Thread: Hawts and Vawts
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Old 09-24-10, 06:02 PM   #6
Big Al
Big Al
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Scotland
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Done a lot of reading since my last post (H.Piggott, and the back shed website-full of useful info.These antipodeans mean bizness !!-plus a lot of other websites).
In a maze of projects have at least gone as far as purchasing a Wind Predictor which I should have mounted on my 10 metre look-out tower this week. Things will then go quiet while I measure wind speeds for a month or two-at my age I don't build anything until I have checked out the potential !!
Am struck by the similarities between wind power and metal working (another hobby of mine ) in that the Americans get things done and are very unselfish in publishing helpful info. , the Aussies and Kiwis even more so , and in the UK we now seem to rely on commercial ventures with most inputs coming from people out to make a quick buck , and with very little practical experience . Hugh Piggott , and the Home Workshop site are among the few noble exceptions.
The Backshed site I found amazing , full of good advice , and full of projects producing real power using all the technology tricks you could imagine. However they seem to love Hawts much more than Vawts. I do think however that in the UK where we have less land than the "colonials" and where neighbours and the Nimby syndrome is so strong that Vawts may be the way to go . My reasons are:-

1. Vawts have a better defined footprint , in theory should n't need such high towers, and with a lower TSR (bad )have less chance of impaling a neighbour with an absconding blade(.Mainly good)

2. From my reading so far I'm not convinced that Hawt performance is that much better for the same horizontal footprint. Admittedly Vawts need a higher vertical profile to achieve this-however we do have in the UK as much air above us as the US, OZ and NZ.

3.Most of the objections to Vawts seem to be based on older technology and don't seem so applicable to helically bladed Vawts.

4. The BIG problem of effective electrical generation at lower speeds surely does nt apply to Vawts where the space under the bottom bearing can be used to make a large radius generator , albeit expensive on magnets, WITHOUT blocking the wind path , this space could also be used (altho I doubt I'm clever enuff ) for variable pitching and for centrifugally swithching in of extra, speed-limiting, coils . This again gets rid of a host of problems and is almost impossible to do with Hawts due to windpath blocking..

5.Hawts seem to have a long history of small wind DIY development , most of the new money seems to be going into more advanced Vawts.

Anyway , enuff of my prejudiced ramblings , got a Power predictor to install. Watch this space . While my PW logs data I'll keep reading and don't be surprised if my next post is a diatribe against Vawts !!!

Big Al

Last edited by Big Al; 09-24-10 at 06:17 PM..
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