micro hydro powered fat Ebike

Solar, wind, hydro and other non-fossil sources of electricity.
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craneplaneguy
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micro hydro powered fat Ebike

Post by craneplaneguy » Mar 17, 2016 9:28 am

I got my hydro system, deactivated and drained through the winter, back up and running yesterday. With 147' of fall/head at 90 GPM through the 3" delivery penstock, it'll produce, for the next several months until the flow drops, over 750 watts into the grid 24/7. This is in addition to my 2.5 KW wind turbine and 4 KW PV grid tie systems. The hydro uses a Outback battery based grid tied inverter, the hydro alternator is 24 vdc, the end product into the grid is a hair above 240 vac. I currently (pun intended) have a net KW credit with my utility of over 8,000. Now that winter is over it will built back up to 10,000 or so, and then through the winter months when my production falls below my consumption, I'll use some of it up. I have jokingly/somewhat seriously told people that I am showing one of my three different Ebikes to, that I HAD to find a way to use up my excess power, and this looked like a fun way to do it!

Later that day as I was riding the 1500 watt fat bike up the mountain to the ski area above my place, I realized that the snow I was going up to play on would later be in part running my pelton wheel and producing the power to.......recharge my bikes battery. At some point this summer I'll ride down to the hydro power shack and recharge directly off the inverter, as direct as I can get from falling water going downhill to pushing me uphill on the bike :D
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footloose
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Re: micro hydro powered fat Ebike

Post by footloose » Mar 17, 2016 2:58 pm

craneplaneguy wrote:...as direct as I can get from falling water going downhill to pushing me uphill on the bike :D
Well that is cool as all get out.
I want a personal hydro power system.
Here in CA suburbs I could probably build one that would run during rare torrential rainstorms, with a fall of 16' from the roof and a flow of say 5GPM for maybe 60 minutes a year. Haven't done the math... but total output over the rest of my life would probably be enough for one bike charge up :lol:

Saw a system similar to yours once, on a sheep station near Mt Cook in New Zealand.
It was installed ~1950. Had been running reliably with minimal maintenance (basically clean the intake, grease the bearings) for decades.

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Hwy89
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Re: micro hydro powered fat Ebike

Post by Hwy89 » Mar 17, 2016 10:57 pm

Excellent CPG. Your's is the kind of story I love to hear.
I charged my bikes exclusively from my home solar array up until 2 years ago when we became full time RVers and hit the road. I still carry a single 185 watt panel in the RV to keep all the batteries charged.

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Re: micro hydro powered fat Ebike

Post by liveforphysics » Mar 18, 2016 2:42 am

Nice setup! Nice bike!
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craneplaneguy
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Re: micro hydro powered fat Ebike

Post by craneplaneguy » Mar 18, 2016 7:52 am

I could have saved a lot of verbiage: water goes down, bike goes up!

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Re: micro hydro powered fat Ebike

Post by Hillhater » Mar 21, 2016 7:25 am

I envy anyone with the space and ability to install these self gen systems.
Have you seen " kurts" posts on his similar systems..you have much in common.
https://endless-sphere.com/forums/viewt ... 8&start=25
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craneplaneguy
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Re: micro hydro powered fat Ebike

Post by craneplaneguy » Mar 21, 2016 10:28 am

HH: That's interesting, and it would for sure make sense if he had most of the needed "stuff" laying around already... cool. I had the idea years ago when I was off grid (for 28 years) of a water tank that would be winched up to the top of a structure, while empty, then filled with water, (all using "excess" power when the battery was full and the sun was out) and then slowly descend while running some kind of geared up generator. This is of course more or less how cuckoo clocks and other old time pieces where you raise the weights on a chain, so not a new idea! It would have been a fun project though. I never followed though with it, didn't have the stuff laying around, so it was cheaper and easier to run the generator to put a full charge in the battery bank a few times during the worst part of the winter. The last few years as my system got fine tuned and I added more power (PV and wind) my average generator run time annually was 2 or 3 hours, so less then 5 gallons of gas. Nowadays, Idaho Power is my battery bank with my grid tie system, in effect. A battery that is 100% efficient,, of infinite capacity, requires zero maintenance, requires no space on site, and only costs me 5 bucks a month! Quite a deal.....anyone who has grid power and talks about going off grid, is crazy. Usually religious survivalists or something, when I get calls from them in my sideline solar biz I pretty much hang up on them as they never have any money to do anything anyway. Some I tell "when the grid is down long enough for the beer to get cold at the supermarkets, life is over anyway", that gets them to quit wasting my time :shock:

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Re: micro hydro powered fat Ebike

Post by Hillhater » Mar 21, 2016 5:07 pm

Yes , currently, grid tie makes financial sense.
BUT.. How for how long ?
Already our power suppliers are shifting the cost model from "power usage". to "service cost" basis and making the Feed in Tarrif less than the supply tarrif !.....and the suggestion is that ultimately the service charges could far outweigh the cost of energy used.
In that senario, Off Grid becomes very attractive.....but its not beyond imagination that authorities could prevent off grid installations without some penalty charges (Tax ?) :shock:
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Re: micro hydro powered fat Ebike

Post by John in CR » Apr 03, 2016 6:49 pm

I love it craneplaneguy. Water goes down and ebike goes up, plus the best part is the man pays you for the excess. I need to find some property downhill from a rain forest with plenty of vertical, and then I won't have to deal with the seasonality problem you have. The are lots of such places here, but the problem is they're on government land. :cry:

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Re: micro hydro powered fat Ebike

Post by craneplaneguy » Apr 12, 2016 9:36 pm

You can't tell but it was blowing pretty good this day, the grid tied wind turbine was making about 1800 watts (it's max is 2400) at 240 VAC. But all in all solar is the way to go, simple, no moving parts, no tall tower required, zero maintenance. The wind turbine is nice though for making you feel better when it's ANOTHER too windy day, at least you're making some power out of it!

