Looking into small DIY wind turbines.

Solar, wind, hydro and other non-fossil sources of electricity.
Post Reply
User avatar
RebelRider.Mike   100 mW

100 mW
Posts: 45
Joined: Oct 13 2017 4:05am
Location: Washington, US

Looking into small DIY wind turbines.

Post by RebelRider.Mike » Jun 26 2018 8:53pm

Hi folks,
I've been looking at using solar panels to reduce my power bill, but in my region, they'll be almost useless in the winter. I'd like to supplement them with wind, but I haven't found much info on how to go about it. The websites I've come across assume an off-grid situation and are describing huge and expensive platforms and towers that are way out of my price range. I haven't had much luck on You Tube either.

Maybe I'm asking the wrong questions? If you all have any good links to web pages or videos please share. I need to learn about pretty much everything. Turbine design, what kind of motor to use, charge controllers, are there good off-the-shelf products I can get, or will I have to reinvent the wheel? Yep, total newb, but I've got to start somewhere, LOL.
Mike

User avatar
Dauntless   100 GW

100 GW
Posts: 9842
Joined: May 29 2010 1:49am
Location: Coordinates: 33°52′48″N 117°55′43″W

Re: Looking into small DIY wind turbines.

Post by Dauntless » Jun 26 2018 9:32pm

First of all do you have the wind? My mother was told she didn't when she was building an off the grid facility, wound up sar only. Are you aware of any wind power around your area?
Any sufficiently advanced technology is INDISTINGUISHABLE FROM MAGIC!
- Arthur C. Clarke

Hillhater   100 GW

100 GW
Posts: 11140
Joined: Aug 03 2010 10:33pm
Location: Sydney ..(Hilly part !) .. Australia/ Down under !

Re: Looking into small DIY wind turbines.

Post by Hillhater » Jun 27 2018 12:56am

How much power are you looking for ?
Most of the 3-5+ kW wind systems i have seen have had disapointing results because of the lack of wind needed.
Smaller < 1kW level windmill type devices ( often seen on boats) seem too expensive for the output.
This forum owes its existence to Justin of ebikes.ca

User avatar
amberwolf   100 GW

100 GW
Posts: 30787
Joined: Aug 17 2009 6:43am
Location: Phoenix, AZ, USA, Earth, Sol, Local Bubble, Orion Arm, Milky Way, Local Group
Contact:

Re: Looking into small DIY wind turbines.

Post by amberwolf » Jun 27 2018 1:10am

And if there *is* wind...how high up is it? How tall are you allowed to build?

Usually to get much power, reliably and constantly, you've got to stick it up pretty high, to clear the surrounding clutter that breaks up the wind and/or deflects it around your prop or vane.

Builditsolar has some info on wind stuff

https://www.builditsolar.com/Projects/Wind/wind.htm

https://www.builditsolar.com/References ... S.htm#Wind


Something else to consider: it's going to cost a fair bit to build the system itself, especially if you need to store the power (batterybanks, etc); otherwise you'll need connection equipment to feed it back into the grid (to be able to use it at teh same time as gridpower, unless you're using it on stuff that's not normally gridconnected).

User avatar
RebelRider.Mike   100 mW

100 mW
Posts: 45
Joined: Oct 13 2017 4:05am
Location: Washington, US

Re: Looking into small DIY wind turbines.

Post by RebelRider.Mike » Jun 28 2018 4:10pm

Thanks for the replies!

I'm not sure how much wind I get. Each website I visit gives a different number for my area, and I'm not sure knowing the average would do much good anyway. I get a lot more in the winter than summer, and winter is exactly when I'd need it.

I plan to build a hybrid grid-tie solar/battery system for my house, so by the time I get into wind, I'll have all the other stuff in place and figured out. I doubt I'll get enough power in the winter to impact my power bill much, but I was hoping wind power could help a little. In the summer, it's pretty calm, but I should be able to get plenty of solar, so the lack of wind won't matter. Even if I only got a few kWh from wind, that would help.

I'm also thinking a single large one is out of my price range, but maybe several smaller ones in parallel or series would be more practical if I can build them myself. I've got a lot more time than money. I'm not sure how high I can put them. I will need to be able to get to them for maintenance and repair.

Thanks for the website links. I will be looking over those sites carefully in the near future. :)
Mike

craneplaneguy   10 kW

10 kW
Posts: 783
Joined: Nov 27 2015 9:15am
Location: S.E. Idaho USA

Re: Looking into small DIY wind turbines.

Post by craneplaneguy » Jun 28 2018 11:35pm

Go solar, GO SOLAR! Small wind turbines, even profesionally engineered ones, much less a newbie built one, put out little power for their cost, even IF on a high tower and in strong wind. You're in Washington state, not the back side of the moon, any way you pencil it out PV will put out MANY times the power for $, and without noise, moving parts, towers, maintenance etc., and will last for decades, NO BRAINER! Now is a terrible time to be a commercial small wind manfacturer, they have mostly gone tits up due to solar being so cheap now.

topspeed   10 mW

10 mW
Posts: 22
Joined: Sep 07 2020 12:30am

Re: Looking into small DIY wind turbines.

Post by topspeed » Sep 07 2020 1:25am

I have been workin 5 years now on VAWT type wind turbine design...of my own.
santonen3.jpg
santonen3.jpg (509.82 KiB) Viewed 192 times

User avatar
RebelRider.Mike   100 mW

100 mW
Posts: 45
Joined: Oct 13 2017 4:05am
Location: Washington, US

Re: Looking into small DIY wind turbines.

Post by RebelRider.Mike » Sep 07 2020 4:30pm

Cool! Does it work well?

I did a bunch of research a while back, and found that there's just not enough wind in my area to make a viable system.
Mike

topspeed   10 mW

10 mW
Posts: 22
Joined: Sep 07 2020 12:30am

Re: Looking into small DIY wind turbines.

Post by topspeed » Sep 07 2020 10:26pm

Well having have to test everything as a pioneer of this kinda invention ( no I did no invent the H-Darrieus but a system in it ) there are many snags in it.

The wing became slightly too heavy and stubby...and wrong kinda generator ( a bike hubmotor with planet gear...which is really heavy to turn ). The tower was too weak at start..it was shaking like in an earthquake at first when it went beyond 200 rpm. After 6 rounds of tuning it started to be vibration free.

It has not performed better than a Savonius yet. This is the third prototype....and I will make new wings for it....and the moment arm. It is a lot of work.

Field testing will OTOH advance with this flawed proto, but 4th( 3B actually ) will be built during the winter.

I am testing at an island of the coast where I live....always a good wind when switching the place. Otherwise this would have to be 30 meters high.
käpynorsu.jpg
käpynorsu.jpg (289.28 KiB) Viewed 156 times

Post Reply