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[Lowes] Firman 3500W Generator $299 + FS (was $599) till Apr25

  • Last Updated:
  • Apr 22nd, 2018 10:11 pm
Jr. Member
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Feb 1, 2011
196 posts
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Vancouver
is it noise? my friend has one years ago, it is very noise.
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Nov 20, 2009
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39.0392° N, 125.7625…
TomLafinsky wrote:
Apr 21st, 2018 10:52 am
Never, ever convert a gasoline gen to propane using kits available on the web. NG/propane burns a lot hotter than gasoline. You will permanently damage the engine. Check out combustion temp of gasoline/propane/NG. Even the spark plug used is different between gasoline and NG/propane gens. Sure it will work if you do the conversion. But it is only a matter of time before you very quickly kill the gen.
You could not be more wrong. :

"The U.S. Department of Energy has stated a Propane Powered engine could last up to THREE TIMES LONGER than the same engine powered by gasoline! For example, many fleets that run on Propane have reported extended time between required maintenance. Spark plugs in unleaded gasoline engines need to be replaced every 30,000 miles, but spark plugs in Propane powered engines can last 80,000 to 100,000 miles! Propane also has a higher octane rating, 104 to 112 as compared to gasoline which is 87 to 92, causing engines burning Propane to run much more efficiently...."
Member
Apr 18, 2017
340 posts
142 upvotes
If needing to run a 220v well pump, one might be able to pair this generator with an autotransformer. A 2kva one would cost I think, around about $75. (Or make your own for pennies if so inclined)
Not sure that the inrush current might be too much for the little guy though.
My 3kw Genny handles it, but it's an inverter generator.
[OP]
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Nov 20, 2009
823 posts
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39.0392° N, 125.7625…
TomLafinsky wrote:
Apr 21st, 2018 1:49 pm
First, I'm never wrong ;) Second, you have completely misinterpreted what I wrote. So let me give it another try. A gen sold as a gasoline engine should never be converted to propane. There are real, physical differences between an engine built to only support gasoline and an engine built to support gasoline and propane.
Wrong. First off, the major physical engine differences are only in the fuel metering systems, i.e. the carb or injection system. If the generator manufacturer makes a conversion kit, there will not be a problem, in fact the engine will run cleaner and last much longer.
You mentioned flame temperatures. Peak flame temp for propane is 1990 deg C, Gasoline is 1977 deg. C. , not much of a difference there. Car and truck fleets have been converted to switch between propane and gasoline at the flip of a switch. Generators are available that can use either fuel. The multi-fuel generator engines are identical (except for fuel delivery) to gasoline-only engines.
Deal Addict
Sep 13, 2004
2754 posts
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Toronto
TomLafinsky wrote:
Apr 21st, 2018 7:19 pm
Ignition temp of gasoline is about 500F. Ignition temp of propane is about 850F and ignition temp of NG is about 1100F. Proof is here.... A gen company making a conversion kit is not the same thing than buying a kit from a third party for a gen not built to accommodate propane. Moreover a car engine is a great deal more robust than the small engine found in generators.
Auto-ignition temperature = temperature when the fuel will ignite without a spark or flame. I don't think that directly matters when you use a spark plug. It would matter in a diesel, but pressure would be another variable to take into account, I would guess.

(I'm currently reading "Ignition!: An informal history of liquid rocket propellants" by Clark. Lots of fun; you don't have to be a rocket scientist to enjoy it.)
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Jan 17, 2003
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rendered22 wrote:
Apr 21st, 2018 9:55 am
How much would I need to spend and what should I buy to get a Generator to power my entire home during an outage for longer periods? (3000+sqft home with 4 people) typical electric appliances.

Some of my vehicles use Diesel too. So diesel generator would make sense. Or propane?
I own a whole house generator. It is attached to the natural gas line. 20kW unit, which powers my pool, 3 fridges, AC etc etc. Most people could get away with 14-17kW.
We have a Kohler, but i believe a generac 20kW is about $10k+.
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Aug 15, 2015
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TomLafinsky wrote:
Apr 21st, 2018 1:49 pm
First, I'm never wrong ;) Second, you have completely misinterpreted what I wrote. So let me give it another try. A gen sold as a gasoline engine should never be converted to propane. There are real, physical differences between an engine built to only support gasoline and an engine built to support gasoline and propane.
This coming from a guy that uses "motorcycle engine" and "car engine" to differentiate between two stroke and four stroke engines...lol.
Btw the engine in the Firman is a four stroke.

No difference in engines that I've seen on many forklifts, and other equipment that's run on gas/propane or gas only. Other than fuel delivery system on the dual fuel ones so you can switch from one to the other.
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Hugh wrote:
Apr 22nd, 2018 2:54 pm
Auto-ignition temperature = temperature when the fuel will ignite without a spark or flame. I don't think that directly matters when you use a spark plug. It would matter in a diesel, but pressure would be another variable to take into account, I would guess.

(I'm currently reading "Ignition!: An informal history of liquid rocket propellants" by Clark. Lots of fun; you don't have to be a rocket scientist to enjoy it.)
Exactly right ! That is why diesel engines are built with much stronger internals and heavier blocks to withstand the detonation under high compression. No spark plugs.

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