Buying Tips: When buying a generator, many factors should be considered. The age-old proverb, “you get what you pay for” applies here. You will get longer life and reliability by using a generator designed for “heavy-duty” use such as those used in the building trades. Some name brands for these are Honda, Yamaha, Kawasaki and Huskavarna. Stay away from machines developed for home use or camping. These include Coleman, Craftsman and Homelite, among others. These units are typically for lighter use and were not designed for the longer hours and current load required for pitching machines.
Ratings: Almost all generators are rated, advertised and named for their ‘maximum’ rating. You need to confirm “continuous duty” rating which is generally 10-15% less than the maximum rating. For instance, the Honda EG 1400X has a max rating of 1400 watts, but actually puts out only 1200 watts continuous duty. The ratings provided at the right are for “continuous duty.”
Operation: One common complaint is a generator not putting out steady voltage. This can make the pitching machine inconsistent or even cause harm to machine electronics. To avoid this make sure you select a generator equipped with Automatic Voltage Regulation (AVR). AVR assures constant voltage output, thus stable equipment operation.
Engine: There are two types of engines, 2-stroke and 4-stroke. The four stroke does not require the mixing of fuel with oil and is generally less prone to operating problems. This means less maintenance and cleaner emissions.
Safety Issues: We recommend a generator with a built-in oil pressure safety device. This device either warns you with a red light or actually shuts down the generator when the oil level is too low.
Weight: The heavy-duty generators typically weigh more than the smaller, home use models. Most manufacturers offer wheel kits however. These wheels make handling much easier and more convenient.
Sound: There are machines available that emit extremely low noise levels. This is highly desirable whether in a coaching/training environment or just for recreation.
Continuous Duty Watt Rating
AVR (Automatic Voltage Regulation)
Oil Level Indicator