based on load, gas on/off switch, lightweight at sub-100 pounds, already wired with a standard 30 amp RV outlet, and best of all it has a remote control. 3100 watts starting, 2800 running. We stop and start it from INSIDE our trailer as needed. Works like a charm! Check out the other reviews on the amazon page below. Note: I don't have anything to do with Champion other than being a happy customer.

https://www.amazon.com/Champion-Power-Equipment-75537i-Generator/dp/B00JZQUSAC/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1494430781&sr=8-1&keywords=75537i

Title: Re: Portable Generator
Post by: muskoka guy on May 10, 2017, 09:06:51 PM
I am by no means a big fan of cheap generators. I have hondas for my contracting business. BUT. I saw a link for these linkable, stackable champion generators.  2000 watts, inverter style and only 50lbs each. For less than a grand you get two of them. They are getting good reviews. Honda will have to step up with something similar, as the idea is a good one. https://www.amazon.com/Champion-Power-Equipment-73536i-Stackable/dp/B0041K09D8/ref=sr_1_1?s=lawn-garden&ie=UTF8&qid=1494468133&sr=1-1&keywords=stackable+generator
Title: Re: Portable Generator
Post by: kjansen on May 10, 2017, 09:51:21 PM
I looked at Yamaha and Honda and first looked at the 3000 watt, but both were in that 157 pound range.  Decided to go with two Honda 2000s. the dollar figure was about the same no matter which way and I can hook the two Hondas together and get an extra 1000 watts. That plus the Hondas weight 47 pounds each so they are easy to move.
Title: Re: Portable Generator
Post by: butchiiii on May 13, 2017, 01:25:02 AM
157 Pounds. for me.. I'd store it anywhere I wished. Truck bed or storage (Vented) compartment..  That's well within my "Load Limit"

Sadly that might not be true of others

(At QZ a few years ago I picked up a 3-wheel mobility scooter and set it on the table.. 250 pounds)  I was nice. Set it back on the floor/ground.

Good to have you on my side :)
Title: Re: Portable Generator
Post by: Old_Crow on May 13, 2017, 07:12:55 AM
I used to do crap like that...until I got a double hernia helping to load my boss's player piano.  Now I leave that heavy stuff to the youngsters.
Title: Re: Portable Generator
Post by: Rvtex on May 14, 2017, 09:32:20 AM
X2 on the two 2000watt with parallel. I just bought 2 champions and parallel cord. They weigh 47# ea. One is almost always enough and if I need more I run parallel. Both fit in my front basement perfect. The champions were waaay cheaper than the red or blue. I got both and the parallel cord for under a thousand shipped to my front door in 2 days...love amazon!!
Title: Re: Portable Generator
Post by: Rvtex on May 14, 2017, 09:33:45 AM
I am by no means a big fan of cheap generators. I have hondas for my contracting business. BUT. I saw a link for these linkable, stackable champion generators.  2000 watts, inverter style and only 50lbs each. For less than a grand you get two of them. They are getting good reviews. Honda will have to step up with something similar, as the idea is a good one. https://www.amazon.com/Champion-Power-Equipment-73536i-Stackable/dp/B0041K09D8/ref=sr_1_1?s=lawn-garden&ie=UTF8&qid=1494468133&sr=1-1&keywords=stackable+generator


X2
Title: Re: Portable Generator
Post by: daveevans on May 17, 2017, 11:53:23 PM
Hey Lainiest,
There are a few options when it comes to portability. If you are looking for something around the 3000W mark I would recommend checking out the Briggs and Stratton 30545. It only weighs 89lbs and has dual handles which allow you to share the load when lifting is necessary. Also has telescoping handles and built in wheels which allow you to roll it behind you. Here's an in depth review I found;

https://www.quietpowergenerators.com/2017/03/10/briggs-stratton-30545-p3000-powersmart-series/ (https://www.quietpowergenerators.com/2017/03/10/briggs-stratton-30545-p3000-powersmart-series/)

