EF1000iS, What's good, what's inside

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EF1000iS, What's good, what's inside

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 Just got it Nov 30 and took it apart before starting it up. Why? Because every GD place I looked for the valve adjust info refused to list it. I'd have to buy the expensive manual or try and coerce the Yamaha Service dept to look it up and tell me. Also, the real reason is I wanted to see where they were set by the factory. I found the typical tiny 4-stroke engine minimal clearances:
Intake: .05mm
Exhaust: .07mm

Then I broke out the camera, took these shots and added in the text with IrfanView:
The basics1
The basics2
Top view
Intake port
Valve gear-1
Valve gear-2
Valve cover
The side
Intake connector
 I left out pics of the unit with the outer shells on, since they are everywhere.

 OK. Poured in about 1/3rd tank of gas and got it ready to go. Because the gastank, carb bowl and fuel lines were bone dry, I knew it would take many pulls of the recoil start for the crankcase air pulses to oscillate the fuel pump diaphram enough to pump the required fuel, and it took 8. When it started I couldn't believe my ears. It was really quiet! Let it run until it warmed up and idled down. Then I tried some low power plug-ins like a drill and small 10" fan. It's a new motor, so I let it run while playing with the Eco switch to vary the RPM's. Very impressive, with the quality feel and sound of an extremely well made expensive machine. It's like Acura made it. You feel the quality construction just pulling the choke knob in-&-out (engine off). Smooth as silk and very solid. There's no clicking, ticking or clattering emanating from the running motor, heavily loaded or not. Definitely not made to a price point like all those under $200 Chinese models, or even the cheaper $500 1KW inverter models made by other familiar U.S. Mfgr names.

After about 1.5 hrs runtime on a few shut down, cool off, start-ups, I tried it on our medium sized Kenmore chest freezer in the basement, it's thermostat turned to "coldest" for my extended run test. At full speed it revved and roared about 2 seconds for the compressor to startup, then unloaded. I thought it popped the electronic overload circuit, but the freezer was running. Activated the Genny's Eco switch and it went almost to an idle. Impressive. The Kill A Watt power meter I plugged the freezer into said there was a 120W draw. After an hour it was down to only 73W, with the compressor still eartest-to-chestwall confirmed to be running. Back up to the garage and a 1500W 7.25" circular saw took it to it's overload light flashing limits on the start-up. Almost 3 seconds of it, then the saw gradually went from fast to full speed with no more flashing overload light. That implies wood cutting would have to be with slow-n-light feed speed. I am REALLY impressed with the brilliance of the inverter generator technology!!

Next test, after it stops raining, is to start-n-run our kitchen's 21 cu ft Amana Bottom-Freezer Refrigerator (energy star compliant). The Yam Genny is supposed to be capable of 3x rated load (2,700W) for 3 seconds enabling electric motor start-ups, so it should be able to do it. I've already measured it drawing 1800W startup, 120W running from the kitchen GFI outlet. The real test is starting each cooler sequentially and leaving on Eco idle overnite when the power goes out. It's a challenge because the freezer only has a compressor motor and the fridge has that plus the low powered induction motor condensor fan. My other Genny, a brand new looking, 21 year old, much noisier EM-3500 Honda recently started both cooling appliances, several lights, DVR hardrive and a ceiling fan with one louder 2 second exhaust roar.

My advice; Spend the extra money and get the best (now) "inverter" Genny $,$$$ can buy. It's a proven long term investment that WILL save your expensive frozen food, costly refrigerated items and your sanity. You'll have cooked food, TV with lights and comfort in ways the cold, darkened housed neighbors will envy. I did that in 1988 with the Honda EM Genny and it never let us down . . . about a dozen very critical times!!

It started the kitchen reefer no problem at all at full speed, even easier than the chest freezer! I heard it started it from the Eco-idle RPM again, sometime later on, with just a 2 second burst of about half it's full RPM's (~4,000). After I set the reefer thermostat lower, it ran for 3 hours to finish the generator motor's break-in. I am now working on assembling the new 4 prong 240V supply cord that'll plug into the dual Ammeter transfer box on the garage wall. Each female 115V outlet on the Yamaha will supply one leg of the house power's 240V leg. Now, with 2 really good generators . . . . the power will never again go out on me!

