Re: Picking a generator
For portable use, LP (Propane) powered gensets are a bit of a pain. So as noted by BB Bill, having several gensets of differing sizes and fuel sources is probably going to be very convenient. Would expect that one would find at least one gasoline-fueled genset very convenient. They do need to have fuel poured into their tanks, unless fueled from a nurse tank. But if you have gasoline fueled vehicles on the farm, it is nice to have one or more gasoline fueled gensets.
Honda brand gensets are very solid, and are very conservatively rated. (the Honda brand generators I've looked at have a Surge rating of 20 or on some, 30 minutes -- much better than any of the inexpensive generators). Have used Honda brand genssets here, of varying sizes, and all of them have been very reliable and trouble free. We do use an Inverter genset, similar to the one linked by Marc, installed as the backup genset to the main Diesel, and it is quiet and fuel stingy, but needs fuel poured into its tank.
Regarding the Generac Ecogen 6500, or 6.5 (forget), some here do use them. One member reported a motor siezure on one at abaout 41 hours, but was being replaced under warranty. Elsewhere, there have been reports of users having diffficulty doing the Field Upgrade from 120 VAC to 240 VAC output. The issue was incorrect output voltage after the upgrade. Something about a new Control board or similar being needed. It is quite possible this has been resolved by Generac by now.
Some extended discussion of the Generac Ecogen here:
There is no simple answer to the question of just which genset, or even fuel source for gensets. Many trade-offs. Good Luck, Vic
Last edited by Vic; August 1st, 2012 at 9:38 PDT.
Reason: Added Link, TYOP, Make certain mispellings intact!
Off-Grid, Sys1: 1280 AH 48 V bat, 3.150 KW STC PV, MX-60, Xantrex Stacked SW+ 5548s; EU6500isa, 21KW Kubota diesel gens, misc Honda Eu gens
Sys2: 1280 AH 48 V 4KS25 Surrettes, 5.88 KW STC, Two Classic 150s, MN SPDs, Stacked X SW+ 5548s; Kohler 18 KW LP, EU 3000isa gens, HB DC Charger, Midnite Breakers/boxes. Thanks for this great Forum!