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Tool Talk Discussion Forum

Re: Running pancake air a 5500 watt genset

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07-23-2013 15:32:37

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I think you have it pegged, George. Locked rotor (startup) ranges 3 to 10 times run current and the 13500 just about covers it, but 5500 doesn't. Also, I would add that the unloader function is "barely there" when it is working. It closes before motor shaft moves and leaves compressor partially unloaded for whatever partial revolution (we could argue about partial vs more, but I wont) is needed in the way of compressor output to fill and pressurize probably less than a foot of line between unloader/check valve and the compressor head. Like I said, "barely there".
BTDT. Built a small (approx quart or two) tank & inserted it between compressor & unloader/check. This made compressor start off generator, where w/o tank, it would not, because now, it actually remained 'unloaded' long enough to get up to speed on the marginal generator.

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John T

07-23-2013 18:10:49

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 Re: Running pancake air a 5500 watt genset in reply to JMOR, 07-23-2013 15:32:37  
Good points I have to agree, as I said up above there after he noted it took 13.5 amps THE GENNY MAY JUST NOT HAVE ENOUGH POOP LOL

My Onan 4000 starts my AC even if the Microwave is running, but its has more surge capacity I bet then some cheap big box store genny rated at the same 4000 I betcha.......

Im sure it either lacks capacity and/or some sort of an unloader problem, but being short on capacity moves right up there after his telling us it draws 13.5 amps........grrrrrrrrr

Fun chat yall

John T

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George Marsh

07-23-2013 19:21:51

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 Re: Running pancake air a 5500 watt genset in reply to John T, 07-23-2013 18:10:49  
Does your Onan 4000w have only one 110v out?

My 3500 watt RV genny can put all it's power to one 110v outlet.

I'll bet the 5500 watt genny can't put all it's power to one outlet unless it's a 220v out. If I'm right, then he is trying to start a compressor with only 2750 watt genny. Won't work.

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John T

07-24-2013 05:22:30

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 Re: Running pancake air a 5500 watt genset in reply to George Marsh, 07-23-2013 19:21:51  
Yep, theres ONLY ONE hard wired 3 wire (Hot, Neutral, Ground) output that leads to a 120 VAC 30 amp grounding RV type receptacle.........

Fun chat George, looks like most of us here agree his genny may just not have the "poop" lol (unless a mechanical problem)

John T

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George Marsh

07-23-2013 16:44:37

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 Re: Running pancake air a 5500 watt genset in reply to JMOR, 07-23-2013 15:32:37  
I was thinking the same, a tank. All compressors I've seen have the unloader built is a part of the pressure switch, So as soon as the compressor is powered up, the decompression valve is closed. Compressor wouldn't even budge if it had a head pressure of 90 psi.

I have an old 2 stage air compressor, guessing 60 years old, that has a set a weights on pulley and as the compressor comes up to speed, the weights move, and a lever closes the decompression valve on the pump. This compressor has a unique motor too, no capacitors. It's a repulsion start, induction motor. The brushes lift off the commutator when motor comes up to speed.

I'm still betting the compressor is an oil-less and my limited experience says they have a large LRA. Also betting that only half the generator is feeding the 110 outlet. So he is really only getting half the power to the compressor, not enough. He should look at the round plug for a 110 volts and a larger amp rating.

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Pandora 504

07-24-2013 05:08:37

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 Re: Running pancake air a 5500 watt genset in reply to George Marsh, 07-23-2013 16:44:37  
George,you are right on both counts.It is an oilless compressor and the genny feeds half its output to each half of a duplex receptacle.Found book that came with it and it can easily be changed to send full output to just the 120 v receptacle> Will lose the 220 recep,but no big deal.Will let you know what happens..Thanks very much for all of you helping out,John T I wish you happy travels and please keep sharing what you know.Thanks Butch

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John T

07-24-2013 05:27:15

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 Re: Running pancake air a 5500 watt genset in reply to Pandora 504, 07-24-2013 05:08:37  
Thanks for the kind words. Yep what you describe I classify as a "multi wire branch circuit". On those a common Neutral serves a split duplex receptacle where Phase A feeds the top outlet and Phase B the bottom. Since the two are 180 out of phase if both outlets current were the same, the Neutral current would be zero. Unlike yours, my Onan has only one outlet, a 120 volt 30 amp RV type.

Fun chat

John T

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07-23-2013 16:57:36

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 Re: Running pancake air a 5500 watt genset in reply to George Marsh, 07-23-2013 16:44:37  
I have a 1927 Curtis compressor that sounds just like yours with flyweights in compressor pulley, linkage to valve on head and the repulsion start-induction run motor. Only about 2 or 3 CFM on estimated 20 gallon tank, but it just keeps on ticking! Compressor pulley looks like designed for flat belt, but motor v-belt,........ but it has worked for 86 years!

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George Marsh

07-23-2013 19:16:50

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 Re: Running pancake air a 5500 watt genset in reply to JMOR, 07-23-2013 16:57:36  
My compressor is a little newer, it has side by side v-belts. I've had to sand the commutator a few times, when it has difficulty starting. Mine is only a 1.5 hp 2 stage. Yes, it keeps on going. However, I have 3 other compressors located in 3 different shops. Biggest is a 5 hp 2 stage. George

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