Tuesday, May 17, 2022

Small, Air-cooled Diesel Engines

I am Jonesing for a small, air-cooled diesel engine. I don't have any good reason that I can articulate. It seems like there are a dozen potential uses for a prime-mover: Pumping water, turning a generator, powering a rototiller and so on.

The sizes that are available are 196cc and 3hp, 247cc and 5hp and 406cc and 8hp.

Running at its most efficient RPM (2700) it produces 5.5hp and will consume about 1.05 liters of fuel. Said another way, a gallon of diesel will last 3.6 hours at that operating point.

Fuel economy is pretty good.

A Chinesium diesel engine is twice as expensive as a comparable gas engine. I am not sure why I want one, but I do.

I asked an internet friend if I should buy one. He was horrified and answered "Absolutely not. You should buy two of them"

Any opinions? I am leaning toward the 247cc, 5hp model for $350 bucks, delivered.

20 comments:

  1. find a lister diesel engine, they damn near last forever

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  2. Would you mind posting a link to these diesel engines, please?

    Cheaper than the hit and miss I've been looking at for a homestead prime mover.

    BTW I agree with your friend, you need TWO of them, spare parts if for no other reason.

    Thanks

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    Replies
    1. https://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_from=R40&_trksid=p2380057.m570.l1312&_nkw=247cc+diesel&_sacat=0

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  3. Homemade diesel fuel is more feasible/possible than most alternatives

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    1. I agree: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0VxYuYiZZZA

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  4. I keep thinking the same, but I want steam. For when there is no more petroleum.
    And when that day comes, you will not waste fat calories on an internal combustion engine.

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  5. My first thought was that diesel is the fuel most likely to be rationed/restricted soon. Already shortages on the east coast, will be restricted to just 'vital trucking/transportation needs'. And while summer might not be such a big deal, what about this fall when the northeast want to fill their heating oil tanks to stay warm and there isn't any? As I understand it diesel and heating oil are nearly interchangable (except for taxes).

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    Replies
    1. We heat with oil and have a 1000 gallon tank. We rarely let it drop below 500 gallons.

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    2. You could probably run your little motor for a long time on part of that storage. Unless someone comes to 'redistribute' it.

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  6. I'm curious as to why a person would consider a Chinese anything when it appears you are buying it for an emergency situation. Seems to me you are establishing an absolute failure node.

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  7. Can you get any kind of engine now that doesn't have chips?--ken

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    Replies
    1. A used engine that still works or will work after you fix it. Cheap, I betcha!

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  8. office-mate in last job was always saying, "begin with the end in mind". was on his marker board also.
    before embarking (yes, I'd get two also) I'd put on paper (or spreadsheet) a list of projects, along with add'tl materials and cost to accomplish.
    diesels are pretty good-natured and will contentedly slurp down about anything including cleaned up used oil or waste fryer oil.
    first thing I thought of as I saw your list was a gen set, but I would go in the direction of the lawn mower/car alternator system. I think a 12VDC set up is more useful than 120VAC.
    related subject: 80's or so, Hobart (I think) made diesel generator/stick welders. My company bought a couple. Didn't work well. They would weld, but a diesel is happy running along at a constant rpm. Throw the quick changes in current draw at it that a gas motor can handle, well, start up on getting your bead going wasn't pretty.

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  9. S195 china diesel engine. Huge flywheel. Kinda water cooled. Has a water tank above head that you refill. No radiator or water pump. 15hp. Weight about 300lbs. Hand crank start or electric. Really slow idle. Used to be able to buy them cheap brand new. I got mine used. Hooked up to 7.5kw gen set. Start and stop on diesel fuel. Switch over to straight used fryer oil, V.O. Uses very little fuel.

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  10. Kubota EA or EL 300. Under 200 pounds horizontal cylinder. Water-cooled for longevity! Most excellent little prime mover for around 2000W power, burning about a pint of Diesel per hour at rated load. Mine is Tier III, so illegal in Kalifornistan, but okay in the 'states.

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  11. The air cooled units are nice for mobile use. If looking at a diesel for stationary use a water cooled engine may be a better choice. The option of recouping energy through cogeneration is more straight forward with water cooling. Had some experience years ago along these lines.

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  12. Father in law used to be a senior engineer "fixer" for diesel engines. One of the companies he was attempting to help sent him to China twice to talk to their suppliers. He did his best, but the Chinese were completely uncomprehending of the concept of quality control. They didn't understand and didn't care.

    "Contract call for 2,000 engine. We make 2,000 engine."

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  13. used diesel powered light tower at auction

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