Friday, October 5, 2012

Build Micro-hydro Generator: Final Assembly

1.      With scissors, cut the vinyl tubing into two small lengths, each 1 cm long.

2.      Slide the shaft into the plastic container through the hole in the stator. Inside the container, slide one piece of tubing onto the shaft.

3.      Position the turbine inside the container so the spoons face the neck of the bottle.

4.      Push the shaft through the turbine’s cork. Work the cork and the tubing down the shaft so the shaft comes out the other side of the container and projects by about 4 cm.

5.      Adjust the position of the turbine so the spoons line up with the neck of the container.

6.      Adjust the position of the tubing so that it comes close to but does not touch the inside of the container.

7.      Slide the second section of tubing over the end of the shaft as shown. The two pieces of tubing will help to keep all parts of the turbine positioned correctly when it spins. Spin the shaft to be sure it turns without binding, and that the turbine does not strike the inside of the container as it spins.

8.      Slide the rotor disk onto the shaft. Position it so that the magnets come to within 2 or 3 millimeters of the coils. Spin the shaft to be sure the magnets do not strike the coils.

The magnets should be close to, but not touching the coils as they turn.

9.      Check the rotor disk to see that it spins true. Turn the shaft slowly and note any wobble. Adjust the angle of the disk on the shaft as necessary.

10.   When the rotor disk spins without wobbling, fix it in position with hot glue applied to the point where the shaft passes through the reinforcing disks.

Reinforce the rotor disk with hot glue.


Test It!

If all has gone well with your construction, this turbine should be able to produce significant amounts of electricity, depending on the speed of the water striking the spoons.


1.      Place the neck of the plastic container under a faucet and turn on the water. The rotor should spin quickly!

2.       Connect your micro-hydro turbine to a multimeter and set the dial to read volts of alternating current. Measure the voltage generated by the operating turbine.

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