Introduction: Maker Studio HATCHedu ThinkFun (gravity Generator)
Generate your own electricity at home with this Gravity Powered Generator. This set up generates around 5 volts at a current of around .1 Amps (enough to charge a cell phone). In this tutorial I will show you how to generate a DC electrical current using the Maker Studio Winch kit a continuous rotating servo and some other household material.
Step 1: Gather Supplies
For this build you will need both gears from the MakerStudio kit, some two part epoxy (i like quick set), a power drill, dril bits, string, and a continuous rotating servo. If you do not have a servo sitting around, any of these will work.
Step 2: Construct Generator Shaft
Carefully drill a hole in the end of one of the MakerStudio rods that is about a quarter inch deep and the diamete of the drive shaft of the servo. Mix up some epoxy and apply plenty into the hole drilled into the rod as shown. Insert the drive shaft of the servo into the freshly epoxied rod. Then assemble the hubs and gear as shown in the final picture being sure to use plenty of epoxy. Position the large gear about a half inch from the servo.
Step 3: Assemble Power Shaft
Assemble the main power shaft as shown in the picture above. Make sure to use plenty of epoxy on the gear to prevent slipping.
Step 4: Final Assembaly
Insert the servo shaft and the power shafts as shown in the first picture. Make sure that the black hubs are positioned so that both shafts can spin freely. Assemble the winding spool on the power shaft as shown, be sure to use plenty of epoxy here. Insert a LED light or whatever you want to power to the power leads of the servo. The longer of the two leads on the LED is the positive lead, so make sure that this is plugged into the middle or red wire while the shorter of the two leads is plugged into the black wire. The string supplied in the Maker Studio kit is too small for this application. So find a longer piece of string and attach one end to the winding hub and the other to the hook.
Step 5: Run It
To run the gravity powered generator set it down flat on the end of a table or elevated surface so that the servo is braced by the surface, but the large gear can rotate freely. Clamp or weight down the back of the gravity powered generator to the elevated surface. Attach a weight to the hook at the end of the string. Make sure the weight is just heavy enough to move the servo and not too much more heaver that that.
To reset the generator, simply pull out the servo shaft so that the power shaft can spin freely. Rewind the line, push the servo shaft back into place and readjust the black hubs. The Gravity powered Generator is now ready to make some more power.