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fishandships 04-05-2016 12:26 PM

Portable Genny
 
Is it necessary to purchase a portable generator? If so, which would be the best? I heard Hondas are pretty good

Sailormon6 04-05-2016 12:45 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
A generator is only necessary if you need a source of electrical power greater than batteries or solar power can provide. If you have, for example, two deep cycle batteries and an engine with an alternator, and you're only going to be away from shore power for a couple days, you can manage without one, even if you have refrigeration. The key question is, how much power do you need, and where else might you get it?

Most sailors find alternatives to an auxiliary generator. They're noisy, especially if you run them at night, they're gas hogs, and there are usually better alternatives.

ChristinaM 04-05-2016 01:06 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
I've lived on my boat for almost 2 years without a generator, so it's definitely not required.

What do you use power for on your boat? Sailing at night, lots of electronics, music, fridge, ???

mbianka 04-05-2016 01:23 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
I would not leave port without my trusty Honda 2000 on board. But, my needs are different from those with engines with charging alternators. I converted to electric propulsion eight years ago and no longer have a diesel engine or alternator. I use the Honda for occasional charging of my EP batteries and also for motor sailing on the occasional windless days.

That said I use the Honda for so much more. I carry 120 volt tools that can be powered by the Honda. Including things like a wet/dry vac that makes cleaning the bilge a snap. Also helps with other boat projects. I also use it to power a Dive compressor so that I can easily clean the boats bottom no matter where I am anchored. IMO at 48 lbs it is cheap insurance that you will never have to worry about battery bank not being able to start your engine. You can also easily carry it back on land should you or someone need it to get through a storm induced black out. After eight years the Honda 2000 is the only generator I would recommend. It is just a reliable workhorse IMO.

JimsCAL 04-06-2016 09:16 AM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Why do you think you need a portable generator? For most of us, a decent battery bank plus maybe an inverter does the job.

Maine Sail 04-06-2016 09:29 AM

Re: Portable Genny
 
I've cruised & sailed for well over 40 years and never once needed a generator of any kind. Alternative energy (solar), direct 12V DC devices, a good alternator, a properly sized battery bank and LED lightning have aided us in avoiding a generator...

TomMaine 04-06-2016 10:38 AM

Re: Portable Genny
 
With better alternative energy producers available, and more energy efficient technology, today is a good opportunity to go the other way - both on shore and on the water.

In our home, with more efficient appliances - vast reductions in power requirements for lighting, we're using less power all the time. And that reduction has taken place even while adding an air source heat pump(to supplement wood pellet heat) to our demands.

Boats are using lower power dependent devices like tablets for some tasks. Refrigeration has become more efficient, lighting has sliced amp hours needed.

Today there is an opportunity to add strategic conservation steps to this more efficient technology - cut onboard energy requirements and enjoy more freedom to sail more miles.

Sailboats can enjoy an even higher quality of life on the water today free(er) of fossil fuel power generation.

outbound 04-06-2016 10:50 AM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Maine-you live in Maine. I think you mostly cruise N.E. Think that has impact on your (quite educated) choices.

F- Maine knows more then anyone here about boat wiring/batteries/circuits. Strongly advise doing an energy audit before deciding. Look at Maines writings first. Strongly advise be honest with yourself about present and future boat use. Then decide.

Would note:
1. Hate any above deck generators. You will lose friends in any anchorage you will visit. If you decide to get one please, please, please don't run it before 9a or after 6p. ( between 9-6 you should be sailing anyway)
2. They run on gas. Another hazard. Another thing to feed. Another fire hazard. Spills are dangerous and not good for gelcoat.
3. They are meant to run on land. A hassle on a boat in salt. Another tank of gas. Another thing to maintain.
4. Problematic to run underway. Problematic to store below deck and not good for them to always live above deck. Box shaped things are hard to store as are any "this side up" things.

General thoughts- if you really,really need a genset go below deck diesel. Safer, more efficient, quieter from outside the boat, more reliable.
We lived 1 1/2y on our current boat. Have high rev 2cyclinder diesel genset. It's a lombardini which I don't recommend. When it dies will replace with low rev unit.

It went on:
During passage to top up batteries after prolonged AP,instrument, frig/freezer, a few hours of AC use due to overcast and very high,hot humid days. Otherwise it goes on once a month to make sure it works. I hate it as well but given our energy budget saw there would be rare times our high output alternator and alternatives wouldn't kept up with critical functions (cold beer, and the AP :-)).
Our current budget allows music, rare hour of flatscreen for movies, rare hour of AC to dry boat, but all dedicated boat functions (instruments, AP, radar, frig/freezer) on alt. energy with left over for the spectra Cape Horn extreme dc watermaker on sunny, windy days. Hence, very, very rare times genset really needs to be run.
So for 99.9% of people there's no need for a genset. The others are much better served by a below deck diesel unit as their usage is so high portable ones won't cut it. Alt. energy costs are such that you can do panels/hydro or wind and after a few years its about a wash. And life is so much more pleasant without an engine running. Isn't that why we sail in the first place.


P.S.- if you do do alt. think about where you are and are going to be. Our D400s are weak sisters in N.E. Unless near/offshore in 10-20 don't do much up there. Think it's the long summer days. Surprisingly the panels don't match up to the D400s when down in the eastern Caribbean. Get 1 1/2 to 2x more out of the wind then solar. Think it's the nearly 24/7 fresh breeze down there and shorter day due to winter. Anytime you have fresh water wash your panels. Makes a real difference. Had Sahara winds with fine dust. Output dropped.

basssears 04-06-2016 03:52 PM

I'll add carbon monoxide as very real hazard to contend with as well. But if you're not in marina may be only reasonable way to run power tools.

Melrna 04-06-2016 04:16 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
OUTBOUND Quote :
1. Hate any above deck generators. You will lose friends in any anchorage you will visit. If you decide to get one please, please, please don't run it before 9a or after 6p. ( between 9-6 you should be sailing anyway)

Not true. The Honda's are quiet. I can hear diesel generators run as much as the Honda's.

2. They run on gas. Another hazard. Another thing to feed. Another fire hazard. Spills are dangerous and not good for gelcoat.

Than I guess you don't have a dinghy engine and the carry the gas cans for that.

3. They are meant to run on land. A hassle on a boat in salt.
Another tank of gas. Another thing to maintain.

True on land, no hassle mine is 7 years old and still running strong. Only maintenance is change the oil once every 100 hours.

4. Problematic to run underway. Problematic to store below deck and not good for them to always live above deck. Box shaped things are hard to store as are any "this side up" things.


Could live in the same space your planned diesel generator . Most carry on deck, secured. Easy on a CC boat. Mine lives in a special box I built.

5. General thoughts- if you really,really need a genset go below deck diesel. Safer, more efficient, quieter from outside the boat, more reliable.


More reliable.. I guess you never owned a Panda Fisher. Pieces of junk. Won't even make a good anchor. I would say the #1 maintenance item for cruisers is the inboard generator par none. You even said the one you have is bad, loud and won't replace it with the same model..

