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Wind generator tower, stage 2

August 09, 2008 — BarryK
Heh heh, here it is:

Put together from water pipe that I had lying around. Four pipes up to about halfway, then three pipes all the way up to 5.5 metres above ground. The turbine itself will be about 6.5 metres above ground.

The individual pipes are not strong, but they will be strapped together. I might use predrilled galvanised steel strap and tek screws. I might also put in guy wires to about halfway, just in case.

The wind generator kit has its own tower with hinged base and that will be used. The idea is, it will be hinged at just above the level of the shed roof, so I can assemble the wind generator on the roof, then rotate it up vertically! A pulley mounted on the top of the pipes will be used for winching. Alternatively, 3 or 4 blokes could probably lift it up. After it is vertical, some bolts can go through the pipes to lock it all together.

The basic idea is that it is serviceable. I can winch it down at any time, without having to hire a crane.

My original "stage 1" post:


Wind power
Username: dogone
Perhaps you've already shared this, but are you all set to go with respect to batteries and electronics? Do you plan to tie your wind machine into the mains or utilize it as a separate power source (for the computers, for example)? What's your utility company have to say about the arrangement? Any restrictions?

Guy Wires
Username: WN2A
"Barry, Without question, guy wires=piece of mind. With my ham antennas, they are indispensable. With your turbine,necessary. 73

The Dangers of Waterpipe contruction
Username: John Biles
"Hello Barry K, It's generally know not to use waterpipes for structures as it doesn't bend but snaps. Besides experimenting with Linux and Electronics, I have also built an ADR approved Chassis. When they started putting roll cages in vehicles in the 50's and 60's, some racing drivers where killed because they were speared by their water pipe roll cages in a crash. So if the wind is blowing, don't stand under your generator.

A few thoughts re strength
Username: RickRandom
"If the diameter is say 2m (guessed at for 300W) and max windspeed is 60mph, then max wind force is about 1250N (swept area x dynamic pressure). You need to allow some safety factor, say 2, so you need to decide if the tower could take a side load at the top of 2500N or quarter of a ton. If it's a bigger area, then the loads go up proportionately, if the max wind speed is higher, then the load goes up with the square of the speed, so 10% higher wind speed is 21% more force. Presumably the machine has an automatic system to prevent overloading in high wind (furling?), so the instructions should state that max speed. Getting the tilting tower up will also put a lot of side load on the hinge point. If the "gin pole" is half of the hinged length then the side load will be double the turbine/generator weight, so guessing 50kg mas = 500N weight, doubled is 1000N, then safety factor. Don't hurt yourself, you're too valuable!

Re: water pipes
Username: BarryK
"I have already decided it's not strong enough to be entirely free-standing. It will definitely have guy wires. The high wind protection of the turbine is quite primitive, it is just set off-centre, so the higher the wind the more it turns to the side. What I could do is have a wind-speed sensor that shorts out the turbine, that is, imposes maxmum load, which should slow the blades right down. The user manual recommends a manual switch to do that, but it would be prudent to have it automated. I'm building this on the "suck it and see" principle.

More Wind Info
Username: Aitch
"Hi Barry I am a subscriber to SEGEN Newsletter here in UK I thought you might find this link useful, as I see you are pitching yours near your shed There are other links at the bottom of the page which may be useful to you also Good Luck - hope you have a supplier of traction batteries and a charge controller :) Aitch

Tags: general