Generation Game

I’ve been considering buying a generator.

I’ve thought for a while that it would be a useful adjunct to the caravan; if nothing else to keep the battery topped up – and therefore enable us to run the lights, radio, telly etc – while we’re on a remote site without electricity. I only recently realised that it would be just as useful during the winter “no caravanning” period – the storage site where the caravan lives has no mains, so a generator would enable me to use power tools, and the Hoover, for those out-of-season maintenance jobs, as well as keeping a maintenance charge in the leisure battery.

The problem is that a generator worth having was always too expen$ive for the benefit it would bring. Even a small good quality generator like one of these:

runs into several hundred, even second hand.

So I started thinking, what would my ideal generator be? after all, if it’s never going to be any more than a wish, I may as well be wishing for the best.

  1. Runs on propane gas. Most or all small generators run on either petrol or two-stroke: Since my car uses diesel, that would mean carrying another type of fuel only for the generator. Whereas I always have a cylinder of propane in the caravan. Petrol engines can be converted to run on propane (and so can two-stroke, although it’s a right fiddle), but the conversion kit alone costs more than I was prepared to pay for the whole thing.
  2. Small enough to be easily transportable: seems obvious but a so-so generator that you’ve got with you is more useful than a brilliant one that you left at home because it’s too big to lug around
  3. Powerful enough to be useful: I don’t expect to be able to power the whole house in the event of an electricity outage, but I want to be able to run power tools and the telly etc.
  4. Quiet enough that the neighbours on the caravan site won’t complain about it – although generally on the kind of sites where I’d run a generator, the neighbours would be running theirs too.

So there’s my wish list: point one puts things beyond what I’m prepared to pay, and points two and three are more or less mutually exclusive, but one can dream!

But then, at a country fair a few weeks back, I spotted one of these: it doesn’t run on gas, but it fitted all the other requirements including price, and really the only reason I didn’t buy it was that I’d have had to carry it around for the rest of the day!

But it started me thinking, and researching on line: I bid for one generator on fleabay but didn’t win it – then the same day spotted another one, cheaper and smaller, and therefore more portable. So now I’m the proud owner of this!

(Better picture coming once I get the chance to point a camera at it in daylight!)

Comments are closed.