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Old 04-07-2015, 07:34 PM   #1
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Genset Setting frequency or Cycles

I did something so stupid that I am kicking myself ever since. We used to have a 5th wheel tow trailer and a few years back we bought a class a.

I had purchased a 3500 watt gen set for the 5th wheel an did not let it go when we sold it. I thought we might use it for backup but never did. I would run it a bit every year just to keep the cobwebs out. Seems I didn't get them all out as it started to run terrible just when I thought I better sell it. Ok no problem I dissembled the carb installed a kit and it is once again running great. The problem is the settings had to be changed in order to get the carb off.
The problem is I got rid of my multimeter and a raft of tools when I retired. I had another multimeter at home so I never thought much of it. No Hertz on the meter at home A meter with hertz is too expensive for a one time use.
Any Ideas how to set the cycles without a meter?
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Old 04-07-2015, 09:48 PM   #2
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Rent a freq meter?
Find a local tech repair shop, and pay the guy for an hour to come with you and read his meter.
Ditto above, but at your local voc/tech school.
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Old 04-08-2015, 06:28 AM   #3
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You can but a small volt and hertz gauge on eBay for around $5
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Old 04-08-2015, 08:31 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by narampa View Post
A meter with hertz is too expensive for a one time use.
Any Ideas how to set the cycles without a meter?
As a matter of fact I do.. But a Kill-a-watt P3 is cheaper, does Hz, Volts and you need volts all the time. Is CHEEPER than dedicated volt meters (20 v/s 25-30) and also is very good for testing heaters and other electric plug in stuff (use amps or watts settings) for current draw (just plug into the Kill-a-watt's outlet) and a few other things as well

The other method involves strobe (NE-2) Lights and a tuning fork or a dedicated multi-reed surplus frequency meter...The Kill-a-watt is way easier and more practical.

Option 3 is park next to someone like me and borrow one of our meters....I have 3 or 4. One I would give you if you wished.
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Old 04-08-2015, 09:20 AM   #5
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Yes, always track your volts!


My Onan was acting like fuel starvation so I fixed that and it was running a bit fast .... 150v w/o a load!


The book for my BF says 108 with and 132 without load. So I fixed that and all is well in Onanland. 111 to 124 now.
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Old 04-08-2015, 09:22 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by MotorPro View Post
You can but a small volt and hertz gauge on eBay for around $5
I checked ebay there are meters on there but they are kilohertz. Not what is required for a gen set.
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Old 04-08-2015, 09:25 AM   #7
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As a matter of fact I do.. But a Kill-a-watt P3 is cheaper, does Hz, Volts and you need volts all the time. Is CHEEPER than dedicated volt meters (20 v/s 25-30) and also is very good for testing heaters and other electric plug in stuff (use amps or watts settings) for current draw (just plug into the Kill-a-watt's outlet) and a few other things as well

The other method involves strobe (NE-2) Lights and a tuning fork or a dedicated multi-reed surplus frequency meter...The Kill-a-watt is way easier and more practical.

Option 3 is park next to someone like me and borrow one of our meters....I have 3 or 4. One I would give you if you wished.
I have two multi meters with kilohertz. Won't work for what I need good for electronics not generator output.
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Old 04-08-2015, 09:30 AM   #8
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Yes, always track your volts!


My Onan was acting like fuel starvation so I fixed that and it was running a bit fast .... 150v w/o a load!


The book for my BF says 108 with and 132 without load. So I fixed that and all is well in Onanland. 111 to 124 now.
Setting the voltage does work for most things. But there are some things that are sensitive to 60 cycles. Electronics especially.
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Old 04-08-2015, 09:40 AM   #9
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As a matter of fact I do.. But a Kill-a-watt P3 is cheaper, does Hz, Volts and you need volts all the time. Is CHEEPER than dedicated volt meters (20 v/s 25-30) and also is very good for testing heaters and other electric plug in stuff (use amps or watts settings) for current draw (just plug into the Kill-a-watt's outlet) and a few other things as well

The other method involves strobe (NE-2) Lights and a tuning fork or a dedicated multi-reed surplus frequency meter...The Kill-a-watt is way easier and more practical.

Option 3 is park next to someone like me and borrow one of our meters....I have 3 or 4. One I would give you if you wished.
Just ordered kilowatt ps 3from amazon.
Thanks for the info. It looks like it will be interesting. I have always been interested in what some of my appliances have been using.
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Old 04-10-2015, 06:55 PM   #10
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Quote:
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Yes, always track your volts!


My Onan was acting like fuel starvation so I fixed that and it was running a bit fast .... 150v w/o a load!


The book for my BF says 108 with and 132 without load. So I fixed that and all is well in Onanland. 111 to 124 now.
To clarify that, the industry standard is: 120VAC is nominal voltage, + or - 10%; which is 108VAC minimum acceptable voltage to prevent appliance damage, and 132VAC MAXimum acceptable voltage to prevent appliance damage.
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Old 04-10-2015, 07:13 PM   #11
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One slight request... Change the title of this thread.

You ask:Genset Setting frequency or Cycles

Frequency is read out in cycles per unit time (Seconds in this case)

So that is like saying Genset Setting frequency or Frequency.

I suspect you meant Voltage or cycles. and the answer is both must be within range.

Oh, and it is an easy mistake to make.. Done it myself more times than I care to admit.
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Old 04-10-2015, 08:09 PM   #12
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Two lamp cords, two 60 watt bulbs with sockets.

Wire the sockets in series, with a plug on each end. Plug one end in home power and one end in generator. Don't touch or short plug blades.
Adjust engine speed until bulbs stop oscillating. 60 cycles!
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Old 04-10-2015, 08:29 PM   #13
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Two lamp cords, two 60 watt bulbs with sockets.

Wire the sockets in series, with a plug on each end. Plug one end in home power and one end in generator. Don't touch or short plug blades.
Adjust engine speed until bulbs stop oscillating. 60 cycles!
I think I need a picture before I try that one
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Old 04-11-2015, 04:07 AM   #14
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I think I need a picture before I try that one
Me too and I know what he means. Bit more to it - and of course safety considerations.
Easier to buy a metre that reads Hz
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