DIY Wind Turbine Charges Batteries

If you use rechargeable batteries on a regular basis, you might want to brush up on your DIY skills for a new project we recently came across on the Hack a Day blog that harnesses wind power using easy-to-find materials.

Dubbed the Mini Mill and first posted on The Back Shed, a site about at-home renewable hobbies, the device can power an LED or any small light bulb, and can charge a pair of NiCad batteries in around 10 hours. Using long, slender wind blades, the Mini Mill is able to gather wind from a variety of directions.

Mini Mill, DIY, Wind Power

image via The Back Shed

The entire set-up can be built using some PVC pipe, plywood, two full wave bridge rectifiers, a 63-volt capacitor, a 5-watt resistor, some hookup wire, and a square stepper motor that might be found in an old computer printer.

The construction instructions, including assembly and electrical work, are available online in three steps, although there are realistically over a dozen different tasks that need to be performed in order to complete the project, which the site suggests could take up a couple lazy afternoons.

Aaron Colter is a freelance writer and marketing consultant in Portland, Oregon. A graduate of Purdue University, he has worked for the NCAA, Dark Horse Comics, Willamette Week, AOL, The Huffington Post, Top Shelf Productions, DigitalTrends, theMIX agency, SuicideGirls, EarthTechling, d'Errico Studios and others. He is also the co-founder of BananaStandMedia.com, a free record label, recording studio, and distribution service for independent musicians.