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Old 12-09-2008, 05:43 PM   #1
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US Carburetion Propane Conversion NOT Recommended

Hey guys and gals,

I recently bought a Honda EU2000i for my rig and specifically to have it converted to propane based on positive posts here in this forum.

So far it's been a nightmare scenario and I now have a $1000 generator with a $281 conversion kit that is basically a 50 lb boat anchor.

I sent US Carburetion my carb after breaking in the genny with gasoline for a day and let them do the carb drilling/set up. I got back my carb and a box full of parts along with two very poorly written instruction manuals that do not remotely relate to my Honda; just generators in general. None of the photos or the parts match the pictures or my setup. If you think their web site is confusing wait until you see their instruction manuals.

Anyway, I sorted my way through the installation and mounting which took about four hours. I spent the following two hours trying to get it to start. Gave it and my arm a break overnight, read through all the directions again, double checked all my work and then spent another two hours trying to get it to at least sputter.

Sadly, I've sent two detailed emails to tech support and have left two messages in four days. No reply and never an answer at their office. At least a courtesy call or short email to say we're busy would be something.

This is the company US Carburetion in Summersville, WV. Their web site is:

Generator Conversion Kits to Propane and Natural Gas.

In retrospect, I wish I had of bought a pre-converted Honda EU2000i from another company and would recommend you do so if you are considering this option. I was definitely excited and looking forward to a nice dual / alternate fuel Honda but all I have now is a US Carb Honda boat anchor.

Hopefully we'll eventually get the thing up and running... hopefully but based on lack of communication and poorly written manuals I cannot recommend this company or their conversion kit(s). Even if I buy a new carb and convert back to just gasoline I've now drilled three holes in my Honda and have wasted $300 and a weekend.

Regretfully,

Robert Starling
Las Vegas, NV
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Old 12-09-2008, 06:04 PM   #2
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Robert,

Sorry to hear of your problems with this conversion.

Years ago I converted my EU3000 to dual fuel with a kit from CarbTurbo. At the time (2001), the EU3000 was new on the market, and there were few conversions, at least none that this company had participated with. I called and found that the people at CarbTurbo were very helpful and willing to answer all my questions, even pointing out the uncertainties and issues I may run into.

In short, I purchased the product, installed it myself, and it has worked very well. They even called back to see if my conversion had worked.

I visited their site again and found a download instruction document, describing installations, that might have some small clue for you: (CTS - Carburetion & Turbo Services Inc.). It may be worth a glance.

Good luck.
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Old 12-09-2008, 06:28 PM   #3
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US Carburetion Sucks Big Time

Robert,
I am sorry you got taken. I had a similar situation 1.5 years ago. I have an IS7100 Honda that I sent them the carburetor and they screwed it up royally. I even had an after hours techie who works on Honda gens 40hr/wk. I invested in an expensive hose system and regulator and we never were able to get it to run either on gas again nor propane. I wound up buying another carburetor, I was out around $450 for that experiment. Also rigged a ramp with hook&tackle to get the 200lb Honda into the Suburban, That was before our first trip which was 9000 miles, we were really green then. I even thought of driving up that way to surprise them. Their tech help was atrocious and by the third phone call I knew I was taken. I am sorry someone else on this forum suffered by them. Please others be fair warned! Do not deal with this company.!!!! In the end I bought 2 Honda2100s with a parallel kit, the Honda IS7100 sits ready for the next hurricane, G_d forbid. Now that the TV is a pickup with bed slide under a camper top the gens are more practical, but we have never used them.
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Old 12-09-2008, 07:26 PM   #4
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Thumbs up Don't give up on it.

Sorry to hear it, we've had no problem with ours.....

