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Old 01-02-2014, 17:46   #16
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Re: starting diesel with Honda 2000i

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They do look cool. Where do you buy them? I cannot find any place online and the Simms web site does not have a buy or where to buy link. What is the ballpark cost?
There's another company in the UK called startwell that's makes spring starters

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Old 01-02-2014, 17:50   #17
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Re: starting diesel with Honda 2000i

Ladies, Gentlemen,
Thanks to Donradcliffe for initially responding and generating such an erudite discussion. Thanks to all who have pitched in.
This sentence from Don: "The Honda also has a 12vDC outlet, but it is not nearly powerful enough to start the engine itself" Is at the heart of the issue my naivetes
sparks. What I have taken from Don's statement and the others that follow is that the Honda will not have enough power to turn the engine over by using the AC outlet with a 30A ( 125 v) to 15A straight ( both 12 volt) adapter going into our shore power insert.
On the other hand, Canibul is correct, the Honda is inverter based. It has two standard three prong AC receptacles ( which, for example, many sailors use to drive an air conditioner while at anchor. ) It also has a 12v DC receptacle for charging batteries. Is Canibul suggesting that the Honda will start the engine if plugged into the shore power inlet? Once, we had an electrical blackout at sea. All five batteries were dead. When we reached a marina, we simply used the shorepower cable to plug into the Marina's 30 amp outlet,
switched on the Yanmar, and it started instantly - no waiting for the batteries to charge.

The majority here seem to say the Honda will not provide enough power to do that
and once connected to the boat's shorepower insert we should keep all electric gear
( except the battery charger) switched off for about an hour while the Honda charges things. ( The Honda has a failsafe device that prevents it from overloading ( excess of 2.0 kVA - whatever that means.) On the other hand, rather than charging the boat's batteries through the shorepower inlet connected to the Honda as described above, would it go faster if we used battery charging chords directly from the Honda's 12 volt outlet led straight to the starter battery?
HV
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Old 01-02-2014, 18:00   #18
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Re: starting diesel with Honda 2000i

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Originally Posted by Habana Vieja View Post
Ladies, Gentlemen,
Thanks to Donradcliffe for initially responding and generating such an erudite discussion. Thanks to all who have pitched in.
This sentence from Don: "The Honda also has a 12vDC outlet, but it is not nearly powerful enough to start the engine itself" Is at the heart of the issue my naivetes
sparks. What I have taken from Don's statement and the others that follow is that the Honda will not have enough power to turn the engine over by using the AC outlet with a 30A ( 125 v) to 15A straight ( both 12 volt) adapter going into our shore power insert.
On the other hand, Canibul is correct, the Honda is inverter based. It has two standard three prong AC receptacles ( which, for example, many sailors use to drive an air conditioner while at anchor. ) It also has a 12v DC receptacle for charging batteries. Is Canibul suggesting that the Honda will start the engine if plugged into the shore power inlet? Once, we had an electrical blackout at sea. All five batteries were dead. When we reached a marina, we simply used the shorepower cable to plug into the Marina's 30 amp outlet,
switched on the Yanmar, and it started instantly - no waiting for the batteries to charge.

The majority here seem to say the Honda will not provide enough power to do that
and once connected to the boat's shorepower insert we should keep all electric gear
( except the battery charger) switched off for about an hour while the Honda charges things. ( The Honda has a failsafe device that prevents it from overloading ( excess of 2.0 kVA - whatever that means.) On the other hand, rather than charging the boat's batteries through the shorepower inlet connected to the Honda as described above, would it go faster if we used battery charging chords directly from the Honda's 12 volt outlet led straight to the starter battery?
HV
I think the Honda will start your engine, but you need a converter and a hard-start capacitor. Some chargers (sold for the RV market) are also converters, but some are not. I am not sure what capacitor is size for starting a marine diesel, but I am sure they exists. I am only aware of ones size for starting a RV air-conditioner, and they are very inexpensive. You will need a larger one for a marine diesel.
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Old 01-02-2014, 18:20   #19
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Re: starting diesel with Honda 2000i

The honda generator is inverter based, but it does not produce 12 vdc....nor any real dc for that matter. The output from the "generator" is a multi phase AC current, that is then fed into an inverter and turned into 120 VAC for house loads. The 8 amp DC battery charge port is also a product of rectifying some of the AC power.

The only way that this little generator will start your engine is like stated above.....You need to have a decent battery charger for it to power to charge your batteries.....once some juice is in your batts then the engine can be started.

To use the output of the generator directly to start the engine would require, as RainDog said, an AC motor starter and some monster capacitors to spin the whole thing.

