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Generator Suggestions

Discussion in 'Ham Radio Discussions' started by W2JKT, Sep 5, 2017.

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  1. W2JKT

    W2JKT Ham Member QRZ Page

    Not a troll thread...

    I've never owned a generator before, but looking to pick one up before I go back to SC tomorrow. They have Honda, Ryobi, and Energizer.. the Energizer seems to be the best deal, 2800W starting, 2600W continuous, with electric start, for $900. Honda is $1000 for 2kW starting, 1600W rated. But, it's a Honda, so you're going to pay a premium for their branding on what is probably the same chinese genset. Ryobi is cheapest but lowest power and features - $600 for 1kW. Energizer and Honda are about the same noise level...

    Suggestions? Leaning towards the Energizer of course but have a few hours to stew over it..
  2. KK5JY

    KK5JY Ham Member QRZ Page

    For what it's worth, ARRL has done reviews of generators, including RF noise analysis... and you should be able to pull this easily from their product reviews section. I suspect you could even look up the generators by brand in their reviews section. And it would be free to download and browse if you have the time before you swipe the card.
    W2JKT likes this.
  3. KD0CAC

    KD0CAC Ham Member QRZ Page

    If you think - " Honda, so you're going to pay a premium for their branding on what is probably the same chinese genset. "
    Then any suggestions may not be accepted ?
  4. W2JKT

    W2JKT Ham Member QRZ Page

    Only if you limit your thinking to the generators I have mentioned. There are many generators out there, many approaches to backup power, and so on...
  5. KK5JY

    KK5JY Ham Member QRZ Page

    Indeed. I'm a big fan of solar + batteries, but that won't help you before the upcoming weekend's big event, should you need backup power by then.
  6. K1VSK

    K1VSK Ham Member QRZ Page

    The overwhelming choice among boaters for a small gen set is the honda. Very reliable and quiet. It's also superior to most comparably priced competitors on purity of power wave.
    NL7W and AC8UN like this.
  7. K7WFM

    K7WFM Ham Member QRZ Page

  8. W4IOA

    W4IOA Ham Member QRZ Page

    My Honda generator is an older 3500w. I've owned it for over 20 years and always starts by the 2nd pull. It''s large enough to power my freezer, fridge, hvac, and a room. You'll need to figure out what you want to power to know the proper size. Having your electrical panel set up properly is also something you'll need to have so that you don't electricute the workers restoring power.
    It's not all about the motor, the most important is the actual generator quality. Genset is good, Honda is good. These last for decades. Harbor Freight makes one that's cheap if you aren't planning on it being around for years.
    Honda has set a high bar for portability and quality.Having an emergency generator is a good thing but it isn't like stuffing it in the garage and ignoring it for years. I run mine several times a year and set aside fuel with stabalizer for emergencies. I swap out the fuel to my lawn mower and truck every 6 months.
  9. KB1CKT

    KB1CKT Ham Member QRZ Page

    Buying before you leave? That may limit choices to what is in stock.

    I've thought about getting a propane generator, for the notion of not having to worry about fuel going stale. But it wouldn't work in my cold climate, so it got nixed. I also have a well pump that needs 240 and I've been told that the cheaper/larger generators are going to handle that momentary overload better. But of course, it'll be a gas hog.

    Which is my roundabout way of asking, what are you after? Just enough to run a few lights, or to keep the house going? Something to last decades, or something to just go a few years with intermittent use?
  10. W2JKT

    W2JKT Ham Member QRZ Page

    The reviews I have seen between the Honda, a Generac, and $generic_inverter_generator have shown that the quality of the power is about the same on all of them, and very very good. One point that has been made is that Honda has the most service centers of all of them, so at least when it breaks you can get it fixed quickly.

    Well there is very little in stock down south right now, so I figured since I was in DC I could probably source something locally. But you're right.

    For the rest of it, just looking to keep the food in the fridge from spoiling and maybe running a 5kBTU window unit. I don't have any huge power consumers.
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2017

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