How to Build Cheap VHS Tape WINDBELT Generator




Micro windbelt generator is the cheapest and easiest DIY project for generation of wind energy. Even with its limited output capacity, small wind-belt can be used in situations where other wind generators would normally give no useful power output.
Especially while camping or sailing, windbelt generator can recharge your batteries, cell phone, ipod, radio, small LED solar flashlight and much more. Micro windbelt is made using the parts worth less than 5$, which makes this windmill extremely cost effective!
Price can be even lower in case you have an old VHS video tape, small magnet and transformer coil nearby...

Step 1: Windbelt Construction Details

First of all, I have gathered all necessary parts for micro wind generator. An old VHS videotape which will be used as a membrane, two small neodymium magnets taken from refrigerator -magnet souvenirs or from PC HDD, and finally coils - (see Picture below, it is from washing machine controller motor). You need to fix the magnet(s) onto a (VHS) tape using glue. When a magnet moves in and out of a coil of wire(or near it), electrical current flows through the wire, and therefore windbelt generates electricity. Shape of my magnet is not ideal, thus I will try to get smaller and round-shape magnet which could get in and out of coil. The Key Advantages of Wind-belt over existing micro-wind turbine technology is the fact that it is good at taking power from turbulent wind flows, i.e. in a built up domestic setting, and it is also very quiet in operation.

Unlike PV solar panels, wind turbine generators do not scale down so well. While large wind turbines can generate huge quantities of electricity very efficiently and relatively cheaply, as the size of the wind turbine is reduced, efficiency reduces and cost per generated watt jumps quite enormously.

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    9 Discussions


    7 years ago on Introduction

    I don't see how the tape moves (enough) with that magnet sat on it. Also, the diagram shows 2 coils and the tape not resting on either.
    Are these pictures of something finished, like Kiteman asks: what does that produce as output?


    3 replies

    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    This is more like pilot project. I will try to get round shape neodymium magnets. In strong wind I have measured 1.7 V, after diodes ans electrolyte capacitor.


    Reply 3 years ago

    Hi, after some time and lot of experiments I have figured out how to upgrade the windbelt. By using small and efficient voltage step-up converter, the output is now stable at 5 Volts...

    Having video of it in operation would go a long way to bridging the conceptual gap. I have some ideas on where it might be useful assuming some stronger materials could be used for the band itself.


    6 years ago on Introduction

    I don't have a spare washing machine motor. Where might be another good source for a salvaged coil of copper wire that will work? How about a dryer motor?

    1 reply

    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    You could use some speaker coils from older speakers salvaged from a local goodwill or st. vinnies. Some of your larger older speakers have pretty large coils on them. As a bonus, they come with the magnets which are already perfectly sized. However they are just alnicos, and don't have nearly as strong of a field as a neodymium. I might actually give this a shot. You could create a bank of these on a larger board wired in series or parallel depending on the desired output. They key would be salvaging enough similar coils to work with.

    - Regards


    7 years ago on Introduction

    I realize that this is a bit of an older post, but having just found it, I thought I would add a few thoughts. Based on the apparent construction and operation of this windbelt generator, if you could get your smaller round magnets and additional coils, you could increase your output easily. You stated 1.7V os your measured output. If this is using the project as pictured in your instructable, if you could add an additional 8 coils and magnets and wire them in a series/parallel combination so that you had a series of 3 parallel circuits, I believe you could get close to a 5V output with a usable enough current to create a fairly decent supply for most of today's standard 3V to 5V devices. Just a thoght, but worth looking into. Might try it myself if I can come up with the materials.