Talent, On Loan, From God  --Rush Limbaugh--
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Re: EF1000iS, What's good, what's inside

This post was updated on .
OK. It is now months later and it has been used once to power the house, on selective minimal usage, during my unexplained Christmas Eve 25 minute power outage. BTW, Stabil is now always in it's fueltank because of unknown future periods of inactivity. It has it's very own dedicated 1.2 Gallon red plastic fuel jug, where the Stabil is always added/mixed. For that power outage, it was hooked up to the transfer box and running the house in 5 minutes! It powered the kitchen bottom freezer Amana refrigerator, a 20" boxfan on medium speed aimed at the woodstove (our heat), the 52" high ceiling fan on medium speed, the 46 inch LCD TV with SatDish DVR, plus 4 CFL bulbs and I later realized, a neighbor upsetting timer controlled 9 Watt string of white LED Christmas lites. Set on Econ Idle, it dropped down to 3,900 RPM on the LCD TinyTach with this load, down from the 4,700 full speed RPM. I was ecstatic that the little 50cc engine could carry that load without sounds of straining! Credit the dual offset stator coil alternator, that Honda does NOT have, and the efficient inverter technology for this capability! I was watching TV with lights and heat while my neighbors were sitting in the candlelit darkness with the just above freezing temps outside. Two vehicles on my dead end street roared past my house at great speed, probably annoyed by my Christmas lites and heading to a restaurant! Honestly, if it wasn't for the timer, that front porch Christmas lite string would not be on under generator power, while everyone else is powerless.

 After the break-in and 6 hours usage, powering the circular saw at full RPM only shows one red overload light pulse while needing only 3,900 RPM with Econ Idle ON to keep the 7.25" blade at full no-load speed. Using my little blue Genny "out back", instead of the ill advised 50+25 foot 12 gauge extension cords, is now a good plan to power the saw when it's needed this spring to build a shed. I am one happy camper.

I have also edit added 5 more pics to the above post's group to better round things out. Those new links above are: The Basics2, Intake connector, Inverter1, Inverter2 and Carb-3.

The correct valve clearance is .1mm for both valves.
Talent, On Loan, From God  --Rush Limbaugh--
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EF1000iS, What's good, what's inside & valve adjustment

This post was updated on .
This post is in response to many questions about the EF1000iS valve adjustment. Normally it is a very easy procedure, but on a compact, fully enclosed inverter generator the necessity to cool the engine, alternator, inverter and the entire exhaust system required specially made, nearly air tight enclosures. Removing the ones necessary to access the valve cover and then put it together again is quite a job. I added it to this thread because this one has a great deal of info in the pic links on the Dec 2, 2009 post above. That needs to be brought to readers not likely to have seen all the extensive pictorial and hands-on documentation of this remarkable generator.

Since my EF1000iS is used very infrequently for .5 to 4 hours at a time, it has been nearly 6 years since I had it apart for major service. The Tach/Hourmeter I added on several hours after the genny was first run now shows 21 hours. To make a more credible post I took it apart again for more pics and to outline the care required to disassemble this little jewel for a valve adjustment.

These links below take you to pics with embedded descriptive text. It is easier/quicker to use the right navigation arrowhead on the current PhotoBucket pic to go to the next pic, or backward.

1-- Before you start, choose a smooth open area where any dropped screw/bolt/tab will easily be found, with room for parts removed. Then peel the thin circular base of the fuel tank rubber shroud (under the cap) away from the blue panel and closely observe how it's locater lug and groove is positioned between the 2 meshing blue main panels. This exact 3 part positioning WILL cause an installation problem if you ignore exactly how it should be tightly positioned when it goes back together. Besides that it will look horrible if you force it out of position.

2-- Be aware of where the screws you remove come from. Have "safe storage areas" (small containers?) so the screws do not get mixed up. There are 4 types and the possibility of mixing them up is limitless. Two types have machine threads and the two other types are sheet metal screws, with coarse, self tapping threads that come to a point. The black shoulder screws on the bottom blue panel perimeter, 2" from the cement floor all have a threadless shoulder near the screw head so when they are tightened the screw head does not crush/crack the plastic panel. The greenish-gray ones with a captive washer go everywhere else where there are Steel/Aluminum inserts to prevent such plastic crushing. The coarse thread sheet metal screws are used in retaining the lower part of the cylinder head cooling shroud and a single shorter screw for the small rectangular black recoil start stop panel. Pay attention when you remove each screw. Better yet, reinstall the screw into it's threaded hole after the part it was holding is removed.  Of course, that trusts the last person that may have worked on it, if it was not the factory. It does take a little longer to do, but it is an excellent way to prevent mistakes. Also, to prevent a novice mistake, the 3 top handle screws that hold the front and back blue panels together are installed from the oil fill side panel.

3-- Remove the screws of the black plastic engine exhaust panel and store them away. Remove all the lower perimeter black screws and keep them together. Remove the other greenish-gray screws which are the ones remaining ONLY on blue panel surfaces.

4--Remove the back blue panel half first by starting the separation at the handle halves as you "detach" the hold the fuel tank rubber collar has on both parts.

