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  1. #1
    Bronze Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
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    52

    Default Lister diesel generator?

    I am looking for a backup power source, that would be extremely reliable, serviceable and efficient for a rural setting, possibly for providing power if we head for total meltdown as we are doing. I want to go with diesel.

    See this link:

    Slow-Turning Lister Type 13,500 Watt Diesel Generator

    I am curious about these generators. They are low RPM (1000), quiet and allegedly simple and low fuel consumption and easily burn veggie oil.

    Disadvantage - very heavy and almost look sort of like a 'hobbyist' sort of thing.

    What do you think?

    DJ

  2. #2
    Super Star Member Egon's Avatar
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    Aug 2001
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    17,991
    Location
    Nova Scotia, Canada

    Default Re: Lister diesel generator?

    You may have a difficult time buying a new one as they might not meet emission standards. Other than that they should be perfect for what you wish to use it for.

    Lots of Google hits.
    Egon
    50 years behind the times
    Livin in a
    Worn out skin bag filled with rattlin bones

  3. #3
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
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    1,359
    Location
    Mid-Coast Maine

    Default Re: Lister diesel generator?

    I looked at them at one time, I am still looking as I decided I wanted something portable. Most of the 'Lister type' engines are being made in India, they often are full of sand from the casting that needs to be cleaned up before use. They are about as simple as you can get and from reviews that I have read, that once they are set up properly... they will run forever. The original Lister engine was made in England and some of those have been running for 40 years basically nonstop. I called the place you linked to, they drop ship the generators, they generally don't have any in stock, I have no idea who the importer is, so I have no idea if they have been prepped properly. Search the web and you will find a post of a guy who bought a 'Lister type' engine and the steps he went through to clean it up before running it. It is a good read on what to look for and what is inside these engines. There are also some forums for the Lister and 'Lister type' engines with good info on them. There is a good deal of parts for them on Ebay. But you need to be careful that you know who made the engine as there are at least 4 different manufactures and for the most part, parts are not interchangable.

    HTH
    Jim

    - '01 Husqvarna W4814- 48" walk behind lawn mower.
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    - '13 Kioti DK40 HST - KL401 loader, DK40 72" QA bucket, LK3054 60" QA bucket, toothbar for 60" bucket, dual rear remotes, 7ft 6 way rear blade, 78" ETA Box Blade, Woods BH-90x backhoe, loaded rear tires, Kioti Canopy.

  4. #4
    Elite Member RonMar's Avatar
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    May 2005
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    2,793
    Location
    Port Angeles WA
    Tractor
    Jinma 284 delivered 06/28/05

    Default Re: Lister diesel generator?

    I have a single cylinder 6/1 that I built a few years ago. As mentioned, there are some reliminary setup issues to make a reliable plant, but nothing that is terribly diffult to do. For the most part, the parts available ARE interchangeable provided they are for the same model. Pretty much all the vendors products follow the original lister designs. The listeroid manufacture is a cottage industry in india and I believe the parts for all the engines are only made by a few small plants. These parts are assembled by different vendors for export/sale.

    I have some definite opinions about these plants, and I personally would not reccomend a twin. The first step to the decision on a generator is a power study and a determination of how much power you can live with(or without). Less is definitely more if you are planning one of these generator s for potential long term use. Probably one of their greatest benefits however is the ability to easilly harvest the engine heat for heating hot water or a dwelling. If you need heat, harvesting the heat immediatly makes them 30% more efficient...
    Ron

  5. #5
    Bronze Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
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    52

    Default Re: Lister diesel generator?

    Thanks for the comments so far.

    As an alternative, I am not opposed to a traditional small diesel engine. Seems that one can find either 3600 (more common) or 1800 rpm diesel generators. I suppose the 1800 RPM would last longer and be more efficient and be quieter.

    I am working on a source WVO (waste veggie oil) which seems like it would more easily suit a Lister engine than a regular diesel engine.

    I always see these on ebay:

    NEW APOLLO DIESEL ENGINE GENERATOR & STICK WELDER - eBay (item 120388465964 end time Apr-06-09 08:52:58 PDT)

    6500 watt diesel generator for $1299.00

    Don't know anything about them, but you probably get what you pay for. And they are 3600 rpm as well.

    DJ

  6. #6

    Default Re: Lister diesel generator?

