My MEP-803a experience

Steel Soldiers is supported by:

lonesouth

Member
306
0
16
Location
Tallahassee, FL
I got a 12 circuit breaker box rigged with the cable that came with the trailer, and a surplus center generator panel. It is temporary till I can find a suitable housing for the three gen panels, i'm thinking a cooler or toolbox. Anyway, I've got the one panel wired up, I'll throw a space heater and waffle iron at it tonight. Should be good for about 25amp load.
 

csheath

Member
644
0
16
Location
FL
I looked through my drawer of surplus 5K pots and didn't find an exact match. I checked a couple with numbers similar and both read just shy of 5K on one side or the other. I have some that read 5K and above on both sides. Probably would not match in dimensions like shaft type/length, etc.

I'm sure your posts and experience will help others down the road.
 

Attachments

lonesouth

Member
306
0
16
Location
Tallahassee, FL
Spent a little time last night. Got some angled supports added to the legs of the stand, long side only, still need to do the short side. Should add quite a bit of lateral stability. Also centered the generator and bolted it to the stand. Still need to add some hurricane anchors and wire it to the house. I think I've got about 40' to run including what is in the wall. Going to go with conduit in the ground. I think it is going to be the easiest route, vs running through the attic.
 

lonesouth

Member
306
0
16
Location
Tallahassee, FL
Got a temporary breaker box and gen output panel wired up. Limited load testing of a 1,500 watt space heater and 1,200 watt iron. barely registered on the load meter. I also decided to lower it, and put the tank behind it. It just looks a lot better and feels more stable.
IMG_2634.jpg

also ordered a 10w 24v solar panel and charge controller.
 
Last edited:

Daybreak

2 Star Admiral
1,272
0
36
Location
Northern, Virginia
Now have 150' of #4 black and 50' of #6 green THWN on order. Also ordered the supplies to build my load bank.Plan to use a couple of these volt/ammeters to monitor output.http://www.ebay.com/itm/131597614102?_trksid=p2060353.m2749.l2649&ssPageName=STRK:MEBIDX:ITView attachment 648574
Howdy,
Not knowing what size the little mounting size is, wait until you physically have it, and look over the different aluminum project boxes for sale to mount them up into. That way it will be a nice finished end product. You can cut and dremel the mounting easily.
 

lonesouth

Member
306
0
16
Location
Tallahassee, FL
Load bank put together. Some basic research suggests about a 25 degree rise with all elements on, given the flow rate of my pool pump without considering losses due to elbows or head in the pipe/hose. If it melts, i'll rebuild it with iron pipe. I do intend to cap off the electrical connections.

load bank.jpg
 

lonesouth

Member
306
0
16
Location
Tallahassee, FL
I think I'm going to install a plate in the accessories compartment and mount them on that plate. Not really room on the control panel, unless I was to replace the existing ammeter
 

lonesouth

Member
306
0
16
Location
Tallahassee, FL
Huzzah!

My fuse and MOV came in a few days ago, so I installed the MOV and rigged the fuse in an old car audio fuse holder till the fuse holder comes in from china.

I got everything wired up to test. Double checked the connections, triple checked the ground and verified no shorts. Since I only have a 6 circuit breaker box, I wired one element direct to the generator and the other three to the breaker box. Cranked up the generator and let the engine warm up a bit. Turned on the water, verified no air pockets. May seem a bit silly, and maybe it offered me no additional protection, but I stood on a plastic foot stool to close the output breaker.

Test 1: 1 x 4,500 watt, barely registered on the % meter, brought it up under 25%, with barely a hint from the engine. Volts and frequency holding steady, verified from the convenience outlet.

Test 2: 2 x 4,500 watt. Brought the % meter up to about 65%, engine doing well, volts and frequency steady.

Test 3: 2 x 4,500 & 1 x 3,000 watt. % meter about 95%, engine doing well, a bit more particulates raining down, volts steady, frequency down about 1hz

Test 4: 3 x 4,500 & 1 x 3,000 watt. % meter to 125%, engine showing strain, exhaust noticeably thicker, volts steady, frequency down about 2hz. I let it run here for about 15 minutes and observed the frequency slowly declining. I was able to adjust the frequency back to ~60hz, but it would slowly go down again. Once I opened the output, frequency jumped back up to ~63hz. I'm speculating that as the generator output ran overload, the heat in the windings increased the resistance. Since the load stayed the same, the increased resistance creates additional magnetic resistance in the generator which is transferred to the engine as increase mechanical load, resulting in the engine slowing a bit. An automatic throttle adjuster would solve this. I also observed that the % meter climbed a bit over time.

Test 5: 2 x 4,500 & 1 x 3,000 watt. I let it run here for about an hour. The exhaust smoke cleared up some, I noticed some smoke coming from around the generator and not the exhaust. The temp was just below 240 during test 4, and I noticed that the overflow bottle was low, i.e. low on coolant. The coolant overtemp light did not come on, and there was no indication of running poorly. After shutdown, I checked inside and the smoke appeared to be coming from the exhaust manifold, or roughly the middle top of the engine, and from the muffler or muffler cover. I'm hoping this was just a result of burning off years of dust. There was no distinct smell to the smoke, such as I would expect from burning oil or wires.

Overall, sans smoke at the end, I call it a success. The load bank worked, the generator ran great, all the gauges worked, no complaints. If I had it to do over, though, I would have laid out the elements in a row, like an inline 4 instead of the flat 4 style, it would make the electrical easier to hookup and keep tidy, as well as keep the water connections on one side and the electrical on the other. There were no issues with this, but I think it would be a better design even if a bit larger. As an aside, the water was not really heated on the output, rather it was only lukewarm, I don't think I could use this to effectively heat the pool.

More to come once I get the fuse holder and meters in.
 

Haoleb

New member
197
0
0
Location
Raymond, Maine
The high temp shutdown switch is supposed to come on at 225 +/- 5 degrees. If you gauge was showing 240 might want to check and see what is not functioning properly or maybe the gauge is just off.
 

Daybreak

2 Star Admiral
1,272
0
36
Location
Northern, Virginia
Howdy,
The temperature gauge is deceiving. There is not a lot of marks or space between the 200 to 240 temp readings.


My unit was wet stacked. The entire unit had to burn off the wet stack goo which had gotten all over. I really should have taken the muffler wrap off and cleaned that whole area. When getting the unit working hard, say 4 hours at 100% load, it clears the exhaust, and burns off that goo on the outside of the muffler and under the wrap. Doesn't do it anymore, since it all gone now :)
 

Haoleb

New member
197
0
0
Location
Raymond, Maine
Howdy,
The temperature gauge is deceiving. There is not a lot of marks or space between the 200 to 240 temp readings.
I did think it was pretty silly that normal operating temp is already at the far end of the scale. Pretty useless as far as monitoring temp goes. Mine seems to always run at the spot right where the needle starts to touch the 2 of 240 but when I feel the hoses to the radiator they don't feel as hot as the ones in my vehicles that run at a steady 210.
 
Top