Intro: Wind Generator Design #4
It's going on 3 years now since dismantling the semi successful wind generator #3.
Now living in central Texas with a constant wind blowing and seeing all of the famous Texas windmills for pumping water scattered all throughout the country side.
I decided I wanted another generator, so I was going to buy a "ready to use" generator from Amazon, but didn't find any that had any good reviews.
There are several of those high dollar "ready to use" generators in the Austin area that have failed and no longer spin.
So 1st off from Amazon.com, I bought a $20 low RPM DC motor, a 10mm spindle adapter for an 8MM shaft and a set of 8MM pillow block bearings.
Dug out of storage all of the "stuff" that I had kept from my previous wind generators and so now it begins.
This latest attempt will be for a more durable and lasting generator, with higher voltage output.
For the design of the windmill and furling mechanism, you'll need to go to my older instructables. I will not cover that in this Instructable.
Also, I'll be letting the images do more of the explaining by putting captions to most of the images per each step
Step 1: The Blades
Using a 4" PVC pipe 2' long, mark it into 1/4s, then into the actual shape of the blade using masking tape.
The handsaw worked perfect for the task of cutting the PVC pipe.
Step 2: The Motor, Shaft, Pillow Block Bearing and Hub
I know using a skill saw blade isn't the smartest thing to use. But hey, for $4.97 it was the best I could find for a good round metal disk.
Drilling the holes through the skill saw blade was no problem. The hub will spin opposite of the direction of the teeth.
The 10mm spindle adapter for a grinding polishing wheel is for an 8Mm shaft.
I also bought a 12pc Saw Blade Arbor Adapter/Bushing Set for the single adapter to fit inside the saw blade to fit on the 10MM spindle.
I installed the pillow block bearing to the 8MM motor shaft. My idea here is that I intend for the pillow block bearing to absorb the direct pressure from the wind and the up and down forces when furling, instead of the bearings in the motor.
I had to glue a weight/magnet to the back side of the hub to balance out the blade assembly.
The nut to the spindle adapter for a grinding polishing wheel is a reverse thread, so therefor I had to make the blades so as to spin in a counter clock wise direction so as to not loosen the nut. I also put thread lock on the threads during the very final assembly of the blades to the shaft.
This is the motor that was purchased from Amazon dot com
Step 3: Generator Cover and Wiring, Using Coaxial Cable and Connectors
I used the PVC pipe covering from my older design and the used a smaller "knock out" cap to cover the larger opening.
The cable I used is also from the satellite dish tripod that I found at the garbage dumpster.
I hope the images of the F type male and female connectors explain themselves. I used the red Loctite thread lock on the lower male and female F-type connectors and did not fully tighten them together, so that the connection would be loose enough to spin and not twist the cable that is running through the conduit.
Step 4: Tripod and Tower
The satellite/dish TV tripod has a 8' long 3/4" conduit pipe running through it.
I ran the cable attached to the wind generator through and out the bottom of the conduit. The conduit is resting on a notched out scrape piece of a 1/4, so as to not pinch the cable.
There will need to be an inline diode so that the power from the batteries do not power the DC motor being used as the generator.
The cable will be attached to my existing regulators and batteries that my solar panels are attached to.
From the images, you can see the generator puts out plenty of voltage in very low winds.
Step 5: Finishing Up (wiring and Tripod)
1st image is of the inline diode connect to the positive lead, the regulator and 12 volt dry cell battery
2nd image is the regulator connected to the existing regulator and batteries from the solar panels that are connected to my campers 12 volt DC system
3rd and 4th image is of the tripod being secured by 2x6s and 6 solid cement blocks, with the solar panels and camper (home) in the background..
Here is a 21 second video of the wind generator putting out DC volts depending on the speed of the wind.
Furling in 30+ MPH gust as a rainstorm approaches
Step 6: 4 Month Update
4 months of constant high gusts/winds has proven too much for the thin 4" x 24" PVC blades. One by one they broke off.
When the 1st blade broke, I took off the opposite blade and found out that the wind generator spins just as good with 2 blades verses 4 blades.
Then when those 2 original blades failed, I then used 4" SDR 26 green sewer PVC pipe to make new blades that are 18" long verses 24" long.
With the new thicker, yet shorter 2 blades, the generator spins just as good as the original design.
From an EBay seller "Windgeneering", I bought a 440 AMP charge controller that uses a 12 volt relay to cut out the incoming power from the wind generator at 14.5 volts. I have it wire in "cut Mode"
Step 7: 2nd Generator
2nd generator using pretty much same concept but using different parts and mounting.
I used the 1st blades that had broken off a few months ago, by cutting off about 3 inches of the blades on both ends.
Slid the conduit into an existing old satellite dish post that is cemented into the ground.
Step 8: The Texas WindZilla
various ideas and improvements for a sturdy long lasting/durable design.