End of Quotes

Generators are like boat types; it is personnel. It is how you use your boat, how your boat is set-up, how much money you have to put one and in and maintain it and where you cruise.

We like our Honda. Great for charging batteries when the solar cannot, when we need relief from the heat to put one AC on and run the odd 120 volt equipment. My Honda cost me $800 back on 2008. One can be had for about $1200 now. Inboard diesel generators cost upwards of $10,000-20,000 to put one in. Do the math.

Bob142 04-06-2016 04:34 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
If you decide that you need the extra power...I also recommend the 2000 Honda....

Don L 04-06-2016 04:49 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by fishandships (Post 3426473)
Is it necessary to purchase a portable generator? If so, which would be the best? I heard Hondas are pretty good

No it isn't necessary. The Honda and Yamaha are the best. Don't get one till you have spent time on the boat and know the answer as to whether it is worth getting one for you.

Maine Sail 04-06-2016 05:14 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by outbound (Post 3428545)
Maine-you live in Maine. I think you mostly cruise N.E. Think that has impact on your (quite educated) choices.

Ah yes where we get even less solar hours and where most boats reside only on moorings.....:wink

I also design and install energy management systems for a living, and do so for world cruisers as well as coastal customers. Many of them, whom I do work for, do not choose to have gensets either in-board or portable and they don't need them. The do just fine with a well designed system even without a generator. I also have a number of customers who leave the fridge running 24/7 on the mooring. While they do have LVD's installed it is pretty rare that they actually trip off at 12.1V / low voltage.

Omatako 04-06-2016 05:17 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Melrna (Post 3429121)
We like our Honda. Great for charging batteries when the solar cannot, when we need relief from the heat to put one AC on and run the odd 120 volt equipment. My Honda cost me $800 back on 2008. One can be had for about $1200 now. Inboard diesel generators cost upwards of $10,000-20,000 to put one in. Do the math.

If I had to respond to Outbound's post it would have been exactly the same as yours.

That said, I don't have a Honda gen but have friends that do and it is a good solution for emergency power as well as (as others have said) being great for running power tools aboard.

I went to great lengths "developing" a Fischer Panda gen set to drive two 12v alternators instead of the proprietary alternator. It worked really well on all the tests I did in the workshop. But I abandoned it recently because it was so heavy and had a huge space requirement. Could easily fit two Hondas into the same space and combined they would still be half the weight.

And my mate's Honda makes no more noise than did the FP.

But in the final analysis I agree with other posts, we have found ways to be energy-independent without the need for a gen set. We stripped our shore-power installation out five years ago and use a Xantrex inverter to run the small mains requirement we still have.

travlin-easy 04-06-2016 05:23 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
I'm seriously considering this one from Harbor Freight, which has lots of rave reviews. The price is right, only 10 pounds heavier than the Honda, half the price, very quiet at 63 db. Inverter Generator - 4.7HP, 2500W Inverter Generator

Now, I have bad lungs from asbestos exposure when I was a kid in the Navy. When the humidity is very high and and the nighttime temperatures are above 80, I find it difficult to sleep because of the difficulty in breathing. That's why I have a heat pump on the boat, but there is a lot of time that I'm not tied to the dock, so the genset will solve this problem. Additionally, I spend most of my time on the water during the week when I have those secluded anchorages to myself. More often than not, there are no other boats within miles of me, so that 63 db engine sound will not be bothering anyone other than myself. Inside the cabin, 63 db is barely noticeable.

A couple years ago, when I sailed down the ICW in October, it was one of the coldest on record. That heat pump would have been a God send to me if I had a genset back then.

As for charging the batteries, no worries - my 100-watt solar panel does a great job of keeping the 4 T-105s topped off, even on cloudy days. However, the genset would be a nice backup, if needed.

The only thing I will have to do is construct a platform on the transom to hold the genset and keep the exhaust fumes out of the cockpit and cabin. That's not a problem. In fact, I may construct a platform that has a cover so the genset can stay in place all the time, and it will also be out of the weather.

All the best,

Gary :cool:

Maine Sail 04-06-2016 05:40 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by basssears (Post 3429081)
I'll add carbon monoxide as very real hazard to contend with as well. But if you're not in marina may be only reasonable way to run power tools.


I have a US Government inter-agency document, consisting of cooperation between the USCG, National Park Service, National Institute for Occupational Safety & Heath, US Department of the Interior & multiple State agencies, covering boat related CO poisonings. The document runs 45 pages, is absolutely ALARMING. It includes far too many deaths of both children and adults due to gas generator use..

I put the use of these small portable generators, on boats, in the potential for DEATH, category. It's kind of like the guy who has not YET been caught or caused an accident drunk driving.

The real scary thing is the small percentage of boats operating these generators that don't have any CO detector or are using a land based unit and not a marine unit. I can literally count on one hand the number of boats that have Honda's stuffed into a lazarette that actually have a UL Marine Xintex or a Safe-T-Alert CO detector that have been tested to UL Marine standards.

EDITED: To remove potential dual-meaning wording that could be taken the wrong way.

guitarguy56 04-06-2016 06:37 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
That is sort of unfair Mainesail to indicate this is one for the Darwin Awards.... far more ridiculous things people do on boats that FAR exceeds the use of a simple Honda generator.

Responsible use of the generator is of course paramount and I as a user of a Honda generator know the use and the hazards.

I would not venture out for more than two days on our boat without the Honda in it's trusty location not only for emergency use but also for pleasure use while off the boat on some remote beach location for electrical needs whatever they may be.

Having the use of the small generator regardless of the make is a personal choice and not one for others to attack or ridicule. I've had mine for over two years and have yet to use it on the boat but have taken it for use camping or during blackouts in our neighborhood.

outbound 04-06-2016 07:55 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Will agree every once in awhile nice to run the AC. But otherwise agree with everything Maine says. Respect his verdict as usual.

So it's hot, drizzly and humid with no wind ok to run the Honda outside. Will it keep up with the tv, AC and other toys you use on those dreary days.
So it's nowhere near time to take the AP offline but there's spray, some green water and its rolly poly. Ok to run the Honda on deck.
I don't know if it's safe to run them below deck without considerable planning and I don't know if they are safe to run underway.
Accept I maybe wrong on this one but still think a dedicated diesel unit is safer and more practical.
Back to sanding 2000e. Breaks over.

ReefMagnet 04-06-2016 08:08 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
It depends on your charging vs power draw differential after considering alternatives.

On our boat with electric refrigeration, soon to be installed 12V watermaker and lots of electrical gadgets and limited space for extensive solar panels and where we avoid using the motor as much as possible we run a Honda 1000 genset to a 50 amp charger for four hours every 3 or 4 days or so to keep the batteries topped up. We rarely use any AC powered equipment so the genset is essentially for charging purposes only. And. if you really do need one, buy the Honda or Yamaha. Most cheap copies are unreliable and NOISY. Noise levels double with every 3 dB increase, so keep that in mind when comparing specs. Our little Honda cannot be heard more than 10 metres from the boat in a breeze and we only ever run it between mid morning and mid afternoon.

