Rain Barrels, Chicken Coops, and Solar Panels


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Welcome to Rain Barrels, Chicken Coops, and Solar Panels: projects to get you off the grid, a collection of awesome do-it-yourself projects from Instructables.com!

The Instructables editors have chosen some of our best do-it-yourself off-the-grid projects to educate and inspire you to make great things with easily-available tools.

Instructables is the most popular project-sharing community on the Internet. Since August 2005, Instructables has provided easy publishing tools to enable passionate, creative people to share their most innovative projects, recipes, skills, and ideas. Instructables has over 40,000 projects covering all subjects, including crafts, art, electronics, kids, home improvement, pets, outdoors, reuse, bikes, cars, robotics, food, decorating, woodworking, costuming, games, and life in general.  
Backyard Chicken Coop style
I made this little chicken barn a few years ago to house 3-5 laying hens in my back yard. I'm in town and had to design a "pretty" one to keep people from having a chicken coup (ha ha). This one was i...
Greenhouse From Old Windows style
This is a brief guide on how I took some old windows from houses they where tearing down in my neighborhood and turned them into a small greenhouse in my back yard. I collected the windows over the co...
Solar Power System style
This instructable will show you everything you need to put together a pretty good sized electric solar panel system. Things you will need: Supplies: Solar panels Charge controller Battery charger 2 ...
Collect rain water with a wine barrel style
I think I read all instructables on this site about collecting rain water.Finally I've decided to build my own one with a wine barrel because I didn't want to destroy the look of my future-to-be terra...
Roughneck Rain Barrel style
This afternoon I went to the hardware store, spent $38.22, and came out with everything I needed to make a Roughneck Rain Barrel. My plan is to use the water I harvest from my roof to water my plants ...
Green Solar Powered Water Barrel style
A Green way of using rainwater with the convenience of city water. The attached solar regenerated pump enables you to water plants with pressure, even when the water in the barrels falls low enough th...
Rainwater collection & distribution system style
This is a custom system I designed to collect the rainwater coming off my roof and have both the ability to store the water and distribute it without attaching any temporary piping. My apologies in ad...
Small Chicken Tractor for the City Dweller style
***NOTE: Due to the acquisition of Instructables by AutoDesk, and Instructables' refusal to allow me to make private or unpublish any of my works, this instructable will be permanently deleted from th...
Chicken Barrow style
I call this a Chicken Barrow instead of a Chicken Tractor because it really reminds me more of a wheel barrow than a tractor!Anyway, after researching chicken tractors in-depth online, I finally decid...
DIY 1000 watt wind turbine style
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 controll...
Build a 60 Watt Solar Panel style
Several years ago I bought some remote property in Arizona. I am an astronomer and wanted a place to practice my hobby far away from the terrible light pollution found near cities of any real size. I ...
How to MAKE PV Solar Panels style
This is not "How to make PV Solar Cells". It is possible to home-make Copper Oxide and other kinds of materials but that is a whole nother story which I may do in the future. I may be a little bit am...
Solar Lawn Mower! style
Let's go green! I've had battery powered lawn mowers before and the biggest problem I've had with them is keeping them charged. You have to either plug them in or take the battery out and that sucks. ...
Clipping Chicken Wings style
Chickens can't fly as well as other birds, but they can flap their wings enough to carry them over fences and out of the coop. If you've got backyard free range chickens, clipping their wings is a mu...
Solar powered fountain/herb garden style
Here is a simple garden fountain utilizing a $20 solar panel/pump combo, some sewer pipe, bamboo, and a strawberry pot. The fountain will only run in direct sunlight, but the herbs will thrive in the...
Chispito Wind Generator style
The Chispito Wind Generator was designed to be simple and efficient with fast and easy construction. There are no limits to what you can do with wind power. There is nothing more rewarding and empow...
How to build a thermoelectric lamp style
The thermoelectric lamp generates electricity off the temperature difference between the hot candle and the cool heat sink. This we can use to power small devices, like a radio or very bright LEDs. Yo...
An Algae Bioreactor from Recycled Water Bottles style
In this instructable, we describe how to build a photo-bioreactor that uses algae to convert carbon dioxide and sunlight into energy. The energy that is produced is in the form of algae biomass. The...
How I built an electricity producing wind turbine style
Several years ago I bought some remote property in Arizona. I am an astronomer and wanted a place to practice my hobby far away from the terrible light pollution found near cities of any real size. I ...
Solar PV tracker style
For a class project (PV Design, Appalachian State, Dr. Dennis Scanlin) I decided to try making a low cost PV (photovoltaic) tracker. Being able to follow the sun's path through the sky can raise your ...
Solar Powered Cell Phone Charger style
Power you cell phone via the sun.