290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

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impulsetaco
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290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#1

Post by impulsetaco »

Are 290 generators (technically for CLX) unobtanium now? I checked with Mike and he confirmed they are hard to get, and I have googled the heck out of the internet to no avail.

I'm open to any and all ideas and sources. Maybe take a 295 generator and cut the nut off?

Thanks!!
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#2

Post by 25_502s »

Seems like the saying is “ you can use a 290 generator on a 295 but you have to use the 295’s nut”. Seem like the reverse would be true. Maybe the experts will chime in.
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#3

Post by Ridge Runner »

I think I see them on eBay.
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#4

Post by 25_502s »

Ridge_Runner wrote: Tue Mar 02, 2021 11:30 pm I think I see them on eBay.
X2
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#5

Post by Phredd »

trying searching by the part number on ePay. 290-5891
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#6

Post by Phredd »

Also - what is wrong with the generator? Other than a broken pricker these can usually be cleaned and used again.
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Re: Phredd

#7

Post by impulsetaco »

Phredd wrote: Tue Mar 02, 2021 11:59 pm Also - what is wrong with the generator? Other than a broken pricker these can usually be cleaned and used again.
I have several lanterns that are starting to get those very bright brass vertical hair-lines on the generator from work hardening due to heat. In my experience once you start seeing those lines, it's only a matter of time before the embrittlement leads to a fracture/rupture.
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#8

Post by impulsetaco »

Phredd wrote: Tue Mar 02, 2021 11:56 pm trying searching by the part number on ePay. 290-5891
I'm hesitant of that - there is one seller in particular with a bunch sold, but his part number crosses over to a Northstar 2000 model as well - #300005096 which is why I am hesitant.
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#9

Post by Ridge Runner »

This one’s NIB, BIN. It says it is for a 290 on the package. There’s a few of them depending on your price range.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/COLEMAN-GENER ... 890.l49292

Edit: Search “Coleman 290 generator”
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#10

Post by Mister_Wilson »

I have a few NOS 290 generators, 295 also. PM if interested.
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#11

Post by Willy »

If you wish to convert your 290 lantern into a kero burner, the 639 kero generator fits perfectly. Add a preheat cup and you are good to go.
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#12

Post by impulsetaco »

Willy wrote: Wed Mar 03, 2021 3:51 am If you wish to convert your 290 lantern into a kero burner, the 639 kero generator fits perfectly. Add a preheat cup and you are good to go.
Willy
I want to keep it (them) on RUG. I'm trying to standardize on that as a fuel source for lights, stove, generator, cars - as much as I can. You saw the freeze we had down here in Houston and it was nice only having one fuel to worry about for everything. I didn't have to drain the cars for fuel, but it was nice knowing those gallons were there in case things wore on longer than they did.
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#13

Post by Willy »

impulsetaco wrote: Wed Mar 03, 2021 7:06 pm
I want to keep it (them) on RUG. I'm trying to standardize on that as a fuel source for lights, stove, generator, cars - as much as I can. You saw the freeze we had down here in Houston and it was nice only having one fuel to worry about for everything. I didn't have to drain the cars for fuel, but it was nice knowing those gallons were there in case things wore on longer than they did.
[/quote]
Last edited by Willy on Thu Mar 04, 2021 1:30 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#14

Post by Willy »

Willy wrote: Thu Mar 04, 2021 12:29 am
impulsetaco wrote: Wed Mar 03, 2021 7:06 pm
I want to keep it (them) on RUG. I'm trying to standardize on that as a fuel source for lights, stove, generator, cars - as much as I can. You saw the freeze we had down here in Houston and it was nice only having one fuel to worry about for everything. I didn't have to drain the cars for fuel, but it was nice knowing those gallons were there in case things wore on longer than they did.
I don't keep all my eggs in one basket. That's exactly why I have the ability to burn CF, RUG, propane, kerosene, alcohol, in various stoves, lanterns and heaters. I even have a few wood burner stoves, an alcohol marine stove, and wax candle lanterns. And I can get kerosene for about 3 dollars per gallon at the pump (I'm a bit of a tightwad). There is also the question of fuel availability and storage.
Perhaps this is a discussion that deserves it's own thread.
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Last edited by Willy on Thu Mar 04, 2021 1:31 am, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#15

Post by 25_502s »

I think the 290 was designed to run exclusively on camp fuel. Like most GPAs, RUG can be used with faster clogging of the generator and the manual says damage to the lantern. The 295 would be better if you intend to run exclusively RUG.
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#16

Post by Chucker »

What Willy says - just use a 639 gen. Output is a bit less but you likely won't be able to tell.