An important thing to remember, prime it until you feel slight back pressure, I have the long supply hose, and it does take several times to bleed it out. The mixture screw is very sensitive, slight turns only and once it's done lock down securely.
Once the mixture was adjusted I haven't had to touch it. Runs cooler with hardly any exhaust smell when on LPG. Easy switch over when needed. Ran 27hrs on the tank shown. Quietly putt's away in it's own tent.
I did have to spend some time getting used to the terminology, the instructions were pretty general. Once I got my head around how everything was supposed to work it was fairly straightforward.
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Old 12-09-2008, 08:12 PM   #5
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Hi Robert

If US Carb. won't take your calls you might consider going on there web site and e mail they the address for this post and suggest they follow it to see what the public thinks of the company.
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Old 12-09-2008, 11:16 PM   #6
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Sorry to hear about problems with the US Carburetion conversion. As you can see from http://www.airforums.com/forums/f448...000-26971.html , we have had good luck with our US Carburetion conversion. The instructions at that time were not perfect, but I found them adequate to modify the carburetor myself and complete the conversion. I do make sure that the propane feed line is full of propane and not air when starting the generator.
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Old 12-09-2008, 11:47 PM   #7
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Thanks for the support guys and super nice install photos Robert. Thanks for taking the time to write and upload. I also like your quick disconnect; smart!

I'm pretty baffled about the product and the lack of customer service. Hearing your story Chaimemet is not so comforting to say the least. Sounds like you took a major hit.

I'll be the first to admit I'm no mechanic and would definitely prefer a camera or guitar to a wrench but it seems like everything is in order. I've been back through the installation bit-by-bit but you know how it is when you're inspecting your own work; you just look at the same obvious thing over and over. I feel like if they would call we may be able to find something obvious.

Robert, your tip on fine tuning the mixture screw is something I'll test out. I've tried it set from 3/4 turn to 1 turn to 2 turns to 3 turns but not much in-between all that. I've definitely tried the primer and line clearing every which way. 12 ft hose here too.

The absolute closest I can get has been 3-4 times what felt like a subtle sputter during the pulling. It was like first pull nothing, second pull a little sputter and nothing thereafter but this has only happened a few times out of who knows how many attempts and there has been no predetermining pattern other than it's the 2nd or 3rd pull.

Howie, you make a good point but I'm not trying to flame these guys on the public forum. By the same token; I've been lurking here for nearly a year now and largely if not solely based my purchase of the conversion kit (and a lot of other things) on the reviews and discussions here. I registered and posted here today to hopefully gain a little insight or suggestions and as well bring their lack of response to the Forum. Already out of 5-6 posts, one other Forum member stepped up and said he got screwed by them. We're both out nearly $900 combined so it is only right that it's a public discussion so others can have a full range of experiences.

Shame on US Carburetion!

Meanwhile, tonight I sent a two-page fax to them with 60pt type asking for a call and some help. It'll be hard to miss that in the fax machine. Wish I had of paid by credit card instead of a check.

Thanks again for your time and support. All suggestions welcome.

Robert
Las Vegas, NV
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Old 12-10-2008, 06:34 AM   #8
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Bob,
One other point that hasn't been mentioned, keep the petrol tank at least 3/4 full. Have you installed a gas line shut-off valve? What you might try that I found helpful. When I shut down I usually switch over to petrol and turn gen off with switch. When you start-up again it will start easily, I then turn off the petrol valve and eco switch and when gen starts to stumble turn on LPG. The green line you see in the photos is surgical tubing that you can use to shut off when on LPG. When priming I pull it off and listen til I hear it hiss. The foam ring you see behind the regulator is used to keep dirt out, it's what's inside the tire of an R/C race truck. Leave the mixture switch loose and adjust too highest steady rpm, the tach is very helpful and is also an hour meter that will give you service reminders.

Hope this helps you get things right.

ps.... I just looked at my own photo, looks as though I have about six/seven threads showing, that might be a good place to start on your mixture setting.
Bob
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Old 12-10-2008, 06:36 AM   #9
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I got my kit from: Generator Conversion Kits to Propane and Natural Gas. a few years ago. I think the kit was only $99 at the time.

On my conversion, I had to remove the fuel bowl, remove the gasoline jet, drill it out to accept the propane jet. There were some vent holes that had to be epoxied shut. I am wondering if that is your problem. If you cannot pull a enough of a vacuum, the propane regulator will not release any gas to the jet. Do you recall plugging any vent holes in the carb?

