Alternative Energy Sources For The Homestead Part Two – Wind Power

M.D. Creekmore

I've been interested in self-reliance topics for over 25 years. I’m the author of four books that you can find here. Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about prepping, homesteading, and self-reliance topics through first-hand experience and now I want to share what I’ve learned with you.

12 Responses

  1. JP in MT says:

    I also hope our property has a stream flow, so we can add a water wheel to the power system.

    • Thor1 says:

      JP, you could breed hamsters and put them in a hamster treadmill with an electric motor to charge a
      battery.Then if they die from exhaustion you could eat them……….LOL

      That solves food and power……LOL

      You could even cook them with the power they generated…. How mean…..a means to an end. LOL

    • JP,

      I also hope our property has a stream flow, so we can add a water wheel to the power system.

      Our property has a stream; but, the amount of head and flow rate varies with the time of year. We are looking into a small (3-4 foot dam to keep a more predictable flow; but, then will still have to use a low head system like a DIY micro hydro system you can find numerous places on the web.
      While I do not think most people will find a single way to provide all of their electric power and other energy requirements, a little from multiple resources can probably do the trick while removing single point of failure problems at the same time. I can power my entire house from our generator as long as I have propane and the maintenance kits to service the generator. To help sustain the propane we can heat with both wood and a bit with solar in winter. In summer, hanging clothing on the line outside to dry, saves energy use from the clothes dryer whether it is from our local cooperative or our generator. My plan for micro hydro solar and wind is similar in that I can collect a little energy from multiple sources and keep batteries charged for later use.

  2. Thor1 says:

    I have an automotive alternator in a Faraday cage just in case I need to make a wind generator. I have seen videos were people have also used treadmill motors for generators. If the lights go out I’d have to say bye bye treadmill, provided its still good…..LOL

    • Thor1,

      I have an automotive alternator in a Faraday cage just in case I need to make a wind generator. I have seen videos were people have also used treadmill motors for generators. If the lights go out I’d have to say bye bye treadmill, provided its still good…..LOL

      First of all, I think the alternator would be fine sitting on the table and the motor might be OK if the treadmill is not plugged into the mains power wall socket.
      Another thing you can do for the alternator is to keep some spare diodes wrapped in aluminum foil, assuming you know how to change them, since they would be the only things damaged in a HEM: or other non mechanical system problem.

      • Thor1 says:

        TOP, I do know how to change diodes, but the IC regulator would also be damaged. I have rebuilt alternators before and used an antistatic table………

        Jack of all trades master of some……LOL

        • Thor1,

          TOP, I do know how to change diodes, but the IC regulator would also be damaged. I have rebuilt alternators before and used an antistatic table………

          I don’t like to assume; but, I’m not surprised. In that case, then you would also need the regulator assembly wrapped in the foil with the diodes. You’ll also probably need some way to solder using propane or butane.

          Jack of all trades master of some……LOL

          Same here. I too often hear this used as an epithet, meaning someone who hasn’t accomplished anything; but, I certainly don’t see the meaning that way. In fact, that description was once called a Renaissance Man

  3. BullDogBeau says:

    Thank You for great information. Great reference when the time comes to start my off grid homestead.

  4. Jess says:

    Dunno if anyone has considered this, or if many people live in areas where it could work, but here in the pacific northwest, there’s a lot of rain. Has anyone tried making a water-wheel using roof runoff? When the sun’s out, solar will cover you, and usually if the sun isn’t out there’s rain…
    I have no idea if this would work on any practical level.

    • Thor1 says:

      Jess, I thought of something similar. A generator/pump in the main waterline, that charges a battery as you use water.

      I can imagine using it and the power level drops of and you say……hey honey go flush the toilet so I can watch the rest of the news…..LOL

    • Jess,

      Dunno if anyone has considered this, or if many people live in areas where it could work, but here in the pacific northwest, there’s a lot of rain. Has anyone tried making a water-wheel using roof runoff?

      Here in Ohio we’ve been deluged with rain this spring and early summer and while the output would be a bit spotty, a small micro hydro setup could add to the mix, from controlled roof runoff. I don’t think any one of these will likely provide all of your needs; but, multiple energy sources combined could certainly help. I mention this in an earlier comment regarding use of a stream on one’s property.

  5. Unfortunately, you may also face legal hurdles in some locations, especially if you are close to a city. The most common restrictions are height limitations and mandated distance between a tower and a building or property line. In some instances, you might even need to get consent from your neighbors.

    This article assumes the traditional and least efficient type of wind turbine. While sticking the blade high in the air can in some cases intercept better and higher speed air flow, at my location and others in our area, the ground wind can be strong and constant. I’ve experimented with vertical axis windmills (Savonius rotor) and they can be superior to traditional rotor systems in both efficiency and simplicity.
    When the traditional rotor is facing into the wind and the wind direction changes, the rotors slows, the vane and guide system redirects the Nacelle into the windw at which point the blades have to some back up to speed.
    In a vertical axis system, nothing moves and wind blowing from any direction simply add to the energy turning the rotor.