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NorthStar 13000 Watt Generator on buy list

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AnnBrush
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 462 Troy OH
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2006-10-03          135669


Do any of you have any experience or observations to share on NorthStar generators (from Northern Tool - item 165929), I lent my little 4kW portable unit to a someone and it was stolen, guess it was too portable :(. I want to replace it with the PTO unit above, any help or experiences appreciated. By the way I have a PDF manual for this unit if anyone wants it. If NorthStar units are cruddy what do y'all recommend.
Many thanks Ann

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NorthStar 13000 Watt Generator on buy list

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DRankin
Join Date: Jan 2000
Posts: 5111 Northern Nevada
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2006-10-03          135670


I only know what I read in the catalog, but I wonder if you are thinking about the trailer they offer to mount it on......... or just put it on the 3 point hitch?

It should be a good match(power-wise)for your Deere. ....

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NorthStar 13000 Watt Generator on buy list

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ncrunch32
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 762 Kingston, NY
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2006-10-03          135671


I bought a 10kW generator from Northstar a couple of years ago with 18HP gas Honda engine (Item# 165967). It arrived in perfect condition and has performed flawlessly the few times I have used it since. I am happy with the purchase.
....

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NorthStar 13000 Watt Generator on buy list

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kwschumm
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 5764 NW Oregon
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2006-10-03          135672


I bought a 13.5 KW LP genset from them about six years ago. It turned out to be a relabeled Gillette genset. The generator itself has been nearly flawless with the exception that there is a hard-to-reproduce problem where sometimes it won't start from the transfer switch (I have to go to the shed to get it started). We have somewhere around 400 hours on it now. My only complaint is that Northern tried to screw me on price. I ordered it during the Y2K frenzy at one price and they added $500 to the price between the time I placed the order and the time they shipped it and charged my credit card. I called them on it and they cheerfully refunded the overcharge. I'd buy again. ....

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NorthStar 13000 Watt Generator on buy list

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AnnBrush
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 462 Troy OH
TractorPoint Premium Member -- 5 Tractors = Very Frequent Poster  View my Photos  Pics

2006-10-04          135681


DRankin - you bring up a good point, my Deere is rated at 25.5hp at the PTO. Are there any concerns with it powering a 12kW genset that requires 24hp. The literature on the genset states it's a 12kW unit (with a 13kW peak supply) and requires 24hp at the PTO (using the 2hp for each kW rule of thumb). That would require 95% of the PTO's rated output at full load, am I pushing the limit here, does the tractor PTO hp decline as hours on the engine go up? Is there enough fudging in the 2hp for each kW rule to make this a non-issue? ....

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NorthStar 13000 Watt Generator on buy list

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Murf
Join Date: Dec 1999
Posts: 7141 Toronto Area, Ontario, Canada
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2006-10-04          135686


Ann, as you so rightly pointed out, 2hp for each kW, is just that, a rule of thumb.

There is a rather complicated formula to work it out precisely, but it includes all sorts of factors that are nearly impossible to calculate. One of the big factors people fail to realize is ambient temperature, you will get a surprisingly large swing in power output between a bitter cold night, a pleasant spring day, and a brutally hot summer afternoon.

Unless you have some very large power-consuming items in your house, I would say you will have no trouble at all with that setup. Bear in mind, with the split between 120v & 240v loads, that generator will produce somewhere between 50 & 100 amps at full power.

That is a LOT of power, even without factoring load shifting and reduced loads from shutting down non-essentials during an 'emergency'.

Best of luck. ....

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NorthStar 13000 Watt Generator on buy list

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DRankin
Join Date: Jan 2000
Posts: 5111 Northern Nevada
TractorPoint Premium Member -- 5 Tractors = Very Frequent Poster  View my Photos  Pics

2006-10-04          135687


Not an expert here, but I agree with Murf.

I sized my 10 KW PTO Genset to start my 2.5 HP well pump way down my 300+ foot well. It will certainly run everything leftover in the house, especially since I swapped the electric water heater for a propane unit.

Unless you have some sort of extraordinary power need that cannot be managed in an emergency I think you will have an abundance of power in this tractor/generator set-up.


....

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NorthStar 13000 Watt Generator on buy list

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AnnBrush
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 462 Troy OH
TractorPoint Premium Member -- 5 Tractors = Very Frequent Poster  View my Photos  Pics

2006-10-04          135694


Great, thanks guys. Looks like there is nothing untoward about NorthStar generators and that the size of the unit will be "ample" but not too big for the tractor. Many thanks you have all been very helpful ....

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NorthStar 13000 Watt Generator on buy list

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Murf
Join Date: Dec 1999
Posts: 7141 Toronto Area, Ontario, Canada
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2006-10-04          135695


Ann, bear in mind too that generating power is an 'inductive load' but in reverse.

You are undoubtedly aware of how the current load changes as an electric motor for instance starts, then gets to running speed. A generator is the same, but in reverse, as a load is applied it will load up the genset, and of course whatever is powering it, then as the load is reduced, so too, and proportionately, is the work energy required to produce that load.

Unless you have some delicate electronics running, all that will happen as you start to approach (or momentarily exceed) either a) the upper limit of it's capcity, or b) the power supply of whatever is driving it, all that will happen is it will start to drop off a little, sort of the electrical equivalent of what the diesel does when you overload the PTO with say a snowblower.

There are many sites on the internet (in fact Northern may also have it) where they list the average load required to run various household electrical appliances. You just do an inventory of what you want to run, tally up how many amps (and whether 220v or 110v of course) and calculate how much draw that will be.

There are also lots of items which are 'intermitant loads' in a household too. Most of these are, luckily, both large loads, and easily manipulated. For instance, usually a fridge and or freezer, will keep food cold for many, many hours with no power at all. Likewise, a water pump can be cycled to avoid running it with other large consumption devices by filling a bathtub then shutting it off. Hot water heaters too will hold temperature for quite some time when switched off.

As an example, my house is fed by a 100 amp service, but even in the worst winter weather I used to "get by" with a 6.5 Kw portable generator for the first few years, no problem.

Now I get the neighbours teed off a little, I even have the yard lights going during a power outage! Hehehe....

Best of luck. ....

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NorthStar 13000 Watt Generator on buy list

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AnnBrush
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 462 Troy OH
TractorPoint Premium Member -- 5 Tractors = Very Frequent Poster  View my Photos  Pics

2006-10-05          135712


I understand the inductive load in reverse analogy, thanks Murf. I too have a 100A service. I guess I have always assumed that's 100 Amps at 110V on each of the 2 hot legs (so that would be the power equivalent of 100A on 220), is that correct? The genset is listed as 12kW however it has a number of recepticles that can be used such that the largest load that can be pulled from any one recepticle is 50A on a 4 blade plug (they call it a welder plug), then there would be opportunity to pull some additional power from some smaller 110 and a single 30A 220V outlet on the generator. Supplying a house though, I could only use one outlet. From my calcs it looks WAY sufficient. ....

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