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Author Topic: Wind Turbine  (Read 6346 times)
Nick Badame Refrig/ACC
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« on: November 08, 2008, 02:43:51 PM »

Hi Guy's,

I just started a new project for the bus. I purchaced a 400watt wind turbine that I am mounting to the roof of my shed that my

bus backs up to. I figure that since I keep the Proheat running all winter, I would try and generate enough power to keep the

battery bank charged up. The turbine arrived yesterday and today,  I ordered 30ft. of 1 1/2" sch 40 galv pipe. I figured that since

it is always windy here during the winter, it would make more sence then solar panels. Plus, it will still generate at night!

Let me know what you think.
http://www.southwestpv.com/Catalog/Wind%20Power/AIR403.HTM

As soon as I get these 3 big boiler replacment jobs done this week, I hope to have time next weekend to install it.

Nick-

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« Reply #1 on: November 08, 2008, 03:22:42 PM »

No personal experience, though I've been an avid reader of Home Power for a few years. My understanding is these small wind turbine can be very noisy, especially if attached to living space, which it seems your will not be.

This is something I've been considering, too, though I'd like to find one that can be stowed easly and take it with me on the road and set it up when we're parked. Maybe attach a pole to the hitch of the bus. I think solar panels mounted on the bus roof would probably provide more power, though, and be easier to use.

Anyway, please keep us updated as you go forward with this project.

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« Reply #2 on: November 08, 2008, 03:31:25 PM »

Another non expert here.  When they rate it at 400 watts, I am guessing that is figured at something like a 30 mph wind.  I was once looking into installing a wind turbine at home.  If you have dependable wind, it seemed that you get more watts/dollar from it than solar.  It can be noisy though.  I sounds like you should be able to produce more power than you need for the batteries.  I think that I, as well as others, would be very interested in how it goes.
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« Reply #3 on: November 08, 2008, 04:24:32 PM »

How does the wind generator compensate for differing rotor speed, or doesn't it matter with DC?  I know the big wind turbines automatically rotate the blades to keep the generator at a constant speed and they put the blades in a neutral position if it gets too  windy.

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« Reply #4 on: November 08, 2008, 05:03:16 PM »

Northern AZ Wind has info and spec's on wind turbines if any of you are interested in one   www.wind-sun.com I read where they work best with winds 12-25 mph and need 7 mph to start       good luck
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Nick Badame Refrig/ACC
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« Reply #5 on: November 08, 2008, 07:05:36 PM »

Hi Guy's,

Craig is thinking what I was..... Taking it with me on the road. Craig, hitch mount is a very good idea! Now ya got me thinking..

This unit is very small and light. It could easily fit in one corner of a bay, poles and all.
Nick-

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http://video.google.com/videosearch?sourceid=navclient&ie=UTF-8&rlz=1T4TSHB_enUS230US233&q=air+x&um=1&sa=X&oi=video_result_group&resnum=7&ct=title#

Here is the write up on the turbine I have


Introducing the latest evolution in small wind turbines. The AIR-X builds upon what has made AIR the world’s #1 selling small wind turbine with new technology previously found only in today’s state-of-the-art mega-watt-class wind turbines.

All of these features are primarily found within the body of the turbine. The new microprocessor based turbine controller results in increased performance, improved battery charging capability, greater reliability and the reduction of flutter noise from the machine.

The controller allows for peak-power tracking of the wind by optimizing the alternator’s output on all points of the cubic curve and then efficiently delivers the energy to the battery. The turbines smart controller allows it to actually control blade rotation speed thus eliminating the buzzing noise commonly found with the AIR 403 and 303 in high winds. Furthermore, a new series of carbon-reinforced blades with a modified pitch angle further increases power production.

