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Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Equip your RV with wind power -- inexpensively

Wind power: For the boondocker, nothing beats this free source of electrical power. The trouble is, getting started with wind power isn't always inexpensive, there's that up-front investment cost. But hang on, if you're handy with a few tools and can scrounge a bit, you may be able to build yourself a 100-watt wind turbine inexpensively.

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.

The next question we had was: What about blades? The basic "propeller" as some call it, is generally a three blade operation. On our commercial turbine a set of blades sets us back nearly $100. Not so here, the blades are built out of a chunk of PVC drain pipe. Gimme a break! This obviously isn't rocket science, but hey, it works.

Check out the website of the good folks at Vela Creations. They offer a FREE detailed manual on how to build your own Chispito Wind Generator with pretty much common tools and cheap parts.

2 comments:

  1. I notice the accompanying drawing shows you setting the stand in concrete. Uh, how is this going to be usable with your traveling RV?

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  2. And just how much electricity does this thing put out and how much per hour at what wind speed? Having had a wind generator on my sailboat, I found that the current produced was minimal unless you spent your entire time in the tradewind of the Caribbean.

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