Voltmeter placement

55 Posts
Apr 3, 2011 09:47 pm
Voltmeter placement

I have just completed a DIY Wind Gen. I am double checking myself but if I wanted to check the output voltage I would place my volt meter on the gen side of the diode and then the negative. Correct.
220 Posts
Apr 3, 2011 10:07 pm
Re: Voltmeter placement

sounds good max,
nice way to see where our mill is "cutting in" too. we will see the voltage rise as the wind picks up then stops climbing just a hair above the battery voltage as the battery bank locks the wind turbine at it's voltage.

cut in = the speed where the voltage of the mill and battery match.. a good speed here is about 7-8mph wind speed.

cheers, dave
99 Posts
Apr 4, 2011 05:03 pm
Re: Voltmeter placement

By DIY, do you mean you built it yourself, or you installed it yourself? 

Some commercial units come with charge controllers which have voltage compensation, i.e they step up the voltage from what is actually produced in order to make it productive in lower wind speeds.  My Bergey XL.1 does this.  When the wind speed is low, the green LED blinks, indicating voltage compensation.  When the wind is strong enough, the green LED is solid, indicating sufficient voltage.  So in that case, if you wanted to check the output voltage, you'd have to know whether you want the raw output voltage or the battery charging voltage.

Since you mention a diode, I assume that this is a home-built turbine and the diode is used to convert AC from the stator to direct current for battery charging.  In that case, then if you want the raw pre-diode voltage, you need to use an AC voltmeter.  To measure the battery charging DC output, then you would use a DC voltmeter on the battery side of the diode.  BTW, a bridge rectifier would be better than a diode for converting to DC.  With a diode, you only capture half of the power (the positive half of the AC wave), whereas a rectifier captures the full output.
55 Posts
Apr 5, 2011 09:38 pm
Re: Voltmeter placement

I have available to me two DC motors. One is up the pole and one in reserve. I in a moment of poor judgement bought one of those Ebay 70$ wind gens and it was blown in 9mo.
I reused the main body and several other parts that I had gotten to keep the original wind motor going. IE 2nd set of blades,40A diode.On the bench at 700 RPM it produces 8V 8A but at near 2000RPM it produces 13.7 10A. I have not done the math but I have a 3 blade set up and the blades are 1ft long. I think in the higher wind days here in the upper midwest I might be able to get the RPM's needed to charge. We had storms over the weekend with gust's up to 45 MPH and it is still intact. We will see.

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