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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-23-2015, 01:43 PM Thread Starter
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Mouse-proofing my generator

I have a generator with a tecumseh air-cooled motor. For some reason the mice love to inhabit the blower housing and chew up the spark plug lead. I repaired the spark plug cable last fall, cleaned out the nest and all the nearby nesting materials and put a mouse hotel and poison in the generator shed. Less that four months later the little b**tards have once again moved in, filled the blower housing with crap and chewed up the cables. It is so effing cold that I can't actually work on the thing -- the gen shed is in knee deep snow and it's -25C out.

Do other folks have to battle wildlife infestations in your power equipment? How do you mouse-proof a generator?
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Last edited by gardner; 02-25-2015 at 01:07 PM.
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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-24-2015, 10:11 AM
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Please posts a picture of your full size generator showing the area nice are getting into. My thoughts are:

1. Fabricate Hardware cloth on the generator to keep them out.
2. If the generator is not too large, build a hardware cloth container to house/run the generator.
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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-25-2015, 02:19 PM Thread Starter
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They are setting up shop inside the blower housing. It is not evident whether they are entering through the openings around the recoil starter, between the fins on the cylinder/head or where exactly. I will go over it in more detail when the snow is gone.

I expect to have to place wire mesh in some locations -- maybe glued in place with epoxy or JBWeld or something like that.

I have seen a recommendation for steel wool. I could place wads of course steel wool between the cylinder/head fins to plug those areas.

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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-25-2015, 02:31 PM
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A number of motorcycle owners run into this same problem, often with rodents chewing up wires. Honda Parts developed and sells a special tape that is impregnated with capsaicin, the actual hot part of natural peppers. . While it would not mouse-proof an entire piece of equipment, it would protect wires from damage.

Google "Honda Rat Tape" for details.

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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-25-2015, 09:09 PM
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If you can not see a permanent safe fit of hardware cloth on the Eng with metal fasteners (pop-rivets, self tapping screws or blots nut) would a hardware cloth sit on/off cylinder be safe if sitting on concrete (a cage). Even a small barrel or Galvanized trash can with drilled breather holes if it will fit. Please show the full size or link to the generator.
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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-26-2015, 11:19 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jow View Post
Please show the full size or link to the generator.
26-Feb-2015-11-13-21.png

It is a perfectly ordinary 5kW generator, like 100s of others. I do not remember the exact model or brand. The motor is a Tecumseh OM110.

I have considered whether sealing the entire generator in a rodent resistant cage is practical, and I rather doubt it. I can physically fabricate a cage out of 5mm galvanized wire mesh alright, but access to the generator for pull-start, oil fill/change and fueling would be a PITA. Levering the generator in and out of the cage would likely tear holes in it and render it useless.

The main thing they seem to chew on is the spark plug wire and I think I will replace/repair the wire and cover the replacement with a wire mesh. I will extract the braid from a length of coaxial cable and use that as looming over the cable. I can secure it with SS wire.

But once the blower housing is filled with nesting, it becomes difficult to start, and really you wouldn't want to run it with all that crap in the housing anyway.

- Gardner
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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-26-2015, 04:22 PM
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It was a good compressor..
There are two sorts of air compressor, gas or electric, however each of these sorts is accessible with a couple of varieties. A few compressors are little and convenient, others are extensive and stationary - the measure of force your compressor has for the most part harmonizes with its size.
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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 02-26-2015, 04:54 PM
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I share your challenge and have had my losses.

1. I feel you can reduce openings that were not in the factory with hardware that will allow breathing.
2. If the braid causes arcs, Heavy Plastic electrical conduit, Etc might allow a tight fit on the plug wire.
3. My ref to a cage was a light weight wire except base, sitting on concrete to be removed/replaced.

Good luck And Please Share Any Good Ideas!
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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 03-05-2015, 02:54 PM
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An AT&T tech was out yesterday and I ask what they used to protect cables from mice. He said a peppermint flavor oil or solution which mice do not like. Something similar was mentioned above.
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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-20-2015, 10:55 AM
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Some folks swear by a product called Fresh Cab. It was developed for farmers to place in the cabs of their intermittently used equipment, to keep the mice out. Places like Fleet Farm and Tractor Supply usually have it. You have to replace it every 3 months though. Instead of steel wool, I like to use copper mesh that I buy from an exterminator (do you have Poulins where you're at?). It comes 6" wide and they sell it off the roll for about a buck a foot. I find it conforms to irregular shapes better so you can stuff it into small areas and it won't rust.
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