When the wind blows, the bike goes!
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liveforphysics
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Re: micro hydro powered fat Ebike

Post by liveforphysics » Apr 12, 2016 10:03 pm

John in CR wrote:I love it craneplaneguy. Water goes down and ebike goes up, plus the best part is the man pays you for the excess. I need to find some property downhill from a rain forest with plenty of vertical, and then I won't have to deal with the seasonality problem you have. The are lots of such places here, but the problem is they're on government land. :cry:

Go solar John! You've got near equator sun levels, and PV panels have become so cheap and efficient and robust.
Each carcinogen vapor exposure includes a dice roll for cancer.

Each mutagen vapor exposure includes a dice roll for reproductive genetic defects in your children.

Each engine start sprays them into a shared atmosphere which includes beings not offered an opportunity to consent accepting these cancer experiences and defective genetics life experiences.

Every post is a free gift to the collective of minds composing the living bleeding edge of LEV development on our spaceship.

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Re: micro hydro powered fat Ebike

Post by 1JohnFoster » Apr 13, 2016 12:27 am

craneplaneguy wrote:I got my hydro system, deactivated and drained through the winter, back up and running yesterday.
Gawd, you're so _old_ dude, you look like me! Wish I had your youthful energy production.

I live in what's technically defined as a rain forest (now without the trees). Always fantisized about re-directing the rain from the 4 storey roof of my building into micro-hydro. Problem is the roof can't buffer a lot of mass up there. Don't think my upstairs neighbours wood be too happy about a roof collapse.

craneplaneguy
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Re: micro hydro powered fat Ebike

Post by craneplaneguy » Apr 13, 2016 1:02 pm

Yeah Idaho is sunny, windy, and has a lot of mountains and streams, so lots of ways to make power. Buy solar and you have it for life pretty much. They wear out, drop in production, a bit but I've sure never thrown one out. I have a 30 year 40 watter that pumps water every day still through my hot water panels.

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Re: micro hydro powered fat Ebike

Post by fechter » Apr 13, 2016 2:17 pm

That's a nice setup. Years ago I built my own micro-hydro generator from a used 90vdc brushed motor that came off a linear accelerator. I made the Pelton wheel from scratch using sheet brass, solder, and some polycarbonate. The thing ran 24/7 for about 10 years when finally a bearing failed. The brushes were still looking great, so I didn't touch them.

It's great to have mulitple sources of power. Solar, wind and hydro took turns depending on the weather.
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craneplaneguy
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Re: micro hydro powered fat Ebike

Post by craneplaneguy » Apr 14, 2016 9:35 am

That is impressive as hell, making your own, and to have it last so long you made it right. Mine is built by Harris Hydro.

No wind today, no sun either, it's snowing! But it's good to know the little hydro unit is down there spinning away. The consistency of hydro, 24/7, is so cool.

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Re: micro hydro powered fat Ebike

Post by quantumcloud509 » Nov 19, 2016 11:19 am

I have no words. Super cool. Thanks for being awesome.

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Re: micro hydro powered fat Ebike

Post by craneplaneguy » Dec 08, 2016 10:33 am

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I just shut down the micro hydro system for the winter. I have found I can run it until the first single digit temps, then it's real risky, suffering a freeze up is something I only want to do once. The first and time time it cracked the cast aluminum base. Running it below freezing is fine, just not TOO much below. The water flow gets so low anyway, it's not worth even considering trying to make a 12 month a year operation. This winter I will change out the bearings, less then 20 bucks and about 30 minutes time. Also, I see the condenser needs replacing. Next spring, one the runoff starts, about March, it will take about 15 minutes to put it back in operation. I probably spend less then 2 or 3 hours a year in total on doing stuff with my solar, wind, and hydro setups. A pretty good deal for free electricity year round! I just bought a 240 wall mount 4,000 watt heater for the shop, to augment the solar heated radiant floor heat system. With over 12,000 KW credit with my utility, I need to use some of it up, so what the hell.


Then I reset the little solar array I made up out of odds and ends, it feeds the same battery based OUTBACK grid tied inverter the hydro does. When I was off grid and needed every single watt, I made my mounts adjustable, like these. But once I got into the grid tied larger arrays, 10' x 20', and solar panels got a lot cheaper, I just weld them permanent to 45 degrees and forget about it. The steep slope helps snow slide off, but really, once the sun comes out it slides off at a 45 angle it just takes a bit longer.
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Re: micro hydro powered fat Ebike

Post by Nordle » Mar 25, 2017 7:06 am

Wonderfull story about energy:)
4:20 Noob Hubz! BLAZE it
..sry for dat poor english..

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