Author Topic: Why have they fell out of favor??  (Read 13106 times)

38ac

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Why have they fell out of favor??
« on: July 29, 2016, 09:45:56 AM »
Just some chatter to liven up the forum  ;)
10-20 years ago the Chinese horizontals were imported and sold by the container full. As far as I can tell they give good service other than the cheapest of cheap that were thrown in the mix. I have a couple that I use more than a little bit, an R185 and a 1115. They give zero trouble, use very little fuel and in general are dandy little engines as compared to the average Listeroid. So the question here is why do they have to be practically given away to sell them? I have several new old stock high quality from 5-23 HP and cant even get a sniff from a buyer. I noticed that Veggie had to about give one away to move it also.  I am not whining about the few I have in stock and have not sold, they are not eating anything. I am  just curious what you all think about what has happened to the market for these engines? Saturated and no need for more? Quality issues with a few ruin the reputation? high priced fuel  and cheap solar??
« Last Edit: July 29, 2016, 09:59:38 AM by 38ac »
Collector and horder of about anything diesel

glort

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Re: Why have they fell out of favor??
« Reply #1 on: July 29, 2016, 11:38:31 AM »

I picked up a 165 years ago and out of all my engines, Roid included, it's by far my favourite.
I have 5 engines in the 5-6 Hp range from different makers and countries of origin and this little one that is rated at 3.5 Hp and has the smallest capacity by a good measure will eat the lot of them for breakfast.
It's a magic little engine and I love everything about it.

It's the simplest design that is the easiest to work on and came with a box of parts including rings and bearings, seals and even new Valves.  I think it would take a LOT to wear it out to the point of needing a rebuild in the first place. I don't know how the longevity of the horizontals would compare to a roid or even a real lister but something tells me they would be comparable.  I have been looking for another of this type for years but they rarely come up here and when they do they are stupidly priced. I'm not going to buy any single Cyl engine when I can buy a good used and guaranteed Multi Cyl, higher HP engine such as a kobota or perkins for less money that I can get parts for nearly anywhere here.
I'd swap or sell the roid and buy a 1115 in a heart beat if I could get a horizontal here at a fair price. 

I love the nostalgic look of the roid but I still have to pull the thing apart and try to balance it. It's not quiet or nice to run atm and won't be till I fix the inherent problems. Admittedly this is not something that would have to be done with a real lister but I can't buy one new any more and the used ones are rare, exy and may well need a resto as well. I can get a new off the shelf horizontal although I would probably have to import one but none the less, can't even do that for a lister.
There is a lot more I should probably do to the roid to make it a long lasting engine but I'm not really that inclined to learn about fixing them, I want the enjoyment of running it.... Which I can't really do till I fix the inherent problems first.

The horizontal was a runner out of the box. Admittedly, I did have to pull the pump and clean it when I bought it as it had a short run from the previous owner and then buried in the shed for 10 or so years but that was easy and straightforward even when I had not done it before. I can move it around and even pick the thing up and while it is a bit short on power compared to the roid, a similar power horizontal would still be a much more manageable and compact item. i also found them to be amazingly fuel efficient. I have had mine hooked up to a 3 phase motor set up as a generator and run the thing for a couple of hours out of a 2L coke bottle.  I still can't make the maths add up on how the thing produced the power i know it did for the time it did on so little fuel.  Then again, I have also seen many times where the electrical power I got out of the motor the little engine was driving surpassed the diesels rated output and the thing still had plenty of throttle left before it got to smoking or maxing out and it certainly wasn't running overly hot either.

My main interest in Diesel engines is for home brew power and I think the faster speed of the Horizontals is much more practical than the roids.  As far as noise goes, The roid isn't as quiet as I hoped and I think a water cooled horizontal could be made just as quiet despite the higher speed and I don't know the life expectancy would necessarily be that much different.

I'm not trying to put down the lister/ roids  but the horizontals have a LOT going for them in my book and given the choice, I'd take the China engine over the punjabi version any day and I'd have to have a good think even if an genuine English bit of iron came along in the same rating power for the same price. Well, no, it' probably take a real lister on sentimental value over practical. A real case of heart ruling head.  :0)
I was looking over the collection the other day and decided I'll do my best to resist any more small aircooled Diesels. Next one HAS to be a water cooled be it a single or Multi Cylinder job.  I might import one direct and see what sort of an adventure that turns out to be. The guy in the parts shop across the road goes to China several times a year so I might have a word to him about bringing a couple back for me in his containers.
Then again, I probably should put the effort into building a stand and setting up my 5 Cyl Merc engine properly.  It's just too big for any use I have but every now and then I have a bit of a browse for a boat to put it in.

