DC Wind Turbine Motors on eBay – BEWARE
DIY Wind Turbines have become very popular items in the past year. We have DIY plans for both horizontal axis wind turbines (HAWT) and vertical axis wind turbines (VAWT) on this site. And yes, in the beginning we recommended people take a look on eBay for used DC Motors to use in their DIY Wind Turbines.
Unfortunately, as the demand for DC Motors has increased, so has the supply “of inappropriate” motors. A quick search on eBay for “wind turbine motor” returns many potential items. However, in my latest scan of the motors listed, I did not see any that would work properly in a DIY wind turbine!
Your homemade wind turbine, will likely produce around 500 rpm in average winds. You will not be producing 1000+ rpm as several “vendors” trying to sell inappropriate motors on eBay would tell you.
Pay attention to the maximum RPMs of the motor. You want a motor with the best voltage output and the LOWEST RPMs. Try to get a motor that will produce 1 volt for every 25 rpm. If a motor is rated as 130VDC with a top RPM of 5100, then divide 5100 by 130 = 39.2 … you get 1 volt output for every 39.2 rpm. This motor will not produce enough voltage to charge a 12V battery (15-16V is required) until you get very strong winds.
TLG Wind Power Products produced a guide for Ametek DC Motors. This guide compares the various Ametek modules, listing their voltage, RPM, Amps and suitability for use in a DIY Wind Turbine. They very specifically advise against the purchase of an Ametek 38 model, which I found today on eBay – where the seller claims that it’s a very good motor for wind turbines! Buyer beware.
Know what specifications you need and don’t believe anyone who claims the motor they want to sell you, “is perfect for wind turbines”.
Filed under: Wind Turbines