Wind Turbine

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About: Hi! I am a high school student interested in pursuing an engineering career. My favorite design programs are AutoCAD and Inventor. I hold my school's record for most efficient bridge design in West Point Bri...

Intro: Wind Turbine

Hello everyone! In this Instructable, I will be guiding you through the construction of a Model Wind Turbine made out of recycled or easily accessible parts. It will be able to produce around 1.5 volts and automatically adjust itself so it is always facing the direction the wind is blowing.

Step 1: Materials

  • Wood Base
  • Piano Wire
  • .5in Dowel
  • Thin Balsa Wood
  • DC Motor
  • .25*.5in Balsa Wood
  • DVD
  • Thin Foam
  • Matching Big and Small Gear
  • Gear the size of a DVD Hole opening
  • Hot Glue Gun
  • Multimeter
  • Alligator Clips

Step 2: Base & Tower

1. Cut 40cm of a dowel.

2. Mark the center of the piece of wood you plan to be the base.

3. Use a Hammer to drive a long nail through the base (The nail should have a flat head)

4. Drill a hole about the same size as the nail into one side of the dowel with the hole as deep as the nail is long.

5. Put the dowel onto the screw.

6. Hot Glue the dowel to the base.

*Drilling the hole before putting the dowel onto the screw prevents the dowel from cracking

7. Drill a hole slightly bigger than the piano wire that is 0.5in deep on the other side of the dowel in the center.

*This piece just made is called the tower of the turbine

Step 3: Tail Boom & Vane

1. Cut 15cm of a dowel.

2. Drill a hole the size of the piano wire 4cm away from one end through the 15cm dowel.

3. Drill a hole the size of the piano wire in the center of the dowel on the same side that is 3cm deep.

4. Hot Glue the 1in Piano Wire in the hole that is 4cm from the end of the dowel.

5. Slide the other end of the piano wire into the hole on the top of the tower

*A freely rotating joint has been created.

6. Cut a tail approximately 12 by 5cm out of the thin balsa sheet for the tail vane. (I reused part of a wing from a model airplane that broke)

7. Hot Glue the tail vane to the long end of the tail boom.

*After completing the end of the build if your tail boom is leaning forward you can balance it by adding play-doh or ballast to the end of the tail vane-like I did

Step 4: Generator

1. Cut 2.5in of Piano wire and insert it into the hole on the front end of the tail boom.

*This creates another free rotating joint

2. Connect the small gear to the axle on the motor and put the matching big gear on the piano wire axle and hot glue the second gear to the axle but not the axle to the wood.

3. Hot Glue your DC Motor to the front of the short end of the tail boom. (I used a motor that I got from a Stereo Cassette Deck but any DC Motor will work)

*You may need to add a piece of wood underneath the motor so the gear on the front of your motor properly touches the big gear

Step 5: Blades

1. Lay a DVD on a flat surface.

2. Mark at points at each third of the DVD's Circumference

3. Cut three .25*.5*1in pieces of Wood

4. Glue the Pieces of Wood at each third of the DVD so the edge of the wood touches the edge of the DVD

5. Cut three 5/16*4*6in of foam (I got my foam from furniture packaging)

*Thin balsa wood can be used as an alternative to foam

6. Hot Glue the foam to the DVD where one corner is on top of a wood piece and the other is touching the base of the next wood piece.

6. Hot Glue a gear to the back of the DVD to work as an adapter to connect the DVD to the wire.

7. Hot Glue the gear to the piano wire axle.

What should happen by now is if you turn the blades than the axle will rotate which means the big gear rotates and that rotates the small gear connected to the motor

Step 6: Electricity

1. To measure the voltage output of your wind turbine connect 2 alligator clips to the metal ends of your motor.

2. Connect the other ends of the clips to the probes of your multimeter

3. Turn the dial of your multimeter to the same settings as in the picture above.

Step 7: Final Touches

- Add something heavy to the base to prevent to prevent the turbine from getting knocked over in heavier winds

-Decorate :)

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    2 Discussions

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    Dhruv BatraJf NicholsC

    Answer 6 months ago

    I suppose you could connect the alligator clips to a USB car charger and connect the charger to a power bank.