Alternatively you could also parallel two smaller units together. In fact for the price of the Yamaha you could almost certainly buy two smaller/cheaper units and run them together. This allows you to move the units individually and also cuts down on noise emission.
This page has a section dedicated to running two inverter generators in parallel;

https://www.quietpowergenerators.com/generators-vs-inverters/ (https://www.quietpowergenerators.com/generators-vs-inverters/)

Hope this helps and remember lift with your legs! :)
Dave

Title: Re: Portable Generator
Post by: butchiiii on May 18, 2017, 12:48:53 AM
Hey Lainiest,
There are a few options when it comes to portability. If you are looking for something around the 3000W mark I would recommend checking out the Briggs and Stratton 30545. It only weighs 89lbs and has dual handles which allow you to share the load when lifting is necessary. Also has telescoping handles and built in wheels which allow you to roll it behind you. Here's an in depth review I found;

https://www.quietpowergenerators.com/2017/03/10/briggs-stratton-30545-p3000-powersmart-series/ (https://www.quietpowergenerators.com/2017/03/10/briggs-stratton-30545-p3000-powersmart-series/)

Looked like a great deal to me until I noticed they don't ship to California. Non carb compliant  :(

Title: Re: Portable Generator
Post by: SkateBoard on May 18, 2017, 04:34:59 AM
I have the Champion 3400/3100 generator. Remote start and idles down when power not in big demand. Half the price of a Honda and does more
Title: Re: Portable Generator
Post by: H5-Phil on June 02, 2017, 02:54:42 PM
Compare the decibel levels (at idle and full output) of anything you consider buying - this is a must.
I have a Honda 3000is that is 15-years old with 2000+ trouble-free hours on it.  It travels in the bed of our truck (see attached).  It's the most neighbor-friendly generator out there IMHO (which means less noise for you too).  Hours upon hours of runtime on a single tank of gas.  I've camped next to the less expensive brands and it ain't enjoyable.  When we aren't traveling during the winter we place it in our detached garage at home and have needed/used it many times during power outages - it's the real deal when it comes to portable generators.  if you want quiet (and your camping neighbors do even if you don't), buy the Honda EU3000is it runs at 48-58db
Title: Re: Portable Generator
Post by: viceprice on June 02, 2017, 10:00:11 PM
Hey Lainiest,
There are a few options when it comes to portability. If you are looking for something around the 3000W mark I would recommend checking out the Briggs and Stratton 30545. It only weighs 89lbs and has dual handles which allow you to share the load when lifting is necessary. Also has telescoping handles and built in wheels which allow you to roll it behind you. Here's an in depth review I found;

https://www.quietpowergenerators.com/2017/03/10/briggs-stratton-30545-p3000-powersmart-series/ (https://www.quietpowergenerators.com/2017/03/10/briggs-stratton-30545-p3000-powersmart-series/)

Alternatively you could also parallel two smaller units together. In fact for the price of the Yamaha you could almost certainly buy two smaller/cheaper units and run them together. This allows you to move the units individually and also cuts down on noise emission.
This page has a section dedicated to running two inverter generators in parallel;

https://www.quietpowergenerators.com/generators-vs-inverters/ (https://www.quietpowergenerators.com/generators-vs-inverters/)

