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Very micro hydro - how to

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bourbon

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and of course the local council and EA will want a nice wedge to process the application. Putting a bit more in a brown envelope may make things go smoother
 

Ollie78

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There is a you tube guy who used his rain guttering to charge his phone I think its Quint builds or similar. It was quite interesting as he did several impeller designs to get more power.
I have seen a couple where they used old washing machines (direct drive ones ) to get quite good energy.

Ollie
 

Lard

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This is a topic I’ve wasted numerous hours pondering over. I came across this vid a while back and it’s well worth a watch…..makes you realise what can be done.

 

Tris

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In this situation it sounds like a simple ram pump lifting the water to a storage tank that then feeds a pelton wheel should do the trick. Think that's the setup Dick Strawbridge built. There used to be a system like that at the CAT in North Wales, perhaps they would be able to offer some advice
 

TobyT

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In this situation it sounds like a simple ram pump lifting the water to a storage tank that then feeds a pelton wheel should do the trick. Think that's the setup Dick Strawbridge built. There used to be a system like that at the CAT in North Wales, perhaps they would be able to offer some advice
 

Spectric

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Have you thought of making it a garden feature, a nice water wheel but that would require an upstream small pond. The wheel could be feed overhead or undershot, both have been used in mining over the years. Look at this for ideas Water wheel - Wikipedia.
 

Ozi

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Thanks for all the help her folks. I'm looking to try with an overshot wheel first just driving the alternator from my old car. Just a proof of concept, I won't need to build a dam or weir so dropping it in temp for an hour or so to measure the output before going for the proper permissions should be OK. Obviously I want to build cheap for a trial, could use wood but it would be nice to make something more durable and cheaper that can be tidied up if it is to become permanent later. To which end I'm looking for something like a plastic cable drum about a meter diameter, I know they exist, I have seen photos online. The design I have in mind involves running a V pulley with a root diameter of about 50mm against the rim to give a 20:1 ratio which should get me most of the way to the input speed I need for an alternator, I might need to add a 2:1 sprocket and chain drive as well depending on how fast I can get the wheel to turn.

Here's the cheeky bit - does anyone know where I can get something like that?
 

Jameshow

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Thanks for all the help her folks. I'm looking to try with an overshot wheel first just driving the alternator from my old car. Just a proof of concept, I won't need to build a dam or weir so dropping it in temp for an hour or so to measure the output before going for the proper permissions should be OK. Obviously I want to build cheap for a trial, could use wood but it would be nice to make something more durable and cheaper that can be tidied up if it is to become permanent later. To which end I'm looking for something like a plastic cable drum about a meter diameter, I know they exist, I have seen photos online. The design I have in mind involves running a V pulley with a root diameter of about 50mm against the rim to give a 20:1 ratio which should get me most of the way to the input speed I need for an alternator, I might need to add a 2:1 sprocket and chain drive as well depending on how fast I can get the wheel to turn.

Here's the cheeky bit - does anyone know where I can get something like that?
A 24" plywood cable reel would make a good hub for a waterwheel?

Perhaps channeling water over the top of it into buckets or past in a channel underneath it?

I suspect the former would give more torque???
 

Ozi

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A 24" plywood cable reel would make a good hub for a waterwheel?

Perhaps channeling water over the top of it into buckets or past in a channel underneath it?

I suspect the former would give more torque???
Not sure how to make the ply stand up to the water, wooden drums are certainly easier to find but I don't want to rebuild if I can avoid it. I may go down this route for the test if I can't find anything more durable.
 

tomlt

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There's a difference between micro and low head hydro. If you don't have a lot of pressure but reasonable flow (which it sounds like you do) look up crossflow devices. These are a bit like old cylinder mower blades and don't need more than about 1m of head. Traditional pelton/kaplan wheel arrangements need 10x that to be worthwhile.

All the best, Tom.
 

hairy

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I had a look a while ago. I seem to remember the extraction bit is to prevent disruption to wildlife so if you are doing it at a waterfall then the fish are already knackered with access and permission is more likely.

Using this man's super useful info I worked out for my tiny stream I might power a lightbulb for half the year! But I may still have a go with a washing machine motor off an underpass wheel at some point. The turbines from NZ he suggests are pricey. His site also is mostly about building your own wind turbine.

 

hairy

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Also, Advoko makes is perhaps worth a watch? How he made his water wheel is I think very clever (in an earlier vid).

 
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Jameshow

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Not sure how to make the ply stand up to the water, wooden drums are certainly easier to find but I don't want to rebuild if I can avoid it. I may go down this route for the test if I can't find anything more durable.
I'd use alloy lades mounted on the hub.

If it works you could make the hub out of alloy too..

Saves spending 000s on an untested design?
 

manicminer

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No, but I did see Dick Strawbridge on tv doing it once, the amount of elec from a very small stream was impressive. I seem to remember it was a constant 2 kW and of course you can do it again a little bit further down the hill. Ian
'Its not easy being green' was the programme you refer to. He used to run his Landrover on biodiesel too
 

Thingybob

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That TV programme must be available somewhere – it was really good, and it was done for people like you to copy the methods, I seem to remember that he diverted the flow slightly so that he had a good fall onto the wheel, as was just said fall rather than flow.
I remember that programme he built the wheel from plywood it was before he got the chateau so it was in England
 

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