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Generators In this forum we will try to answer any of your questions about the different model generators that can be found on Blue Bird coach's.

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  #1  
Old 12-24-2011
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Default Perkins Generator Didn't want to stop, now starter keeps turning

My wife and I are getting ready for some winter camping next week. I haven't started the bus for a month, but it has been plugged into shore power the whole time. I decided to fire up the Generator (12.5KW Perkins Diesel 4.108). I held the glow plugs (stop switch on console) for 5 seconds and then the start switch. The generator fired right up.

After the genny ran for 5 minutes, I decided to shut it off to show my wife how to start the genny. This is when it starts to get weird. Neither switch in the galley or at the Drivers console would shut off the genny. I finally pushed the stop swith in quick succession and the genny did shut off. (Now it gets scary). I thought this was just a sticky switch, and didn't think much about this.

I then tried starting the genny again but I figured it had enough cylinder heat and therefore didn't give it any glow plugs. The starter engaged, it did not start the engine and the start refused to disengage. This was the scary part. Toggling either switch to start or stop would not disengage the starter. Since the bus had not been started, I had no air pressure and could not open the tray. I started the bus. I brought it to a high idle and hope the air pressure would come up. I finally got the genny tray open. The battery is way in the back and I wasn't two keen on leaning over the generator. The starter was starting to smoke. (As a side note I should mention that I have a slight fuel leak from the lift pump and I believe it was the diesel fuel evaportating off the start housing. I don't think it was actual smoke.) While tried to figure out how to get the battery disconnected, I had my wife get a fire extinguisher and then garden hose ready in case flames appeared.

I used side cutters to cut one of the cables going to the starter solenoid. There are 2 big cables to starter solenoid. I cut the thinner of the two first. When I disconnected this the engine stopped cranking but not instantaneously. It stopped starting slow enough that I thought there my be power coming from the other large cable. That cable was too big to cut but by now I was brave enough to get a 1/2 box wrench on the solenoid to pull the rest of the cables. It was finally all over but I **** near crapped myself trying to get it to stop. I figure it was cranking for a good 6 minutes.

I have read the other posts in this section. I am looking to replace the solenoid and possibly the generator battery. Any clues on why the generator stop switches would not work? Could it be related to the starter failing to disengage?

Tim
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  #2  
Old 12-24-2011
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Hate that when it happens. Onan air cooled diesel genset did it to me once. Starter solinoid likes to stick sometimes when they get old. Attempting to start with out cycling the glow plugs should have no effect on the starter. Seems to me there is a starter reman place in Portland @ 26th and NW Thurman NW corner.
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  #3  
Old 12-24-2011
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I agree - sounds like mechanical failure of starter relay/solenoid. Had a runaway starter on a car once that was caused by misalignment - drive couldn't retract because jammed. Starter motor must be pretty heavy duty to run that long - it's probably trashed by now.
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Old 12-24-2011
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Tim- was the white light on inside the switch when you tried to shut it down?
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  #5  
Old 12-24-2011
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a weak battery can also cause the solenoid to hang up.
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Old 12-24-2011
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I had a 1985 Harley Davidson FLHT that would do the same thing from time to time, It would scare the heck out of ya. I got to where I made sure my battery was fully charged, otherwise the starter/relay would hang up. On another note, that machine also ghost-started on me once with the ignition key off (I think from moisture in the relay) Thank goddness it was in neutral. I think all start/stop systems are pretty much the same, but I'm no expert.
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Old 12-24-2011
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I have a seperate battery for the generator and there was no disconnect on it.
that battery exploded on I10 in Florida at a rest area when I started the generator.
when I replaced the battery I added one of these.
http://www.campingworld.com/shopping...location/12075

Merry Christmas ALL!!
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  #8  
Old 12-24-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sfedeli View Post
Tim- was the white light on inside the switch when you tried to shut it down?

Shane,

No. The white light was not on.

Tim
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Old 12-24-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by techson View Post
I have a seperate battery for the generator and there was no disconnect on it.
that battery exploded on I10 in Florida at a rest area when I started the generator.
when I replaced the battery I added one of these.
http://www.campingworld.com/shopping...location/12075

Merry Christmas ALL!!
Yes. I see one of those in my future. There is the odd chance that it was not the solenoid and I get to experience this all over again.
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  #10  
Old 12-24-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Randy Dupree View Post
a weak battery can also cause the solenoid to hang up.

That is what I read in some of the previous posts from other folk that experienced this. However, the engine did not respond as if it had a weak battery. The first time it started it cranked over pretty fast and sounded normal. Even when it hung up, it sounded like it was cranking at a pretty good speed. There are two large cables connected to the solenoid. I know one is from the generator tray battery and I would assume the other is from the coaches battery. If the genny is pulling starting current from both battery sources, that would explain why the started ran for so long. I can't believe a weak battery would have cranked for 7 minutes.

Tim
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