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Old 02-19-2011, 05:00 PM   #15
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Well, I have it narrowed down to the Yamaha 4500iSE based on my usage, your comments, and a few PM's from Forum friends about generators.

I've been looking at prices and all seem pretty close online.
Do you know of any company that blows away their competitors on pricing of Yamaha units?
I'm ready to order, just need the name of a company with good pricing.
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Old 02-22-2011, 09:52 PM   #16
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Yamaha 4500iSE - Great Choice!!!

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Old 02-22-2011, 10:15 PM   #17
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Scheck,
Ya, it seems like it would be great choice, but actually not practical for me. I'd like to have all the power of the 4500, it could run everything. But, I did some measuring and constructed a box out of cardboard the size of the 4500.
Way too big of a package for me to have in the back of the pick up and operate on my tailgate. Just to bulky for me, it takes up too much valuable room in my truck.

So now I'm rethinking this again and taking a hard look at the 2 small portables or the EF3000iSEB like the one you bought recently.

I'll muddle my way thru this eventually.
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Old 02-22-2011, 10:25 PM   #18
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Is there any way you can try starting the Penguin AC on borrowed or demonstrator 3000 unit? I think if there is a problem, starting the air conditioner will be it (unless you're concerned about running the microwave and AC at the same time). You could always put a bit of extra load on it like electric fridge, or other load, to simulate hot days.

At least for me, the 3000 has been ideal. I've had it since '04, it has been completely reliable, it has started the air conditioner and run it at altitudes up to 7K feet (not tried higher) and operated in very hot weather, it has a long runtime on tank of gas, it idles down very quietly when under low load, and it rolls around easily on wheels.
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Old 02-22-2011, 10:26 PM   #19
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I do love my EF3000iSEB - perfect solution for me
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Old 02-22-2011, 10:39 PM   #20
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Is there any way you can try starting the Penguin AC on borrowed or demonstrator 3000 unit? I think if there is a problem, starting the air conditioner will be it (unless you're concerned about running the microwave and AC at the same time). You could always put a bit of extra load on it like electric fridge, or other load, to simulate hot days.

At least for me, the 3000 has been ideal. I've had it since '04, it has been completely reliable, it has started the air conditioner and run it at altitudes up to 7K feet (not tried higher) and operated in very hot weather, it has a long runtime on tank of gas, it idles down very quietly when under low load, and it rolls around easily on wheels.
tpi, that's a great idea. I'll check around locally to see about borrowing a demo unit to try out.
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Old 02-22-2011, 11:12 PM   #21
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One little heads up is the inverter gensets don't boot the AC (or any big motor) up to speed as crisply as shore power, they kind of grunt and lag a bit even with the boost feature. It just takes a half second before it is all up to speed. You could satisfy yourself you have enough margin by adding extra load until the start fails (give sufficient time between starts so pressure equalizes in AC).

I have a Chinese diesel 3500 watt generator which really gets the air conditioner going crisply. The big heavy Yanmar clone engine has lots of moving mass and its already at 3600 RPM..

The inverter gensets have so many advantages for camping use the little lag is worth putting up with. I have had no ill effects from this on my Dometic air conditioner. I have used it a LOT with the Yamaha 3000.

Edit: I strongly suggest having the "economy" feature turned off when running the air conditioner. This keeps motor speed up and gives better surge performance. My AC will start with the economy feature turned on, with the low idle. But the start is uglier with more lag.

One thing the air conditioner mfg. could do to improve starting performance with inverter gensets would be to have a "genset" setting on the control. It would very briefly start the heat strip, and then instantly shift over to the compressor. This would ramp up the inverter genset prior to starting the compressor, plus start the fan and compressor motors individually rather than simultaneously.
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Old 02-23-2011, 04:59 AM   #22
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Seems I remember being told to run the ac on fan only a short time before using the ac cooling function. zz
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Old 05-03-2011, 09:44 AM   #23
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Found a cool product for those of you with generators.

After buying my generator (Yamaha 3000 w/Boost), I now had to think about keeping it safe from thiefs. I did get a 140lb. unit so that in itself would discourage some weaker thiefs or those without a partner in crime. So along with alarm cables that will connect to the inside of my pickup bed and to the generator I also bought an alarm for inside the trailer.
It's a little alarm with a light that will alert me inside the trailer should someone disconnect my gen from my trailer power cord or if the gen stops running.
This alarm plugs into any regular 120v outlet inside trailer. When it senses a power loss it lights up and a alarm will sound. The alarm is loud enough to wake me, but not so loud to alert a thief outside.
I found it on Amazon, but Mayberry's also carries it. Price I paid was $14.66.
Reliance Controls Power Out,THP207,Plug In Power Failure Alarm with LED Flashight.
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Old 05-03-2011, 10:17 AM   #24
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I do love my EF3000iSEB - perfect solution for me
John,
Will the EF3000iSEB power your front 15K AC unit effectively?

-Chris
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Old 05-04-2011, 06:14 PM   #25
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Use this Yamaha link.
It looks like the 3000 w/boost is a good match for the 15,000btu a/c. I'll be trying mine out with the 15,000btu A/C in about a week or so when the temps start to get around 90.

Generator Sizing Chart - Yamaha Motor Corporation, USA
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Old 05-06-2011, 08:20 PM   #26
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RV Air Conditioner Hard Start Capacitor | ModMyRV

This will make a marginal unit work and cut down on wear and tear of the generator set.
I have used a similar hard start capacitor on home A/C units and water well down hole pumps to cut down on the utility bill.
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Old 05-07-2011, 05:37 AM   #27
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RV Air Conditioner Hard Start Capacitor | ModMyRV

This will make a marginal unit work and cut down on wear and tear of the generator set.
I have used a similar hard start capacitor on home A/C units and water well down hole pumps to cut down on the utility bill.
Great idea. Makes sense, and looks like an easy mod.

I remember talking to a fellow sailing enthusiast about how he added a blower switch to the ac (Mermaid) on his Gemini catamaran. He had a small Yamaha generator he used to run the boat when not hooked up to shore power. He would switch the blower off before starting the ac. Once the compressor was started, he would switch in the blower.

Does that make sense? Would it work here, too?

I was thinking that perhaps with the starting cap mod, and waiting til the compressor was up to speed before powering the blower at the same time during startup....it might make using a small portable generator even more possible.
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Old 05-07-2011, 06:41 AM   #28
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Gringo- just switching the blower on, waiting for the generator to stabilize and then turning on the compressor also helps. Cranking the switch directly to cool gives the initial load of both the fan and the compressor at the same time. While the fan initial load is not huge, it can make a difference.
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