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Engine-Driven Mains Alternator/Generator


ChrisB
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Hi,

I'm trying to research options for an engine driven (either belt/aircon mount or PTO) 240v alternator to fit a 200tdi 130 ambulance. It belongs to the Red Cross, and has just been converted from ambulance use into a logistics/support role, retaining the original ambulance body shape. We would like to be able to use it to supply 240v mains power, preferably as much current as possible, given cost / space constraints.

Does anyone have any ideas about how to do this, suppliers of parts, where there might be an alternator lurking in a barn somewhere?!

Thanks in advance for any thoughts!

Chris Beresford

British Red Cross

Thames Valley Area

(i also run a 200tdi Disco)

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I would have thought that that will be pretty inefficient. i.e running the motor while stationary & all of the wasted heat energy.

If it was me i would use a portable generator. Possibly also a UPS on the end if mains quality/power cuts were important.

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Hi,

I'm trying to research options for an engine driven (either belt/aircon mount or PTO) 240v alternator to fit a 200tdi 130 ambulance. It belongs to the Red Cross, and has just been converted from ambulance use into a logistics/support role, retaining the original ambulance body shape. We would like to be able to use it to supply 240v mains power, preferably as much current as possible, given cost / space constraints.

Does anyone have any ideas about how to do this, suppliers of parts, where there might be an alternator lurking in a barn somewhere?!

Thanks in advance for any thoughts!

Chris Beresford

British Red Cross

Thames Valley Area

(i also run a 200tdi Disco)

Hi Chris,

I could be wrong but I think Seimens VDO used to supply and fit kits like this I keep meaning to look into as I'd like 110volts on board. It may well be worth droping Dreadnought110 a PM as he will probably be able to advise better he is caravaning in wales till after the bank holiday though so don't expect a quick reply.

The electricity board and environment agency plus lots of other councils and utilities use vehicle mounted generators on board.

Matt

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What current are you looking for?

It shouldn't be hard to find a portable generator with a knackered engine -

link

Alternators of 3kva or above are pretty bulky,so putting in air con pump position could be tight.

A high current inverter and a bank of batteries would be less of an engineering challenge,and may end up being cheaper ,they have come down in price a lot recently - that is the way most people do it - boats campers etc.

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Thanks for all the quick replies guys!

For the intended use, the alternator needs to able to supply at least 3kw continuous, 4kw would be ideal.

I did look into the inverter / large battery bank option, but I would need a generator or very large low-voltage engine-driven alternator to charge the batteries.

Reliability of supply isn't so critical, any sensitive equipment has a UPS or battery backup with it anyway. Simplicity and minimal effort in setting it up on site is the most important thing, coupled with long run-time and no requirement to lift a large weight from the back of the vehicle when working alone.

Please keep the advice coming!

Chris

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Thanks for all the quick replies guys!

For the intended use, the alternator needs to able to supply at least 3kw continuous, 4kw would be ideal.

I did look into the inverter / large battery bank option, but I would need a generator or very large low-voltage engine-driven alternator to charge the batteries.

Reliability of supply isn't so critical, any sensitive equipment has a UPS or battery backup with it anyway. Simplicity and minimal effort in setting it up on site is the most important thing, coupled with long run-time and no requirement to lift a large weight from the back of the vehicle when working alone.

Please keep the advice coming!

Chris

What do you intend using the power for, 3-4 kw is alot really I think,

I have a 2kw hydraulic motor based generator, designed to be powererd from the gearbox hydraulic PTO (to go with the H14 setup), I now just use a 2.2kw petrol generator because running the generator from the PTO made loads of waste heat, noise and used (comparatively) lots of fuel.

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I did this!

I have a 4 kva alternator which is driven by an additional belt attached to the crank pulley on a 200tdi. I made a quick-release mounting kit for the alternator so it could be moved from one vehicle to another quickly & easily.

The pulley on the alternator was sized such as to produce reasonable mains voltage and frequency at idle. It needed a bit of throttle at 4kva though. I used it for the frequent power cuts we suffered in the late 90's where I lived. It generated enough power to run the whole house, including kettle.

On the basis that I've not used it since I bought a silenced generator - I might be up for doing a deal if you are interested!

Si

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Not sure if it helps but possibly try and look for an Electrolux travel power setup - true sine wave mains power through the alternator with a top end silky smooth 3kw fan cooled invertor for when the engines off, charges the "house batteries" when the engines running as well, good kit but oooooooooooooooooooooouch expensive, used on house boats but readily fits cars/vans etc

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I did this!

I have a 4 kva alternator which is driven by an additional belt attached to the crank pulley on a 200tdi. I made a quick-release mounting kit for the alternator so it could be moved from one vehicle to another quickly & easily.

The pulley on the alternator was sized such as to produce reasonable mains voltage and frequency at idle. It needed a bit of throttle at 4kva though. I used it for the frequent power cuts we suffered in the late 90's where I lived. It generated enough power to run the whole house, including kettle.

On the basis that I've not used it since I bought a silenced generator - I might be up for doing a deal if you are interested!

Si

This is exactly the kind of thing I am after! Does it have any kind of clutch, or does it run all the time? I guess you used a standard hand throttle to increase revs at full load?

Chris

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