As for Darwining oneself off using a portable genset on a boat I'd have to say that if one was that stupid, they'd most likely have Darwin'd themselves off long before being in a position to buy and own a boat in the first place. Not saying it doesn't happen, but I'd guess no more so than people blowing themselves up with gas appliances on board. It doesn't need much common sense to place the generator in a location that eliminates CO poisoning risk to the boat's occupants. If you're planning to run your genset overnight, however, do not run a portable unit.

travlin-easy 04-06-2016 08:34 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
I don't think it makes a bit of difference whether the exhaust gasses are created by diesel or gasoline - both are just as deadly. Explosive - only if you do something really stupid, like refueling while it's running. Same as refueling an alcohol stove canister right after you put it out - BOOM!

From my point of view, the Darwin award should go to folks that climb to the top of their mast - I wonder how many people have been killed or injured doing that? I suspect it's a fairly long list as well.

I continually read posts about the danger of a gasoline engine on a sailboat, which drives me nuts. There are thousands upon thousands of gasoline powered sailboats in this country, and in more than 60 years of being on the water, I've never seen one blow up or catch on fire. However, I have witnessed three diesel powered boat fires. All but one burned to the water line. A few months ago, on the TV series Deadliest Catch, one of the crab boats had an injector line blow. The entire engine compartment filled with diesel fumes that were so dense, you could barely see more than 10 feet in the lighted compartment. The engineer, was afraid to press the mic key on the intercom, claiming the tiniest spark could have blown the boat to smithereens. He had to wear a SCUBA rig to work on the problem because the gasses were so deadly. They eventually were able to evacuate the diesel fumes using a huge fan that did not have brushes on the fan motor.

I have had an explosive gas detector on my boat since the day I purchased it. It detects all explosive gasses, including the gasses emitted from charging the boat batteries. It works very, very well, and I tested it using a propane cigarette lighter held about 4 feet away and just pressed the trigger enough so the gas would escape, but not ignite. I held it for about 5 seconds and the alarm went nuts. I had to put a switch in the system so I could turn it off when charging the batteries with the onboard charger - the damned thing would fire off in the middle of the night and wake everyone in the adjacent condos.

I just looked at the study Mainsail talked about, and apparently, the vast majority of those deaths occurred when people fired up gasoline generators in their garages, basements and homes during power outages. Here is an exert from that study: ASHRAE Journal, Sept, 2014, Vol.56(9), p.92(4) [Peer Reviewed Journal]
Description: Concerns exist about the hazard of acute residential carbon monoxide (CO) exposures from portable gasoline-powered generators, which can result in death or serious adverse health effects. As of April 23, 2013 and as shown in Figure 1, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) databases contain records of at least 800 deaths (involving 597 incidents) from CO poisoning caused by consumer use of a generator in the period of 1999 through 2012. (1) Typically, these deaths occur when consumers use a generator in an enclosed or partially enclosed space or, less often, outdoors near a partially open door, window or vent. While avoiding the operation of such generators in or near a home would reduce indoor CO exposures significantly, it may not be realistic to expect such usage to be eliminated completely.

All the best,

Gary :cool:

sidney777 04-06-2016 11:05 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
How much $ for a "well designed system" ?

sidney777 04-06-2016 11:09 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Buy it. & you will know why when you use it.

Omatako 04-07-2016 03:04 AM

Re: Portable Genny
 
If the Darwinian status of running a gasoline generator includes running it down below, then I agree. But nobody is that stupid. Are they?

Unless you're directly in the path of the exhaust gases being emitted, I find it really hard to conceptualise a condition where a genset operating on deck can end up killing you. That belief is really driven by the parallel belief that the genset would always be located as far away from occupants as they can get it just to escape the noise.

Don L 04-07-2016 07:47 AM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Omatako (Post 3430057)
But nobody is that stupid. Are they?

Not for long.

Maine Sail 04-07-2016 07:52 AM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by travlineasy (Post 3429681)
I just looked at the study Mainsail talked about, and apparently, the vast majority of those deaths occurred when people fired up gasoline generators in their garages, basements and homes during power outages. Here is an exert from that study: ASHRAE Journal, Sept, 2014, Vol.56(9), p.92(4) [Peer Reviewed Journal]
Description: Concerns exist about the hazard of acute residential carbon monoxide (CO) exposures from portable gasoline-powered generators, which can result in death or serious adverse health effects. As of April 23, 2013 and as shown in Figure 1, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) databases contain records of at least 800 deaths (involving 597 incidents) from CO poisoning caused by consumer use of a generator in the period of 1999 through 2012. (1) Typically, these deaths occur when consumers use a generator in an enclosed or partially enclosed space or, less often, outdoors near a partially open door, window or vent. While avoiding the operation of such generators in or near a home would reduce indoor CO exposures significantly, it may not be realistic to expect such usage to be eliminated completely.

All the best,

Gary :cool:

Gary,

That is not the data I am referring to. The data I have, 45 pages of deaths and poisonings, is just specific to boats. As far as I know it is not a public document. I have it for one of the committees I sit on.

Minnewaska 04-07-2016 07:53 AM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by travlineasy (Post 3429681)
I don't think it makes a bit of difference whether the exhaust gasses are created by diesel or gasoline - both are just as deadly.......

Both can be deadly, but gasoline exhaust has something in the neighborhood of 30 times more carbon monoxide than diesel exhaust. It's worth considering.

basssears 04-07-2016 09:50 AM

Re: Portable Genny
 
All it takes is breeze from an unexpected direction... say you're anchored bow and stern, or your at a dock with no shore power... i.e. situations where you can't pivot into the wind, you run your generator in its normal stern location (usually downwind) and voila, your boat is full of carbon monoxide.

Put it on the bow to get away from the noise while you sit in the cockpit, it could easily drift down through solar vents / dorades and into the cabin.

You'll read different things, but it basically has a vapor density of 1.0 meaning it weighs the same as air, so it just hangs there (doesn't rise, doesn't sink) until acted on by the most minor or air currents and drifts - in my experience - exactly where you don't want it to.

-- Bass

Quote:

Originally Posted by Omatako (Post 3430057)
If the Darwinian status of running a gasoline generator includes running it down below, then I agree. But nobody is that stupid. Are they?

Unless you're directly in the path of the exhaust gases being emitted, I find it really hard to conceptualise a condition where a genset operating on deck can end up killing you. That belief is really driven by the parallel belief that the genset would always be located as far away from occupants as they can get it just to escape the noise.


outbound 04-07-2016 10:35 AM

Re: Portable Genny
 
So the below deck diesel units are water cooled. Exhaust gases mixed with water before egress from the boat. Exhaust is at the waterline.


Some how this is an equivalent danger of CO poisoning? Really? Please explain?