The 290 Powerhouse will be the brightest two mantle kero lantern you own! It will also run CF and RUG as you might guess.

Yes, the North Star gen should work as well but with the 290 nut.
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#17

Post by mcdugal2 »

The northstar gen should work just fine. I know it works just fine in the other direction!
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#18

Post by 1freshfind »

Chucker wrote: Thu Mar 04, 2021 1:00 am What Willy says - just use a 639 gen. Output is a bit less but you likely won't be able to tell.

The 290 Powerhouse will be the brightest two mantle kero lantern you own! It will also run CF and RUG as you might guess.

Yes, the North Star gen should work as well but with the 290 nut.
I have a 290 that I really like and I was looking for another on ebay and found a 290A without a frame like my 290 and it has the bulged globe like the 639. I bought it and it is on the way. The generators are hard to find. I would love to stick a 639 generator in it just to have the versatility. Is this confirmed to run Kero and CF like the 639? Also what mantles should be used? Thanks.
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#19

Post by Coast_to_Coast »

Will a 639 generator also work on a 295 or just a 290?
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#20

Post by sleebus »

Willy wrote: Wed Mar 03, 2021 3:51 am If you wish to convert your 290 lantern into a kero burner, the 639 kero generator fits perfectly. Add a preheat cup and you are good to go.
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Oh man, this sounds like an excellent, easy project! Thanks for the tip.
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#21

Post by 1freshfind »

sleebus wrote: Thu Oct 28, 2021 8:32 pm
Willy wrote: Wed Mar 03, 2021 3:51 am If you wish to convert your 290 lantern into a kero burner, the 639 kero generator fits perfectly. Add a preheat cup and you are good to go.
Willy
Oh man, this sounds like an excellent, easy project! Thanks for the tip.

Image

I am going to do this. I hope it runs well on Kero and CF. Not sure which mantles either. Hopefully somebody smarter than me sees this thread and chimes in.
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#22

Post by Chucker »

Perfect! Looks great.

Any Peerless 2CHG or Coleman 21's are fine mantles for this.
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#23

Post by 1freshfind »

Chucker wrote: Fri Oct 29, 2021 2:26 am Perfect! Looks great.

Any Peerless 2CHG or Coleman 21's are fine mantles for this.
Awesome! Thanks!
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#24

Post by 1freshfind »

The 290 pictured arrived today with a broken globe. I have had really bad luck with globes lately :(
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#25

Post by Chucker »

Ouch! Those large bulge globes really set them off nicely though.
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#26

Post by 1freshfind »

sleebus wrote: Thu Oct 28, 2021 8:32 pm
Willy wrote: Wed Mar 03, 2021 3:51 am If you wish to convert your 290 lantern into a kero burner, the 639 kero generator fits perfectly. Add a preheat cup and you are good to go.
Willy
Oh man, this sounds like an excellent, easy project! Thanks for the tip.
OK. I hooked up the 639 generator to the 290. I moved the preheater cup to use on the 290 as well. I preheated and got a nasty fireball. That was scary! decided to clean it up and try again with more preheating with a little torch. I got it plenty hot and openet the fuel slowly. Seemed good for about 5 seconds then same mess that nearly made me pull the trigger on the fire extinguisher. After the excitement I emptied it and pressurized it and checked for leaks then I put CF in it and it ran just fine. Not sure what I am doing wrong here but I will keep playing with it.
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#27

Post by sleebus »

How long did you preheat? Usually I fill the cup and let it run until almost empty, so that's maybe a couple of minutes of preheat. Kerosene takes a while to get hot enough.
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#28

Post by 1freshfind »

sleebus wrote: Mon Nov 15, 2021 8:03 pm How long did you preheat? Usually I fill the cup and let it run until almost empty, so that's maybe a couple of minutes of preheat. Kerosene takes a while to get hot enough.
Round one - full cup and a guess of 2-3 minutes. Round 2 - full cup plus torch before and after and a guess of 4-5 minutes total and that time it was plenty hot. Generator is brand new and no leaks. It seemed as thogh it just shot it out so fast that it didn't have time to vaporize anything that was not already in the generator. Maybe the hole is just too big and I could control it more by just barely opening it. Problem with that is at a someone (me) will come along and turn it up after it is lit. I will get to it again hopefully this weekend. do you think there might be different generators that can be labeled for the 639? I can pull a used one off of a 639 and put the new one on that test it that way too.