Much Lower Noise: Previous AIR wind modules relied on their aero-elastic blade design for protection in high winds. This caused a loud flutter noise in winds above 35 mph (16 m/s). AIR-Xs circuit monitors the wind speed and electronically slows the blades as it reaches its rated output preventing it from going into flutter. This results in a much quieter wind turbine. In high winds, the AIR-X will continue to produce power at a reduced level until the wind decreases, at which point maximum potential output will resume. The Benefit: Quieter and neighbor friendly wind turbine.

Improved battery charging: Previous AIR designs required 300-400 amp hour battery banks so the trickle charge of the wind turbine could be adequately absorbed. The AIR-Xs charge controller periodically stops charging, reads the battery voltage, compares it to the voltage setting and if the battery is charged, it completely shuts off all current going to the battery. This function is performed within a few milliseconds. The closer the battery is to reaching its full state of charge, the more often the AIR-Xs circuit repeats this action. This means any size battery bank from 25 to 25,000 amp hours or higher can be charged safely. When the battery has reached its charged state, the AIR-X will slow to an almost complete stop. Only when the battery has dropped below its voltage set point will it startup and resume charging. The Benefit: Extended battery life, no overcharging.

Lower stress design: AIR-X limits power on the input side of the electronics by controlling the torque from the blades. The power no longer has to be dissipated by the electronics resulting in lower stress on the circuit, bearings and other materials. Furthermore, stress on wind turbines occurs primarily in high winds. Under these conditions, the electronic stall design reduces the blade speed to 600 rpm, thereby significantly reducing turbine and tower loading while still producing power.

« Last Edit: November 08, 2008, 07:18:03 PM by Nick Badame Refrig. Co. » Logged

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« Reply #6 on: November 08, 2008, 07:47:38 PM »

Nick

I had the earlier model which fluttered the blades when it hit over speed and flattened and the noise was not that bad to me but some neighbors in RV park complained.

I never had to charge batteries in the 7 years I had it operating and it was hooked to a bank of 6 volt trojans 105's and it's still operating today up in Seligman AZ.

It will keep your batteries charged and I had a a dpdt toggle switch and could apply brake and stop it completely or a very slow barely turning in winds over 35 mph. I believe you will be happy with it but get it at least 20 feet above any buildings within 100 feet if possible.

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« Reply #7 on: November 08, 2008, 07:52:11 PM »

Nick, my boating friends...mostly sailboats...say the only drawback is the noise.  Your application should not have that problem. 
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« Reply #8 on: November 08, 2008, 08:31:56 PM »

I saw a write up about a wind turbine that used a different blade design that looked kinda like an old time egg beater instead of blades, the article talked about it haveing a more effective pattern for operating at lower wind speeds and was much quieter, something about it being used in europe now, I can't remember where i saw the article, anyone else see it?
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« Reply #9 on: November 08, 2008, 08:57:35 PM »

I saw a write up about a wind turbine that used a different blade design that looked kinda like an old time egg beater instead of blades, the article talked about it haveing a more effective pattern for operating at lower wind speeds and was much quieter, something about it being used in europe now, I can't remember where i saw the article, anyone else see it?


http://www.livescience.com/environment/080910-pf-energy-ball.html
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« Reply #10 on: November 08, 2008, 09:02:49 PM »

Yep, thats the one I was talking about.
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« Reply #11 on: November 09, 2008, 06:31:50 AM »

Home of the small wind turbines (left click)

Now go where the wind is and have fun.

FWIW

Sojourn for Christ, Gerald
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« Reply #12 on: November 09, 2008, 06:45:39 PM »

With your skills Nick,  I would have expected you to go vertical. Cheesy



or



 i saw someting similar a while back
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« Reply #13 on: November 10, 2008, 05:31:09 AM »

The vertical sort work on a fundamentally different aerodynamic principle (drag rather than lift) and as such are not capable of producing as much power as a horizontal axis turbine. If you think about it is simplistic terms, a vertical turbine always has one side of the blade being 'pushed into' the wind, so a lot of power is lost. They do have the advantage of being able to work in wind coming from any direction without having to pivot, which is especially useful in gusty conditions. They also turn a lot more slowly, so produce less noise. Even the very fancy vertical-axis turbines with curved corkscrew-shaped blades have to be very big though to produce any useful power.

