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Old 04-14-2011, 10:11 PM   #81
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Me personally being a hater of smelly diesel anything, I like the propane powered options for a generator. Of course I was in the propane business for many years so I am probably biased. Just barely more expensive than a gas generator the same size, and you can figure double the engine life of a gas engine the same size. Clean burning fuel, virtually no pollutants in the exhaust (still CO2 like any engine so you still have to be careful where you route the exhaust) to keep the greenies happy. There may even be a government subsidy or tax credit for alternative fuels. I guess that's only half joking, it may be true! It is not really a second fuel, as virtually every camper has propane on board for heat, cooking, refrigerator etc., but you do have to figure in a much larger tank so that you can fill it once for length of your stay, not really a good way to pour in more from a can like gas. The larger permanent tank would be required, not a 20# bottle, but you can get those in any size you want up to 100 gallon or so. I know Portable generators - portable generators online - affordable rv dealer where MMM got his has a nice selection, I've been looking at them myself. All self contained in a quiet enclosure with remote and everything. In my case my truck is propane fueled and has 160 gallons on board so I am single fuel for everything.

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Old 04-15-2011, 01:14 AM   #82
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I am getting a 5500 onan that will run on propane. I bought a 49 gal tank and will mount it between the frame rails behind the rear axle. I made this decision befor the price of diesel went above $4.00 per gallon. Propane in my area is around $2.75 a gallon.
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Old 04-15-2011, 07:51 PM   #83
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hay ken i got a onan that runs on propane if u want it we took it out of are race hauler let me know if i can help we also have a gas one one is 6.5 and the other is 7.0 i will take 2000.00 for each of them i got the one i want now it just took some time could not get a deisel for what i could pay so it took me 4 years of looking and the right timing
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Old 04-16-2011, 06:52 PM   #84
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fastavenger where are these generators?
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Old 04-16-2011, 07:31 PM   #85
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in maryland 20895 i can ship
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Old 04-16-2011, 10:36 PM   #86
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fastavenger, thanks for the offer, I have already made a commitment on mine just waiting to pick it up so I won't use the warranty up while I build the motor home.
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Old 04-18-2011, 07:19 AM   #87
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My Diesel Genny taps into my main fuel tanks, nothing to think about just turn it on, very efficient.....
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Old 04-19-2011, 09:40 PM   #88
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how big of a tank would it take to run generator on a 3 day weekend if you ran it all the time?
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Old 04-20-2011, 09:51 AM   #89
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Quote:
Originally Posted by volvoman View Post
how big of a tank would it take to run generator on a 3 day weekend if you ran it all the time?
i have a 26 gallon tank for the generator and I can go 4 days
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Old 04-20-2011, 10:19 AM   #90
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The old motorhome (1985) I used for about ten years would average 3/4 gal. per hour at moderate load. A/C was usually on. It was a Onan 6500 watt gas unit. The newer ones may do better on fuel. MMM
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Old 04-20-2011, 04:31 PM   #91
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i was asking about lp style generators usage.
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Old 04-20-2011, 08:05 PM   #92
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I think HotRod is the guy that can answer that. I don't remember the difference in BTU's between gas and LP. I have never had a LP unit. MMM
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Old 04-21-2011, 04:11 PM   #93
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I can answer that.

100% gasoline is 114,000 btu per gallon, but with the 10% ethanol blend they are forced to sell us these days (gotta love the farm lobby), that number is reduced to about 108,000 btu per gallon. Propane is about 92,000 btu per gallon. So the raw math works out to 1.17 gallons of propane to create the same energy as 1 gallon of E10 gasoline. So using $4.00 a gallon gasoline, the break even cost would be $3.42 for a gallon of propane to be the same $ cost to operate an engine for the same period of time. However, in the real world of mechanics vs. mathematics it is a little closer than that as the propane is a cleaner more efficient burning fuel so the real number is somewhere in the middle, more like 1.1 gallons of propane being equivalent to 1 gallon on E10 gasoline, so figure the real world break even cost of about $3.64 per gallon. So right now, if you can buy the propane for $3.64 per gallon or less, it is cheaper to operate than a gasoline generator at $4.00 per gallon. Flying J usually runs .10 to .40 cheaper than gas depending on the day, and usually rv stores and the like are usually a little cheaper.

