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How to Build a Windmill

Abhijit Naik
A windmill is a structure used to harness wind energy in order to generate power. Windmills were initially used to power mills in order to grind grains or pump water from wells. Of late though, wind turbines, which are advanced versions of windmills, are being utilized to generate electricity.

Why Make Your Own Windmill?

Wind energy, which was being overlooked since a long time, has today become an important source of power generation. Owing to the fact that it is environment friendly, many people are choosing it as an alternative source to non-renewable sources of energy. Other advantages of wind energy include its cost-effectiveness and abundant availability.
Contrary to what many people believe, it's possible to build your own windmill to harness this clean source of energy to suit your requirements. Though ready-made windmills are available in the market, they can cost you a fortune. On the other hand, making one on your own can help you save your hard-earned money.

How to Build a Windmill on Your Own?

The blades of your windmill can be either made of plastic or wood. Owing to its capacity to withstand strong winds, the PVC plastic sewer pipe is an ideal material to make the blades of a windmill. Make sure that you apply a coat of UV-resistant paint to protect them from the sun.
Mark the outline of the blade on the pipe and cut it. After cutting you can brush-up its edges with a sandpaper. The hub of the windmill is the part that connects the blades and DC motor. It is important that the diameter of the hub is equal to the diameter of the motor for smooth functioning of the windmill.
To connect the blades to the hub, you will require a pulley measuring 6 inches in diameter, a shaft equal to the diameter of the motor, and short pieces of 1/4-inch steel measuring 12 inches in length and 2 inches in width.
To create the assembly of the wind generator blade, you will require a 48-inch long and 6-inch thick PVC pipe. Make sure that the pulley fits on the DC motor shaft properly, so that the assembly can spin the motor. Use a drilling machine to drill a hole through the shaft and pulley, and attach the two using a nut bolt.
In order to figure out the distance to be left between two blades, measure the circumference of the hub and divide the same by three. Attach the wind generator assembly to the top of the tower using a piece of ABS pipe that can accommodate the DC motor. Use a piece of wood to fill the blade assembly such that the shaft extends out from it.
Lastly, insert the entire motor in a protective casing on the tower. Make a tail using a strong metal and attach it to the assembly with the help of a drilling machine. You can attach a pilot vane, to keep your windmill safe during strong winds.
The most important thing is installing a controller between the battery storage and windmill. In the absence of controller, the batteries will get overcharged and eventually damage the windmill. Buy a good quality inverter and attach it to the windmill to send alternating current (AC) to your home.
With a windmill in your backyard, you will be able to save a considerable chunk of your income that you would otherwise spend on paying electricity bills. Several households across the country have adopted this idea. If you haven't done it yet, it's high time you do. It would be beneficial for you as well as the environment.