So you can put matches out in diesel. This is the same fire/burn risk as a hot engine on deck? Please explain?

So below deck units will tolerate 20-25* of heel. Still wondering if folks run their Hondas underway? Honestly don't know if a device made to run on level ground will run bouncing around on the sea. Please educate me.

Seems to me gas generators are great if you are not sailing and careful. Big issue for some is not those wonderful lazy days but when your draw is high but main engine is off. Overcast, 5-15 with radar, AP, frig/freezer, and all electronics going. No shower for 2-3 days so run the watermaker.

I'm with Maine. Boat should be set up that need for extra electrons should be never. But it does happen to me. Like to think fuel equals water shouldn't be true. Like to think wind vane means no AP as well. Like to think crew and I are vigilant with our eyes and everything shows up on AIS. Like think we see squalls before the radar and can see their size.

Admit I'm deficient. Clumsy on deck, get tired, like my steering and nav aids, sloppy pouring fluids on a pitching deck.Feel better after a shower. In short human.

No still hate generators. All generators. But still think below deck units make more sense for some.

Recall a day at Block. Wife pulled four consecutive days of 12h shifts. Finally got back to the boat. After the sail she needed sleep. Anchored in great salt pond. She was woken at 6a. Not one but 3 Hondas running. Not so quite in my mind.
Out to Jost van Dyke. Hard to get to sleep among the charter cats partying. Their vacation so I'm cool with it and understand. Just wish they played better music. They all crash. 10-15 boats with AC on (no need), some with TVs on ( no one watching) and diesel water cooling water splashing all night long. Wasteful and obnoxious.

Don L 04-07-2016 12:07 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by outbound (Post 3430385)

No still hate generators. All generators. But still think below deck units make more sense for some.

Yeah but like all things boat, everything can be fixed with cash. I'm in the process of installing a below deck diesel generator and so far I've spent about $6800 on the project. And this is for an inexpensive unit. Not everyone can afford one of these and not all boats even have the space to install one.

You should get off your high horse broken record about it as you are sounding like a boat snob to me.

guitarguy56 04-07-2016 12:43 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Maine Sail (Post 3430137)
Gary,

That is not the data I am referring to. The data I have, 45 pages of deaths and poisonings, is just specific to boats. As far as I know it is not a public document. I have it for one of the committees I sit on.

Maine Sail... you must be talking about this study?

CDC - Carbon Monoxide Dangers in Boating - NIOSH Workplace Safety and Health Topic

Lots of reading and while informative... most of us using the generators in a safe way will not have to worry if used responsibly... anything else is pretty much nonsense.

basssears 04-07-2016 01:01 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
I have an EU1000 (smaller cousin of the 2k) that I use sometimes with my 4wd camping van, my experience with that generator is that it would NOT tolerate running at an angle at all... I think you'd starve the oil pump and seize the engine, unless it starved of fuel first.

Quote:

Originally Posted by outbound (Post 3430385)
So below deck units will tolerate 20-25* of heel. Still wondering if folks run their Hondas underway? Honestly don't know if a device made to run on level ground will run bouncing around on the sea.


fishandships 04-07-2016 01:29 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
A friend of mine purchased a generator for his work, and I thought of my boat.The need for a generator is not urgent, but just wondered if it would be a reasonable/necessary purchase. If I were to purchase one, the noise and where to place it would be the concern

travlin-easy 04-07-2016 01:31 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Minnewaska (Post 3430145)
Both can be deadly, but gasoline exhaust has something in the neighborhood of 30 times more carbon monoxide than diesel exhaust. It's worth considering.

Keep in mind that it only takes a minuscule amount of CO to kill a person, mainly because the human body absorbs CO at a rate 300 times faster than O2. When I worked at the University of Maryland Shock Trauma Unit we had a hyperbaric chamber for treating CO poisoning and other diseases. We saw lots of CO poisoned patients every year, often children. In those instances, though, the CO was the result of faulty, natural gas, hot water heaters and plugged chimneys. The oddest case I treated was a guy who was a heavy cigar smoker, one that inhaled the cigar smoke. When he came in, his skin was blood red and he was gasping for every breath. His CO blood level was near the lethal level and he spent two days in the chamber before recovering.

So, like I stated above, both are deadly - one may be quicker, but both sources are very lethal.

Gary :cool:

mbianka 04-07-2016 01:34 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by basssears (Post 3430585)
I have an EU1000 (smaller cousin of the 2k) that I use sometimes with my 4wd camping van, my experience with that generator is that it would NOT tolerate running at an angle at all... I think you'd starve the oil pump and seize the engine, unless it starved of fuel first.


My Honda 2000 has run at various angles underway without a problem for eight years now. It does have an electric fuel pump so that may be helping not sure if you 1000 unit has the same configuration.

travlin-easy 04-07-2016 01:40 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by mbianka (Post 3430681)
My Honda 2000 has run at various angles underway without a problem for eight years now. It does have an electric fuel pump so that may be helping not sure if you 1000 unit has the same configuration.

And, similar to most small gasoline engines, they do not use an oil pump, but instead, use an oil splasher, which does a great job on lawn mowers, garden tractors, etc...

Gary :cool:

Minnewaska 04-07-2016 02:50 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by travlineasy (Post 3430673)
Keep in mind that it only takes a minuscule amount of CO to kill a person.......

Well, there is a minuscule amount of CO in the atmosphere. Whether it kills you is dependent on both the amount of CO in the air you breath, as well as exposure time. It would take an extraordinary amount of CO to kill you in one breath, but it is theoretically possible. More typical, you'll die after repeatedly breathing the CO and it cumulatively attaches to your hemoglobin, thereby preventing O2 from doing so.

Suffice it to say, it will take 30x more diesel exhaust to kill you, than gasoline exhaust, over the same period. Said differently, the equivalent amount of exhaust will have much less CO from diesel and, therefore, take substantially longer to kill you.

guitarguy56 04-07-2016 02:52 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
If CO was such an issue I and everyone driving convertibles on the roads for hours at a time behind some real polluters should theoretically be dead (dazed or prone to suffocation) a long time ago from all those emissions at a far higher dosage than what one would get on a sailing vessel out in all sorts of open areas and winds. Just a haphazard guess... ;)

Minnewaska 04-07-2016 03:07 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
The risk of death is clearly from CO getting down a hatch or companionway, not while sitting outside.

Don L 04-07-2016 03:15 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Marine CO2 detector $89 from Defender

FireBoy - Xintex Sentinel Carbon Monoxide Detector - No Relay

If you skip that and die, oh well one less idiot!

I'm not against people having generators, even portable ones. But I don't support overly protecting idiots. In fact I'm for allowing idiots to do whatever damage to themselves as they wish. As we say in New Hampshire "Live Free or Die"

outbound 04-07-2016 04:58 PM

Don. Problem is much to perhaps your mutual dismay we do not live in a libertarian society. You my friend not infrequently get to pay for others stupidity.
Chronic surprisingly low level CO intoxication or acute CO intoxication selectively damage the basal ganglia producing an irreversible movement disorder. These people are significantly disabled. You Don get to pay and support them. Always fascinated to me that smokers on the other hand have lower rates of the most common significant movement disorder. That being Parkinson's Disease. Don't see anything too snotty about that. Maybe just don't like unfortunate folks drooling. Miserable to be brain injured. Should only have sympathy not your cruel heartless attitude.