One big benefit of the propane though is engine life. On the average you can double the engine life on propane. Clean dry fuel with no contaminants to get in the oil and sludge up the works and cause wear. One misconception though, the oil will stay nice and clean looking but you still need to change it regularly as it still will break down like the oil in any other motor, it just does not look bad like other engines.

I know none of that answers your question of gallons per hour to operate, but I cannot answer that question for you. Every engine size and generator size will use a different amount of fuel, as will the electrical load you are pulling. If you are just running your lights the generator will idle along and burn very little fuel. Turn on your air conditioning and the engine revs up to meet the demand and starts sucking down the fuel. Check the specs for the generator you are looking at. They will all give you a fuel consumption figure both at idle and max output. Real world you will never get either number, it will be somewhere in the middle. For normal use (lights, battery charger, tv, etc. plus the occasional use of the microwave and refrigerator) you can figure about 125% of the idle consumption, and more if you are running the a/c but all that is a shot in the dark until you get out in the boonies and let it run for a weekend. But that 125% figure should be close enough to figure tank sizing. Also keep in mind nobody runs the thing 24 hours a day, so think about how long you will realistically run it. If you are not running the a/c, most people just use it to keep the batteries charged and run the lights and tv and stuff off the batteries, and just run the generator as needed.

While I'm on my political soapbox, that E10 gasoline/ethanol our wise government has foisted upon us takes 5.5% more gallons to produce the same energy as compared to 100% pure gasoline. That's right folks, the Uncle wants you to pay an extra 5% every time you drive your car, all in the name of the farm lobby paying off politicians so they can force us to buy more corn, and not so coincidentally driving up the cost of everything you eat because we are diverting our foodstuffs to burn up in our cars, artificially raising the demand for and therefore the price of corn. So you say "but I only eat corn at picnics", ah, but did you ever eat a cheeseburger? Or chicken? Or bacon? They all eat corn. Or bread? More acres in corn for ethanol equals less acres in wheat and higher prices for bread.

Sorry, you got me started on one of my pet peeve issues. Always a danger with me.
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Old 04-21-2011, 06:27 PM   #94
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How about E85, now there's the answer to all our dependence on foreign oil. Hahahahaha.
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Old 04-21-2011, 07:44 PM   #95
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Ethanol is nothing about a fraudulent hope being perpretrated on the American people by a special interest group and lawmakers who have been duped by their money. If the truth about the energy and water needed to make ethanol were known, the public would rise up. The IRL, Indianapolis Motor Speedway, and now NASCAR have all drunk the ethanol Kool-Aid.

Compressed Natural Gas to power cars and trucks ... with its enormous, DOMESTIC supplies ... now that is something that CAN make a difference.

Let's keep the pressure on!
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Old 04-21-2011, 09:26 PM   #96
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I know. I read some about that E85. What a crock that is. Those stupid tree hugers thinking it's good for the environment.
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Old 04-22-2011, 10:18 AM   #97
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Oh yeah, and another thing on ethanol... as we speak, our wonderful and intelligent political class is trying to mandate an increase in the required ethanol content in pump gasoline to be raised from E10 to E15, meaning now there will be 15% ethanol in the gas. That is a 50% increase in the gallons of ethanol burned up each year, meaning 50% more of our foodstock being burned up in engines, and raising the cost substantially of both the fuel and the food that is being robbed. Not to mention decreasing the energy content from the 5.5% loss with the current E10 to an 8.25% loss vs. 100% gasoline. Add to that the fact that both automotive and motorcycle manufacturers, as well as small engine manufacturers, are vehemently opposed to the move saying that a higher ethanol concentration will damage both the fuel systems and the engines themselves, particularly in older engines that were designed before ethanol was in use. But the government just pooh poohs their concersn, saying "don't you want to save the planet?".

Sorry, there goes that darn soapbox again.
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Old 02-18-2014, 08:28 PM   #98
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377 Pete can you send me a PM. I guess I am too new on here to write you directly.

Thanks

Joe
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