Jeremy
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« Reply #14 on: November 11, 2008, 06:55:53 AM »

That AIR X and/or AIR403 are the ones I'll be buying, when the time for adding wind to the sails comes along. Read a ton over the years and they seem to be the standard in that size range.

And you'll be hard pressed to find anyone complain about their performance or reliability. Problems are usually installer/designer based, not in the turbine.

The weed whacker noises from it spinning are more than compensated for by the absence of a running generator....Ask the complainers if they'd like you to fire up 'ol smokey?

Keep us updated, this is a good one for the boondockers to live vicariously through!

happy coaching!
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« Reply #15 on: November 11, 2008, 01:16:54 PM »

Hi Nick,
I was parking next to a full timer with a wind turbine.
He backed into a tree and broke two blades.
When he got the new blade , he started to polish them with a very fine steel wool.
He shined them both front and back.
He said if he kept them as smooth as posible the blades were pretty quite.
He also said about twice a year he would shine them up again.
His system was a lot quiter than any other turbine I was near.
Frank
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« Reply #16 on: November 11, 2008, 01:30:21 PM »

eludicate please ;-) Previous AIR designs required 300-400 amp hour battery banks so the trickle charge of the wind turbine could be adequately absorbed. The AIR-Xs charge controller periodically stops charging, reads the battery voltage, compares it to the voltage setting and if the battery is charged, it completely shuts off all current going to the battery. This function is performed within a few milliseconds. The closer the battery is to reaching its full state of charge, the more often the AIR-Xs circuit repeats this action. This means any size battery bank from 25 to 25,000 amp hours or higher can be charged safely. When the battery has reached its charged state, the AIR-X will slow to an almost complete stop. Only when the battery has dropped below its voltage set point will it startup and resume charging. The Benefit: Extended battery life, no overcharging.
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« Reply #17 on: November 11, 2008, 04:13:48 PM »

Has anyone ever mounted one of these on a bus?  You could charge batteries while driving down the road, or stopped.

Hummmm,

Bill
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« Reply #18 on: November 11, 2008, 07:05:38 PM »

Hi Friends,
   I  got an AirX 400 last year and took it to the beach for backup. I didn't have any way to monitor it so I never really knew how many amps it was putting out. But It acted just like it was supposed to. It stopped dead when the wind got over about 40. The charge light worked. It stopped when the batteries were fully charged. The average wind was about 15 mph.
   This year I have a battery monitor for it ( http://www.forcefieldmagnets.com/catalog/product_info.php?cPath=24&products_id=190 ) so I'll be able to tell exactly what's going on. It was VERY quiet. The problem is not the noise but the vibration. It should not touch the bus. Somebody makes a nice mount that you drive on and park but it is $800.
Good Luck
Jerry



   
   




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Nick Badame Refrig/ACC
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« Reply #19 on: November 11, 2008, 07:24:03 PM »

Hi Guy's,

My 1 1/2" galvinized pipe was delivered today so, I'm excited to get it up in the air this weekend.

I'm under the gun to finish up the 3 boilers that we are installing....By friday, I hope!

The boilers are a really cool install for us. We removed a 1.4 million btu Weil McClain with a Gorden Paiit gas gun and what a job it

has been removing 2 thousand lbs of Iron out of a Township building. Worst of all, trying to work with all the building employees

complaining about noise.... [had to buy 2-20ft legenths of 3" copper last week... $420 each! Shocked]

The cool part is we are installing 3 really hi-tech Budarus Modulating boilers in it's place. These boilers will be 98% efficient....

They are coupled to a Honeywell pnumatic building controller and the Budarus boilers have their own modulateing controls that only

fire the boilers that are needed using indoor and outdoor temps. As of today, 90% complete! Our town is trying to reduce it's carbon

footprint to recieve state funding for a much bigger Solar project that will cover a 400 x 400 parking lot area.

