Sunday, July 27, 2008

My First Windmill -- SPIN TEST

Hello from San Diego California.


I decided to see what I could do about making electricity from the wind on a homemade scale. After searching the Internet I came up with many great links and such.

This first windmill is an ornamental eight-foot tall kit that I got from I purchased this after my trip with Ron up the coast to Moro Bay. Monterey, San Francisco and South Lake Tahoe. I take very little wind to male it spin and with the tail fin it easily keeps the blade into the wind.

This is my next step into wind turbine energy. At this time my wind turbine doesn’t produce any power but it should when completed, in theory anyways. The DC motor came from a treadmill that I got off of in the FREE section. In truth, I have been working on this turbine for quite a few months and sort of had a breakdown as far as the next step. The original blades were wooden and shaped with a belt sander but didn’t have enough “lift” to catch a breeze. It has been resting behind my sofa in that incarnation for a few months but that changed today. The new blades were cut from a section of PVC pipe. If you look closely at the video you can see that it took a couple of tries to get the right angle as seen by the extra holes drilled into the blades. The wind turbine is temporarily mounted to the roof of the patio pergola with clamps. The eventual mounting will be via a 1” pipe sleeve over a 1/2” pipe that is connected to our backyard patio cover. A tail fin will be attached as well and then this windmill/turbine should also keep its head into the wind.


I have also been looking at working on the micro level as well and have recently been acquiring old VCRs and printers to remove some of the small step motors and gears. With just the twist of my wrist I am able to light an LED with no problems. The next step for that is working out a propeller/blade configuration that will work with the smaller scale parts.


I will keep you posted as to progress and new endeavors. Stay safe and be eco-smart.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

A little about myself...

My first Blog

Hello and welcome to GREEN IN SD.

I have thought about what it means to GO GREEN for a long time, even before it was the politically correct thing to do. I grew up with the upbringing that you could do anything you set your mind to and that NEW doesn’t mean BETTER. 

I am the third of six kids and had two loving parents that believed in us. College was encouraged but it wasn’t set as the goal, only a step to reach our potential if we decided to follow that path.

My journey included two years at the University of Arkansas. My plan was to work on the Pre-veterinary program and then apply to a Veterinary School. I developed very poor study habits in high school, even thought I was an honor grad. Lets just says that my first choice didn’t work out and I change or re-aligned my next career site on commercial art. 

With no improvement in study habits I set out on my third option and joined the U. S. Navy as a photographer. Twenty years in and an honorable retirement later and I am were I am today.

I work as a receptionist in a veterinary clinic so I got close to my first dream job. My partner told me after I retired from the Navy that I should do something now that I enjoyed rather than what could make the most dollars in my pocket. That is why I also have kept my toes in the pool so to speak with my website…

I grow a garden in my back yard and have grape vines, and avocado tree grown from a pit that finally has fruit on it, a raised planting pet with sunflowers (for the bees), pole beans, green peppers, tomatoes, pumpkin, zucchini, garlic, watermelon and apple gourds right now. The garden is always changing and growing but nothing tastes better than eating something fresh from the garden.

I am addicted to Green Planet on cable, Ed Bagley Jr. is my hero, I have a need to figure out how to make my own electricity with either wind or solar power. I am always spending time on the INSTRUCTABLES website and Google already knows what key phrases I search for… homemade wind power or turbine. I also have my lifetime subscription to Mother Earth News. 

I am starting out small and working with DC motors, one is from an old treadmill and another is from an old cordless drill. Also looking into stepper motors from a printer/scanner but that brings in the whole other issue of building an inverter to handle the power. 

I will try to update weekly with what is going on at the homestead and until then please read and reply. Questions, tips and advice are always welcome. Thanks