I will try and dig up the installation manual for mine tonight.
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Old 12-10-2008, 06:48 AM   #10
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robert,

I have a Yamaha 2400 genset I onverted with a US Carb kit and have had no problems. Sorry to hear about all your difficulties. I also bought my conversion based on reviews here. Unfortunately, though many are pleased with their US Carb conversion, most, if not all have mentioned their poor customer support.

Mine was a 3 way conversion and did not involve drilling the carb - don't know if that makes a difference.

One thing to note, when starting. It often takes me several pulls to start, and I have to push the propane prime button each time. Also, after priming the fuel, usually the first pull does nothing, the second pull the engine starts to sputter. This process usually repeats 3 or 4 times. prime, pull (nothing), pull (sputter), prime, pull (nothing), pull (sputter), prime, pull, (nothing, pull (sputter), prime, pull (nothing), pull - starts right up.

I have tried priming it longer but the results are always the same. In the end has always started.

Don't know if this helps or not.... Unfortunately I cannot offer much help beyond that. I follow instructions very well but am not much of a mechanic either. Agree with sending this link to the company if they continue to ignore you.

I hope you get it running. If you do, I think you will find yourself VERY happy. Propane is so much nicer than gas. jk
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Old 12-10-2008, 07:12 AM   #11
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One other note: I know they tell you not to use the choke. I usually close it all the way, and pull once. Then half way and pull again, and it usually starts, 2nd or 3rd pull.
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Old 12-10-2008, 09:35 AM   #12
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Exclamation

their instructions are written for someone taking"Shop". Their CS is the worst. You better be a Shop type of guy. I did better than that i had a Honda certified technician play with it while I travelled across country. This company then bailed refused to pickup the phone. The worse! The issue is not over for me and I will take the advise and email them this website address. They could care less about CR. With the auxillary 6gl feed tank for the Hondas they will run almost for over 10-14 hours, so I was told. That investment for me in the end is better than having my big one in the back. Neither one will run a 50amp so I gain nothing more over the 2 running together. I was really committed to the conversion and spent too much time dealing with this issue. I wish there was someone local who could do this. Everyone I checked with locally would not get involved, issues of licensing for service when working with gas. Even when the price of gasoline was high "Shop" guys still questioned the use of gas for various reasons from octane levels to the minute configuration adjustments that maybe necessary for proper running. It is not so easy and to have those guys in WVA involved just screwed up the path for legit companies to jump-in and burned the motivations of people like myself who were willing to go that route. I am not a "Shop" guy but I am fairly mechanical. I believe they even advertised converted Yamahas for sale with warranty!! If Yamaha knew how they run their business they would pull their product. Please people be forewarned find someone else.
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Old 12-10-2008, 10:04 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ROBERT CROSS View Post
Bob,
Have you installed a gas line shut-off valve? What you might try that I found helpful. ... I then turn off the petrol valve and eco switch and when gen starts to stumble turn on LPG
Thanks again folks!

They did not include a shut-off valve in the kit and when I read that part of the manual one of the first things I did was remove the gasoline line at the carb and seal the nipple and seal the end of the gas line. I feel like it is sealed on that end against leaks / vacuum leaks.

My intention was / is not to ever use gasoline as I don't care for the fumes during storage or the exhaust fumes.

Prior to shipping the carb to them for the conversion, I ran the genny on gasoline for about 12 hours (full tank) to seat the rings/pistons. I used a modest load of about 400 watts (large electric fan 3.2 amps). The instruction manual when it came with the kit said to run the genny for about two hours with a FULL LOAD. Since we're splitting hairs here my thought process was that 12 hours running would have seated the rings / pistons for sure. Could it be possible that two hours at full-load would have made a difference?

Thanks!

Robert
Las Vegas, NV
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Old 12-10-2008, 10:16 AM   #14
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Quote:
Could it be possible that two hours at full-load would have made a difference?
No, I do not think it would make any difference at all. I did not do that with mine. Mine was WELL broken in before I did the conversion. Hurricane Frances caused a power outage of almost 7 days, so mine got a real good workout.

Your problem appears to be that you are either not getting any fuel, or you are getting TOO much fuel. I think I have got the same kit you have. But I did my conversion myself.
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