Don L 04-07-2016 05:34 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
feeling bad for people and protecting idiots aren't the same

outbound 04-07-2016 05:38 PM

Whatever.

Guess you don't realize some people are not as gifted as you.

Still think you have a piss poor attitude. Get over your self

Don L 04-07-2016 06:12 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by outbound (Post 3431065)
Whatever.

Guess you don't realize some people are not as gifted as you.

Still think you have a piss poor attitude. Get over your self

Where the hell and how do you come up with these crazy crap posts? Are you on some weird drug or something that allows to to read something and twist it into a Twilight Zone thing?

Melrna 04-07-2016 06:18 PM

Portable Genny
 
My biggest worry of Carbon monoxide poisoning is not my Honda generator but the engine itself. I have seen too many older boats where the engine exhaust system has deteriorated to the point of leaking underway or while recharging batteries at anchor. Here is a typical scenario on the east coast and Bahamas; Current is one way and wind is from the opposite side. Boat faces downwind. Morning rolls around and boater starts engine/generator to charge batteries and/or make breakfast. Exhaust rolls into the cockpit and down the companionway. Real scenario, a friend lost his boat and almost his life in the middle of the Atlantic because of an exhaust system failure. The biggest question (elephant in the room) is how many folks have a Carbon monoxide detector in the area of the engine exhaust run inside their boat?? For most boats that would mean the rear staterooms. The marine parts stores don't carry a lot of exhaust hoses for decorations.

Even bigger question is why doesn't the NMMA and other boat standards require a Carbon monoxide detector installed from boat manufactures and boat owners?? There seems to be rules on other safety equipment required; fire extinguishers, life jackets sound producing equipment. Carbon monoxide detectors should be required in all boats. I have 2.

outbound 04-07-2016 06:27 PM

"But I don't support overly protecting idiots. In fact I'm for allowing idiots to do whatever damage to themselves as they wish. As we say in New Hampshire "Live Free or Die"".
?your words not mine, Don. Seems pretty egocentric. See fellow sailors from lack of knowledge or thought get in to all kinds of difficulties. Always try to help if I can. Know I've done and will do stupid stuff. Guess your just better than us.

Good to know the 2000 will run on a slant. Good to know if properly done noise comparable to below deck units. Still not a fan but can see merit in the other side of discussion

Don L 04-07-2016 06:51 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by outbound (Post 3431161)
"But I don't support overly protecting idiots. In fact I'm for allowing idiots to do whatever damage to themselves as they wish. As we say in New Hampshire "Live Free or Die"".
?your words not mine, Don. Seems pretty egocentric. See fellow sailors from lack of knowledge or thought get in to all kinds of difficulties. Always try to help if I can. Know I've done and will do stupid stuff. Guess your just better than us.

Not better than "us" probably. :wink

I still don't know how you have twisted this. I stand by not overly protecting idiots! Don't know how that applies to "fellow Sailors" unless they are idiots as in how it applies to this thread of running a gas generator and not having a CO2 detector.

Ulladh 04-07-2016 08:19 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Carbon monoxide is the issue not carbon dioxide.

CO detectors are available at most Lowes Home Depot Walmart and other big box stores also single unit CO and smoke detectors.

CO2 makes drinks fizzy, CO a product of combustion kills.

guitarguy56 04-07-2016 10:27 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Note to OP... Buy the Honda or whatever small generator you happen to like for the $$$ involved. If you're running the generator keep it as far from any open areas where the wind will blow the CO into the cabin. CO is similar to air in density so it will linger where it is exhausted from the generator... you can't get away from this phenomena... just keep it away from the cabin... outside of this the dangers are no different than filling gasoline into the outboard tank(s), filling the fuel tanks with diesel, etc. Even filling alcohol into the Origo canisters have their own hidden dangers.

What you don't need are the hyperbole and nonsense you're reading here unless of course you've never filled your car with gasoline or filled the mower tanks with fuel, or started a fire pit or charcoal grill... and who hasn't done that? Silly thread! Melrna seems to have more [email protected] than some here! ;)

travlin-easy 04-07-2016 11:46 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Melnra is my hero - I've known her for several years and she's probably among the best captains on the forum.

My son told me tonight that he has figured a way to send his genset exhaust underwater, which is neat. Much quieter and safer. I asked about back pressure and he said the exhaust hose will only be about an inch beneath the surface and it shouldn't be a problem according to the manufacturer.

Cheers,

Gary :cool:

Minnewaska 04-08-2016 06:59 AM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by guitarguy56 (Post 3431489)
.....Melrna seems to have more [email protected] than some here! ;)

Mel is a great contributor and experienced Captain and we're fortunate to have her point of view. Can't speak for her, but most woman I know are not a fan of that sexist way of describing fortitude.

She's also not in the habit of calling others names, when they have a different point of view.

There are valid points of view from both the gasoline portable crowd and the inboard diesel crowd. There is no win here.

boatpoker 04-08-2016 07:55 AM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Melrna (Post 3431121)

Even bigger question is why doesn't the NMMA and other boat standards require a Carbon monoxide detector installed

ABYC A-24 Carbon Monoxide Detection Systems (required since 2008).

guitarguy56 04-08-2016 07:55 AM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Minnewaska (Post 3431785)
Mel is a great contributor and experienced Captain and we're fortunate to have her point of view. Can't speak for her, but most woman I know are not a fan of that sexist way of describing fortitude.

She's also not in the habit of calling others names, when they have a different point of view.

There are valid points of view from both the gasoline portable crowd and the inboard diesel crowd. There is no win here.

No need to feel thin skinned Minne... Yes we all know Melrna and she has been exemplary here and she is an incredible contributor... My point was if she has done the portable generator use why do some question it if they themselves do not have one? Why not take her advice as well as others that ACTUALLY have the Hondas or other generators and instead of ranting about the use and the knowledge of the user why not let it go? Why not buy one and go through the paces of using one before questioning the ability or experience of users of these generators, the carefulness of placement of these units, and the protection from CO in the form of CO monitors throughout the cabin... What I and others that have the units and the CO monitors don't need are blatant blowhards such as has been read on this thread... Get a unit and then have a say about it's use, hazards, etc... instead of ranting while having a 5-10k generator onboard your vessel doing the same thing albeit exhaust gases blown into the water but CO still there if sitting motionless right?

boatpoker 04-08-2016 08:03 AM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by travlineasy (Post 3429249)
I'm seriously considering this one from Harbor Freight, which has lots of rave reviews. The price is right, only 10 pounds heavier than the Honda, half the price, very quiet at 63 db. Inverter Generator - 4.7HP, 2500W Inverter Generator

I had one of these, a Chinese Honda knock-off. It worked great for the one year that it lasted with about 100hrs. run time.