5--Then work the choke knob back-n-forth as you watch its resulting operation on the carb, taking note of how the cable wire "pushes" the choke to the fully OFF position that emits a "tap" sound hitting home on the carb. Now loosen without removing both the choke outer cable mounting screw and cable wire pinch bolt so the entire cable can be pulled out.

6--With the fuel valve shut OFF, loosen and remove the ribbed collar of the fuel shut off cable and pull it out. You may need pliers to loosen it. Now you can partially remove the remaining blue half panel as you pull the recoil starter for slack. As you pull the panel away from the engine, move it just far enough to push out the recoil starter black plastic panel, after you first remove it's single mounting screw below the pull handle. Then turn it sideways and pass it and the recoil handle completely thru the opening you removed it from, allowing the front blue panel to be carefully repositioned out-of-the-way. Pretty tricky, wasn't it?

 After removing the valve cover bolts, tap the Aluminum casting sideways to break the "stuck on by pressure" bond of the  gasket. You'll need a box wrench NOT AN OPEN END WRENCH(!!), an Allen wrench and a Metric .1mm ( = .003937 inch) feeler gauge -or- a .004 inch feeler, which is slightly thicker if you can not obtain the Metric feeler. Find TDC as instructed in the "TakeApart-H" pic above. If you are at TDC but the valves are moving when the flywheel is turned slightly, you are 1 turn off from TDC compression stroke. Measure the gap between the rocker arm and the flat surface tip of the valve stem. Be aware that the valve springs are very weak (by design) and you can push the spring keeper down to open either valve. I say this because "struggling forces" with the box wrench could/WILL open either valve and possibly pop the pushrod out of it's socket in the rockerarm! No foul, just compress the spring with the rocker and put it back in place. To remove any surplus freeplay in the valve train, a light thumb push down on the other (pushrod) end of the rockerarm will remove that play, giving a more accurate feeler gauge measurement.

If the clearance is too tight: Use the box wrench on the locknut and an Allen wrench inside the threaded adjuster. While holding the Allen wrench solidly, loosen (counterclockwise) the box wrench just enough while you continuously try to loosen the Allen wrench. Just when you can forcefully turn the Allen wrench looser, stop loosening the hex locknut. Then turn the Allen wrench only a small amount looser (counterclockwise), like 5 clock minutes, then try to insert the feeler gauge. Keep trying with loosening/tightening the Allen Wrench until the feeler gauge slides in-and-out with friction light enough so a 2 inch span of the gauge does not bend on the push in direction.

If the clearance is too loose: Use the same loosen/hold/turn technique, but going in the clockwise direction with  the Allen wrench.

When you finally get he correct adjustment, forcefully maintain the Allen wrench's position from moving as you tighten the locknut with the box wrench. This can be frustrating until you learn either precise judgement or find how much "compensation" is required to get the correct final setting.

 On re-installing the valve cover, you could use a very thin film of gasket sealer on the separated surfaces. If your gasket got torn to pieces in its removal, you can eliminate it completely and use just a thin uniform film of gasket sealer. The Permatex brand of RTV "gasket maker" available in auto parts chains or WalMart is best. Tighten each bolt incrementally in a criss-cross pattern until they are tight, but not TOO tight. They are small screws that will snap or strip the threads, both of which are not good. Go slow with the panel re-assembly by reversing the disassembly sequence you yourself performed.

You are done!  As always in starting the genny after the carb bowl has been drained, it will take several (4+) full choke recoil starter pulls until the fuel pump fills the empty carb floatbowl, so be ready to gradually push in the choke.

Another topic often referred to is "DeCarbonizing" the engine. Normally that means removing the cylinder head and using a screwdriver and small putty knife to scrape away the 200+ hours of hard caked on carbon deposits. NOT SO with our EF1000iS Genny motor where the cylinder head, cylinder barrel and crankcase half are all the same Aluminum casting. For most people that are not mechanically inclined, that means an EXPERIENCED capable mechanic has to perform an expensive complete engine tear down to access those hardened deposits. The best, ridiculously cheap (by comparison) real world alternative is to use a liquid cleaner designed to remove gum, varnish and carbon deposits slowly, as the engine runs. A product that is most famous, highly successful and readily available is called Seafoam. It is in a white screw top can always stocked in Wal*Mart for about $7 US. It is especially needed if your Ef1000iS is mostly used for light loads on eco idle -and- sees a lot of on/off restarts, as most remote campers would do to conserve the fuel they brought along. Use the carefully measured recommended SeaFoam dosage for a tankful about every 50 hours, with Eco-idle set to OFF, to keep the gremlins away.
EF1000iS Crankcase

Talent, On Loan, From God  --Rush Limbaugh--