Author Topic: Lister ST1 / Markon 4 kVA Generator project, rebuild, refurbish  (Read 1164 times)


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I'm new here, brand new, first post!

We have recently purchased an off grid property and the backup generator was a Lister ST1 coupled to a Markon LC28B 4 KVA alternator. Unfortunately it died. My plan is to refurbish the Lister and have the alternator tested and cleaned or replace the alternator. I would like to replace the alternator as the output from it was never as stable as I would have liked but that would be costly and might not even be possible. The hour meter shows its done over 5,000 hours. I don't know what that means though. I don't know if its done 5,000 since its been installed here and done more somewhere else, or 5,000 here alone and never been installed somewhere else.

We did have on loan a Lister TS1 coupled to a 3 phase 18KVA Stamford rewired to 1 phase 12 KVA ish. Over-sizing alternators like that seems to be quite common in Australia and it gave a very good output which dealt with our high frequency piss poor power factor (.68) charger very well. Unfortunately it also had an issue and is now back with its owner. So if I do have to replace the alternator it would be nice to do it with a Stamford or decent Stamford copy (if such a thing exists) or Mecca Alte I suppose. Coupling it would be another story though, I think. More details later in the post.

So this is it. Very dirty.

I can't remember how to read the serial number but I remember figuring out it was made in 1983, the same year I was born! Also build number was 22 I believe. Not sure of the rotation.

When it died I thought it was the alternator. Unfortunately it looks to be worse if I can't find replacement parts. The flexible coupling disc seems to have deteriorated over time. It looks like the three bolts coupling the flexible disc to the flywheel have sheered off, grinding a groove in the flywheel. So not only the coupling needs to be replaced, something needs to be done with the flywheel.

Everything is filthy. I'm assuming the exhaust was leaking into the shed and everything has been smothered in black soot. Its everywhere, the alternator fan and windings are full of it. Surprised it didn't die earlier.

The engine itself sits in a pool of oil and diesel. It seems to run well though. I assume it will need a top end rebuild and a coat of paint. I'm not sure what I will find inside. The hour meter stated its done just over 5000 hours, that it this application, so who knows how many in total. The charger it was originally running wouldn't have worked it very hard at all, so I assume it would have spent a considerable portion of its life quite under loaded and may have the consequences of that.

So I don't really know where to start with this project. I suppose I'll have the alternator cleaned and tested and see if I can repair or replace the flywheel. No idea where I'd find a replacement, any ideas?

Then if I can sort out the flywheel and the alternator is good, I'll have to find the coupling parts. If the alternator is bad, I'll have to figure out how to couple it to a more modern alternator, which I'm not even sure is possible. I'm not sure what mounting system the old Markon alternator uses.

If all that is possible, then I'll rebuild the engine, paint it, put a decent muffler on it, then rebuild and insulate (in an attempt to reduce the noise) the generator shed.

I think that's my plan. I can rebuild engines so mechanically I'm up to it, just not sure about the whole alternator side of things and getting that sorted with the coupling and fitting issues.

I'd love to hear comments from those of you with experience and expertise, or just interested :).  For more images go to:



« Last Edit: August 12, 2018, 05:36:49 AM by Mountains »


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Re: Lister ST1 / Markon 4 kVA Generator project, rebuild, refurbish
« Reply #1 on: August 12, 2018, 05:29:15 AM »

Well then, Preventative Maintenance is just that isn't it.


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Re: Lister ST1 / Markon 4 kVA Generator project, rebuild, refurbish
« Reply #2 on: August 12, 2018, 11:19:49 PM »
Hi Mountains and welcome. If you are after Lister parts in Australia you should get in touch with Rob at Old Timer Engines, a quick google search will bring up his website. He collects everything Lister and has a large inventory of new and used parts.

A bit of a worry about the wear on the flywheel. The damage could probably be brazed and the threads re-taped. I suspect that there was some sort of alignment problem between the ST and the Markon head.

5000 hrs isn`t excessive but the amount of wear will be determined by how well it was maintained, loaded and how many short runs it has done.

The cylinder can be re-bored and the crankshaft re-ground. Gary (aka Dieselgman) at Diesel Electric in the USA stocks over sized pistons and rings, he also stocks under sized big end and main bearings. He will ship to Australia.

Markon made very good alternators so that one should clean up OK. Sadly they are no longer trading so spares could be a problem.

Keep us posted, good luck,