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05-12-2013 02:40 PM  6 years ago
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Bouchah

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Willow Spring, N. Carolina USA

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Generating power with a creek
We recently moved to a piece of land with a creek running through it. For some reason I have this desire to generate power from the creek by means of a wheel like they used at saw mills years ago. The creek is not that wide, maybe 2' so it sohuldnt be too hard to bottleneck it to get the most RPM out of the available energy. I have no experience with this sort of project, just thought it would be cool to try. I dont even know what I will use the generated power for!

Here is what I have, A creek, several 6v 10 AH rechargeable batteries from emergency lights, a DC motor to create the power.

Has anyone messed with such a project, what did you do with the power that was created, use it as DC or invert it to AC? Any helpful tips?
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05-12-2013 03:05 PM  6 years ago
Machinehead01

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Lower Michigan

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Sorry to say this but, you may need to check....
With your local DNR(Department of Natural Resources) to see if there is anything against it first. Most natural waterways cannot be obstructed without permission. To do so, could lead to having to tear it all back out and return the landscape back to normal, or at worst have to do all that with some fines added as well.

My 2 cents

Tom
"You judge according to the flesh; I am not judging anyone."
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05-13-2013 03:27 AM  6 years ago
NZ_Neil

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Auckland, New Zealand

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Watch this YouTube on how to do it.

Watch at YouTube

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05-13-2013 03:16 PM  6 years ago
spaceman spiff

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Tucson

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Do you have any significant difference from the highest point of the creek to the lowest on your property? You may need to create some aount of water pressure (using pipes) to operate a generator. The bigger that difference in altitude is the better your potential energy is...
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05-13-2013 04:31 PM  6 years ago
Bouchah

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Willow Spring, N. Carolina USA

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I wouldnt say there is a big difference. I thought I may need to narrow the creek so more water would flow past the wheel.

After reading what Machine head commented about Im not sure if I would be able to modify the flow of the creek at all, I will have to check into it.
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05-13-2013 04:38 PM  6 years ago
helimatt

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Lafayette, IN

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If you have a flow 1 meter delta height, traveling 1 m/s, size of .5 meter wide and .3 meter deep for example, and 30% efficiency in the wheel/generator system, you can get 440 watts power. I don't think you'll get even that but scale linearly to suit your actual creek size and flow. I got the formulation from Wiki, and its for turbine flow so takes into account the stream flow velocity.

In short, the little creek won't do very much but it might be a fun experiment.
Never, ever, ever, ever give up.
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