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Junkyard Nordberg

| November/December 1998

  • Kato 20 KW generator on 3/71 in Detroit
    Kato 20 KW generator on 3/71 in Detroit.
  • Nearly ready to run 1 cyl. Nordberg
    Nearly ready to run 1 cyl. Nordberg.
  • Nordberg as found
    Nordberg as found.

  • Kato 20 KW generator on 3/71 in Detroit
  • Nearly ready to run 1 cyl. Nordberg
  • Nordberg as found

218 South Poplar Arthur, Illinois 61911

My son-in-law told me of a generator sitting among some things of doubtful value in south central Illinois, about 160 miles south of my home. A quick conference with a friend and we were on our way to see it for ourselves.

We found ourselves among some very fine folks and inquired about the generator. We were told the generator, engine, and another engine could be had for a price we could live with. Closer inspection revealed the generator to be a 20 KW 3 phase. Great, just what I was looking for, 1200 rpm, also. A small amount of math told me it would be a perfect match for a 3-71 Detroit I had. Looking at the engine attached to it, I discovered a Nordberg two-cylinder engine, 20 HP at 1200 rpm. The other engine was a Nordberg single-cylinder 15 HP at 1800 rpm. Both were diesel. The two-cylinder was virtually an unused engine, perfect condition, while the single cylinder was nearly worn out. Nordberg two-cylinder units have been around my area for many years and are superb engines, so mine sold readily. I had never seen a single-cylinder one, but an Amish friend of mine said he once had one, and gave me the injector pump to put on mine. I located a book, but it only had 24 three-cylinder units listed. Again, I did not know a three-cylinder had ever been made. It appears the rods, pistons, flywheels (400 lb.) were all the same on 1, 2, and 3 cylinder models. I am working on the one-cylinder engine in my spare time and the generator is now mounted on the 3-71 Detroit. The one-cylinder, 700 lb. Nordberg diesel will be a nice addition to my collection and can be put into service at a moment's notice, should the need arise. Page 347 of American Gasoline Engines shows the larger marine Nordbergs, but the one called Power Chief is not mentioned. I hope to hear from other Nordberg owners.

Ken Roberts
5/19/2009 5:33:56 PM

Hi I just purchased a Nordberg Power Chief 2 Cy Diesel 10 Kw gen set and am looking for some engine parts to make it run,So far I have run ito a brick wall. Can any body help me? Thanks Ken


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