Maine Sail 04-08-2016 08:07 AM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by guitarguy56 (Post 3431833)
No need to feel thin skinned Minne... Yes we all know Melrna and she has been exemplary here and she is an incredible contributor... My point was if she has done the portable generator use why do some question it if they themselves do not have one? Why not take her advice as well as others that ACTUALLY have the Hondas or other generators and instead of ranting about the use and the knowledge of the user why not let it go? Why not buy one and go through the paces of using one before questioning the ability or experience of users of these generators, the carefulness of placement of these units, and the protection from CO in the form of CO monitors throughout the cabin... What I and others that have the units and the CO monitors don't need are blatant blowhards such as has been read on this thread... Get a unit and then have a say about it's use, hazards, etc... instead of ranting while having a 5-10k generator onboard your vessel doing the same thing albeit exhaust gases blown into the water but CO still there if sitting motionless right?

Completely rude and 150% unnecessary..

guitarguy56 04-08-2016 08:47 AM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Maine Sail (Post 3431849)
Completely rude and 150% unnecessary..

MaineSail.... Sorry you feel this way... But others were just as rude citing 'Darwin Awards' and stupidity for using these generators... those aren't my words... maybe look back at some of the comments... I'm sure they were just as rude and unnecessary as well... we're all not stupid idiots here are we?

Minnewaska 04-08-2016 09:15 AM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by guitarguy56 (Post 3431833)
No need to feel thin skinned Minne...

It's not me you may have offended, perhaps not even Mel. But many women don't like the "balls" comment. You own it now.

Quote:

...why do some question it if they themselves do not have one?
Who have you parsed out that has one? I have one. I also have an inboard diesel.

Quote:

Why not take her advice as well as others that ACTUALLY have the Hondas or other generators and instead of ranting about the use and the knowledge of the user why not let it go?
That logic doesn't equally apply to those with diesels?

Quote:

What I and others that have the units and the CO monitors don't need are blatant blowhards such as has been read on this thread...
Yea. Name calling anyone that doesn't see it your way. There is more than one valid perspective on this.

Quote:

Get a unit and then have a say about it's use, hazards, etc... instead of ranting while having a 5-10k generator onboard your vessel doing the same thing albeit exhaust gases blown into the water but CO still there if sitting motionless right?
I own both, do you? The inboard diesel is substantially better and safer, IMO. I doubt you're now convinced. Although, I have only engaged in this thread with respect to the relative safety of diesel exhaust v gasoline exhaust. I don't really care which anyone uses and see both points of view.

Minnewaska 04-08-2016 09:20 AM

Re: Portable Genny
 
As far as etiquette goes, I don't fall completely on the side of banning all generators. In fact, I find the sound of a wind generator to be substantially more annoying than an engine. I also believe that the splashing water from an inboard genset is pretty tame, although, I know it annoys others. It doesn't sound and different to me than water splashing ashore or under a sugar scoop transom. Granted, the sound of a buzzing generator on deck annoys many.

The answer is to be considerate. Both ways. If the wind is honking and your neighbors couldn't possibly hear your genset, then it doesn't really matter what you do. When still, especially at night, being considerate is called for. Don't run your generator anymore than you would play loud music everyone could hear, while sleeping. Beyond that, knock yourself out.

guitarguy56 04-08-2016 09:23 AM

Re: Portable Genny
 
I don't care or need an inboard generator for the size boat I have. I don't need one for it's electrical needs as I don't need a hairdryer for my hair... second YES the balls comment was to indicate Melrna has more strength and sensibility then some of the 'men' here! YES I own that phrase and proud of it! I could care less you own both... but now seeing that you DO own a portable generator why didn't you just come out and praise the benefits of using one and careful placement to avoid CO instead of acting as if anyone using one is an idiot or agreeing they deserve a Darwin award?

If you've ever been in the NAVY then you know 'blatant blowhard' is used quite often without anyone getting 'thin skinned' offended! Grow a pair!

Minnewaska 04-08-2016 09:46 AM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by guitarguy56 (Post 3432001)
.....why didn't you just come out and praise the benefits of using one and careful placement to avoid CO instead of acting as if anyone using one is an idiot or agreeing they deserve a Darwin award?

Care to quote any of my posts above that acted like anyone was an idiot or agreed with the Darwin comment?

SVAuspicious 04-08-2016 09:48 AM

Re: Portable Genny
 
There really can be no question that gasoline engines generate more CO than diesel engines. Melissa (who I am happy to call my friend) is correct that we should also be as concerned about the exhaust systems of fixed engines. At some point, regardless of your risk threshold, the difference between 1 in 10,000 and one in 1,000,000 (the order of magnitude is right, round numbers to make a point) makes little difference if you are the '1' affected.

As noted, ABYC recommendations include gas sensors (propane and CO and smoke). I am not aware of USCG regulation except on inspected vessels (i.e. not us). I am not aware of service intervals defined for much of anything by ABYC or USCG (or CE or Lloyds, et al) except for flares, fire extinguishers, and EPIRBs. I may not be remembering something.

Practically speaking a diesel exhaust leak is going to be smoky and smelly and sometimes wet and steamy. Gasoline engine exhaust leaks are more pernicious.

Mel's point about wind against current is well taken and a good reason for exhausting generators through the side. Not perfect, but better.

It is worth noting that the sensors in CO detectors have a service life. Service life begins at the time of manufacture of the sensor, not the device as a whole. That means the device you purchase could be a couple of years old already when you take it out of the box. High end sensors last 10 years; cheaper ones about five. This is a case of getting what you pay for. The failure mode is false negative (that is, the sensor stops sensing anything). I buy good ones and replace them at about five years.

It is my experience that sharing an anchorage with high frequency noise is more disruptive than lower frequency noise. Other people may have different sensitivities. I find small gasoline generators as irritating as a mosquito circling my head. I suggest the same human audio frequency response is why some (not all) wind generators are similarly unpopular neighbors. For most inbuilt diesel generators the most significant intrusion is splashing of cooling water. You can make that go away with a gas/water separator, but I digress.

outbound 04-08-2016 09:51 AM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Seems beyond this immediate issue there maybe another divide. Noise. I hate noise pollution of any sort. Whether the source is diesel or gas engines, or even cooling water splash. Believe in the golden rule so mute or turn off our cockpit speakers unless underway. Try to follow the rule if you can hear anything from the boat from 6' away it's too noisy.
In process of trying to design and build another enclosure beyond the stock enclosure for the lombardini as find it too noisy. Thinking of sewing up a cloth enclosure using nomex or fiberglass welding mat. Will incorporate baffles to allow air flow but not noise egress. Can slip it on/off as necessary. May add another set of vibration isolators to it's base. Think all high rev gensets are too noisy but this one is particularly bad. Would appreciate thoughts about materials and techniques to do this.