Hope this helps and remember lift with your legs! :)
Dave

We just purchased the Briggs and Stratton from Amazon Warehouse Deals - "Used, Like New." It appears the only issue was the box was kind of chewed up. I could not see any evidence the box had been previously opened. I was assured it would have the full 2 yr factory warranty. The generator was fine and appeared unused. Everything inside the box looked untouched.  I tested it on our TT for about 1 hour while we camped at a state park last weekend (no hookups - we camped off the TT battery and propane).  I was most interested to see if it would run our 15,000 BTU AC.  Reviews stated it ran the 13,500 BTU AC units. It seemed to work fine on ours - I had all other power draws turned off to see if it would start the AC. I also cycled the AC off and on once to see how it would do with the AC starting with more gas/head pressure on the compressor.  I did all of this with the powersaver switch off - this keeps the generator running at max rpm. I am pretty confident it will work as I envision we will need. After the AC start up and running the AC, the generator still runs at max RPM  when using the powersavor. The gauge on the generator showed about 60% output. I would guess that when over a certain power demand, the generator runs at max RPM. It is a 3000W peak and 2600W continuous inverter generator. This is equivalent to 25 amps peak and 21.5 amps continuous.  60% of 2500W is 1500W which is just about what I calculated the AC to use. Noise is listed at 58db. It seemed within acceptable noise levels. After testing the AC, I used it to charge up the TT battery. In this mode, the RPMs (and noise) decreased in power saver mode.   I lifted it on and off the open tailgate of the pick-up with a full tank of gas (1.5 gal) - that would be about 100 lbs total.

We have a SurgeGuard surge protector and a SurgeGuard voltage regulator. These both monitor open ground and reverse polarity and would not work initially with the generator. First, the generator (and I suspect all inverter types) has a "floating" ground meaning the ground and common are not wired together like residential wiring. The solution is to insert a "bonded" 3 prong plug into one of the standard receptacles. This can be purchased or made by simply wiring a jumper wire inside the plug between the ground and common then plugging it in. You need to be sure you know the common prong if you make your own and label the plug so its purpose is known.The surge protector and the voltage regulator will read the expected ground when the bonded plug is used.  The next obstacle once the ground issue was solved was a "reverse polarity" message. The surge protector will not work with either of these conditions. I had read in one of the generator reviews that it was reported the RV receptacle was wired backwards. I did some testing with my meter to locate the line and common ports in the receptacle. I opened up the panel of the generator and found the red line ("hot") wired into the receptacle labeled "white" - a pretty standard color for common. The other line was a black wire but I could easily tell was being used as common by the way it was connected to all the other receptacles. I reversed the two and tested again before trying any load on the generator. This changed the polarity to the way it should be in the RV receptacle. This allowed everything to work fine. The polarity in the other receptacles was correct. 
Title: Re: Portable Generator
Post by: gravesdiesel on June 26, 2017, 09:29:31 AM
I use a 3700 watt Yanmar diesel generator when I boonie camp. I gotta have diesel power!  ;-)  It will run anything in the camper during the day, then I shut it down in the evening and run on DC.
Title: Re: Portable Generator
Post by: SkateBoard on July 04, 2017, 11:52:23 AM
The biggest factor in me selecting the Champion was the remote start that sets the choke on and off automatically. Doesn't do much good to remote start a Honda and still have to go outside in the cold to set the choke.
Title: Re: Portable Generator
Post by: skeeter_ca on September 23, 2017, 09:38:16 PM
I bought the Champion 4000/3500 gennie. Love it. It has the remote start also. It has an automatic choke like Skateboard says but what I like best about it is you can start it remotely while still having all the appliances on. It holds adding ac power for 15 seconds after it starts so the genie can be running at full speed and stable before it loads up. Also I can shut it off at night, remotely, leave the power turned and when I get up in the morning hit the remote, BAMM starts right up and ready for another day. I have the 159lb gennie attached to the rear of my 5'er on a Curt cargo carrier in a box. It is a bit loud but I have plans on reducing the noise to an acceptable level. At $425 it's a steal. Champion is making a name for itself by being very competitive with the big boys.

skeeter
Title: Re: Portable Generator
Post by: skeeter_ca on September 23, 2017, 09:43:55 PM
I thought about having it in the back of my truck but we usually leave the gennie running for the dogs to get AC while going places in the truck. Would be a big pain to have to pull it in and out of the truck all the time and secure it so it doesn't walk away. Those little light weight gennie's grow legs real easy.

skeeter


Title: Re: Portable Generator
Post by: skeeter_ca on September 23, 2017, 09:52:19 PM
Oh, also with the gennie permanently mounted on the cargo carrier I can run it while driving down the road. The inside is nice and cool when we get to our campsite.

skeeter