GENERATOR

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GENERATOR

Postby morty » Mon Aug 11, 2008 1:05 pm

I am bringing a generator this year (small one) and wanted to know the best muffling device for it.
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Postby ZaphodBurner » Mon Aug 11, 2008 2:56 pm

Honestly, the best muffling device is a square plywood box with an open top that extends upward about 18"-24" above the top of the generator.

We built a fully closed, insulated box with air intake and exhaust stacks, solar-powered air circulation for our theme camp... it got so hot in the box that it melted the OFF switch and we had to starve the fuel to shut it off. Toward the end of the the event, a veteran burner friend showed up, looked at our contraption, took the stacks off and flipped the box over. It made less racket with an open top than it did covered, but, you need to have the sidewalls extend a little bit higher than the top of the gen.


The idea is that the sound is projected straight up in the air, like from a speaker cone. If you were to stand above it and look down it would be louder than hell, but a few yards away the sound dissipates pretty quickly.

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Postby munney » Tue Aug 12, 2008 2:43 pm

:lol: FYI some super quiet Generators have pretty low Decibel ratings, like below 60 :roll:

:?: Do you have a loud one or is it already kinda quite? :?:

:arrow: True, a Box with higher walls is a great thing, However without sealing the box, a slanted shade to protect the unit from the sun is a good way to keep it a touch cooler and running more efficiently. :lol:

:shock: Share your excess power with your neighbors, and do bring lots of surge strips and extension cords , :roll: as good things happen to those who share :lol:

:wink: Word :wink:

:oops:
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Postby Jmeier » Tue Aug 12, 2008 6:19 pm

That's an abuse of smileys.
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Postby Absolut Jeenyus » Tue Aug 12, 2008 8:31 pm

-AJ )'(
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Postby gyre » Sun Aug 17, 2008 6:03 am

Heavier material will work better.
I posted on another thread more detail.
Sheetrock, mortarboard, then plywood, soundboard, glued, not nailed together.
Lead sheet helps.
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Re: GENERATOR

Postby sharpstick » Mon Sep 08, 2008 9:56 am

morty wrote:I am bringing a generator this year (small one) and wanted to know the best muffling device for it.


plywood box with sides about 4 ft. one side is hinged or bungeed on for easy removal. line it with carpet scraps to deaden the sound. i've seen some install a small electric fan toward the bottom to force cool air through it. a shad overhead is a good idea too. (see my next post about dust clogging)
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Postby Oubliet » Wed Sep 24, 2008 3:22 pm

Some of the newer Honda generators are very quiet when operating.


Seriously, they are quiet to the point that you wouldn't need to make an enclosure to muffle the sound.


of course, the problem would be that you'd want something concealing it so thieves wouldn't try to walk off with it. (Apparently, they are considered highly desireable generators.)
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Postby Captain Goddammit » Wed Sep 24, 2008 5:48 pm

Honda EU-series generators are the ones. That's what I ended up going with.
Locking them up is a good idea.
If you bring one of those cheap loud noise factories, no muffler is going to quiet it, the engine itself radiates noise, it's not all coming from the exhaust. I've tried about everything you can try.
The good thing is that you won't have to lock it... no one wants it.
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Postby Kenny Z » Wed Sep 24, 2008 7:48 pm

Yeah, they had a Honda stand at the Reno Air Races this year. I walked by the stand and didn't realize it but 6 Honda generators were running for display purposes. You couldn't even hear the generators over the crowd. I just happened to notice they were vibrating slightly.

Honda's are more money but their reputation for quality is excellent. It takes some guts bringing a Honda generator to BM versus a cheap piece of crap but I'm sure if you change the oil and air filter when you get back, it will still last you many years.
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Postby Elliot » Sun Oct 12, 2008 9:23 pm

:D
This can not be said often enough, so I'm going to join in:

Honda EU-1000, Honda EU-2000, and Honda EU-3000. Decibels down in the 50s, yes.

