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Windmill 4

V-belt pulley windmill

(Click to enlarge photo)

Installed after the bike-wheel machine at the same location, this time much stronger and with a v-belt drive (v-belt losses were not an issue for this application because of the strong winds). Still not strong enough though, it did not survive what was considered to be the worst storm for twenty years just a couple of weeks after it was installed! Often luck is against you when installing a wind machine, either the wind drops and the machine can't be tested for weeks, or there's a ridiculous storm that nobody predicted. I know it isn't really true but sometimes that's how it makes you feel. This machine had a 1.2m diameter propeller which has become my size of choice. Propeller diameter is a trade-off between grabbing as much power as possible for the cost of the machine versus its weakness due to size. I tend to favour solidly made propellers (see Windmill propellers) that will have a long life-expectancy as a trade-off against some aero-dynamic quality. Price per Watt is always the dictating factor as far as I am concerned.


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