Your post is rather frustrating as I suspect the price of the engines you have would be attractive to me but I also know that US shipping is a complete and utter joke to the point of an insult. I have been pissed off more than once how I can get stuff from Canada Or anywhere else in the world for that matter)  for a reasonable price but for some ridiculous reason, getting something the size and weight of a box of matches from the US has an ask for delivery of about 80 bucks.

I don't know why there is no interest in them there, I'd love to find some for sale at a reasonable price here. My little horizontal was one of the best things I have bought ever!

broncodriver99

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Re: Why have they fell out of favor??
« Reply #2 on: July 29, 2016, 04:28:49 PM »
I think the hobby as a whole is in decline. I also don't see near as much WVO collection as I used to. All of my restaurant customers have gone back to selling their oil to a protein company and I don't see near the adds on Craigslist anymore.

I was late getting into the game. The EPA was really cracking down on the roids and the horizontals were all but gone when I raised my interest, that's why I ended up with an original Lister. I looked into the horizontals at first but the unknown quality and the question of parts availability in the future made it seem a poor long term plan. At least with the Lister I can buy a bunch of spares and let them sit on the shelf until needed. I admit the higher speed horizontals are probably much more up to the task of smooth power generation but I read a few accounts of changfas experiencing flicker as well so decided I would rather deal with a Lister.

Ultimately I think it is a hobby that is fueled by disposable income and the years of hard economic times really put a damper on the number of people who could afford to play. When both the horizontals and the roids were cheap and available on Ebay and everywhere else they had much more exposure and garnered much more interest. I suspect that the roids have suffered the same decline in interest.

Really though I would say the price of solar coming down is the most likely reason. Currently the cost of an engine, generator head, fuel supply, and whatever else is needed to make the set-up usable is enough to outright pay for a 2-3kw solar array and that is without counting on tax subsidies. The solar requires no fuel, little or no maintenance, comes with a warranty, and provides a return on investment. I know personally other than liking to tinker the only reason I invested in a Lister is for a situation when the grid is out and for times when the sun isn't shining, then again I have a Honda generator sitting in the shed that will do the same thing.

dieselgman

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Re: Why have they fell out of favor??
« Reply #3 on: July 29, 2016, 04:40:52 PM »
It might be worth another look at the Lister Alpha series??? They offer a very lightweight and small footprint, 1800rpm for stable power output, current production and plenty of parts readily available, very easy to work on (with just a few caveats), huge numbers being brought into the used marketplace from ex-military. The water-cooled units are available in 2, 3, 4 cylinder versions including a slightly beefed-up turbocharged 4-cylinder. Tough little reliable engines. These are the models built in Kansas up until a year ago. You can find them rebranded as Cummins, Onan, New Holland - same exact engines.

dieselgman
« Last Edit: July 29, 2016, 04:43:46 PM by dieselgman »
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LowGear

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Re: Why have they fell out of favor??
« Reply #4 on: July 30, 2016, 02:47:32 PM »
Why have they fell out of favor??

Because they're not beautiful.
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listard-jp2

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Re: Why have they fell out of favor??
« Reply #5 on: August 01, 2016, 07:36:25 AM »
It might be worth another look at the Lister Alpha series???  very easy to work on (with just a few caveats)

You mean like fuel injection pumps that have the element integral with the pump body, making them a non serviceable and throwaway part, and a cylinder head that is not doweled, hence the head gasket totally relies on the cylinder head bolts for correct location.

Here is someone who has a LPW4G engine, and whom seem to be less than impressed with it, granted his number 1 complaint concerns prices of spares (as he bought from a main dealer)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7JzYlYoh6aQ

dieselgman

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Re: Why have they fell out of favor??
« Reply #6 on: August 01, 2016, 12:24:59 PM »
Those guys obviously are being badly abused by their Cummins dealer... do NOT rely on the misinformation provided there. Lister/Petter full list pricing is only a small fraction of what he is quoting. They also do not appear to know what they are doing inside that little engine... too bad they are having a bad time of it. I would be angry as well!

In my experience Cummins has always been difficult to do business with and very expensive with their power generation stuff. I do not like dealing with them at all. Lister/Petter is not known for being inexpensive either, but they have generally justified their position by keeping the quality of everything they offer very high. Do business directly with Lister dealers...