I'll post some pics later in the week
Nick-
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« Reply #20 on: November 13, 2008, 10:47:55 PM »

The vertical sort work on a fundamentally different aerodynamic principle (drag rather than lift) and as such are not capable of producing as much power as a horizontal axis turbine. If you think about it is simplistic terms, a vertical turbine always has one side of the blade being 'pushed into' the wind, so a lot of power is lost. They do have the advantage of being able to work in wind coming from any direction without having to pivot, which is especially useful in gusty conditions. They also turn a lot more slowly, so produce less noise. Even the very fancy vertical-axis turbines with curved corkscrew-shaped blades have to be very big though to produce any useful power.

Jeremy

That's interesting Jeremy,  do you have a windmill?  would like to hear more

I find the cheap, easy to build ones interesting too like the barrels or the pvc pipe one. Smiley
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« Reply #21 on: November 14, 2008, 04:09:10 AM »

eludicate please ;-) Previous AIR designs required 300-400 amp hour battery banks so the trickle charge of the wind turbine could be adequately absorbed. The AIR-Xs charge controller periodically stops charging, reads the battery voltage, compares it to the voltage setting and if the battery is charged, it completely shuts off all current going to the battery. This function is performed within a few milliseconds. The closer the battery is to reaching its full state of charge, the more often the AIR-Xs circuit repeats this action. This means any size battery bank from 25 to 25,000 amp hours or higher can be charged safely. When the battery has reached its charged state, the AIR-X will slow to an almost complete stop. Only when the battery has dropped below its voltage set point will it startup and resume charging. The Benefit: Extended battery life, no overcharging.
calimexta in greek is hello like the rest of this.can anyone explain in english?
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« Reply #22 on: November 14, 2008, 04:48:12 AM »

Northern Tool's Sunday ad had a wind turbine advertised.  I believe it was the AIR X.  This might a place to go look at one if you live in the Midwest or South where they have stores.

A wind turbine wouldn't do me any good when boondocking as we can't launch rockets when winds are over 20 MPH and prefer less than 10 MPH.  We usually won't launch anywhere known for high winds.
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« Reply #23 on: November 14, 2008, 06:41:24 AM »

The vertical sort work on a fundamentally different aerodynamic principle (drag rather than lift) and as such are not capable of producing as much power as a horizontal axis turbine. If you think about it is simplistic terms, a vertical turbine always has one side of the blade being 'pushed into' the wind, so a lot of power is lost. They do have the advantage of being able to work in wind coming from any direction without having to pivot, which is especially useful in gusty conditions. They also turn a lot more slowly, so produce less noise. Even the very fancy vertical-axis turbines with curved corkscrew-shaped blades have to be very big though to produce any useful power.

Jeremy

That's interesting Jeremy,  do you have a windmill?  would like to hear more

I find the cheap, easy to build ones interesting too like the barrels or the pvc pipe one. Smiley

Windmills are for grinding corn, and I don't have much need for that. I would love to have a wind turbine - and a proper big one at that - but my garden is unfortunately far too sheltered to make it worth while. I have done lots of reading though, and as it happens my hobby is sailing so I have a grounding in the aerodynamics too. When I've made my fortune from selling magazines I'm going to buy a place in the country with lots of space and no neighbours, then spend my retirement playing about with alternative energy machines and other mechanical stuff.

Jeremy

PS. Try googling the term 'savonius' for info. on vertical-axis turbines - there are many home-build designs that are a lot more sophisticated that a barrel cut in half
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« Reply #24 on: November 14, 2008, 06:47:15 AM »

eludicate please ;-) Previous AIR designs required 300-400 amp hour battery banks so the trickle charge of the wind turbine could be adequately absorbed. The AIR-Xs charge controller periodically stops charging, reads the battery voltage, compares it to the voltage setting and if the battery is charged, it completely shuts off all current going to the battery. This function is performed within a few milliseconds. The closer the battery is to reaching its full state of charge, the more often the AIR-Xs circuit repeats this action. This means any size battery bank from 25 to 25,000 amp hours or higher can be charged safely. When the battery has reached its charged state, the AIR-X will slow to an almost complete stop. Only when the battery has dropped below its voltage set point will it startup and resume charging. The Benefit: Extended battery life, no overcharging.
calimexta in greek is hello like the rest of this.can anyone explain in english?


