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Can somebody point me to plans for a generator.

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Tim01 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-13-09 07:12 PM
Original message
Can somebody point me to plans for a generator.
I think I have the water for a water wheel. So if I can just fine a cheap or used electric generator I could mess around with making my own power.
Thanks.
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OKIsItJustMe Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-13-09 07:14 PM
Response to Original message
1. May I suggest a trip to your local "junk yard?"
Generators from cars are getting harder to find, but alternators should be cheap and plentiful.

Lot easier than trying to build one from scratch.
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Tim01 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-13-09 08:33 PM
Response to Reply #1
6. Any old alternator will work? I have those.
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OKIsItJustMe Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-13-09 09:42 PM
Response to Reply #6
9. Assuming 12V works for you, sure
For many applications, any old alternator should be just fine.
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lapfog_1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-13-09 07:14 PM
Response to Original message
2. here is a link...
http://www.bitterrootsolar.com/hydro.htm

google "micro hydroelectric" and there are dozens to hundreds.
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Tim01 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-13-09 09:36 PM
Response to Reply #2
8. That's awsome, thanks! nt
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kentauros Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-13-09 07:51 PM
Response to Original message
3. Here's a different kind of water wheel that's supposed to be
very efficient: Mini Water Wheel

There are also low-head designs, like this unique and efficient whirlpool type: Zotloterer Gravitational Vortex Power Plant


Post pics when you build your system :)
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MineralMan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-13-09 07:53 PM
Response to Original message
4. A lot will depend on your setup, really.
There are commercial hydropower solutions, from small to large. Expensive. Or, if you're talking about a large, low-speed water wheel, you'll be on your own. You could adapt the alternator from a gasoline powered system. Finding one with a bad engine isn't too hard, and from there it's a matter of pulleys to get the speed you need to generate. Again, though, it all depends on how much torque your wheel can generate.

It's all been done before. Mother Earth News ran many articles on small-scale water power back in the 70s and 80s. Happily, their back issues are all on their website and you can hunt those articles down.

This kind of stuff is best suited to backwoods stuff, really. Homemade systems take a lot of fiddly maintenance and commercial setups take a very long time to get to break-even. But, for a cabin somewhere, it can be an alternative to gasoline or diesel.

All sensible systems use battery storage, unless you have a constant water flow you can tap. Even then, using battery storage and an inverter can get you more power when you need it by storing power when you don't.

Good luck. I fiddled with this stuff back in those Mother Earth News days, and had several homespun systems set up for people. Fiddly stuff, though.
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Traveling_Home Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-13-09 08:12 PM
Response to Original message
5. Here's an article .....
"The heart-and-soul of this little machine is a recycled treadmill motor; the designers suggest you may be able to scrap one out of a freebie treadmill; we think you'll be likely to find a used one on a nearby Craiglist sale. In any event, the little treadmill motors put out a lot of juice for a small number of revolutions."

http://www.rvtravel.com/blog/lowtech/2007/09/inexpensiv...
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Tim01 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-13-09 08:37 PM
Response to Reply #5
7. Don't ever mention this article again.
Edited on Mon Jul-13-09 09:35 PM by Tim01
My wife read it AFTER I took our broken treadmill to the recycle guy.I talked her into getting rid of the old treadmill. There was lots of trouble.(shivers)












I hope you understand I'm exaggerating.
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