So folks, whatever you decide please run it in the middle of the day. Please run as briefly as possible. Please think about ways you can decrease the noise.

Minnewaska 04-08-2016 09:56 AM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by outbound (Post 3432073)
....So folks, whatever you decide please run it in the middle of the day. Please run as briefly as possible. Please think about ways you can decrease the noise.

Totally fair.

Maine Sail 04-08-2016 10:00 AM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by guitarguy56 (Post 3431905)
MaineSail.... Sorry you feel this way... But others were just as rude citing 'Darwin Awards' and stupidity for using these generators... those aren't my words... maybe look back at some of the comments... I'm sure they were just as rude and unnecessary as well... we're all not stupid idiots here are we?

If my post came off to sound as if folks who choose to use these are "stupid" that was not my intent at all. I can see how using the term Darwin Award could suggest people being stupid or dumb but it was not my intent. My intent was more about the end result state your body could be in. I apologize if it sounded as if I was referring to all portable genny users as stupid or dumb..

It was to suggest folks could wind up DEAD. Many smart people have died from CO poisoning.

My point was that the use of these quite often has folks thinking they are safer than they really are. Folks are easily lulled into a sense of safety by others using them or 10 uses and no death etc.. One could certainly wind up in a Darin Award state (meaning dead), as has happened, if not careful.

The "station wagon effect" is real on boats both at anchor and underway and sadly it is rarely if ever talked about..

Quote:

Originally Posted by guitarguy56 (Post 3431833)
My point was if she has done the portable generator use why do some question it if they themselves do not have one? Why not take her advice as well as others that ACTUALLY have the Hondas or other generators and instead of ranting about the use and the knowledge of the user why not let it go? Why not buy one and go through the paces of using one before questioning the ability or experience of users of these generators,

Why are the opinions of those of us who do have them, and choose not to use them, apparently discounted or not as valid or valuable in terms of input?

I personally won't use my portable gas Honda EU2000 on board our boat. I do own one and have made that decision for myself and family. Even with a marine CO detector, which we have, I still choose to not use it.

When I have to use my EU2000, for working on customers boats, (I try to avoid it at all costs but most of my customers are on moorings) I carry a Safe-T-Alert CO detector with me and tap it into the ships 12V. Even though I often run the EU2K in my Maritime Skiff, tied to the back of a customers boat, at 15' to 20' off, it has set off the CO detector twice most likely due to station wagon effect.

I just don't believe these are as safe as the masses would have us believe and yes, I do own one. I do believe the use of portable genny's is not as safe as many assume it is but that is jut my apparently discounted/invalid opinion...:wink

Can they be used pretty safely or more safely? Absolutely, but there is still risk. Until I see everyone using one in a safe manner and who also have a Xintex or Safe-T-Alert Marine UL CO detector, you'll see me cautioning their use.

My main point is that folks need to use these SAFELY and many do not, heck most I have seen do not. Does this make the users "stupid"? Absolutely not just perhaps not as well informed about safe use as they should or could be and this could put them in a Darwin Award state, which means dead....

Honestly, show of hands,:wink how many here, with a portable genny, have a less than 5 year old (they expire) Xintex or Safe-T-Alert Marine UL CO detector?

I was on a boat last August and checked the residential grade Smoke/CO detector and found NO BATTERIES. When I asked the owner, who also has a Honda EU2000, why no batteries,

"Oh the galley stove sets the smoke detector off too much."

We then had a long conversation about CO, using proper detectors etc, and he now has a Safe-T-Alert... This guy is not stupid but could have been dead because he "forgot" to put the batteries back in.. Forgot is not being stupid, it happens to even the smartest among us, but it could still wind up with he or his wife in a permanently horizontal state...

Captain Canuck 04-08-2016 12:43 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Maine Sail (Post 3432097)
We then had a long conversation about CO, using proper detectors etc, and he now has a Safe-T-Alert... This guy is not stupid but could have been dead because he "forgot" to put the batteries back in.. Forgot is not being stupid, it happens to even the smartest among us, but it could still wind up with he or his wife in a permanently horizontal state...

I agree. Forgetting things isn't about smart, it's about memory. Why do you think so many of us tie the key to the diesel's water intake valve when we close it?

dragon lady 05-03-2016 10:43 AM

Re: Portable Genny
 
travelineasy. ref post #49
please post info/details of the exhaust hose you mention
thanks

travlin-easy 05-03-2016 10:16 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by dragon lady (Post 3472073)
travelineasy. ref post #49
please post info/details of the exhaust hose you mention
thanks

I'll check with my son this weekend when I see him and post the information here for you.

Gary :cool:

Whitebread117 05-03-2016 11:49 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Late to the party here, but I do use a Honda portable genny on the aft deck of our center cockpit ketch every other day or so. We have a big fridge, a big freezer, 2 kids, so big electrical loads. Windy/sunny days we can go 3 before Honda comes out, but that's about it. We aren't the type to motor or motorsail unless we absolutely have to though.

For MS, we do have a 3 year old xintrex Co detector mounted in the aft cabin. Honda sits with exhaust pointed out over transom centerline (vertical transom, no transom ports, always at anchor swinging into the wind). No issues so far.

We also have a Fisher Panda mini 8 inboard diesel generator that I can't wait to rip out. Total junk regarding reliability/maintenance (gen head bearing replacement every 1k hours - really?). Faulty sensors, failure to shut down ( like a gas engine on too low octane) , the list goes on. Plus that lightly loaded 7.5kw gen uses more fuel than our loaded Honda. 1/4 load on Panda (15.6A 120ac) uses approx 1/2 gallon per hour - same burn rate as 50% load on the same Panda. Full load on Honda yields approx 4 hrs run time on .9 gallons (13.3A load). Let's not start on the one less wet exhaust, no belts, no extra diesel filters, no additional sources for leaks inside the boat, etc.

Fwiw, there was a Lagoon 380 cat anchored near me in a quiet anchorage today. They fired up their Honda this afternoon on their stern deck about 200' away. It sounded like a dinghy/outboard from significantly farther away-i was not bothered in the least. And this is in a relatively quiet low wind anchorage with 5 boats total.

travlin-easy 05-05-2016 03:28 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
I talked with my son last night and he said the exhaust hose he's using was purchased at a local auto parts shop. It is made of some special kind of rubber that is heat resistant and clamps to the exhaust pipe of his generator. He is using a generator that he purchased from Harbor Freight, which allows him to have access to the exhaust pipe.

Gary :cool:

fallard 05-07-2016 05:25 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Maine Sail (Post 3432097)

The "station wagon effect" is real on boats both at anchor and underway and sadly it is rarely if ever talked about..
.
.
When I have to use my EU2000, for working on customers boats, (I try to avoid it at all costs but most of my customers are on moorings) I carry a Safe-T-Alert CO detector with me and tap it into the ships 12V.

