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Old 10-06-2014, 07:22 PM   #1
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Portable generators

Looking for some input on portable generators. We mostly camp in RV parks or campgrounds with power, but we do plan to take a few trips out in the desert to do some trail riding in the spring, and plan to take up 1 to 2 Nascar events, camping in the infield. Many are using the Honda or Yamaha generators, they are great I know, but expensive. I've been hearing about eh Ryobi 2200 units. Two of those tied together are about half the price of the Honda and Yamaha units, and get me all the power I'll need. Any feedback on the Ryobi units?

If I had plans to use them more, I would pony up and buy the Honda or Yamaha. I would like to same some money here if it's worth it. All feedback welcome. Thank you.
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Old 10-06-2014, 07:55 PM   #2
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Not much help in the comparison but I haven't found a portable yet in the power range that out performs the Honda units.

They are best on fuel consumption rates and are much quieter than most of the others, not to mention the reliability.

Price wise, I wish they were less expensive, but you get what you pay for. I can't comment on the Yamaha, no experience using them.

DTW
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Old 10-06-2014, 09:22 PM   #3
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Two of these can be paired up if needed.
http://www.costco.com/Smarter-Tools-...100121916.html
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Old 10-06-2014, 09:31 PM   #4
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I have 2 Honda EU 2000's with extended run kits.

If I were buying new today Id buy yamaha.

Chain driven cam vs belt.
Iron cylinder sleeve
Fuel shutoff
Fuel gauge

I Love my hondas- the yamaha is a more robust design that addresses a few of the shortcomings the Honda has.

UD
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Old 10-06-2014, 09:51 PM   #5
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I've got a Honda EX4500, it's 12 years old and has done everything from power my camper, fellow tent campers around me, my house for many days during storms.

I've never tuned it up, had to rebuild the carb, or even needed to adjust the valve lash. I change the oil yearly with Mobil 1 syn and that's all I've done with it. I can walk out right now, turn the key and it will start within five seconds. That reliability is really hard to beat.

I'm going to give it the TLC treatment this winter, valve lash check, clean the tank, clean and adjust the carb. After 12 years, it's time.

From what I understand the reliability of the smaller units is just as good, I'd get two EU2000is and parallel them together. The one drawback to my unit is it's size, it's big and heavy.

So my experience tells me it's hard to go wrong with Honda gensets.
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Old 10-18-2014, 07:27 PM   #6
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I have a Honda EU2000i and a Dometic 3000.

I also ran both together under full load using a decibal reader to see if the factory claims are correct. I tested both at the gen, 10' away, 20' away, 25' away, 50' away and 100' away. The Honda is definitely quieter but not by much. And the Dometic was carrying a larger load so the comparison wasn't exactly equal.

The Dometic is build for RVs and can run my 13,500 BTU ducted AC plus a few other items like TV and lights. The Honda, by itself, cannot run the AC. I use the Dometic for the heavier loads, HWH, AC, coffee maker, micro, and the Honda for all else. I keep the Dometic in the bed of my truck secured by a padlock and cable. I even have it set up to run while I go down the road, although that is not a proven safety concept so I only do it when I need to run the second 110V fridge we have in the aft storage bay.

The Dometic is CLEARLY an outsourced piece of Chinese hardware. You tell in every part of the fit and finish of build quality (term used lightly). Whereas the Honda is exactly what you would expect from a reputable company that builds precision machinery. There is simply no comparison between Yamaha or Honda and all others. Virtually all the other generators are built in China, from Dometic, to Ryobi, to Champion, and it shows. It feels like your typical Walmart junk... will only last as long as your lucky to have it last, if you know what I mean. The Honda, in contrast, is obviously built to run forever.

That said, I have had problems with Honda Carb issues. Numerous problems. That is likely due to the ethanol that is in our fuel these days and the propensity to gunk up the jets and float bowl with varnish. The only solution is to run the gen under load every so often to flush that fuel out. Honda doesn't offer any cheap solution to carb kit rebuilds so it's a issue they could and should address at some point. But thanks to youtube, there are quite a few videos on the Honda EU2000i that show you how to maintain your gen and how to rebuild the carb. I have had to do that twice. There are no such videos (yet) for the other generator makes.

If I had to do it over, I would have bought a second EU2000i, maybe even a 3rd, and paralleled the two, rather than going with the Dometic. My next FW is going to be a TH that will come with a gen so I don't see a need to go out and buy another EU2000i at this time. Otherwise, I'd do that now and just leave the Dometic on the side of the road... ha!