The 3000 is the quietest one.

At an outdoor event this summer, I lent my EU 1000 to the announcer for the PA system. The first day, he put the EU 1000 as far away as he could muster extention cords for, before he even started it. The second day, he put it under his table, and there was no difference in the announcing sound quality.

We live in a world full of crap. But there are exceptions. The Honda EU series generators is one such exception. And a much needed one, for the noise of cheap generators is almost enough to keep me from returning to Burning Man. (Only almost.) Let's enjoy those rare exceptions, even if it means putting in some overtime to pay for it.
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Postby Grazelda » Mon Oct 13, 2008 2:53 pm

Honda's noise level and quality are easy to endorse. They are the #1 desired small engine in generators, pumps, outboard boat motors, lawnmowers, etc. I used to sell Honda power equipment and one of our sales tricks was to put a glass of water on top of a running Honda lawnmower to show there would be no ripples on the water from vibration. The engines are ball bearing from top to bottom and almost spin from inertia. If quality mechanics give you a stiffy, Honda small engines are liquid viagra.

The #1 problem with Honda's is outrangeous pricing across the board. Prices are ridgedly controlled by Honda to keep dealer prices high. A decent street price for an EU 3000 is about $1800. But you can get non-EU generators from people like Northern Tools who use Honda engines and put out a 2700 watt generator for about $530 - about the street cost of the just engine alone. The generic will put off 10-15db more noise - until you silence the troll.

But if you use your generator only for BM and emergency situations, with a little creative noise blocking you can get a generic 3000 watt generator in the $300-$350 range or a Chinese import 1000 watt for about $150.

Honda EU 3000 = $1800
Honda EU 2000 = $1000
Honda EU 1000 = $700

or spend your $1800 as:

Generic Honda 2700 watt generator = $550
Massive quantities of non-generator needing blinkies = $500
Random acts of art = $750

A grand will buy a hell of a lot of neat blinkies & "ohhhh" factor art toys which will create a lot more pleasure on the playa. You could waste another hundred on a nifty noise baffle box and still have ice money left over and enough to make a couple of loans thru the burner's group on kiva.org no less (shameless plug for a wonderful after-burner art form!)

Going to BM well equipped and responsible does not have to be a bottomless money pit. The bankers and investment addicts living in Mr Bush's underpants seem to need the extra money badly right now anyway.
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Postby Captain Goddammit » Mon Oct 13, 2008 7:22 pm

The louder set will not be small and light like the Honda and more of a pain in the ass to always have to set up a sound deadening box... this is one case where you oughta not fuck around with junk and just get the good stuff.
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Postby Grazelda » Mon Oct 13, 2008 7:35 pm

Captain Goddammit wrote:The louder set will not be small and light like the Honda and more of a pain in the ass to always have to set up a sound deadening box... this is one case where you oughta not fuck around with junk and just get the good stuff.


I dunno Capt... the Honda EU3000 weighs in at about 135lbs and measures about 26" x 19" x 22". But has an electric start...

The generic honda-engine 2700 from Northern Tools hits at 85 lbs and measures 23" x 16" x 16". Has a recoil puller; but on a Honda engine its less scary.

Wouldn't you box a EU3000 for dust intake control anyway?

Hey - if I had the money I'd buy the Honda. Just don't so can't and won't (smile).
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Postby Captain Goddammit » Thu Oct 16, 2008 5:01 pm

Yeah but the EU2000 only weighs 50 pounds, and the 1000 is 30 pounds.
Not all Honda generators are quiet. The Honda-engine generic unit will NOT be anywhere near as quiet as an EU. My first Honda generator was an EM2500. It pissed off everyone around it when I took it to BM. I got lucky and found someone to sell it to that didn't know how much he'd hate the thing. I suppose he wondered why I wanted to unload a perfectly nice unit...
I had others, Onans, Robins, etc. All gone because they're too annoying to use.
Yeah I know, the quiet ones aren't real cheap (I'm not made of money either) but the loud sets aren't such a dollar-per-watt bargain when they produce zero watts because no one wants to listen to them run.