It's simply saying that they have improved their charge-controller to include a battery sensing circuit - ie. the charge controller now acts as an intelligent battery charger to avoid overcharging the battery. Consquently you now don't need a big battery bank as you are no longer relying on the capacity of the battery to act as a sink for any excess charging current.

There was a closely related discussion about charge controllers on the 'solar panel' thread very recently

Jeremy
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« Reply #25 on: November 14, 2008, 08:21:05 AM »

Hey Nick,
Check out this site , you could get some savings in taxes !!!!!!

http://www.marketwatch.com/news/story/Federal-Government-Endorses-Small-Wind/story.aspx?guid=%7BDF6552E3-5A1A-48B5-BB9F-BC1B2955A821%7D

Frank
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« Reply #26 on: November 14, 2008, 07:38:16 PM »

I bought a small wind turbine six years ago and it has worked well all this time . It does make some strange noises when the wind gets to 45-50 MPH. Jerry
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« Reply #27 on: November 14, 2008, 07:58:52 PM »

Hi Frank,

Thanks for the link. It looks like I may save some $$ on this project.

I will start the pole mounts tomorrow.

Thanks
Nick-
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« Reply #28 on: November 14, 2008, 08:59:21 PM »

Nick,

Really interesting project.  Hope all goes well and quickly. Smiley

Now for what begged.....Money for solar project from the State gummint?  You know it is backed with Fed gummint, read tax, dollars.  That is socialism!  How could you Nick?  "Say it ain't so"....from Shoeless Joe Jackson legend.  Oh the humanity!  What a jerk I would be if I meant any of that, right?

Now, about that tax "right" off.  Every dollar less you pay is made up for by everyone else...from the many to the few....and deservedly so in this case. Grin  More Socialism!  Get used to this sort of gummint interferance cause the brown ONE said energy independence in ten years(that echoed Gore and T boone Pickens).  You can plan on a whole slew of gumint interferience incentives to flow so stay flexable and frosty. Roll Eyes

Ever the kidder....John Wink Grin Grin
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« Reply #29 on: November 15, 2008, 02:49:26 AM »

Going completely off topic for a moment....I was fascinated during the coverage of the US election just how much nonsense was spoken and written about socialism. I'm certainly not a socialist myself, but having lived under a socialist government for around half my life I can assure you that many of the anti-socialist beliefs apparently held by those opposing Obama have little basis in fact.

Just to give a couple of examples of how socialism doesn't necessarily lead to the ruination of the economy as many people seem to think:- The only two countries in the whole of Europe which haven't yet gone into recession are Britain and France. Both have socialist governments and very successful economies - Britiain for example has the sixth largest economy in the world and has one of the highest per-capita incomes despite the fact that the entire country is smaller than some US states.

By comparison Germany (capitalists since WW2) are in major trouble. Their problem ironically is that they have the perfect capitalist economy - huge balance of payments surpluses earnt from being the biggest exporter in the world - bigger than American, Japan and China. Unfortunately being so reliant on exports mean they are suffering hugely now because all those export markets have collapsed.

I must admit that as a capitalist I have been surprised myself how some pure socialist policies (the minimum wage for example) have turned out to be a very positive influence and not the dire catastophe that the right-wing politians predicted. Listening to some of the debates prior to the US election though I genuinely think that some commentators have been confusing socialism with marxism or even communism.

