Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it – no matter if I have said it! – except it agree with your own reason and your own common sense.” – Siddhartha Gautama, a.k.a. the Buddha

Call me da breeze

I know that many of you are as frustrated by the slo-motion downslope action that is taking place in this country.   It is accelerating, what with the shooting war on cops kickin’ off in a two way shooting gallery, ( something that I think has been building for a very long time, mind you) and the globalist trying like hell to hold onto what little credibility they perceive as still theirs.  Some of this is shown by the recent “Laws are for Peons” attitude that was flagrantly shoved down our throats by the Clintons and their cronies.  I still say that Comey was trying to get her but was stymied by the payoffs upstream so went to the court of public opinion.   I am willing to be proven wrong, as always, but until such time, that is the nature of my thoughts on it.   Yeah, he is a stoolie from the hill, has had history with the Clintons in the past, but his actions speak more to me than recent opinions or past history. 

Anywhoos, I am working on things here at the homestead.   I figure, it doesn’t matter one whit what these asshats do, because by the time I could do anything to counteract it, my actions will have the finality of a suicide.   Not real interested in dyin’ anytime soon.
The other side of that coin is in recognition.   These asshats NEED us, while we really do not need them, in fact, it would benefit all of us if the government was reduced to 1/1000th its current size, or even done away with all together.  (argue with me later if you are still of the statist bent.  This post has a purpose along other lines.)  If we continue to give them attention, they feed on that.   If we continue to ‘recognize’ them as ‘our betters’ by voting for the scum, they will continue to rape us of our worldly goods and by default, of our self respect.  Dunno ’bout you, but I do NOT, think Hitlery is a better person than myself, and My only respect for the Donald is that he is a self made person, not some parasite crawling out of the septic system of politics. (and I believe he wouldn’t try crawling into such except to fix it.   This isn’t a self sacrifice either, He is going to gain something from it, you can bet good money on that.   He doesn’t strike me as the self sacrificing type.)  Nope, the only way to rid ourselves of such is to ignore it.   If you can’t ignore it, SHOOT IT!   The only power that they have over us is threat of force, and if we deliver that right back into their faces, they will fold like the limp noodles they are.  (you can’t enslave a free man, the most you can do is kill him.)  
I know, I am up on my soapbox playing the hypocrite here, preaching one thing and practicing another, so to speak.   Yeah, I am still a wage slave, but my efforts are quickly drawing to an end. One where I can walk away from that rat race and start to spend more, FAR more, time on my needs and less on chasing a quixotic myth called Federal Reserve Notes.  My financial footprint continues to get smaller and smaller the further I get along on building my homestead.  Eventually, I should be able to get that footprint off the mainstream and into the grey economy.    Then I will know as true a freedom as anyone can in this institution called USA.  

I gotta shift topics here.  I keep coming back to that mess called politics and I am sure that some of you think that this is all I think about..  Not true!  I probably only spend an hour a day on it, mostly observing, gathering intel as best as I can and assimilating that intel into what makes sense and what is complete bullshit.   Most of the rest of the time, I am twiddling neurons trying to come up with some better way of building something, or some idea that has been on the back burner and needs stirred up so it doesn’t burn to the bottom of the pan.  
So, what have my neurons been fiddling with this week?  
Wind generators.
Yeah, I have one in the air, and it works, some-days, especially in the winter when the leaves are off the trees.  But it isn’t running 100% even on the best of days and my mind has been over it and over it trying to ‘fix’ the problem. 
Well, the problem isn’t just the hardware, its the location.  When I put up the tower, it was further away from my abode, and my abode was 1/3 the size of current.   Second problem is that it was originally at 36′ but due to design errors (all mine thank you very much!) I had to shorten that tower to 24′  bringing it further into the turbulence zone of the house. 
When you work in automotive there is an axiom that the old guys will tell you when you are trying to build a race car.    Fast, cheap, reliable.  Choose two because you can’t have all three.  With this genny, I forgot that axiom.   I built fast and cheap, and reliable went right out the door.     Now, I am looking at losing one of the first and regaining that reliable.  
I plan on doing this in two ways.   FIRST: a much more reliable tower design.   Triangle truss and a more robust guy-line system.  SECOND:  Moving the tower location further out into the field, and getting into the tops of the trees again.  (not literally.   I just need that altitude.  Nearest tree to it will be 50-60′)   THIRD:  There is a new genset out that is non-cogging.   That means lower start up speeds, and that equates to more efficient.   FOURTH:  and this one is still in the air, Considering going with a Vertical system vs a Horizontal one.   Now I have something more to talk about.