This is written on the back of the generator package.
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#29

Post by 1freshfind »

1freshfind wrote: Mon Nov 15, 2021 10:35 pm
sleebus wrote: Mon Nov 15, 2021 8:03 pm How long did you preheat? Usually I fill the cup and let it run until almost empty, so that's maybe a couple of minutes of preheat. Kerosene takes a while to get hot enough.
Round one - full cup and a guess of 2-3 minutes. Round 2 - full cup plus torch before and after and a guess of 4-5 minutes total and that time it was plenty hot. Generator is brand new and no leaks. It seemed as thogh it just shot it out so fast that it didn't have time to vaporize anything that was not already in the generator. Maybe the hole is just too big and I could control it more by just barely opening it. Problem with that is at a someone (me) will come along and turn it up after it is lit. I will get to it again hopefully this weekend. do you think there might be different generators that can be labeled for the 639? I can pull a used one off of a 639 and put the new one on that test it that way too.

I just watched the "Crack n' Close" video. I will do that too. Thanks!

This is written on the back of the generator package.
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#30

Post by Deanofid »

1freshfind wrote: Mon Nov 15, 2021 4:47 pm OK. I hooked up the 639 generator to the 290. I moved the preheater cup to use on the 290 as well. I preheated and got a nasty fireball. That was scary! decided to clean it up and try again with more preheating with a little torch. I got it plenty hot and openet the fuel slowly. Seemed good for about 5 seconds then same mess that nearly made me pull the trigger on the fire extinguisher. After the excitement I emptied it and pressurized it and checked for leaks then I put CF in it and it ran just fine. Not sure what I am doing wrong here but I will keep playing with it.
You may have answered your own question here that I have marked in bold print. The 290 is not designed to burn kerosene, but CF. The 639 gen has a slightly smaller orifice than the original 290 gen, but should work fine on CF. Keep in mind that the 290 lantern is a dual mantle lantern, while a 639 is a single mantle jobbie.

This is just my guess, but I would say if a 639 gen works well with your 290 using CF, you have found the solution!

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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#31

Post by 1freshfind »

Deanofid wrote: Tue Nov 16, 2021 12:29 am
1freshfind wrote: Mon Nov 15, 2021 4:47 pm OK. I hooked up the 639 generator to the 290. I moved the preheater cup to use on the 290 as well. I preheated and got a nasty fireball. That was scary! decided to clean it up and try again with more preheating with a little torch. I got it plenty hot and openet the fuel slowly. Seemed good for about 5 seconds then same mess that nearly made me pull the trigger on the fire extinguisher. After the excitement I emptied it and pressurized it and checked for leaks then I put CF in it and it ran just fine. Not sure what I am doing wrong here but I will keep playing with it.
You may have answered your own question here that I have marked in bold print. The 290 is not designed to burn kerosene, but CF. The 639 gen has a slightly smaller orifice than the original 290 gen, but should work fine on CF. Keep in mind that the 290 lantern is a dual mantle lantern, while a 639 is a single mantle jobbie.

This is just my guess, but I would say if a 639 gen works well with your 290 using CF, you have found the solution!

Dean
I am inclined to believe this if not for the seemingly certainty of this working based on the responses of users chucker and willy. Maybe their information is not from first hand experience. Maybe they will chime in with some expertise. Also about it being a single or double mantle. I am not really sure why that would matter. should still make enough heat to vaporize and still be enough to run 2 smaller mantles shouldn't it?
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#32

Post by Willy »

Hey guys, I afraid I have no answers as my Powerhouse kero conversion works just fine on kero. Never had an issue with it fireballin'. Maybe try for a real good preheat first? Open the valve for a moment before preheating to fill the generator with kero. Then after preheat is just about over, easing the valve open and see how it goes.
For that matter my 220 convert to kero works just fine too until the carbon builds up in the generator.
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#33

Post by 1freshfind »

