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Old November 24th, 2012, 02:22 AM   #1
phittie1100
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Default Small 2 stroke generators - personal review

This year as we got ready for our annual fishing trip we started talking about trolling motors. We camp on an island in the middle of a lake, in the middle of no where on a Canadian shield lake. Trolling motors mean batteries, which would mean taking a generator, but it had to be man-transportable and light enough for a 14' row boat. So I bought one if these little two strokers, and off we went. 38 pounds, so no heavier than a couple of cases of beer. Same 50:1 fuel used by our outboards. And it worked! We had a small light for playing cards each night, charged deep cell marine batteries and AA batteries and even a cell phone or two. Fuel consumption is a bit higher than advertised, but partly due to 30:1 mix during the break in period. Not too loud, but always hunting for the right rpm range.

Next experiment was the camper. I have an "Offroad" popup from Starcraft, but never really used it in the woods due to limited battery storage. Last weekend we partially discharged the battery to see if this little 1000w generator could run the on-board battery charger for the camper. It worked in the driveway, so off we headed to deer camp this weekend, where we set up on a friend's property with no electricity. Cold weather means lots of furnace run time. The generator only has about a 3 hour run time on a tank of gas, so we figured we would run the battery for a couple of hours then start the generator until dry, then hopefully get through the night on the battery. Hard to start in the cold, but warmed me up at 2am. Couldn't get it to stay running - the load from the battery charger seemed to stall it out. Finally played with it enough - throwing the breaker would cause it to rev a bit then try to stall, flipped the breaker off until it recovered, then turned the breaker back on. Took a couple of tries, but sitting here with the furnace back on, generator still running (still surging though) and recharging the battery. Once the surge was bad enough that the low volt alarm came on, hopefully not killing my on board charger as we do this.

Next experiment? Coffee pot in about 2 hours.

So if space or weight limits you to one if these little 2 strokers, it will get the job done of that's all you have, but I think next time I will buy one of the bigger 4 stroke models and work around the 55-65 pound weight issue in the boat and up and down the rock shore of our little island on our favorite Canadian lake.

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Old November 24th, 2012, 04:11 AM   #2
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What brand unit did you use?

FYI, the fancy Honda 4 strokers aren't as heavy as you state. The 1000 watt is under 29 lbs and will also run over 8 hours on a tank of fuel. The 2000 watt is 47 lbs and will over 9 hrs.
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Old November 24th, 2012, 05:04 AM   #3
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It's a Diehard.- not sure who made it.

If I bought another one, it would be a 2000 watt unit, which gets up in the 50+ pound range vs the 1000 watt unit I bought.

FYI it conked out again around 0345, but had enough time to recharge the battery to get me through until the alarm went off at. 0515. Coffee pot experiment eon hold for now.

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Old November 25th, 2012, 04:34 AM   #4
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OK like many things in life, some of my problems seem to be user error.

Yesterday between our morning and evening hunts we played with the choke some. Like my old tractor, seems to run better at about 1/2 choke in the cold. Ram fairly smoothly and without stalling until the camper battery was recharged. Last night, we topped off the fuel at 2030, set the heat on low, and went to bed hoping to get 3-4 hours until refueling. It finally ran out just after I hit the snooze on my alarm at 0515. Still has wild surges in rpm, and when it recovers it almost stalls, but dis not have to restart or refuel for almost 7 hours. Not bad for 2.5L of gas.

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Old November 25th, 2012, 09:11 AM   #5
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i run my honda 2000's on a 6 gallon boat tank. i can run one or both together.
they are very quiet, almost no surge at all. if im not running my 15000 btu ac, a 6gallon boat tank runs for days.
the eco throttle is a nice feature. it will only run as fast as it needs to. for just charging the batterys and a few lights, it just idles.
at night, fill it up b4 i go to bed, and it will run all night on the factory 1 gallon tank.
its light enough my wife moves it around when necessary.
u can get a new honda 2000 for about 899.00

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Old November 25th, 2012, 10:07 AM   #6
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Just an FYI harbor freight has a 900 watt 2 stroke on sale for $88 today.
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Old November 25th, 2012, 10:34 AM   #7
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Just an FYI harbor freight has a 900 watt 2 stroke on sale for $88 today.
Waste of money.


Shawn has a 2000watt Honda. We use it to power the cabin. It will run a few lights. A sleeping machine. Charge cell phones. It is almost always in power save mode. The only time I hear it throttle up is when I turned the vacuum on. I think we had to put guess in it once while we were up there.
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Old November 25th, 2012, 09:23 PM   #8
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Just an FYI harbor freight has a 900 watt 2 stroke on sale for $88 today.
Those suck. You are better off looking for a used Coleman than buying one of those.

One of the guys at work bought one, it crapped out (no output) after 3 hours. Ruined his hunting trip.
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Old November 25th, 2012, 10:11 PM   #9
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i use mine when im camping. i dont want a lawn mower screaming next to my camper.
you get what you pay for in generators. my older honda is 6 years old. i have yet to change the spark plug.
i change the oil 3 or 4 times a year. i got the new eu2000i companion model this year.
it allows you to connect 2 hondas together to double the power output.
i usually only need one, so i use the old one. i only need two if i run my ac.

did i mention it was quiet and efficient??

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Old November 26th, 2012, 06:28 AM   #10
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Surprisingly the Diehard 2 stroker is not that annoying when I put it out 25-35ft away from the camper, except when it surges. Not as quiet as the Honda - my perk coffee pot makes more noise than the Honda 2000! My chief complaint of the 2 stroker is the smoky 2 stroke exhaust.

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Old December 28th, 2012, 10:26 PM   #11
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Just an FYI harbor freight has a 900 watt 2 stroke on sale for $88 today.
well, after reading all those reviews above my comment here my buddys dad must have got lucky. has had good luck w his, running lights and the well pump up at thier cabin. runs pretty quiet as well
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