Well, I finally took the plunge, and sprung for a generator, a bit contrary to my initial intentions.
After that halloween snow debacle, where millions were without power for weeks, I was dead set on a nat. gas Generac from, but after that halloween storm and Irene, you couldn't get a decent generator anywhere, for months....
God works in mysterious ways, as it came to appear that generac uses a cheap engine, with lots of complaints, and with shitty service on top of it all. I figger that they figgered that since home-moaners will be using this thing for, like, mebbe 5 hours in a year, all's it has to last is 10 hours! LOL
I had finally settled on a genset from these people in Maine:, in particular a near-14 kW jobby, 12kW continuous, with, innerestingly, a $295 upgrade for 3 phase. What was attractive about this is that it delivers about twice the power of a generac for about the same price, AND has a Honda engine. AND is much much smaller.
Still, when all was said and done, it would be proly over $2500 for something that I might possibly NEVER use!!! My testosterone is too low to be a really good gambler....
Toward my "new strategy", these companies sell tri-fuel kits, supposedly diy-doable, no real mods to the carburetor, turning a gasoline generator to a tri-fuel generator..Well, it turns out that the above company in Maine will also convert your gasoline generator to tri-fuel, for less than the above companies, but want the carburetor for mods. You send them the carburetor, and they send you back a *tri-fuel bolt-on*! I spoke to the maine company about the diy kits from the above companies, and he said he couldn't really comment on them, but couldn't really see how they would work, or work well. I've come to like this company in maine, having spoken to them a few times, and am leaning toward letting them set up the tri-fuel carb.
Any opinions on going with the above diy-kit people vs. sending the carb to the Maine company for a bolt-on solution, presumably professionally done?
So, you ax, what carburetor will I be sending them?
Sam's club carries a Black Max gasoline generator (actually, exclusive to sam's clubs, hmmm.... ), 7,000/8,750 continuous/starting watts, with...... a Honda gx390 engine!whole unit seems nicely set up, with an hour meter, and seems to be a generic setup sold by a few companies, including the above Maine company, as a gasoline OR a tri-fuel jobby -- which I take to be a fair endorsement of the unit.
So I picked this up today, at $999, considerably cheaper than elsewhere, incl. Maine. Tomorrow, my first test will be to see if it is PC/Fadal stable. If it is, I will send out the carb, pending opinions here.
The nice thing about tri-fuel is that for prolonged outages, the nat gas fuel is Da Bomb, yet you can take it to jobsites or whatever, on gasoline/propane.. But, you lose about 10% of the power rating on nat gas.
I opted for 7 kW as opposed the 12 kW jobby, simply as a $$ bet. The 7 kW will power the house OR the shop, or pieces of both. If it works well, and if it turns out I need more power or there are lots of outages, I can always get another, and still be ahead of the game. I can isolate the shop from the house electrically, and therefore can power them separately. Or together, if I'm mindful of loads.
Comments/suggestions on this strategy? Sam's has a 90 day return policy, so I have some time to bail out.... and get a Generac.... LOL