Token wrote:And to add to all this phase crap, the Honda EU2000i dissent even produce 110V AC. .
Yes, it does. The nominal rated output is 120 VAC. Measured values between no-load and full nameplate load are very closely clustered around this nominal value. You may be thinking about the old 650, which was known for undervoltage issues.
Token wrote:It runs two 55V rails to both Line and Neutal.
There is no "55 volt rail" anywhere in the inverter output section.
The inverter section is what Honda calls the "electronics module". It is about 2 inches thick and completely potted with hard plastic. It is powered by a 3-phase alternator (delta-wound) that produces about 250 volts peak/peak at no load, and 180 volts fully loaded (I measured). Using the "top" sticker as a reference, alternator output goes in via the large 6-pin connector underneath. Inverter output comes out by the inductor in the upper left of the module. No load voltage is about 128 to 130VAC, with full load being 117 to 120VAC. Frequency is fixed at 60.05 hz by an internal timing reference, apparently a PLL circuit, as the inverter, when paralleled, will automatically match phase and frequency with others in the chain within a narrow range.
BTW: Does that 180 volt value look familiar? That is 1.404 times the voltage of a 125 volt RMS sine wave, minus a couple of semiconductor junction drops.
You are possibly confusing your "55 volt rail" with the floating neutral design used by most portable generators. This design is common and complies with 2011 NFPA 70, Art. 250.34(A). If you have a generator sitting on the bench with a token load, and you tried to attach a meter to the output, you could (wrongly) come to the conclusion there were two 55 rails referenced to ground. An o-scope in capable hands would debunk those thoughts however.
Token wrote:The net effect is 110V
The net effect is a nominal output of 120VAC, exactly as shown on the nameplate.
Token wrote:That's how they get away with the "no circuit braker" design.
A breaker has nothing to do with direct lethality or protection of humans from electrical shock. Most electrocutions at these voltage levels happen with less than 1 amp of current. Breakers are a requirement of the NEC/NFPA 70 and have to do only
with fire protection issues under overload or short-circuit conditions. Not coincidently, NFPA = National Fire Protection Assn, are the guys who wrote the model codes adopted by most jurisdictions in the US.
In truth there is absolutely no NFPA or UL requirement for a circuit breaker on a portable generator as long as the output is "inherently self-limiting under all operating and short-circuit conditions". Older copper-wound/non-inverter generators could source considerably more current than the nameplate values during a short, so breakers were required. In contrast the inverter design used on the Honda EU2000i is electronic, classified as inherently self-limiting, and is UL tested as same. There is no possibility of this design sustaining a short-circuit current above the rated output for more than a brief second or two. Under fault conditions the waveform collapses, the inverter faults, and the output is disconnected. (The EU3000i design goes a step further and internally crowbars the output during the initiation of the disconnect event). Such designs do not require, and do not benefit from, a breaker.
Note that later units in the "I" series that have the paralleling option DO have a fuse in the output leg to the front-panel receptacle. See here: http://m.powerequipment.honda.com/pdf/m ... Z07610.pdf
Again, the reason is overload current. The receptacle is rated for 20 amps, and in parallel operation it would be possible to draw about 32 amps from that single outlet. Hence the 20 amp fuse. But the paralleling leads provide full, un-fused output at all times.
As an aside, these units can be paralleled beyond just the advertised limit of two. We paralleled four of them just to prove it could be done. That is 64 amps of rated output, and it would be possible for an uninformed user to attempt to draw it all from one receptacle. Again, the 20 amp fuse becomes a requirement.
Token wrote:55V is less than lethal.
Less than 20 volts can be lethal under the right conditions. There is quite a body of literature on this subject.
You appear to consider 55V as "low voltage" and therefore the basis for a lack of a fuse/breaker. This is not true. As far as the code goes, the 2011 NFPA generally only recognizes circuits of 49 volts AC or less
as a "low-voltage" circuit. 2011 NFPA 250.20(A)1-4. But see also 2011 NFPA 110.26(A)(1)(b) which defines "Low Voltage" as "...not greater than 30 volts RMS, 42 volts peak, or 60 volts DC..."
Token wrote:The portable low-noise Honda's are a rather poor choice for home power.
Perhaps, but every other generator sold as a local-stock item by Home Depot, Lowes, Cabellas, etc is subject to the same limitations. All are compromise solutions. None of them are rated for "home power" duty, including the "big" 20KW units with a "whole house" transfer switch. Even these are only standby-rated
. In most US jurisdictions if you want to power a home routinely and comply with code, you will need a "prime-rated
" generator. In the 80KW and lower ranks, these will generally be 1800 RPM diesels with a 4-pole head, with a few high-end prime-rated sets powered by natural gas completing the mix. The only question for a non-prime-rated genset owner is "just how much of a compromise am I willing to tolerate". For some, a little 2K Honda EU2000i will do well enough in an outage. Others will need more.
On the playa, these generators do very well. We have used them since 2007. If you can elevate them 2-3 feet, get them out of the direct line of dust-laden wind, give them an oil change every 50 hours, use synthetic oil, and give just basic care, they don't mind the playa at all. Neighbors will appreciate them for their almost undetectable (at BM) noise level.