Hello everybody. My 87 Holiday Rambler project is moving along slowly. We have plans to use it next weekend at Assateague National Park at the beach. We live just 20 miles away so it's not a long haul. Anyway She is running good and the brakes work now and the sending unit on the gas tank is new so it doesn't spray gas everywhere. But when we took it to have the generator to get worked on we found out the control panel is missing . GONE. It's a Kohler. Don't know what else it may need but that one part is pretty expensive. 

My question is this. I have an old class C that is going to the junk yard but it has a good ONAN in it and I know it runs. How hard is it to remove so the Generator guy can swap it out with the Old Kohler ? Has anyone ever done a swap ?  Thank you for any input. 

Tags: Generac, Kohler, Onan, RV, generator", rv Generator swap

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I replaced the 1973 Generac 4 kW in my Hall GTC with a much newer Onan 2.8 Microlite. The biggest issues I had to tackle were the diisassembly of the exhaust system and getting the bloody thing out the hatch with very minimal clearance. I rented a hand crank powered Genie lift, whos forks were both long and thin enough to shoehorn in under the Generac and worked it out the opening with minimal swearing. I only had minor mods to make to install the Onan and it went off without a hitch. The ONLY reason I made the swap was the miserable parts availability for the Generac, which was an incredibly smooth, quiet and powerful machine that would allow running the coach AC with barely a change in RPM. The Onan simply stops in it's tracks and makes about 2X the noise when running other loads, but at least I can get parts for it. If I were you, I would buy a new control panel for the Kohler. Kohlers are very good generators and usually woth the effort to preserve. If your old RV is going to the bone yard, play it safe and pull the genny before it goes and keep it as backup.

The guy at the generator shop was concerned about spending the money just to get the control panel and still possibly having other unknown issues. He said he would not know what else it needs until the panel is in. The part is almost $600.00 so it would be $900.00 installed . I don't know what they would charge for swapping the generators? I will ask more questions when they open up Monday. Just spending almost $1000.00 and it could still need other parts. He seemed to think that swapping them was the better choice.  ?????? 

I know Onans  are really good. I was not familiar with Kohlor ? 

Valid concerns for sure. What happened to the control panel?

Onans do have a good reputation and parts are easy to come by. How old is the one you have and how many hours are on it? Kohlers are just as good as Onans but not as well marketed. I'm in the solar/wind/off-grid field and I always use Kohlers as backup generators when possible - especially the older ones.

Thank you Matthew. I think I may want to look into the Kohler before opening a can of worms in makeing the switch. 

I just found what is left of the control board. It was in a cabinet. LOL....... But I got the part number and found a replacement online for $385.00 . 

Woo hoo. I think I can hook it up and then take it back to the generator guy.

Oh happy day! If you were in the neighborhood I'd do it for ya.

Hi Phil, this is Jim Bornemann, i just installed a 4000 Gen-set, onan, in my 86 class c Tioga, I didn't think it was that difficult.The exhaust was the most difficult for me, if you can remove the exhaust at the " Y " pipe, and lower the pipes out of your way, the rest is pretty simple,just disconnect the wires in the junction box, cut the remote start wires in a location where you can easily spice back together again,remove the fuel line and fold over and crimp with a pair of vise grips,remove the bolts holding the gen down and your ready to pull it out.Any question, shoot me a email, ill give you my phone number. Onan's are like the " IRON DUKE " of generator's, hard to beat, not the most quite on the market, but very dependable.

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