In the end it would have been cheaper not to throw away money on the ones I ended up getting rid of and get one that was tolerable in the first place, but I suppose you'll have to go through the same learning curve I did.
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Postby Burp! » Thu Jan 08, 2009 5:46 pm

Another EU series fan. I have a 3000. Anything that needs a muffler or a box, should be left at home. Go Lo-Fi, that's fun too. My first couple years we use marine batteries for everything.
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Postby Galaxo Magic » Tue Aug 17, 2010 1:27 pm

We have a Honda EU2000 that has been to 7 burns and a Honda EU3000 that has been to the last two. We can power everything with these, including AC in the yurts. These gennies rule!

We also have two solar panels that produce enough energy to run 200 feet of LED lights all night long. So the camp always has some illumination at night. :)
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Postby swampdog » Tue Aug 17, 2010 2:06 pm

I scored a honda ex650 - which I think is predecessor to the EU1000. Very quiet, very small. You can comfortably stand next to it and talk in a normal voice and be heard. It was only a couple-hundred bucks. Well used, well cared for. I got it mostly to charge MV batteries but the MV didn't make the cut. I figure it should be good to run a few odds n ends and recharge some small electronics.
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Postby LostinReno » Tue Aug 17, 2010 3:48 pm

We scored a hardly used Yamaha EF3000 last year, it only puts out 51-57db's (according to the manual), we never had any complaints, we put the generator in the bed of our pickup, that seemed to muffle a lot of the noise.
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Postby Martiansky » Mon Mar 14, 2011 4:33 pm

I just saw and add for a Generac generator and was wondering if anyone has tried one yet?
Theres apparently 3 different models and MSRPs
iX800=$299
iX1600=$449
iX2000=$549
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Postby oneeyeddick » Mon Mar 14, 2011 6:05 pm

^^^pieces of crap, thus the name^^^
We have an obligation to make space for everyone, we have no obligation to make that space pleasant.
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Postby Martiansky » Mon Mar 14, 2011 6:40 pm

oneeyeddick wrote:^^^pieces of crap, thus the name^^^


Good to know, thanks!
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Postby much2naughty2 » Wed Mar 16, 2011 9:39 am

Trust the Captain (Goddammit) After reading his generator posts I sold my Gentron and bought an EU3000. You can stand over it and carry on a conversation. Everyone I know with an EU wouldn't have anything else.

Just to be a good neighbor, I also built a box around mine, made out of 1 inch insullation board with foil on both sides, Duct taped together, and very light weight.

At the end of BM, the neighbors came over to thank us, saying in 10 years they had never camped next to a camp with such a quiet generator.
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Postby The CO » Wed Mar 16, 2011 10:21 am

I work with small generators (1k-5k) on a regular basis in Defaultia, and have taken 4 different make/model of genny to BRC. Nothing in that range beats a Honda EU series.

Quiet enough that mine is usually 10-15 feet from my personal tent. It's like a gentle white noise generator. Never had to build a baffle box. Never had a complaint. Never had it fail on me.

Kenny Z wrote:It takes some guts bringing a Honda generator to BM versus a cheap piece of crap but I'm sure if you change the oil and air filter when you get back, it will still last you many years.

Grazelda wrote:Wouldn't you box a EU3000 for dust intake control anyway?


I've been taking my EU2000 to BRC for 5 years now. Every year I come back expecting dust everywhere & that I will have to replace filters. I'm still using the original air filter, washed every year after BM. I changed the oil filter at around 300 operational hours and looking at it and the oil, probably could have left it in for another 700 hours. The only maint/cleaning I've had to do is open up all the compartments & do a light vinegar spray followed by compressed air to work loose any dust that had settled inside.

