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Old 09-14-2017, 02:11 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Lightbulb Generator Propane Conversion

Thought I'd show my recent experince with one of these guys:



Available on ebay for a whopping $25.

I wasn't expecting much. Oh, I was hopeful, but still...I hate gasoline and carburetors! So for $25, I had to know.

It was a direct fit for my cheap chinese generator. Swaps directly in place of the old carb, and is identical to the old carb, except for the additional propane delivery stuff and the aluminum float bowl:



It runs on low pressure - after some research, it turns out to be the same pressure range that BBQ regulators put out. (about half a psi) So I salvaged a regulator from a trashed BBQ:





It works! Even with a decent load on it -- not a hiccough! Not bad for $25! I'm thrilled!

(Ok, so starting it takes some finesse, but once you work that out, it's pretty easy to do again)

Disclamer: For demonstration purposes only.
I am in no way suggesting anyone else does this, nor am I in any way responsible if you blow yourself up, burn down your house, or suffocate yourself. Nor do I care if your engine runs lean and burns a hole through the piston. If you chose to do this, you are responsible for your own decisions. Heck, man up and start being responsible for all your other decisions while you're at it!!!!

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Old 09-14-2017, 06:29 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I wonder if I could put that on my Honda 55 and run those little disposable propane bottles. They are only about 1/4 gallon though, and I would refill them myself. I suppose I could just put a 20# cylinder on the back rack but that's too much.

I didn't realize they have gotten that inexpensive. Thanks!
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Old 09-14-2017, 07:09 PM   #3 (permalink)
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A 1lb propane bottle holds about 10,000btu, or about as much energy as 10 ounces of gasoline.
A 20lb propane tank only holds about as much energy as 3 gallons of gasoline, but costs 3 times aa much.
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Old 09-14-2017, 11:09 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oil pan 4 View Post
A 1lb propane bottle holds about 10,000btu, or about as much energy as 10 ounces of gasoline.
A 20lb propane tank only holds about as much energy as 3 gallons of gasoline, but costs 3 times aa much.
Factory tank is 1.6 gallons, it would just be cool, maybe I could run it around the house that way as well LOL!

Actually I think these are dual fuel so I could have extra range as well as refill from the big tanks on my camper.
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Old 09-15-2017, 01:48 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oil pan 4 View Post
A 20lb propane tank only holds about as much energy as 3 gallons of gasoline, but costs 3 times aa much.
Ahh, well...not here, not when you fill it at Costco. It costs literally half as much per liter as it costs for gasoline. So I'm still "in the black", even with only 3/4 the energy content. (This was a major reason for wanting to do this...I'd stick to gasoline if it was equal or more)
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Old 09-15-2017, 01:52 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hersbird View Post
Factory tank is 1.6 gallons, it would just be cool, maybe I could run it around the house that way as well LOL!

Actually I think these are dual fuel so I could have extra range as well as refill from the big tanks on my camper.
Even though propane burns cleaner, it's still not safe to run in an enclosed space. Even if it does run cleaner, you'll still have carbon monoxide to deal with.

And, yes, they're dual fuel. It can still run on gasoline.
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Old 09-15-2017, 02:08 AM   #7 (permalink)
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My small generator has a 7 gallon tank then I added another 4 gallon tank on top of it, the the big generator has a 16 gallon tank.
The big one uses 1.6 gallons per hour at half load.

The 3x gasoline prices is if you use swapped out 20lb tanks. Bulk propane would be cheaper.
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Old 09-15-2017, 03:19 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Purple Penny Pincher - '95 Pontiac Firefly Base
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oil pan 4 View Post
My small generator has a 7 gallon tank then I added another 4 gallon tank on top of it, the the big generator has a 16 gallon tank.
The big one uses 1.6 gallons per hour at half load.

The 3x gasoline prices is if you use swapped out 20lb tanks. Bulk propane would be cheaper.
You're absolutely right about swap-tanks costing too much. And having to get my tank refilled means going out of the way; I probably wouldn't want to keep messing around if I had to do it very often.

On the other hand, since I don't use my power equipment much, it's nice not having to put up with gas going off and/or it wrecking the carb when I forget/can't be bothered to drain it every time between uses. I'm stoked with the idea of not having to mess around for an hour to get my power equipment started each time I go to use it.
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Old 09-15-2017, 05:21 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Team Hyundai
90 day: 30.21 mpg (US)

Bug - '01 VW Beetle GLSturbo
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Why do they take an hour to start?
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Old 09-15-2017, 10:10 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Topoff (RIP) - '92 Geo Metro LSi
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'91 Miata - '91 Mazda Miata
90 day: 27.11 mpg (US)

'86 Fiero GT - '86 Pontiac Fiero GT

Purple Penny Pincher - '95 Pontiac Firefly Base
90 day: 43.68 mpg (US)

Jett-Black - '01 Volkswagen Jetta
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oil pan 4 View Post
Why do they take an hour to start?
Because even fuel stabilizer has it's limits and doesn't necessarily stop a carburetor from getting gunked up.

Someone suggested it might be the ethanol in gas these days.

Then again, I let my Miata sit (sheltered, mind you) with fuel stabilizer, and it started right up. Again showing me that me and carburetors don't get along.

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