Vertical Axis Wind Turbine. (VAWT )(think about the turbine vents you see on buildings.   Thats what this idea is.)  VS Horizontal Axis Wind Turbine (HAWT (don’t laugh!))
Been doing a lot of research on it, and if you look on youtube and its ilk, you will find a lot others have as well.  Kinda.  Sorta like.    What I mean by that is there are about as many designs as there are shade tree engineers, but of all of them, very very few actually put their unit under load for testing.   Yeah, its pretty turning in the breeze at a gazillion RPM, but it doesn’t take a whole boat load of torque to turn free wheeling blades.   Put that thing under a 200 watt load and watch it sit like the paperweight it is.   I  found this out when I originally purchased the Raptor blades.   Worked great until there was an actual load to deliver then the things wouldn’t do squat unless there was a tornado in the area.
Then I started looking at reports and papers from technical schools and what I find is that the big guys won’t touch VAWT because they have already ruled it out as an infrastructure type design.   In four papers I read, all of them wrote the idea off, but only one stated that it is feasible for point use, but not for large scale; IE it is likely an efficient method if you are not trying to power a city with it.  
My needs, being what they are, have to account for mountain winds.   If you have lived in the plains all your life, you may not understand that.   In the mountains, wind is tricky.   One second its blowing up hill, the next, down hill. Then it comes at you sideways, and the trees 40′ in front of you aren’t touched by it.  Part of the problem I have had with my current genny is that turbulent air.   This is part of why I want to run VAWT instead of HAWT,   The vertical doesn’t have to revolve into the wind for the blades to be effective.   (part of this as seen by empirical observation is centripetal force. The blade setup in HAWT  act like a a huge gyro and those do not like to be tweaked, not without forces being redirected somewhere else and at odds to needs.  I am sure you have played with a gyroscope as a kid.  You could feel the resistance when trying to force it sideways off axis.    This is the same effect as felt on a motorcycle wheel at speed.  You want to turn right force the wheel left and the bike leans right and so turns right.  The same thing applies here.)  There is a certain amount of mass and forces tied up in the unit when it is operating, shifting those two means something has to give and since the mass is fixed in nature, the losses happen in the forces. (and no, I can’t show you the math, even though I know it exists. I understand this stuff intuitively.)  The blades are forced to slow down, and that may mean that the whole stops operating if the shift is radical enough.   (and those forces have to go SOMEWHERE as they don’t just evaporate into the aether.   Nope, those forces are transferred into heat (a little,) and vibration (a lot) into the tower itself.  This isn’t a good thing in the long run.)  And there are days where those shifts are radical enough I can watch the whole tower flex around like a noodle, despite the guylines holding it upright. (kinda slowmotion of a guitar string, one half vibrating on the x axis, the other half on the y, and then they swap around.  Thats called a harmonic and harmonics are NOT GOOD for fixed machinery or architecture.   They can build up to dangerous levels and destroy the item in question.)
(and for my readers that know this stuff, I apologize, but there are those that do not.)
SO, by my analysis, the VAWT would benefit me by being able to better access the wind energy, even in the turbulence of the hills, and that should alleviate stresses on the tower as well.   So there is Reliable.   NOW, Cheap or Fast, Choose one.   Well, It ain’t gonna be a race car, so I am going to go with cheap.   I went cheap and fast on the current tower, and it sure ain’t reliable.   Time to get that character back in the fold and do away with the miscreant screwing up the works.  So that leaves me with Cheap.  
But none of this stuff is cheap.   Tower truss (prefab) is outrageous even if it comes with that sheet of paper saying it will hold up under a force 10 hurricane.  The Genset is reasonable, but the VAWT side of that is kinda out there.  R&D being what it is, even by some shade tree engineer/tinkerer, things still cost money and mistakes cost three times more.   SO, staying with the cheap aspect, I have to build it myself, and R&D it myself.   Since much of the R&D is kinda done (blade design, number, etc) I really only need to scale it to what demands I see are needed.   I am not going to be building something the size of a water cooler and expect it to put out a billion joules of energy.  I know better than that.    But that will be later on.  Right now, I need to build a tower, tower base, and set guy-line points on the ground. (concreted in the ground as I think this thing will have a slightly higher wind resistance factor involved than the last)   But I can build the tower truss now.   That is actually the cheapest part of the whole project.

