Introduction: DIY 1000 Watt Wind Turbine

We built a 1000 watt wind turbine to help charge the battery bank that powers our offgrid home. It's a permanent magnet alternator, generating 3 phase ac, rectified to dc, and fed to a charge controller. The magnets spin with the wind, the coils are fixed, so no brushes or slip rings necessary.

Update: DIY Amp Hour meter for monitoring charge!

All about homebrew wind and offgrid power systems, the complete reference!

Step 1: Build the Magnet Disks

We had 12" steel disks hydro cut. We cut a template for mounting the magnets. Then we mounted 12 grade n50 magnets around the outside edge. We then built a form, and poured the resin with hardner.

Step 2: Build the Coil Disk

We wound the nine individual coils, soldered them in a 3 phase wye configuration, and encased them in resin. We used 35 turns of 2 parallel strands of 14 gauge enameled (magnet) wire for 12 volts. Use 70 turns of single strand for 24 volts. # 3 phase diagram shown here shows 3 stator coils. each of those coils is actually 3 coils in series. coils 1,4, and 7 are series together, 2,5, and 8 are series together, and 3,6, and 9 are series together.

more details, see the following page 15 for the series star, 1-y diagram.

http://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/axialflux/files

AXIAL_FLUX_HowItWorks.pdf

Step 3: Build the Bearing Assembly

Two Harley Davidson wheel bearings are inserted into the pipe, with a smaller pipe locked between them to keep them in place.

Step 4: Construct the Blades

The blades are 2" x 6" pine, cut at 10 degrees on a table saw, and sanded into a rough airfoil. Not perfect, but close enough.

More can be found at

http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/axialflux/

http://www.green-trust.org

http://youtube.com/watch?v=o9EEHFKEckM

Step 5: Further Reading

Comments

author
AlexK212 made it! (author)2017-07-24

Hello greetings

How do you control the battery charge

What device do you use to control the load

I would like to know the characteristics of the device for the charge control of 1000 watts

thanks for your attention

author
sspence made it! (author)sspence2017-07-25

We use a diversion control. Basically, when the batteries hit a certain voltage, a load is attached, like water heating elements. The reason this is done is that if you were to disconnect the wind turbine, like you do with solar, it would self destruct.

author
ajayt7 made it! (author)2017-07-05

Great project. Thank you for posting. If I may ask, can this same generator you built be used for A VAWT?

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sspence made it! (author)sspence2017-07-06

It could, but VAWT's are so disappointing.

author
creektilghmank45 made it! (author)2017-07-03

Go to inplix page if you'd like to know how to build it. Great solutions for everyone I think

author
chronistergama made it! (author)chronistergama2017-07-03

Thanks for advice

author
Tonyobj made it! (author)2017-06-26

Great job @SSpencer. I'm new on this platform but my project is very much in line with this. I need to know how to build different capacities from 1KW to 1MW (if possible) wind turbines for home/estate/industrial use. Simple solutions for everyday use.

author
mikecustalow made it! (author)2017-06-17

Hey there! This is an awesome guide and I was wondering if I could use it as a reference on a site that I'm building? I would give proper attribution and provide links of course.

author
steele899 made it! (author)2017-06-16

That's great but how do you hook up this electrical generator to AC circuit for powering domestic appliances?

author
sspence made it! (author)sspence2017-06-16

Thank you for asking. This unit is designed for off grid applications, and uses a battery bank and inverter to make 120/240vac.

author
steele899 made it! (author)steele8992017-06-16

I see. That's impressive work you're doing. Keep it up.

author
Poutsokavlis made it! (author)2017-06-09

On magnet disks shown some kind of overheat under each magnet, can you tell me what is that?

author
sspence made it! (author)sspence2017-06-09

overheat? the magnets are held in place by superglue and epoxy.

author
MikeD50 made it! (author)2016-10-13

Good job on the generator!

Could you elaborate a bit on the mechanics, e.g. how turbine rotates around vertical axis, are you taking any measures against cable twist, are you offsetting your turbine in strong wind in any way (mechanically or other)?

