This $30 Wind Turbine Is Made from Bike Parts and Discarded Aluminum

Energy & Sustainability Science
This  Wind Turbine Is Made from Bike Parts and Discarded Aluminum

Editorial note: This is one of the many cool projects to come out of the POC21 conference where 100 eco- hackers gathered in a french castle to brainstorm ways to improve the world.

$30 wind turbine SKY2

What do you get when you combine new research, a scrappy attitude, and the desire to create free and clean renewable energy? This great $30 vertical axis wind turbine (wooden tower not included). This year at POC21 Daniel Connell built a new dual post version of his design that has a small footprint and big output. If you have a spare bike wheel, 30 bucks, and want to reduce your ecological impact, then check out this great open source project.

$30 wind turbine ASSEMBLE

With a build time of 6 hours between two people, Daniel’s design of a Lenz2 turbine is the perfect weekend eco-project. The Lenz2 turbines boast an awesome 40% mechanical efficiency at the shaft, and can be built almost entirely from upcycled reclaimed materials. The vanes of the turbine are made using discarded aluminum offset printing plates, which you can get for cheap (or free) from your local offset printing company. Let’s get building this weekend and make some power! Be sure to check out the construction tutorial animation in step 2 — it walks you through the entire build process in just six and a half minutes.

$30 wind turbine CARRY

Once you’ve built this project, you can use it directly to pump water or air, run a cooling system, or use it to charge a battery through a generator. Daniel’s focus on upcycled reclaimed materials makes his design affordable and accessible to all.

Find the entire $30 windmill project with steps on Instructables.


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Michael Floyd is a creative director and sustainability consultant. As Marketing Lead for Autodesk's Making for Impact program, his work supports and amplifies the positive environmental and social impact of the global maker community. Originally from the US, he has been a Londoner for seven years

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