Willy wrote: Tue Nov 16, 2021 3:33 am Hey guys, I afraid I have no answers as my Powerhouse kero conversion works just fine on kero. Never had an issue with it fireballin'. Maybe try for a real good preheat first? Open the valve for a moment before preheating to fill the generator with kero. Then after preheat is just about over, easing the valve open and see how it goes.
For that matter my 220 convert to kero works just fine too until the carbon builds up in the generator.
Willy
Ok. Definitely gonna try and make sure there is Kero in the generator while preheating. The second try it was very well pre heated but there may not have been any kero in the gen either time. I didnt think about that making any difference. The generator you use is a straight up 639 without any modification right?
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#34

Post by Coldwaterpaddler »

1freshfind wrote: Thu Nov 04, 2021 7:14 pm The 290 pictured arrived today with a broken globe. I have had really bad luck with globes lately :(
I just read this, and that's really sad. My 290A with the bulge globe has a 2" crack and I glued it and used it every night for a week up in the mountains. I bought several replacements, but all of them are too short and the globe rattles around in the lantern. My 290A has spring supports at the bottom which holds the globe snug to the vent. I bought one from American Mantle, a Chinese Coleman version and and unmarked one from OCP and all were too short. If you find one that actually fits like the original, please post that info. Thanks.
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#35

Post by zoomkat »

"If you find one that actually fits like the original, please post that info."

Well, you might not find an original fit globe, but you probably can make do with a little mod. Below is a frosted globe I got from OCP that I can use on my 285 lantern. The globe is about 1/8 inch shorter than the original globe (the top and bottom of the globe dimeter are about the same). I got a piece of aluminum foil and kept folding it in half until it was almost round at the desired ~1/8" thickness. I cut little pieces that I fitted on the top of the globe rim like below so it would shim/hold the globe down on the bottom spring metal to limit rattling. Not really noticeable when in use.
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#36

Post by Coldwaterpaddler »

Hmmm . . . that looks like a good idea. I was considering some of that flexible stove-pipe-jack fire-proof fabric and cutting a ring out of it, but couldn't think of a way to keep it on top without sliding off. Aluminum foil is cheap, easy and flexible.
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#37

Post by 1freshfind »

Coldwaterpaddler wrote: Tue Nov 16, 2021 3:57 am
1freshfind wrote: Thu Nov 04, 2021 7:14 pm The 290 pictured arrived today with a broken globe. I have had really bad luck with globes lately :(
I just read this, and that's really sad. My 290A with the bulge globe has a 2" crack and I glued it and used it every night for a week up in the mountains. I bought several replacements, but all of them are too short and the globe rattles around in the lantern. My 290A has spring supports at the bottom which holds the globe snug to the vent. I bought one from American Mantle, a Chinese Coleman version and and unmarked one from OCP and all were too short. If you find one that actually fits like the original, please post that info. Thanks.
Image
Image

This is a globe for a 639 and it is the best fit I have seen.
You can see in the second pic that the spring supports are about half way up the lip of the frame giving it a little push down without fear of sliding out . The diameter could be a tiny bit bigger. It wants to shift off center but at least it's not rattling around like crazy. It's not perfect but it is the closest I have found and is not that bad.
Here is a link to it in OCP.

https://www.oldcolemanparts.com/product ... at=&page=1
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#38

Post by Coldwaterpaddler »

I think that's the same one I have. My spring clips might be a little different than yours or just more worn out. I'm a little afraid to bend them back up again.
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#39

Post by 1freshfind »

Coldwaterpaddler wrote: Tue Nov 16, 2021 5:00 am I think that's the same one I have. My spring clips might be a little different than yours or just more worn out. I'm a little afraid to bend them back up again.
Are your springs laying flat or touching on the ends? I bet the original would rattle too if that's the case. I do not know for sure as I have never hade an original one for this lantern but he original globes on my other lanterns with these type of springs would rattle around if they got bent down too far over time. I have bent several of them up multiple times without any issue that I can remember.
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#40

Post by Willy »

1freshfind wrote: Tue Nov 16, 2021 3:50 am
Ok. Definitely gonna try and make sure there is Kero in the generator while preheating. The second try it was very well pre heated but there may not have been any kero in the gen either time. I didnt think about that making any difference. The generator you use is a straight up 639 without any modification right?
Yep, straight 639 Gen with no modifications. Take it apart before you install it, see the difference between kero and no kero gens. No fiber tube and two coils.
My mantles start to glow during preheat, as some of the fuel vaporizes and wanders into the mixing chamber. Lemme know if yours do the same.
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#41