The Alpha engine did have its share of problems in its early versions, but those were gradually worked out. I find it a very easy machine to rebuild and maintain, and it is proven solid and reliable. There are at least 50,000 of them in service with the US Military (maybe a lot more, because that number is just one contract over a 25 year time-frame).

dieselgman
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dieselgman

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Re: Why have they fell out of favor??
« Reply #7 on: August 01, 2016, 12:41:11 PM »
Just another example... precisely the same Mitsubishi engine gets rebranded and licensed to various companies under different colors and designations. Mitsubishi S4S, Lister DWS4, Caterpillar 3044, Perkins 804D. Cat charges list price above $9,000 - Lister $5,000, the others are in between I believe. Just a few of the externals and a coat of paint make the difference.

dieselgman
Ford Powerstroke, Caterpillar 3304, Cummins M11, Too many Listers to count...

veggie

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Re: Why have they fell out of favor??
« Reply #8 on: January 01, 2017, 05:31:41 PM »

I don't think Changfa's fell out of favor. I think people would buy them if only they could get them.
Noisy...yes, but very durable and tough.
I sold a couple of extra units that I had this year. They sold very quickly when I advertised them.

Veggie
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glort

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Re: Why have they fell out of favor??
« Reply #9 on: January 02, 2017, 04:08:05 PM »

Exactly the case with me. I'd buy one, or several, If i could get them. We have no import bans but I didn't see them advertised anymore.
When things settle down after I move and If I have the space, I'll look at importing a few myself.  Should be able to sell them easily in the country where my father is.

I'll go for a big watercooled Job I can rev slow and gear up fast so it just cruises quietly along.

vdubnut62

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Re: Why have they fell out of favor??
« Reply #10 on: January 03, 2017, 02:48:37 AM »
Maybe people who love the Chinese diesels are hoarding them? I know that I have ended up with a pair of S1100's and an 1115 since I got my first one. I wasn't looking for another engine really, they just sort of found me.
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artfull dodger

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Re: Why have they fell out of favor??
« Reply #11 on: June 06, 2017, 01:15:56 PM »
I would love to find one of the 4.5hp yanmar LA series clones that were imported for awhile.  Only can get the 6 and 10 hp versions now, which are to tall for where I want to use it.   It has gotten quite difficult to find the Chinese clones, be it hopper cooled or air cooled.    Mike
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glort

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Re: Why have they fell out of favor??
« Reply #12 on: June 07, 2017, 01:35:49 AM »
Quote
I would love to find one of the 4.5hp yanmar LA series clones that were imported for awhile.

I bought one last week. An electric start 8HP. I have 2 of the smaller ones already and I nearly bought another 8 hp electric the other night but I don't know what I'm going to do with them all.  They are noisy as hell and the other 2 ( or is it actually 3 now?) haven't proven that great. One pisses oil from the main seal and the other has an injector problem. Neither of them have done much work. Hoping this one is better and more reliable.

The vertical clones are my least favorite engines. The horizontal I love, my Hatz, lombardini and ruggerini are all great but the Yanmar Clones...... Meh.
No shortage of parts supply, that's one thing. Easy and cheap as to get on any China trade site. They seem pretty rough in comparison to the others and make a hell of a mechanical Racket.  tend to be pretty harsh on Vibration as well although I couldn't say any of them except the Hatz are smooth.  The big Ruggerini Snaps 1/2" Bolts I try to mount it with.

I also bought an 8 HP China petrol Fire Pump. Yes, unusual for me to buy anything that runs on the devils fuel, petrol, but it went cheap and I'd already bought the diesel so have to go fetch that so I thought one more won't hurt.  :0)
Also Bought a Demolition drill and a 92 CC China Chainsaw.  My brand Centric mate has 2 of these saws.  I saw them in his shed the other week and asked him if they were OK. He said I have 2 of them because the first one was so good I wanted to get another in case they stop bringing them in. He pointed to the other 4 Saws he has and said the China ones were ball tearers and the best ones of the bunch. He cuts some BIG Timber so it's not just shrubbery he's doing with them.

For him to say that, the china saw is going to be good enough for me.
Now, If I took the bar and sprocket off the Chainsaw and fitted that to the Diesel engine and mounted it on a frame that pivoted....... Hmmm.

artfull dodger

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Re: Why have they fell out of favor??
« Reply #13 on: June 08, 2017, 12:15:28 AM »
What I need is one of the LA170F clones with a keyed crankshaft and electric start.  Dont need several, just need one good one.   Seem hard to come by in the USA.  I have cash in paypal waiting if someone can hook me up with one.   Hopefully soon before the engine in my Wheelhorse gets any worse.   Mike
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buickanddeere

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Re: Why have they fell out of favor??
« Reply #14 on: June 08, 2017, 12:23:31 PM »
As previously mentioned the EPA and changing demographics . 2-3 generations ago boys grew up working with their Fathers  working on equipmemt on farms and family owned small businesses.  Now the men at that nostalgic  stage and tinkering with stuff are far and few between. The last  few generations being raised in town by single Mothers has wiped out whole generations of future mechanical hobbiests , fisherman, hunters etc.