Alright, let us be the first to congratulate you on getting this far. You’ve got the blades and hub of your turbine made and assembled together! Now it’s time to move on to build a wind turbine body for your project.
If you missed out on the first 3 parts you can get them here. And don’t forget to sign up for the 12-week program so you get weekly email instructions. After 3 months you’ll have a free energy producing wind turbine up and running.
OK, so back to how to build a wind turbine body. This part of the wind turbine connects everything together. It holds your blade and hub assembly at the front. The fin and counterweight at the back. And in the middle, it includes the pivot center to allow the turbine to rotate when the wind changes.
We’ll split this post up into 3 parts one for each of the parts and show you how to attach each to your body.
- Counter Weight (We’ll cover the fin design in another post)
- The blade and hub assembly
- Pivot center.
First, we’ll discuss what to use for the actual body of the wind turbine and how to design it. Like the hub for attaching the blades, you want this part to be strong. It’ll hold all the parts that will experience the brunt forces of the wind. So we recommend making it out of wood. You can also use metal if you are comfortable with metal work. Although this will make the turbine heavier and harder for the winds to move.
Even a simple 600mm block of wood, like the one shown below, is the perfect simple design to get the job done. It has the generator mounted to the front and the counterweight mounted to the back. In the center, you can see a piece of plumbing equipment with a long bolt screwed into it that acts as the pivot center. Granted it’s not the best-looking design but it’s strong, sturdy in the wind and best of all, dirt cheap.
Blade and hub assembly
Now let’s look at each of the 3 body components separately. We’ll start with the bracket used to mount the generator to the body. Most of the small generator you can buy online come with threaded holes on the outside to make it easy to attach it to things using bolts. Then buying 2 simple L-brackets (one for each side) like the one shown below which can be found in your local hardware store is a great way to attach your generator to your body using bolts or screws.
If you still have to purchase a generator check out this resource list to see the ones we suggest you buy and if you missed how to attach your blades to a hand and then to the generator check out this post on the subject here.
For the pivot center, all you need are two pieces of hardware that you can easily get in your hardware store. Make sure the plumbing valve or joint you buy has a threaded section for the bolt and a wall mounting to attach it to the body. The image below shows the plumbing joint you can use to attach the long bolt to. The bolt can be screwed into it and then be inserted into a pole used to lift the turbine up into the air. We’ll discuss this further in another post.
Finally, you need a counterweight for the back of the body to offset the weight of the blades and stop the body from tipping over. If you have some old weights lying around you can easily bolt these to the top or bottom of the back of the body. We suggest bolting the weights to the bottom of the body to leave room for the fin. An even easier solution to this is to use a bottle of sand or gravel and some water. This can then be cable tied to the back of the body and there you have it your wind turbine body is ready.