Craft & Design Energy & Sustainability
Bucket-borne hydroelectric generator

From the MAKE Flickr photo pool:

Pico Hydroelectric Generator in 5 gallon bucket developed by Sam Redfield and tested at La Florida in Guatemala. The generator is meant to be a very small, cheap, low impact generator designed to be used with existing gravity fed irrigation, fresh water, or waste water systems.

24 thoughts on “Bucket-borne hydroelectric generator

  1. Max says:

    Is there a web page with more info on this project? Are the coils implemented with wirewound resistors? clever! :)

  2. tim says:

    Yes, more details on construction would be wonderful!

  3. Leareth says:

    A quick google and I found a video of the inventor Sam Redfield explaining it. At least I hope… I have no speakers at ye’ work computer…

  4. Gareth Branwyn says:

    The folks who did are Couldn’t find much in the way of tech specifics poking around their site (which doesn’t mean it’s not there).

    There are more pics in their Flickr stream.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Slick design, but you can only get so much energy out of low head-pressure and low mass-flow hydro — I’d love to see the numbers.

  6. Cat Laine says:

    Hey folks,

    Cat Laine from AIDG here. Sam wrote up some more info on the system here on our blog:,com_jd-wp/Itemid,34/p,1136/

    He’s going to try to get me a parts list with some basic specs in the coming week. I’ll post the link here when he does.



  7. amanda says:

    I’ve been trying to get to’s website, with not much success. “this account has been suspended.” Doesn’t always mean it has been, but…

    Hope this comes back.

  8. Bailey Yordie says:

    I’d love to see plans for this.

  9. Bailey Yordie says:

    I’d love to see plans for this.

  10. Bailey Yordie says:

    I’d love to see plans for this.

  11. Bailey Yordie says:

    I’d love to see plans for this.

  12. Julian Keesee says:

    That would be great in a sewer pipe

Comments are closed.


Gareth Branwyn is a freelance writer and the former Editorial Director of Maker Media. He is the author or editor of over a dozen books on technology, DIY, and geek culture. He is currently a contributor to Boing Boing, Wink Books, and Wink Fun. And he has a new best-of writing collection and “lazy man’s memoir,” called Borg Like Me.

View more articles by Gareth Branwyn