That’s a whole month since Henry that we’ve been without a wind turbine!!! Sure we’ve missed its regular swish, well more like a helicopter out the back door really. Funny how your perspective of things alter to suit hey, pretty sure if it was some one else who had a turnip out side my back door I’d be moaning about the racket Seriously the more noise it makes the better as far as I’m concerned as it’s producing more juice. Not that we’ve actually been that short of power whilst it was out of action, the house is still warm, the washing machine running and ‘The Voice’ on TV Luckily I know have an office I can retire to and shut the door.
Below is a table of the energy generated in kWh by each turbine and the solar panels. The wind turbine died during the night of the 1st. The total generation is the red column and the hours of diesel generator the last column, even without the wind turbine the Lister only ran for 10 hours during the whole month. OK, it wasn’t particularly cold and our son is at the hostel during the week but that’s pretty ‘damn fine splendid’ if you ask me.
Having said that, I think we were lucky and wind is a pretty essential piece of the mix, especially at this time of year when demand is normally high and solar pretty poor.
The Proven/Kingspan core
So, when the new stator, or core as Kingspan Wind prefer to call it did arrive I couldn’t wait to get it fitted, sadly it proved far from straight forward.
The first thing I noticed was that the new core was 5mm thicker than the old one. This meant that if I fitted the rotor ‘as is’ then it would foul the stator. The ‘air gap’ between the rear rotor and stator was 4mm (that part of the stator/core being identical). Theory told me that I therefore needed to pack out the old rotor by 5mm to compensate, so I started searching around for some 5mm steel. Couldn’t find any 5mm, but I did find some just over 3mm and some just over 2mm.
The thinner piece on the left being some Land Rover rear cross member and the 3mm plus bit part of a ‘wheelie bin stand.
Having made two washers I then fitted the stator to the turbine head, or at least I tried to, the new one needs a deeper cut making into the head to allow the cable lug to fit in that slot. Now fitting this 40kg lump whilst stood on the back of a quad is hard enough to start with. You have to line up six long studs whilst all the while ensuring you do not trap your fingers between the core and EXTREMELY strong magnets!! Of course once it’s in position and you have to remove it without damaging the delicate core it becomes even trickier, especially perched on the back of a quad.
The yellow marker indicating the metal that required removing for the core/stator to sit correctly into the head.
Once that was very carefully done with a 100mm grinder fitted with a 1mm cutting disc I refitted the core properly. Take heed of the oak wedges that I made, these proved invaluable during the whole process.
With the core nicely but not too tightly secured to the head I commenced what turned out to be the first of three trial fittings of the outer rotor.
I had to remove the rotor, again whilst stood on the back of the quad and sand the washers down by 1mm on a belt sander.
Once I’d got the rear ‘air gap’ the same as the forward ‘air gap’ I finally refitted the rotor with Loctite 638 on the shaft and Loctite 222 on the threads of the retaining bolt.
That done, the next job was to fit some new ‘yaw rollers’, these are supplied in kit form by Kingspan Wind http://www.kingspanenviro.com/kingspan-wind at half the price that the old Proven Energy used to charge. Again the oak wedges I made proved invaluable.
By 15:00 on the second day she was up and ‘flying’,
OK, more of a gentle ‘glide’ than actually making any meaningful amounts of power but ‘hey ho’ that’s the way it goes. Looks like we may get some wind on Wednesday.