I called Dometic, btw, and complained about the sad product they outsourced. The rep agreed that it is poorly put together and said they get lots of complaints. Oh well, it still runs.

You may save a few hundred bucks by going with another brand, but you'll pay in the end finding parts for it and if you were to sell it. Honda's hold their value. You rarely see them on CL for less than 70-80% of the going retail rate.
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Old 10-18-2014, 08:21 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncle Dave View Post
I have 2 Honda EU 2000's with extended run kits.

If I were buying new today Id buy yamaha.

Chain driven cam vs belt.
Iron cylinder sleeve
Fuel shutoff
Fuel gauge

I Love my hondas- the yamaha is a more robust design that addresses a few of the shortcomings the Honda has.

UD
You missed one, the main bearings are superior on the Yahama as well, though I forget just what they use (Roller instead of sleeve I think but not sure)
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Old 10-18-2014, 08:39 PM   #8
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the Honda and Yamaha are fantastic generators and are most likely the way to go. I have a p3000 generator/inverter, its a Chinese knock off of a Honda eu3000, and has remote start, its been very good so far and im very happy with it, I paid 1255.00 with tax at napa auto.
I was wondering if anyone has one of the briggs & Stratton P2000 power smart generators?P2000 PowerSmart Inverter | Portable Generators | Briggs & Stratton US
gbstewart
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Old 10-22-2014, 07:27 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncle Dave View Post
I have 2 Honda EU 2000's with extended run kits.

If I were buying new today Id buy yamaha.

Chain driven cam vs belt.
Iron cylinder sleeve
Fuel shutoff
Fuel gauge

I Love my hondas- the yamaha is a more robust design that addresses a few of the shortcomings the Honda has.

UD
Keep your Hondas they are better. Honda has a fuel pump. You can put a special cap (Amazon) on the Honda and connect an outboard motor fuel tank. Runs all night.
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Old 10-23-2014, 12:31 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kiwi View Post
Keep your Hondas they are better. Honda has a fuel pump. You can put a special cap (Amazon) on the Honda and connect an outboard motor fuel tank. Runs all night.
I have two extended run kits now. They work pretty well. Im happy with my hondas, but I just think Yamaha one upped it, with equal quality but superior features.

I can buy a kit for a yamaha to fit an extended run tank from Pinellas , they sell them for my Ef3000 as well. Its a little more expensive than the hondas dual cap system but once mounted is quite elegant and less prone to vacuum leakage issues that the twin cap based systems.

Thanks wa8yxm didn't know about the bearings, interesting.


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Old 11-13-2014, 09:50 AM   #11
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Thanks for all the great information, I ended up going with the Yamaha setup. I got an OK deal on the pair, you never see anyone getting a steal on these or the Hondas, they hold their value used also. My buddy got the Ryobi pair and they seem to be working ok for him, I just don't see them lasting liek the Honda and Yamaha, so it was worth spending a little more to get the Yamaha. Looking forward to using them.
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Old 11-17-2014, 09:10 AM   #12
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We have a 1 kW Honda that we have only trialed to make sure it works. We have had it for 18 months or so and have less than 2 hours on it. Need to run it this week to see if it still works. When we did use it, we were getting 900 watts to the battery bank according to the Tri-Star controller.
Reed and Elaine
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Old 11-17-2014, 05:34 PM   #13
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I have two Honda EU2000 and one of them is over 12 years old, purchased new 3/10/02. We boondock almost always so we do put them to work for us. The only complaint I have is that they are very picky about leaving fuel in them for anything over two to three weeks without starting them. The carburetor jets get gummed up pretty fast, making it hard to start. I've been thinking about adding a fuel shutoff valve to mine so I can burn all the fuel out of the carb before I put them away for any length of time. All in all I really don't have any big problems with ours.
Bill
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Old 11-20-2014, 10:37 PM   #14
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I was just over at a friends house, he has the Smarter Tools generators for his rig, very similar to the Yamaha... actually a Yamaha motor. He paid just under $1,400.00 for both of his and the cable to connect them together. I think I paid around $2,200.00 for the same but in the Yamaha setup. He has been happy with the Smarter Tools genny, he got them at Costco and has about 30 hours on the pair. Looking forward to using mine
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