Post by Coldwaterpaddler »

The original does not rattle. The springs are rather bent over such that the ends touch the frame, however, they are still arched. Not flat.
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1freshfind
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#42

Post by 1freshfind »

Image
I have the same frosted globe that zoomkat has and I can say that it does not fit quite as well as the 639 globe fits the 290a but his mod looks like it would work just fine on either. Either way they are just a bit too short. If you tried that with that frosted globe it would slide right over the frame. I have no mods on my 290a just pulled up springs and I am comfortable with it but I like zoomkats mod and it is a whole lot cheaper.
William
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#43

Post by 1freshfind »

Willy wrote: Tue Nov 16, 2021 5:32 am
1freshfind wrote: Tue Nov 16, 2021 3:50 am
Ok. Definitely gonna try and make sure there is Kero in the generator while preheating. The second try it was very well pre heated but there may not have been any kero in the gen either time. I didnt think about that making any difference. The generator you use is a straight up 639 without any modification right?
Yep, straight 639 Gen with no modifications. Take it apart before you install it, see the difference between kero and no kero gens. No fiber tube and two coils.
My mantles start to glow during preheat, as some of the fuel vaporizes and wanders into the mixing chamber. Lemme know if yours do the same.
Willy
ok. My mantles only glowed during preheat due to direct contact with flame from alcohol or torch so it is likely safe to say I had no fuel in the gen.
Here is something interesting. I took out the used generator that it came with and it looks identical to the brand new 639 generator. Insides and all. It did not smell at all like kero when I got it but definitely no fiber tube and two coils.
William
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#44

Post by Deanofid »

Some of the old 290 and 295 gens had nothing inside them. Also, the pricker was captive unless you were brave enough to put enough muscle into pulling one out of the lower staked in bushing. They were different than what we are used to with 200A, 220, and 639 gens. They had a small bushing in the bottom of the gen that was pinched in with a punch mark, and that thing did not want to come out!

I got a few of those out of the 290 and 295 gens, (which are slightly different) and there is nothing inside the generator at all, except the pricker. That bottom bushing only serves to keep the pricker lined up with the top of the gen, as far as I can tell. At the top of the gen is a small ring-like fixture that keeps the generator centered in the gas tip. All that was to replace the spring and cardboard tube that we see in the 220 and 200A gens. In those gens, the cardboard tube helps reduce pulsing and the "spring" only serves to keep the pricker rod and wire centered so the wire does not bend when it goes into the gas tip orifice.

In the newer gens that have no "guts" save the pricker rod itself, the bottom bushing near the flare on the end of the genny serves to stop the pulsing effect. That little bushing is only about 3/16" long, and has a knurled appearance, which I "guess" is to let fuel in to be vaporized. It also has a groove around its outside diameter, which is how the bushing is held in by the punch mark in the lower part of the genny, near the flared end.

The top end of the genny, just below the gas tip has a small reduced inside diameter in some of the gens, and in others only has a long taper leading to the gas tip. That is how the pricker can go up and down in the genny without bending the pricker wire itself. Unlike other junior engineer type people, the guy who thought up this one earned his pay, IMO.

Hope this all makes sense. I understand how it works, but I may not explain it well.

Dean
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#45

Post by 1freshfind »

Man I have a lot to learn
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#46

Post by Deanofid »

Don't we all, William. Don't we all...
Dean -Midnight Kerosene Ritualist--Deans Machine:  www.deansmachine.com  
ICCC #1220.   275 commiseration #0018.
"In Him was life, and His life was the Light of men."  John 1:4
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#47

Post by Coldwaterpaddler »

I fixed up a friend's 290 and also my 290A a couple years ago. I think his is an 1985 and mine is an 1987. Here is what the inside of those generators looks like for future reference:

290_290A_Gen.JPG
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#48

Post by justjay »

I did a 290 conversion to kero with a 639 gen the other week and it works nicely. I did a soft startup with it though...no pressure in the fount, valve open.. near the end of the preheat start pumping it up until you get it as brite as you want it.
- Jay
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Re: 290 (CLX) Generators unobtanium?

#49

Post by 1freshfind »

This is interesting. I will start up with it again soon.
William
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