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Improvised DC generator from old gas edger


Mike Davis built this DC generator from an old lawn edger and a permanent magnet DC motor. He writes:

The inspiration behind this generator was to have a way to charge up my battery banks on days when the weather is cloudy and calm, when my solar panels and wind turbine aren’t providing much energy. It was a really quick, easy and cheap project. I got the lawn edger for only $5 at a yard sale. The permanent magnet motor came from an auction for another $5. The total cost of the project was only a little over $20! So far I have the output of the generator up to 10 Amps at 12 Volts. Further tinkering may improve that. My eventual goal is to convert the generator to running on wood gas from my biomass gasifier project.

Mike’s website has a bunch of really cool projects on it, like the above-mentioned gasifier.

My Improvised DC Generator Build

6 thoughts on “Improvised DC generator from old gas edger

  1. Shadyman says:


    Even better, how about an old lawn tractor with the cutting blades removed and replaced with a car alternator or three? :D

  2. Simon says:

    Cool! Mike’s home made turbine is one of the main ones that inspired me to make my own jet engine 10 years ago! Am just reading up on the gasifier now.

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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.

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