Jeremy
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« Reply #30 on: November 15, 2008, 07:04:19 AM »

I am parked in Quartzsite AZ with about 15 of those turbines around me with the wind blowing 25 mph all night it sounded like a helicopter pad                                          have a great day
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« Reply #31 on: November 18, 2008, 03:35:56 PM »

DONE!  It's about time!!

2 days behind schedule.... Now I can start the Wind Turbine project.

Here are a few pics of the boilers
Nick-
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« Reply #32 on: November 20, 2008, 11:10:20 AM »

Years and years ago we were plank owners of Home Power Magazine.  A very cool magazine then and probably better now.  Wish we hadn't sold the 5ac homestead and stopped the subscription.

If memory serves (always suspect!) the magic number with wind is 12 to 15 mph.  Ya' gotta have that much to do any good.  We did research wind for SW Oregon; no go, had to go with PV panels.

Anyway you can mount the turbine away from living quarters?  The feedback we received years ago was that smaller windmills are kinda noisy.  Let us know how it works out.  Some beach in Mexico?  HB of CJ Smiley Smiley Smiley
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Jerry W Campbell
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« Reply #33 on: November 20, 2008, 04:05:07 PM »

The newer Air-X wind turbines are much quieter because of blade design but mostly because they shut down right before the blades start fluttering. And it is true they work better on the beach in Mexico. One more week and it's adios for this bus.
Good Luck Nick
Jerry
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Nick Badame Refrig/ACC
1989, MCI 102C3, 8V92T, HT740, 06' conversion FMCA# F-27317-S "Wife- 1969 Italian/German Style"
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« Reply #34 on: December 03, 2008, 06:56:44 PM »

Hi Guy's,

The Air X turbine is up and operateing. It's 28 ft. in the air and generateing power "at times"... So far, it has not been so windy out

and there has only been 1 windy day for testing. Start up speed is as stated, 9/10mph and I have only measured 18 mph around here

so far. I have to admit, that this project has been alot of fun but, I can see where a combination of wind and Solar will be a better

set-up.. I'm sure when Jan/Feb rolls around I will have more steady winds around here to produce a constant charge on the batt bank.


The turbine has 3- 22" blades. I just located an aftermarketer that sells 6- 28" blades with a custom hub to fit my Air-X unit. They claim

that with the 6 longer blades, that the start up wind speed will drop to 4mph and give me a more steady surpluss of power. I ordered them

yesterday and I should get them next week.

So Far I spent
635 for the turbine
135 for 1 1/2" sch 40 galv pipe and fittings
180 for 60ft of 6-3 marine jacketed stranded copper wire
 58 for connectors, fasteners, and misc items

1008 total.  My Labor, PRICELESS Grin

After the new blades arrive I will have spent another 150. Still $1158 for 400 watts I think is still reasonable...

I will post pics soon
Nick-
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Whatever it takes!-GITIT DONE! 
Commercial Refrigeration- Ice machines- Heating & Air/ Atlantic Custom Coach Inc.
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« Reply #35 on: December 04, 2008, 08:17:16 AM »

I think the 'lack of wind' thing is the most common discovery people make after buying and installing a wind turbine. I've wanted to get one myself but did some measurements in my garden and realised that I didn't even come close to the minimum wind requirements to acheive any kind of useful output. I still want to build one though, and have recently been thinking about the viability of having a telescopic pole (possibly mounted to one corner of the bus) that could get a turbine 40 or 50ft in the air (wind speed and stability increase rapidly with height). Having a pole that can be easily lowered allows the turbine to be optimised for lighter winds without the risk that it will destroy itself when it blows hard.

On a sort-of-similar subject, I did a test with my solar panels earlier this week:- obviously at this time of year the sun is very low in the sky, and I found that the output of my panel when mounted horizontally (which 99.99% of panels are) was less than half of the output of when it was pointed directly at the sun. Given how expensive solar panels are for a very modest output makes you think that spending some of the money on a sun-tracker instead would make a lot of sense.

Jeremy
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