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A typical summer time mowing session for me is about 2.5 hours, the 4520 uses about 4 gallons of diesel. That would be maintaining areas that get mowed every 2-3 weeks. Yesterday I cut 3 fields (totaling 2 acres) that had not been cut in about 5 years, and it used about 6 gallons in just under 3 hours. Very tall grass and weeds, gum tree saplings up to about 1.5". FWIW, it was a "yep, this is why I go the 4520 and MX6" moment.

On my little 318, it took about 6 hours to cut less than I cut now in 2.5 hours, and the 318 burned about 5 gallons of gas. And it wore out the just-replaced spindles in the deck in 3 years, the original ones lasted 15 years (that's kinda how I knew it was time for something bigger). Last year, I had tried to mow part of a field that had not been cut for 4 years with the 318, it took multiple slow passes and still didn't do well, and could not deal with (didn't even try) the gum trees. The 4520 was running about 2.5 MPH (in reverse so I could take out the trees). One pass was enough. After a little bit of limb trimming, next step is to recover some paths in the woods.

I was "used to" what my B21 TLB (21 HP) used, so at first the 4520 seemed to be thirsty. Now I view it this way: It uses more fuel than you'd like when you doing small stuff, but uses less fuel than you'd think when you running hard.

Pete
 

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Brian, here's your generator. 45KW on a 1000 gallon LP tank (800 gallons of storage). 6 cyl 300 cu-in (4.9L) liter in line Ford industrial motor, they used to be in school buses and all sorts of things. Just over a gallon an hour idling, 2 to 3 on load, and 4 gallons an hour at peak load (which we never see). So basically when the house is on it, it's typically 50-70 gallons of fuel in a 24 hour period. Only down side to LP is the higher exhaust temperature.

Pete
 

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The short story (wandering a bit off topic...) is that when I got it, our old house was all electric. It was cheaper to go from a 25KW to a 45KW than it was to get a heat pump or gas pack, or replace the stove with a propane stove. I brought it with me to the new house (also all electric) because no one buying the old house would really appreciate it, and if they did they would understand that having a pad, propane tanks, and a transfer switch is the hard part. Buying the generator is the easy part. New house has 400 amp ASCO brand switch.

One other "general info" on generators. The pricing (at least when I got this one) on generators had a big of a stair step to it. The 18 to 25KW were 4 cyl engines, the 35 to 45 were 6 cyl engines, and the 55 to 65 where 8 cycl engines. So the simple act of keeping one heat pump 10 KW resistive electric on line bumped me from 25KW to 35KW ($1200), and for $800 more I went up to 45KW. When I bough this is 1997, it was about $12,500. I prices a new one in 2005 and it was about $16,000. I don't know if the "miracle of modern management" has "simplified" pricing down to a linear per KW curve or not.

I also liked the Onan because 45KW means 45KW continuous at max temp (120F ambient). None of the "peak" and "average" derating stuff.

It took about a year for generator prices around here to stabilize after Hurricane Fran in 1996. I got a quote of $32K for an installed system. I "found" a 200 amp transfer switch that was new in the box. All in all, I spent about $15K putting in in. That's when I got my B21 TLB. It cost $23K in 1997, so I figured that compared with the install price that was $6K more, and I got the TLB out of it! Important lesson in rationalization when purchasing tractors here...

Had no outages for 20 months after it went in. Then we had a 20 hour outage after a storm. In 2001 during the ice storms it was very nice. I was traveling and it all came on and just worked. I called home from Orlando and as you can probably figure out the difference in reaction with "Big ice storm, we're OK" and "Big ice storm, we have no power."

That's my generator story.

Pete
 
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