My summary: Save the long term headaches, and buy an EU series. The extra money spent is worth it. Especially 5 years down the road when you are watching people have problems with the third genny they bought in the same amount of time. $1000* for a unit that will last as long as you take care of it, versus $200-400 per unit to replace the one that failed last year, which replaced the one that failed the year before, which replaced the one that failed two years ago, which (you get the point).


*Also note, $1000 for a new EU2K. I found $850 seems to be the median price for a new one in Oregon. I have seen them used online for as low as $400, and it takes a lot of effort to fuck them up. If it starts up, you can probably get it tuned up for $50-100, but you may not even need to do so.
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Postby ibdave » Wed Mar 16, 2011 10:42 am

own 2 of the eu2000i units.. one has been to the Playa 7-8 times. Beside the normal prep I do have the starter rope changed every 2 years.. I HATE having a starter rope break and I would hate it to break while on the Playa... ( i do carry extra rope)(you have to find me, if you need some)
I do set the unit on a large wood board to keep it from digging into the Playa as it runs and I chain and lock the shit out of it.. I might make a gennie box for it this year but to only hide it from worthless thieves.. When I get home I start it and then hose it down after removing the outer covers. I don't blast it, just hose it down until the water is clear then let it run a few minutes to dry it.... If I'm running it during the winter for the burnerRV while snow skiing I get 13-15 hours on 1 tank( 1 Gal) of gas. On the Playa I get about 8 hours on a tank because I'm running more lights and radio's ect...

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Postby dragonpilot » Wed Mar 16, 2011 1:47 pm

If you don't build a gennie box, just position your gennie away from your camp center...next to your neighbors. Give them enough booze and they won't care...
Don't bore your friends with all your troubles. Tell your enemies instead, for they will delight in hearing about them.
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I went with kipor

Postby crstophr » Wed Mar 16, 2011 3:10 pm

After much research and soul searching I decided to go with 2 ig2000p kipor generators. I bought refurbished models that were about 60% the cost of the EU2000. They are a Chinese knockoff of the Honda quiet generators have have nearly identical fuel efficiency and noise ratings. I ran 2 of them in parallel when we needed AC in the trailer, but one generator on idle (eco/quiet) mode was enough to run everything including the microwave with the AC off. We mainly just ran them during the hot part of the day to cool down and recharge the batts. We never needed them at night. We had EE and were there for 10 days total. BM is our primary use for the gens and I couldn't bring myself to spend the extr $$ on the honda brand name.

No matter what you get definitely bring air filters and extra spark plugs. it's very cheap insurance. I had an incident where a piece of grit got stuck in the carb float needle valve and briefly flooded the engine, stalling it and fouling the spark plug. New plug and a float bowl drain and she fired right back up. I also have a spare carb and will be adding a pull rope to the emergency kit this year.

I'd also recommend making or buying an external extended run fuel tank. It lets you refuel without spilling gas on a hot generator and I could run in idle mode for days on one 5 gal tank. I also chain lock mine.
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Postby Elderberry » Wed Mar 16, 2011 3:39 pm

much2naughty2 wrote:

Just to be a good neighbor, I also built a box around mine, made out of 1 inch insullation board with foil on both sides, Duct taped together, and very light weight.


Just make sure you keep an eye on the generator so it doesn't overheat. That insulation board keeps in heat as well or better than it insulates.

We thought we'd use it to build a box around our airconditioner to help keep the dust out...it overheated and blew a fuse. Removed the box, no more problems. And that was with two 2' x 4' filters on two sides as well.
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Postby much2naughty2 » Wed Mar 16, 2011 4:33 pm

What I didn't mention is I mounted an 18" AC fan on the outside of the Box and taped a furnace filter over the fan, Everytime the generator started, the fan started and blew filtered air onto the generator. When we got home, the generator was barely dusty.
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Postby gyre » Wed Mar 16, 2011 6:36 pm

[quote="jkisha"]
Just make sure you keep an eye on the generator so it doesn't overheat. That insulation board keeps in heat as well or better than it insulates.
[\quote]
???
That's what insulation does.
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