Thanks MIke

author
sspence made it! (author)sspence2016-10-13

I'm using harley wheel bearing on the vertical part. I manually untwist on occasion, but it hasn't been a big issue. there is an offset tail to point the turbine into the wind,and turn it out of the wind in winds above 30 mph. All that was beyond the scope of this instructable, but is documented in Dan Fink and Dan Bartmann's book.

author
John SeverinF made it! (author)John SeverinF2017-04-23

Slipring

slipring.jpg
author
MikeD50 made it! (author)MikeD502016-10-13

Thank you for the explanations and pointers ... good harvest ;-)

author
frisbrob made it! (author)2017-04-14

Have a question? How do you run several wind generators at the same time to feed one battery bank without the charge controllers canceling each other out or can you run several generators in series some how and go through the one controller? I do not see how anybody goes off grid and runs their whole home using just one wind generator, even this 1000 w PMA will not put 1000 watts out unless the wind is blowing hard and constant all the time running it at full speed. It probably will only put out around 150- 350 watts bouncing up and down as the wind speed changes all day long. Can't keep a battery bank charged up and run your home on that little bit of power. Just wondering.

author
AlexK212 made it! (author)2017-04-09

query

Each coil produces 4 volts

3 per phase connected in series give the 12 volts

it is right

author
anorris5 made it! (author)2017-01-07

Hi nice project and impressed you made it all yourself. Was wondering would it be any easier and/or more cost effective to use a bike wheel motor? I can get a 1000w version for £150 in the UK. You say this project costs $1000 - $1500. How much of the time / cost is spent on the motor?

author
JohnS1343 made it! (author)JohnS13432017-01-18

I was wondering the exact same thing too. Usually DIY (and especially non machined) things like this are extremely inefficient compared to a pre-made ones. I'd be very surprised if he got anywhere near 1000w. Does he list any electrical figures anywhere?

AFAIK you are better off getting a slower but more bulky generator rather than a small one that spins too easily and fast. So a bike one would not be the best.

author
anorris5 made it! (author)anorris52017-03-02

I have seen a commercial wind turbine that uses bike motors and claims to be very efficient. Cost about £1000 and made 1000w watt max.

I have read that such motors are ideal for the job. No time to find links. Google it my friend.

Not sure about his home made one being inefficient. It looks good to me. It's only magnets and coils. Select quality ones. The bearings will only add a very small amount of extra drag, even low quality ones. My main issue with making your own is the effort and it's not much cheaper. Fun to make your own though if you like doing that. We are always going to depend on industry others to make the wires and magnets!

author
DanM6 made it! (author)DanM62017-03-01

you be-d wrong!... this can put rated watts out easily & can be MORE affordable & can last for years!. Do the research! Why are you wasting time on Inscrutable just go buy one!

author
anorris5 made it! (author)anorris52017-01-19

Hi John. Google it. Apparently they are perfect for the job. There's even some commercial home wind turbines using them that give 1000w in good wind.

Maybe sspence is not interested for other reasons, IDK, maybe it's more green if you make it entirely yourself. Nice work though designing and building it all yourself, must be pretty satisfying.

author
JohnS1343 made it! (author)JohnS13432017-01-19

Interesting. Any chance you could link the £150 / 1000w one you meantion? Thanks.

author
sspence made it! (author)sspence2017-01-07

About half was spent on the alternator, the other half on the tower. I'm not interested in bike wheel motors.

author
anorris5 made it! (author)anorris52017-01-07

Thanks for the info. Half/half makes sense. I guess you must find it more interesting to make it all yourself? I have heard the bike wheel motors are perfect for the job. I will do some more research. Have a nice day.

author
8baller made it! (author)2017-02-28

Yes for sure not enough info to bad looks like a fun build

author
MuraliK37 made it! (author)2017-02-11

Hi SS
Which grade magnet is better N-32;50;52

author
sspence made it! (author)sspence2017-02-24

52 is stronger.

