Thanks. I am glad the generator started the pump, but I got the generator a while ago and the meter, a couple of days ago. If I was shopping around for one now, I'd probably shop for a larger one, based on the readings.
The meter is an Extech 830: http://www.extech.com/instruments/pr...d=26&prodid=80
The readings were repeatable.
I guess there's a large inertia the motor has to overcome and the motor isn't a fancy soft start model.
I originally tried starting it with a 5kw generator, but I imagine the pump tripped, because the lights dimmed in the basement and then went bright again. I don't want to experiment too much with the pump!