Q and A: 2/9/2011 Email of the Day

Hi George…..

Seems to me that building a diy genset is a low probability/high risk proposition….even if you are willing to buy all new parts from wherever, fab and weld what you need and anything else it takes.

I have 3 diesel mechanic contacts that have owned their own shops for years and have drawn a blank. The biggest hangup to this hobby/serious business seems to be a source of low speed motors.

Maybe you could do an article about getting into this activity….be specific….here are the main parts to a 3kw genset and here is where you get them. Good motors are here and you can get on the the waiting list for my generator over here. And here is a list of other miscellaneous parts you might consider for a top shelf finished product.

If, IMO, a person can’t get that far (seems like first base to me) then they are wasting there time and money. Maybe you need to say that.

I look forward to disassembling a new motor and dialing everything in….but where is the best source of the best motor ? ? ?

Sorry for the rant. Chalk it up to frustration.


George’s Reply:

Hi Joe, DIYers are one per-centers, we have a different view of what is practical and what’s not.  As I read the above, I think about the gen set I am building right now. If I were to add up the time I’ve been thinking about the project, it would certainly receive an insanity rating from others I know. There are some who invest a great deal of time and energy following sports, I choose to waste my time playing with back up power, and what I call practical Alternative Energy, which certainly will not include a Chevy Volt in my driveway.

As for slow speed, that Engine and Generator in Clark Fork generated a lot of interest, but no one wanted to go get it or arrange for shipping, and the seller wasn’t able to offer that.  I guess it wasn’t easy enough to buy? My Articles mention several ways you can get all the parts, and as you likely know, you as an individual can import most things up to $2000 worth without an agent.

I’ve also mentioned there are folks buying this new generation of small two cylinder diesels and they like them so far.., fact is, Joel Koch has/had some extended run units with high capacity oil sumps and more for sale in Portland Oregon, your back yard?

For those of you considering import and resale of slow speed parts, there seems to be a market.

A special treat?? Several years ago, I received an email from a person who said he had Willem Engine, (VERY) rare as we find no owners on forums. Apparently it’s a 24/2 that has received some extensive work at Willem’s shop. A rare op? The asking price is $2500. Willem told the owner in email he’d ask $5000.00 for the same engine and mods today. Do note, the owner waited three years for this Gem, and you can own it for half price and pick it up this week!

Joe, we are ‘one percenters’, we do what 99% of the population think is crazy… we know it. There’s quite a few slow speed engines out there, some people look at rebuilding oil field engines, but I doubt that’s an inexpensive way to go. There’s a number of forums out there you may want to visit, and check the ‘for sale’ pages on..  micro-cogen, smoke stack, and more. Anyone who cares to note a favorite forum below, please feel free to place a link.

All the best,

George B.

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2 Responses to Q and A: 2/9/2011 Email of the Day

  1. I was brought up a DIYer before I ever knew what the word meant. All the stuff we ever done or built, was with the Lord’s help. I’m a hillbilly and happy about it. It makes you feel better not having to soley rely on the power co. Or water co. or anything but the Lord. That’s why I’m still after that Lister engine genset if I have to buy it, one peice at a time. That, Lord willing, will be the last peice to my puzzel.
    Hang in there, DIYers; I’m a one percenter who understands!

  2. George,

    Whereabouts is Willems shop ?- these engines sound too good to be true – I’d seriously like to buy one – on paper they sound better than anything Lister ever produced – but if they are – being cautiously optimistic by nature I’m curious why aren’t they all over the place in Australia and New Zealand etc and the US? – I think youve missed your chance to own one of these George – the EPA wouldn’t allow a Willem engine with more HP and presumably higher HC NOs emissions than a plain old listeroid engine.
    If anyone has a Willem listeroid I’d love to hear from them – or even better if anyone has a Willem engine for sale. I suspect these engines are exactly what some of my clients are looking for 🙂

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