Home made power

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Icu4dzs
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Home made power

Unread post by Icu4dzs » Sun Nov 16, 2014 7:35 pm

Having homemade power is something not that many folks will ever experience. It was wildly expensive to get up and running but now, after almost 5 years I can say that I have been very glad I have it.
My reason for getting it was multi-faceted. First, I wanted an insurance policy of sorts against the ever increasing cost of energy that we are seeing.
Second, I didn't want to be out of power in the winter when the lines are frequently down with ice and snow. And thirdly, I hate resetting my clocks. It was an every day problem.
So I built my own alternative power system and it has been doing well since 2011. I had some problem with it initially but resolved it and got on with things.

I have a Whisper 500 which is a 3kW wind turbine. It is almost never idle. We got wind here in SODAK.
I built my own tower for it so I could take it up and down BY MYSELF. There are two other systems in the area, both within 1 mile of my farm but both are Skystream 3.5 and produce AC v. DC (like mine) and one of them has broken and not turned for at least 2 or more years.
It was only 1 year old when it broke. It is on a very expensive "monopole" system and over the past several months, one of the blades broke off of it and now it not only sits idle, but can't work even if the problem is simple.
The owner says she has called the company that installed it but they haven't come out to fix it so there is it. I thought of offering to take it down and move it away for her and then put it back in service on my farm...still haven't done that yet.

The other is owned by a guy and his wife and he is usually in some foreign country building oil drilling platforms because he is a well paid engineer and really doesn't need the $ that the wind turbine generates. I think it was simply a hobby for him and once it was built and raised (which I helped to do) he went overseas and has only returned recently.
I also have 16 solar panels (175 watts each) and the sun does contribute to the power that is collected here on the farm. The shorter days don't help much with that but the wind turbine takes up the slack on that issue.

So, I guess I will just see what happens over another 10 years or so. I hope all my equipment lasts that long.
You're believing it is not required for it to be true. TMM
Saepe Expertus, Semper Fidelis, Fratres Aeterni
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dizzy
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Re: Home made power

Unread post by dizzy » Sun Nov 16, 2014 8:01 pm

How many KWH do you average a month?

animalfarm
Posts: 58
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Re: Home made power

Unread post by animalfarm » Mon Nov 17, 2014 7:17 am

I had a whisper 500. It worked like a charm till it blew off the top of the pole. We have our windmill way out back of the barns and there was very little line loss. Thats the beauty of DC. The whisper has 2 flaws which can be fatal when combined. The first is an aluminum bracket which holds it to the pole and the second is that it only has two blades which tilt face upwards in strong winds. This causes a tremendous amount of lift which can torque the aluminum bracket right off the pole.

I was out at the pole trying to figure out what the ruckus was about. I looked up and started running. I now know exactly how far a 150 lb windmill lands from the pole in 95 km/hr winds. It skipped twice. If you have a whisper, next time you take it down, check that mounting bracket and if its aluminum consider changing it out for steel.

I now have a kestrel 3kw and I like it fine but there is too much line loss (AC) Unfortunetly, they buried the wrong electrical line. I will have to carefully dig down the line trench and put in another just above it, or move the kestral close to the house and install another whisper out back. Steel bracket this time. I don't want it close to the house though. It ruins the ambiance and I am now a bit paranoid about them blowing off the pole.

I have 8 solar panels and would absolutely love it if I had 16. I think I will start buying one every month or two. Problem is the whole system is shut down now as we had a lightning strike near the house and I am hoping it only blew out the surge protetors on the inverter and control systems. If it is more than that we are up the creek without a paddle as we cannot get the generator started now either. (wired into the system)

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Icu4dzs
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Location: NE SDAK
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Re: Home made power

Unread post by Icu4dzs » Mon Nov 17, 2014 2:22 pm

OUCH...that sounds awful. I did have one problem with the Whisper with the blade mount bolts all torque-ing off inside the rotor. I sent it back to the company and they rebuilt it. They told me it was because of dynamic oscillation.
I added 2 guy wires to the mast and have had no problems since.
Good to hear form you."

More as it develops...Details at 10 PM"
You're believing it is not required for it to be true. TMM
Saepe Expertus, Semper Fidelis, Fratres Aeterni
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Sunsaver
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Re: Home made power

Unread post by Sunsaver » Mon Nov 17, 2014 4:00 pm

The Tacoma Narrows bridge in WA fell victim to "dynamic oscillation" too. I want to add wind power to my DC system one of these days, so it's nice to know what sort of things to look out for. Thanks for the info!

HybridHomesteader
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Re: Home made power

Unread post by HybridHomesteader » Wed Jun 15, 2016 9:30 am

I saw a guy on that tv show Port Protection build a wind turbine with plywood and an alternator etc... To charge his batteries.

I keep thinking it would be great to add some type of turbine to my house to supplement the solar. Here in Ca we net meter.

Would it be possible to tie it in without them knowing. Have it add more power to what we back feed into the grid.

I guess it probably wouldn't matter. They don't really pay much for anything we over produce.

Nevermind.

G

|em22|
Gina, Hybrid Homesteader, It'sMeG, TanksHill.... Mom, Wife, trouble maker extraordinaire.

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