Shore power won't start your engine either.....all it does is run a battery charger to put some juice into the batteries.
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Old 01-02-2014, 21:50   #20
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Re: starting diesel with Honda 2000i

Thank You Sailmonkey,
Seems like in addition to the Honda we need a battery charger but, Honda claims
the genertor, with the correct cables, will function as a battery charger. I am sure there are many of us who believe the claim. But if untrue, and it will fire a battery charger, then that takes care of the issue.We need a battery charger to plug into the honda. However, we have found that on our vessel, even if the batteries are dead and we plug into 30 amp shore power, things fire up. What's up?
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Old 01-02-2014, 23:52   #21
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Re: starting diesel with Honda 2000i

The Honda 12v output will function as a battery charger, but it is such a small charger that it would take several hours to bring the boat batteries up. If you can plug into shore power and get things to fire up, that means you already have a charger on the boat. As long as the boat charger does not overload the Honda (and you turn all the other AC loads off), the boat charger should charge your batteries 5 to 10 times faster than hooking the Honda 12v outlet to the batteries.

Any attempts to mix 12v and 120v circuits will result in some expensive smoke. If you are unsure of what you are doing, you may want to get some help.
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Old 02-02-2014, 00:20   #22
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Re: starting diesel with Honda 2000i

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Originally Posted by Habana Vieja View Post
If our batteries are completely dead and we need to start the diesel engine
( a Yanmar 4j H2-te ) will our Honda EU 2000i generator supply enough power if companioned directly into the boat's shore power socket or
will we need to use the generator to charge the batteries before firing up
up the diesel?
how big is your on board battery charger? if you have a large 100a charger to an acr to the starter battery you probably wouldn't need to run it too long. if you have a little 10-20a charger then yes you'd have to run it for a while.

Quote:
If the generator is connected to the batteries with jump start cables, will it supply enough power to jump start the diesel?
Thanks for any help offered,
HV
I doubt it.
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Old 02-02-2014, 05:34   #23
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Re: starting diesel with Honda 2000i

The Honda is a DC generator but it is hardwired to an inverter producing AC. There is only a small side circuit putting out 12v DC at maybe 10 amps.

Of course, the idea of plugging into shore power does presume you have a reasonably large AC battery charger.

On the side issues:

I've always thought a pull start would make sense for the small diesel engines on sail boats (yeah it would take a pretty good tug but under 30hp it's doable). We are outboard powered and if the battery dies, a coupe pulls and we are on our way.

Battery jump packs: No real benefit to this conversation but reminds me of one time we returned from an overseas trip to find we left the dome light on in the truck. We called the service and were explicit that we had a diesel truck. Two hours later a guy in a minivan shows up with a jump pack. After an ongoing fiasco at 2am, we finally told him to go away, picked up a rental car and returned in the morning with a couple new batteries...We now have a backup set of batteries for the truck.
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Old 02-02-2014, 05:41   #24
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Re: starting diesel with Honda 2000i

The dc side on the Honda will not start your engine if you manage to connect that with your batteries. The ac will if plugged into your shorepower and you have your charger on. I have done it when there was a voltage loss and my starter would not crank. I guess the smart charger boosts the voltage up right away.
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Old 02-02-2014, 07:40   #25
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Re: starting diesel with Honda 2000i

This thread is going in a lot of interesting directions. But back to the core issues:

1) The 12V output of the Honda eu2000i is there to keep a small battery topped off. It has no where near enough capacity to turn over the starter on even a small diesel engine.

2) If you were able to connect your boat to shore power and start the diesel, then you'll be able to do the same thing with the Honda. Power from your boat's built-in charger, together with whatever was left in the batteries, was enough to turn over your engine.

You'll need a 30A to 15A pigtail so you can plug your 30A shore power cord into the 15A outlet on the Honda.

Now, some math. Let's assume you have a 100A charger for your 12V batteries.

Watts = Amps times Volts. Remember "WAVe".

100 Amps times 12 Volts = 1,200 Watts. Your Honda 2000W unit will have no trouble powering it. You can even run other 120V appliances at the same time. I happen to have a 100A charger and a Honda 2000i, and I've tried this exact scenario.

Every circuit in your 120V AC system should have a fuse or a circuit breaker. Since your whole boat takes 30A, it's likely the charger circuit needs a fraction of that.

Remember that a 100A charger at 12V needs about 10A at 120V. That circuit breaker or fuse shouldn't be any larger than 15A.

And if your charger is only 30A or 40A (more likely), then it's only going to use 3A or 4A at 120V, and maybe have a 5A or 10A breaker.