    In a recent trip to Ethiopia, I found this generator at our guest house. The electricity went off and they cranked it up. It was fairly quiet and ran most of the building. No A/C there so the load was fairly small. Looks like this one is Chinese. It was not very well maintained and leaked diesel like a sieve, but it ran reliably. One cylinder and a very large fly wheel. Also 440 volts and 50 hertz.



    Lyons, Texas
    Massey-Ferguson 135
    BCS 710GX
    Taxation WITH representation isn't so hot either.

  7. #7
    Bronze Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
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    52

    Default Re: Lister diesel generator?

    Nice pics - thanks.

    Reminds me of another point.

    One of my business partners has a 50 acre farm and bought a big chinese diesel generator. I searched around and found mixed reviews - everything from 'runs forever' to 'is a piece of junk that I had to totally rebuild - big mistake'.

    He as never set it up or run it yet.

    DJ

  8. #8
    Elite Member RonMar's Avatar
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    May 2005
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    2,793
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    Port Angeles WA
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    Jinma 284 delivered 06/28/05

    Default Re: Lister diesel generator?

    Those pics look like a Changfa type horizontal diesel engine and a ST type generator head(same type genhead I have). I have only seen videos of them run, but am aquainted with a few people who are running them. One I know pretty well is making a cogeneration plant using one of these(recovering heat from coolant and exhaust). For extended operations, this really makes the most sense. You are burning the fuel, you might as well get the most out of it. That is how I still have hot water in my home, with only a 3KW backup generator. The normally wasted heat from the cooling system is sent to the hot water tank to maintain it at 120F. Any heat after that tank it hot, I dissipate in the house or dump outside as needed. This heat is basically free as it must be removed from the engine, and is usually dumped into the atmosphere as waste heat.

    One thing the gentleman who is experimenting with the changfa notes is that compared to a Listeroid, the Changfa is a bit noisy and has that loud diesel clatter. But compared to the listeroid, the fit and finish of production is more refined. They are a little more technolgically advanced, with counter balance shaft, pressure lubrication and other refinements. But more parts, means more parts to break. One of the most appealing things to me about my 6/1 is the simplicity. I can have mine stripped down to a bare block in less than an hour with only a few hand tools(and a strong back). I also like that at it's 650 RPM running speed, I can hold a conversation across the top of a running engine. You are not going to get that from very many 1800-3600 RPM engines.

    I don't know if you have looked, but there are a whole bunch of videos of these engines running on Youtube and Google Video. Searching "listeroid" or "Changfa" will get you some videos like these

    YouTube - POWERLINE (LISTER) ENGINE
    YouTube - LISTEROID LOVSON, BY D.S.ELECTRIC (2)

    YouTube - Changfa China genset 12 KW WVO lister
    YouTube - 20kw diesel generator
    Ron

  9. #9
    Platinum Member Bill Barrett's Avatar
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    Jul 2006
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    671
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    midwest
    Tractor
    Kubota L3130, Satoh G650, Case 580, Case 446

    Default Re: Lister diesel generator?

    I'm in the middle of a generator build now. I pulled my hair out for over a year, befor pulling the trigger. Almost went with:
    Lister Type Diesel Engines, Generators and Parts
    I'm building a Listeroid with a ST, with maybe compressor too.
    I'm still going to build a PTO unit in the future.

    -dsc02047-jpg

    -dsc02050-jpg

    -dsc01875-jpg

    Mine was really clean, I found a small spot of sand and figured I'd go through it.
    If you want more pics or follow what I'm doing let me know.

  10. #10
    Super Member JB4310's Avatar
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    Feb 2005
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    5,645
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    Central CT
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    J.D. 4310 E-hydro

    Default Re: Lister diesel generator?

    Yeah, keep us informed, I was considering trying the same thing for a reliable back-up power source, read alot about the Listers.
    How big is that ST genny 5K?, I like the idea of the 1800 RPM's. (4 pole) That connecting rod looks pretty impressive, not pretty, but heavy.

    Ended up getting a 10 K pto unit.

    JB.
    JD 4310; E hydro, 300CX, 48 BH, 60" box, 72" rake, 72" rear blade, cast pallet forks, 48", 61"HD & 73" high volume bucket.
    FORD 1700; 2 WD, 2600 hrs.
    JD 320; Hydra lift, 48" deck and 48" snow blade.
    2007 Dodge Ram 3500, Cummins 6.7L, Aisin 6 speed, 9ft utility body.

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