Maine Sail, given your experience with temporary location of CO detectors, do you have an opinion on the best location for one? I am not a gen user, but do care about the station wagon effect from my diesel at anchor.

travlin-easy 05-07-2016 11:52 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
The specific gravity of Carbon Monoxide is 0.9657 (with normal air being 1.0), this means that it will float up towards the ceiling because it is lighter than regular air. However, when a build up of dangerous levels of CO gas is taking place, this is nearly always due to a heat source that is not burning its fuel correctly (motor vehicle exhaust fumes are an exception). This heated air can form a layer near your ceiling which can prevent the Carbon Monoxide from reaching a ceiling detector.

For this reason I strongly suggest that it is best to mount your detectors on the walls at least a couple of feet below the height of the ceiling. If your detector has a digital read-out, then I recommend placing it at about eye level so you can easily read it. Or if you have some other structure, like the exposed beam in this photograph insdide my house which is positioned below the ceiling level, then you can attach your carbon monoxide detectors to it instead.

I got this just by googling carbon monoxide detector locations.

Gary :cool:

boatpoker 05-08-2016 12:45 AM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by travlineasy (Post 3478897)
The specific gravity of Carbon Monoxide is 0.9657 (with normal air being 1.0), this means that it will float up towards the ceiling because it is lighter than regular air. However, when a build up of dangerous levels of CO gas is taking place, this is nearly always due to a heat source that is not burning its fuel correctly (motor vehicle exhaust fumes are an exception). This heated air can form a layer near your ceiling which can prevent the Carbon Monoxide from reaching a ceiling detector.

For this reason I strongly suggest that it is best to mount your detectors on the walls at least a couple of feet below the height of the ceiling. If your detector has a digital read-out, then I recommend placing it at about eye level so you can easily read it. Or if you have some other structure, like the exposed beam in this photograph insdide my house which is positioned below the ceiling level, then you can attach your carbon monoxide detectors to it instead.

I got this just by googling carbon monoxide detector locations.

Gary :cool:

A specific gravity difference of .0343 is so miniscule that a single breath, an open port, someone opening or closing a door in an adjacent room is enough to send the CO in another direction up, down or sideways. My safety training has been that CO detectors be near head level in room being protected for that reason e.g. bed level, close to headboard in sleeping accomodations

travlin-easy 05-08-2016 06:38 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
It all depends upon the volume of gas - and of course, the temperature. I treated hundreds of CO poisoning patients in the 15 years I spend working in medicine, and I can assure you that it doesn't require a lot of CO to enter the bloodstream to be deadly. If it were not for hyperbaric therapy, which I worked with back in the 1960s, there would be a lot more CO deaths in Baltimore.

Gary :cool:

fishandships 05-10-2016 12:53 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Ok so pretty much, most of the repsonses are don't buy a generator cause you'll die due to CO

travlin-easy 05-10-2016 05:23 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by fishandships (Post 3481881)
Ok so pretty much, most of the repsonses are don't buy a generator cause you'll die due to CO

Nah! Just be careful about the placement and you won't have any problems at all. And, of course, get an inexpensive CO detector, which can keep you out of trouble.

Good luck,

Gary :cool:

[email protected] 06-03-2016 08:39 AM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Honda guy here...sorry I'm late. A few facts:

No Honda generators are Coast Guard approved. Honda does not recommend their use aboard any craft.

The EU2000i has a splash-type lubrication system, not pressurized, and there is an engine shut-down sensor (float-type) if the oil level falls below a minimum level. This sensor can engage more readily if the generator is operated at an angle vs. flat and level.

The EU2000i has a vacuum-style (not electric) fuel pump. Most generators are simple fuel tanks with gravity-feed designs, but the compact design of the EU2000i means the carburetor sits above the fuel tank sump, so a pump is required.

There are no special hardware or treatment of materials to make them marine grade or less susceptible to corrosion.

- - -
I work for Honda, but the preceding is my opinion alone.
[email protected]

Minnewaska 06-03-2016 01:46 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Well, there you go. All you folks that use the honda portables aboard are all going to die. :)

mbianka 06-03-2016 03:44 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Minnewaska (Post 3518674)
Well, there you go. All you folks that use the honda portables aboard are all going to die. :)

Only if you don't get the Honda that comes with the common sense mod. :)

guitarguy56 06-03-2016 04:00 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by mbianka (Post 3518914)
Only if you don't get the Honda that comes with the common sense mod. :)

I die every time I crank mine on... Oh wait I never have used it on the boat for anything but useless weight but glad it's there! No wonder I still walk this Earth! Sigh... ;)

mbianka 06-03-2016 04:02 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by [email protected] (Post 3518210)
Honda guy here...sorry I'm late. A few facts:

• No Honda generators are Coast Guard approved. Honda does not recommend their use aboard any craft.

• The EU2000i has a splash-type lubrication system, not pressurized, and there is an engine shut-down sensor (float-type) if the oil level falls below a minimum level. This sensor can engage more readily if the generator is operated at an angle vs. flat and level.

• The EU2000i has a vacuum-style (not electric) fuel pump. Most generators are simple fuel tanks with gravity-feed designs, but the compact design of the EU2000i means the carburetor sits above the fuel tank sump, so a pump is required.

• There are no special hardware or treatment of materials to make them marine grade or less susceptible to corrosion.

- - -
I work for Honda, but the preceding is my opinion alone.
[email protected]

I agree but, it is still a great generator to use on board as long as you use some common sense. Though one has to keep an eye on corrosion issue. Especially the case screws as I found out when I had to replace the pull cord after five years of use: THE BIANKA LOG BLOG: RELIABILITY: So much for that!
About to start my 9th season with it and plan to change out the muffler due to some rusting around the screw heads. Still a great product to have on board and complements my electric propulsion system very nicely.

chuck53 06-03-2016 10:00 PM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Over the years I've heard lots of people rave about their Hondas. Just curious...has anyone seen that infomercial about the new Generac 2000 inverter style generator. Made to compete directly with the Honda 2000 and has a couple nice features the Honda doesn't have. They say it is even a few decibels quieter than the Honda and about $200 less. Looked like a pretty nice unit. Generac is a pretty good company and seems they own the home generator market.

SVAuspicious 06-04-2016 08:51 AM

Re: Portable Genny
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by [email protected] (Post 3518210)
Honda guy here...sorry I'm late. A few facts:

No Honda generators are Coast Guard approved. Honda does not recommend their use aboard any craft.

The EU2000i has a splash-type lubrication system, not pressurized, and there is an engine shut-down sensor (float-type) if the oil level falls below a minimum level. This sensor can engage more readily if the generator is operated at an angle vs. flat and level.

The EU2000i has a vacuum-style (not electric) fuel pump. Most generators are simple fuel tanks with gravity-feed designs, but the compact design of the EU2000i means the carburetor sits above the fuel tank sump, so a pump is required.

There are no special hardware or treatment of materials to make them marine grade or less susceptible to corrosion.

Ground and neutral are not bonded at the generator.

The high frequency noise floats across anchorages and is as irritating as a mosquito buzzing about your ears.


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