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post #1 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-03-2016, 21:47 Thread Starter
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Wind Generators

I'm looking for a 'northern European' supplement to my existing solar panels, but before I go down the Honda Generator route I wondered if anyone here uses a wind turbine, and if so how do you mount it, how effective is it and what make/model?

I'm considering a Rutland 914i - any opinions??

There are several reasons for considering this instead of a petrol Generator - noise, price, theft, and carrying a limited quantity of a different type of fuel are just a few - I'd like to live comfortably off-grid for extended periods and not have to rely on an EHU when we tour the Scottish Isles, Ireland and Scandinavia in (hopefully) a few months.

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post #2 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-03-2016, 22:10
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Wind turbines are not that popular on M/Hs and I understand that the main reason is because of the noise they generate - probably more than will be generated by a well silenced generator. I have seen them being used in the past, a few years ago we had a member who used one all the time - but no-one would park near him if the wind was blowing.

It may be a practical proposition if you tend to camp alone but you really need to mount it isolated from the body of the van as the vibration from it will transmit through the van body.

They're very popular with the boating fraternity but they don't have to worry about the neighbors - and the wind blows a bit more consistently on the open water.

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post #3 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-03-2016, 22:19 Thread Starter
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I have heard that the vibration and noise is bad, but I thought maybe a modern high quality marine type maybe rubber mounted might be acceptable - otherwise I'd have a go at making one but that's bound to keep everyone awake! I don't remember hearing anything from turbines at the marina, but then again I wasn't thinking of getting one then.

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post #4 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-03-2016, 23:43
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Stand near a marina and you will get the oppurtunity to hear them buzz.

HAve you looked at the Gas generators ?

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post #5 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-03-2016, 08:59
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I also can confirm, they can be very noisy, and it is not a constant noise. As the wind comes and goes the noise alters, making it very obvious and annoying!
Maybe OK if you are parked miles from anywhere, but not nice for any next door van.
We also have a Honda Geny, but hardly ever use it
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post #6 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-03-2016, 09:24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gordonm View Post
I have heard that the vibration and noise is bad, but I thought maybe a modern high quality marine type maybe rubber mounted might be acceptable - otherwise I'd have a go at making one but that's bound to keep everyone awake! I don't remember hearing anything from turbines at the marina, but then again I wasn't thinking of getting one then.
I have been sailing for 25 years and I can assure you there is noise outside the boat, but as Gaspode said the MH will resonate to the vibrations - like a sound box, like boats do, but a boat's hull probably gets some vibration damping effect from the water which would not apply to a MH body, so it could be a bigger problem.

One solution could be to have it mounted on a pole detached from the MH, but it would need to be well stayed. This might fall foul of rules on campsites and Aires and require set-up time, which might not be convenient if one moves frequently like us.

Geoff
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post #7 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-03-2016, 09:40
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There are available vertical axis wind generators.
Supposed to be much quieter and less vibrations.

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post #8 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-03-2016, 09:50
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I did it a while ago. No problems due to vibrations or noise. The problem was dirty wind. For clean wind you need to be in open country and preferably on a hill, pretty much exactly where you don't want to park your motorhome. https://forums.motorhomefacts.com/49-...rbine-van.html
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post #9 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-03-2016, 11:28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by erneboy View Post
I did it a while ago. No problems due to vibrations or noise. The problem was dirty wind. For clean wind you need to be in open country and preferably on a hill, pretty much exactly where you don't want to park your motorhome. https://forums.motorhomefacts.com/49-...rbine-van.html
Alan

Great stuff, I like it. Mainly because the mast set-up gets rid of to of the drawbacks I noted above; namely, vibration and secondly it makes minimal infringement outtside the MH footprint when on a site pitch or Aire, so probably would not attract attention/objections.

It also gets around the problem of staying a free-standing pole on hardstanding.

I suppose one could attch some metal mesh to the underside of the foot frame to resist it digging in on soft ground and lso help driving off if the rig were placed under a driving wheel.

Unfortunately some of the links in your other post about fitting it did not work, so I was not able to look at the manufacturer's website. But it was the 'anchoring' of the mast under the wheel which made me think that I might consider one, especially since we do like wilding on hills

It is a pity boats do not have wheels

Thanks again.

Geoff

Last edited by nicholsong; 06-03-2016 at 11:33.
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post #10 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-03-2016, 11:47
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That post and those links are now nearly 7 years old, it seems that Southwest Wind Power went bust Geoff: http://www.irecusa.org/2013/05/what-...st-wind-power/

Plenty of other generators will be available and by now there may even be a good vertical axis one to do your job. A vertical one will cope better with dirty wind and they are quieter and less bulky though when I last looked (years ago) they weren't as efficient as horizontal axis turbines. Vertical would be a lot better if you can find a suitable one I think. Maybe like this one: http://www.ebay.com/itm/Vertical-axi...-/111744307743

I'd caution against using a very small turbine because even though they may claim 2, 3 or 5 amps or whatever, that is at maximum output. The output figure will quickly drop off if wind speeds aren't sufficient to drive it flat out and they rarely are. There will be a graph showing how it drops off, I 'd be inclined to consider the output at say 10mph or so.

Anderson connectors are available on Ebay.co.uk but here's what they are like. http://www.amazon.com/SB-50A-Connect...son+connectors

The main thing is that they can handle the power, are easy to connect and disconnect and small enough that they can be pushed down the middle of the mast with the cable (which is also substantial) attached.
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