Your Honda is rated at 2000W. That's over 16A at 120V.

In other words, your charger circuit by itself couldn't possibly overload the Honda.
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Old 02-02-2014, 07:55   #26
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Re: starting diesel with Honda 2000i

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Originally Posted by Habana Vieja View Post
Thank You Sailmonkey,
Seems like in addition to the Honda we need a battery charger but, Honda claims
the genertor, with the correct cables, will function as a battery charger. I am sure there are many of us who believe the claim. But if untrue, and it will fire a battery charger, then that takes care of the issue.We need a battery charger to plug into the honda. However, we have found that on our vessel, even if the batteries are dead and we plug into 30 amp shore power, things fire up. What's up?
As Honda claims, it will function as a battery charger, but only at 8 amps......

If you plug in your boat with dead batts and things work, you have a battery charger. Just plug the honda into the shore power inlet and the same thing will happen. It produces the same power as the dockside connection, just less of it.
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Old 02-02-2014, 09:18   #27
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Re: starting diesel with Honda 2000i

I just went through this exercise and decided to purchase a Honda eu2000i-companion. My Freedom 10 (1000w inverter) AC input is 12 amps (max per the manual). The Honda is rated 1600 watts, peak 2000 watts. At 120v AC, this is rated 13.3 amps or 16.6 peak. I've tested the eu2000i using 30 amp shore cord and the Xantrex remote indicates charging mode. This should be able to charge the batteries enough to start the boat.

Also, the companion mode has the round 30 amp plug, so you can use your ordinary 30 amp shore power cord without pig-tail adapters. Honda's documentation is not clear. They claim the companion mode lets you run two eu2000i's in parallel to generate 30 amps. What they don't say is that you can run the companion by itself and use the 30 amp outlet. You can.

From Power quality from various backup devices, the AC power output looks very good and the DC is not, claims DC only good for battery charging.

Regarding portable emergency battery packs - I looked at these and was put-off by having to either keep charged or recharge every few weeks. Knowing my luck, the minute I needed to use it, it would be dead! I decided the Honda will work with our boat's charger and run our house refrigerator in an emergency.

I have to agree with everything I read about the Honda EU2000i - it is a sweet product. Happy to have purchased.

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Old 02-02-2014, 09:43   #28
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Re: starting diesel with Honda 2000i

CaptTom and Sailmonkey go to the core of the issue. When Sailmonkey says

"If you plug in your boat with dead batts and things work, you have a battery charger. Just plug the honda into the shore power inlet and the same thing will happen. It produces the same power as the dockside connection, just less of it."

This is what we had hoped for and the purpose for which we bought the Honda.
Our Freedom Charger / Inverter - when in the Charger mode specs out with:

input 120 vac 60 HZ 25 amps
output 13.5 volts DC 130 amps

and since our boats electrical systems fired up and the batteries charged when we plugged into shore power with dead batteries, to be redundant, we assumed things would behave the same way when we used the Honda rather than the Marina's 30 amp shorepower system. There does seem to be some
ambiguity on the time it will take for the batteries to charge. On the one hand there is the experience that it will take very little time to get enough juice to turn the engine over. On the other hand, a few people have said it
can take from 3 - 5 hours.
Again, thanks to all who have responded.
HV
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Old 02-02-2014, 09:51   #29
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Re: starting diesel with Honda 2000i

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Originally Posted by Habana Vieja View Post
This is what we had hoped for and the purpose for which we bought the Honda.
Our Freedom Charger / Inverter - when in the Charger mode specs out with:

input 120 vac 60 HZ 25 amps
output 13.5 volts DC 130 amps


HV

Here's your problem......The required input of the charger you have is 25 amps. The Honda will only supply 16ish amps. You will need to find out if you can de-rate your charger so it won't upset the honda. If you can, then you wont have any problems.
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Old 02-02-2014, 10:34   #30
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Re: starting diesel with Honda 2000i

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They do look cool. Where do you buy them? I cannot find any place online and the Simms web site does not have a buy or where to buy link. What is the ballpark cost?
$1000-$1500. I was quoted $1500 for this

https://www.dieselproducts.com/en/en...i-starter.aspx

a few months ago. I presume used ones exist, and as it's mechanical, if the spring is springy and the item is non-rusted, I expect it would be fine as a used item, if you'd done the research to get the right fit with your flywheel or pinion setup.

It's not a trivial expense, nor would I suggest it for the weekend sailor. We are considering circling the world, however, over a five-year span, and I think I would be naive to assume my electrical setup would be so bulletproof that I never have a diesel starting issue.

If diesels still had compression levers, this would be a simpler decision.
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