mrrrk.net

Yet another narcissistic load of old cobblers that no-one will ever read.

The Day of Erection

What?  Erection is a perfectly normal and suitable word.  Stop sniggering.  So, now it's time to put up the wind turbine that will help power my Chacmool project.

Here's a step-by-step idiots' guide.  As in, you're probably an idiot if you do this like I did.

First, I soldered 3 m of extra cable onto the short leads that come out of the bottom of the turbine flange.  I haven't really soldered for years.  I found I need glasses to do it now.



Then I added heat-shink tubing 'cos I thougt it'd be nicer than wrapping it in tape.  I added extra tape in the end 'cos my soldering is awful and there were sharp bits where strands of wire stuck out as I'd mashed the two ends together, willing them to stay still long enough to accept my molten fixative.



I then bolted the flanges together, the other flange being the tube clamp wall plate.  I added a solid-neoprene spacer between the two faces (bought off Ebay and cut to size with scissors.)  The bolts look excitingly chunky.  Looks like proper engineering.  The reason the nuts are upper-most (rather than the bolt heads) is that the washers won't fit on the other side 'cos the tube clamp collar is too wide.



Next, the blades need bolting onto the hub and the hub is tightened to the spindle using the hex socket in the middle:



Then I added the shorter tube and snapped on the nose-cone to complete the upper assembly:



You might notice the notch I needed to cut near the bottom, with drill and hacksaw (and filed off aterwards), to allow the wires to branch sideways into the shed:



Now I needed to assemble the bottom tube and brace it to the shed.  I decided to reinforce the shed panel from the inside with a sheet of MDF.  I then drilled some holes and fixed the tube, the base plate and the T-piece in place.  I'd done all this already without taking pictures as I went but you can see the results below.

Now comes the idiot step.  I seriously wondered if I could manage this without help (my wife was in Leeds that day) and I probably shouldn't have tried.  Undaunted (well, a bit daunted, actually) I managed to climb the stepladder, carrying a turbine weighing too-many kilogrames swinging around on the end of a 1.3 m steel pole.  Finding myself in this new precarious position, I needed to feed the yellow wires round 90° through the T-peice and into the shed while simutaneously supporting the unweildy, top-heavy turbine and myself - without falling and breaking several bones or rupturing internal organs in the process.  There's no way I would have comtemplated this if there'd been any wind - but there wasn't any.  Anyway, got there in the end.  The tube found it's way home with a statisfying thunk and I'm pretty sure I managed not to trap any wires.  Do not try this at home kids.  Or at least get a grown-up to help you.

One thing to note is that the wires need to be shorted together if they're not connected to the charging controller.  If it's windy (presumably very windy!) it's apparently possible for the turbine to spin so fast that it damages itself.  Shorting the cables stops this becuase any generated current will create an opposing magnetic field in the coils and will resist the turning.  You can feel this when you try and turn the blades - it's not locked up but its quite stiff to turn.  Once connected to the controller, it should handle all of that sort of thing automatically.

Anyway, here are some pictures of the final assembly:








At the time of writing, the blades haven't turned an inch on their own yet.  I did mention it wasn't windy though...
Loading