Introduction: Wind/solar Power Mill

The picture shown above is the original design drawn on Sketchup.

Step 1: Building the Turbine

To build the turbine, we used 3 old bicycle rims that were the same size, and removed every other spoke. Next we tightened the remaining spokes. Drill out all the holes on the wheel to attach the PVC fins. Next step is to cut five 10' 4" pvc pipes length wise in half, shove them through the spaces where the spokes were, turn on edge and bolt in place. From there, we cut 3 circular boards from plywood, and screwed them into each other to support the spoke. In addition, we cut and drilled pieces of 2X4s to support the axles on each wheel. As shown in the picture.

Step 2: Building the Turbine Support

To mount the turbine on the mill, we had the welding shop cut up bed frames we acquired to form supports to hold the turbine. With tabs attached to the frames to bolt the turbine to, it worked very well. In the photo, you can see the turbine supported to the bed frames.

Step 3: The Mill Body

We used 4X4 pressure treated lumber to build a "T" type frame. The frame had the bed frames mounted on it to hold the turbine and mount a tail fin on it to spin it into the wind. We also used a piece of plywood to build a location to install the electronics.

Step 4: Install Tail Fin and Photo-voltaic Panels

After the body of the mill is built, we installed a tail fin, and then the photo-voltaic panels. In addition, we added a drive belt around the center wheel and mounted a permanent magnet generator to be driven by the turbine to produce 3 phase AC power. The output from permanent magnet generator was connected to a bridge rectifier changing it to DC, and that plus the DC power from the photo-voltaic panels were connected to a hybrid charge controller to charge the battery on board. The output of the battery was then connected to a power inverter, which outputs AC power to run AC devices. Once done the entire mill would sit on a wheel hub from a car, enabling the unit to turn itself into the wind and produce power.

Trash to Treasure Contest

Participated in the
Trash to Treasure Contest