I originally wrote this as a bleg of sorts.   I sat on it for several days before doing this final edit.  Thearticle is valid, the bleg, not so much.   I do not need any of the above to continue my evolution in off grid living.   It would be nice, but,,,,,,     as is, I am going to rebuild and relocate the tower.  Once I am at the point of standing it up, then I will make the decsion of VAWT or HAWT  The easiest part of this being staying with what I have (with a different genset at the heart and that will happen no matter what I use.)  It will give me time to get the shop built where I can use the jigs for making the tower to build the frame to hold a VAWT and I can experiment around with blade design, blade pitch, variable pitch blades, direct drive or geared drive, and be able to mount the whole she-bang in my redneck wind tunnel for testing (in the bed of the pickemup going down the road).
Of course, all of this makes a big assumption about the future.   Heck, I have to go with that assumption right now.   I have done pretty much all I can to prepare for the worst and I can’t sit stagnant awaiting what may or may not come down the road.  I ain’t gettin’ any younger. and if you think about it, designing and building a better moustrap is a further prep for the future.   This may end up being a point of income, or it could just be a one off for little ol me alone.   Depends on how it turns out, and depends on whether or not I can actually get it going.   Many many many variables ‘tween now and then. Like our world slowly doing a summersault with no idea where the landing zone is.  OF the variables I can control, power generation is one of them and I am trying to get as many different options as I can, while at the same time trying to maintain what I have. (and do it all while working a 40+ hour work week, single, and keep the parental unit satisfied that I am not completely off my cams.  Sad to say, I am going on 48 and my dad still rides me like a 13 year old punk, and I don’t even live under his roof!)
Any whoos, Yeah, this started as a bleg, but I changed my mind on that.   To many are in far worse shape than I and if I can’t scrounge what I need, I’ll figure something out.  I always do.

for those interested.
WINDBLUEPOWER     For the gensets I am planning on using in this and other projects.
A real VAWT system that doesn’t blow smoke.
REMNET.  
No affiliation with either and I recieve zero compensation from them.   (maybe I should approach some of these places,,,,,,, KIDDING!)

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6 responses

  1. Spud

    I can see some very positive advantage to a vertical axis. No commutator needed and also the use of three phase to transport the power. Both very much a positive ! Probably need a gearbox on this axis to enable high enough rpm for the alternator though. Which which tend to require larger blade area at low wind speeds.
    How do you plan on governing the max speed ? Friction brake ?

    July 20, 2016 at 1:27 pm

    • Thought about a simple ball governor to adjust angle of attack on the blades. High speed would have them nearly closed. Another option is using said governor and a cable actuated disc brake (I have a pair or three tucked back from dealing with bicycles ) OR just use the magnetic flux as a brake. Lot-o-options. Looking at ’em all but dwelling on the KISS principle as well .
      All of these alternator designs I am looking at use three legs for transfer. Cheaper wire to run as 12-2 is about 1/10th there cost of 4-0, as well as AC current doing better over distance than DC. Rectify it to DC at the battery stage, and use a MPPT and a dump load and all one need worry about is maintenance .

      July 20, 2016 at 5:57 pm

  2. Son of Flintlock

    Small wind as a sole source of electricity is a waste of money with solar being as cheap as it is now. A solar system would be a tiny fraction of the cost of a wind system that generates the same amount of electricity on an annual basis, and solar can do at least 10% of its sunny day production on an overcast day. Good luck getting comparable performance out of a wind system. Save the wind generator for use as a supplemental generator.

    July 20, 2016 at 11:38 pm

    • You are new here so I won’t rib you too much AND I didn’t specify in this post. The wind IS the suplimental power. Mostly to take advantage of the wind during the stormy season.

      July 21, 2016 at 5:10 am

      • Robert Dudley

        Also the sun don’t shine at night heh !

        July 21, 2016 at 12:12 pm

      • Damned good point, but the wind can blow anytime. And why I went with the hybrid (though I really really wanted to run microhydro, but my place doesn’t have a good enough stream for such)

        July 21, 2016 at 7:38 pm

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