Making generators at lower cost has had a significant negative impact on the current fleet of generators, units less than about 30 years old. A number of factors have come into play, including the “reinventing old problems”, designs that push duties to higher and uncharted levels, and pressures to manufacture new machines more quickly and with less costly materials and processes.

Couple these competitive market realities with reduction in number of engineers in OEM organizations and the loss of institutional knowledge as elders have retired, and it is not surprising that some machines are failing much sooner than historically expected. This paper will present examples of some of the more critical missteps for various 3600 (3000) and 1800 (1500) RPM generators and propose practical maintenance approaches for power plant engineers.

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