author
Fred_tone made it! (author)2017-02-19

"Is our Children Learning?"(infamous quote from G.Bush) I realize that many of the readers here may not have access to friends or library but those that DO have access; go to the library, take a friend or family member/neighbour that has attended a high school or college physics class or has professional experience. At the library, ask the librarian for books on basic electricity and magnetism. The principles outlined there may help you, with help from your partner, understand what is going on with the DIY generator and help you with other projects not to mention the realization that the public library is good for stuff besides free internet ...and you could even bring your new found understanding back here !

author
MuraliK37 made it! (author)2016-12-21

Height of coil can increase magnet height.

author
sspence made it! (author)sspence2016-12-22

coil height (depth) has nothing to do with magnet height. only the gap between the magnet and the coil is important. keep is as small as possible without interference. a 1" wide x 2" long x 1/2" deep magnet needs a coil that has a 1" x 2" whole in the center so that it only swipes one side of the coil at a time. The thicker (depth) the coil, the less flux on the further side of the coil. so pack them tight and thin as possible.

author
MuraliK37 made it! (author)2016-12-20

Inside diameter of coil should be greater or less than magnet,and height of coil can increase mag height.

author
sspence made it! (author)sspence2016-12-21

The magnet should just fit the open center of the coil.

author
MuraliK37 made it! (author)2016-12-20

ok

if i want to produce 2kv with 9coils and 18 magnets which guage is better and number of turns required.


thank q

author
sspence made it! (author)sspence2016-12-20

72 turns of dual 12awg for 24v, 83a (2000w) depending on wind and blades. see http://www.green-trust.org/windpowercalc/

author
sspence made it! (author)2016-12-20

No idea.

author
MuraliK37 made it! (author)2016-12-18

thank u ,

if i arrange 12coil @16 magnets for 2kv@ 24v ,please suggest about guage number , and turns for coil.

author
sspence made it! (author)sspence2016-12-19

try 72 turns of dual 12awg wire. You need 18 magnets (9 for each plate), and 9 coils.

author
Marine1968_69 made it! (author)2016-11-03

Hello,Thank you for posting this,but I would like to see more detail,for instance what is the diameter of the 12 volt coils and more detail about the mount and how much Epoxy did you use and does it matter what type,can you add these things to your post.
Thank you
Bob

author
sspence made it! (author)sspence2016-12-16

IIRC, it was about a quart of epoxy.

author
Tsiquaye made it! (author)2016-10-14

I have 18 pieces of N50 magnets with the sizes 48mm×19mm×9.8mm which I want to use in making my homemade wind turbine. But I don't know the amount of power I will get when it is done.

But I'm sure I will gain experience as time goes on!

author
sspence made it! (author)sspence2016-12-16

the number of turns per coil decides the output voltage. The gauge of the wire determines how much current you can pull, providing your blasdes can catch enough wind to turn at load.

author
MuraliK37 made it! (author)2016-12-16

if i want produce 2kv with 14 guage how many turns required for each coil ,

and 16guage how many turns required.(total 9 coils).

author
MuraliK37 made it! (author)2016-12-14

HI ss

iam doing 2kv turbine ,shell i use 50mm*25mm*10mm neodymium magnets ,is enough for 2kv watts producing ,,and which grade is best for turbine

(i mean N32,N42,N50,N52 ......like ).

if any changes should do or not.

thanku

author
sspence made it! (author)sspence2016-12-14

Can your coils handle that much current? The higher the grade magnet, the more magnetic flux.

author
OriannaK made it! (author)2016-12-12

Me too

author
Tsiquaye made it! (author)2016-10-12

I know that every coil has two output wire. So how did you joined three coils with six output wires together to get just one output wire, please?

author
sspence made it! (author)sspence2016-10-12

series, so there are two wires. one comes out of the machine, the other connects to the common of each of the other two series sets.

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Bio: Professionally, I'm an IT Engineer (Executive Level) and Electronics Tech. I'm a Amateur Radio Operator (KK4HFJ). I lived off grid, with Solar (PV ... More »
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