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Old 02-22-2021, 06:48 PM   #1
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Wind power supplementation

Hi all, I am new to the forums, and am awaiting a September delivery. I live in the southwest, so naturally I have planned the maximum solar options along LiFePO batteries. But I have been noticing a trend in wind power supplementation filtering down to the boondockers. I wonder if anyone here has attempted supplementing with wind or hydro power, and would be interested in pursuing a discord on same.
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Old 02-22-2021, 06:54 PM   #2
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Not sure I would want to camp in a wind tunnel. Don't mind sunlight though.
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Old 02-22-2021, 07:28 PM   #3
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A number of years ago, we were camped near a very creative and interesting fellow.
Among other things, he had a large lazy Susan sort of device on the roof of his bus conversion. His solar panels were mounted on the lazy Susan. Now and then, he operated a pulley to rotate the panels so they were pointed at the sun.
He also had a wind turbine. Talked to him about that. The downsides were the noise it made when the wind was blowing strong, plus the required equipment was heavy and bulky. More of a novelty solution than a practical one.

There was no convenient flowing water where we were camped so I guess that ruled out the hydroelectric option.
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Old 02-22-2021, 07:53 PM   #4
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Search for RV wind turbine

I did awhile ago. The article I saw, the person had a 400W or so turbine with his rig. It was a PITA to set up (you need a tower, taller the better) and mounting it all was not quick or easy. And yes, the noise can be an issue. Storage space for the turbine and tower ate up useful storage/travel space. He tried it and gave it up.

400 watts in a 28 mph wind. Not impressive, except for the needed wind blowing like the dickens. Reduce that wind speed by 1/2 to a nice zephyr of 14 mph and you get 100 watts or less.

Hydro? Even more limited than a wind turbine in usage, unless you know a sweet spot. Much more compact than a wind generator, but very, very site specific. Boondocking in the Nevada desert? Good luck with that one.

You want more juice? Get more portable solar panels.


https://rvlifestyle.com/experiment-p...-wind-turbine/
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Old 02-22-2021, 08:44 PM   #5
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Solar........or get one of these

Some folks swear by them...or at them.
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Old 02-23-2021, 09:12 AM   #6
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Shortly after we moved into our home in 2006 my “neighbor” on the other end of our development put up a wind turbine. Not a big thing and sits about 1100 feet from us. When the wind is out of the east and it’s quiet at night I can easily hear it spinning. It is barely noticeable at this distance. Probably more so to the owner and the closer neighbors. I never talked to him about the output. If a little breeze is good a little more should be better I always figured. However I notice that after our derecho wind last August it hasn’t been spinning. Apparently the 142 mile per hour wind was a little too much. That little zephyr also destroyed his 30 by 48 garage that he built a few years ago. I’ve worked around folks who consistently believed and expressed the fact that building on the high ground was the only place to build. Probably came from an experience involving flooding somewhere in their ancestry. However again, the derecho also completely destroyed a home less than 20 years old which overlooked our development which was about a $650,000 humble abode. In this case the high ground was not so good. The wind farms in Iowa are producing a lot of electricity, their long term viability and effect on bird populations is yet unknown.
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Old 02-23-2021, 09:24 AM   #7
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I've spent a number of winters in the long term visitor areas in Quartzsite, AZ where dry camping is the norm. I see hundreds of RVs with solar for every one with wind; in fact, last winter I only saw 3 wind set ups. I generally located them by the sound...

Quartzsite is an excellent location for wind (or solar) so I suspect that sticking with solar & lithium would be enough. If you were doing a permanent camp on your own land, I might consider it, although small scale wind is never going to compete with solar if you are in an area that gets any sun. Even here in Oswego, where we only see direct sun a couple of times a month in the winter (we are in the lee of Lake Ontario) almost all of the folks that installed <10K wind turbines switched to solar in a year or two, with improved results.

I'd add a portable solar panel to the mix to cover the times you park in the shade.
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Old 02-23-2021, 01:33 PM   #8
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The wind farms in Iowa are producing a lot of electricity, their long term viability and effect on bird populations is yet unknown.
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I had a long conversation with a USFWS biologist about this probably 10 years ago as wind turbines were popping up on the TX coast. He did say there were important flyways to be avoided in turbine construction along with lighting and guy wire considerations. But because of their relative low numbers they were no where near the problem of existing structures we take for granted every day. Power and transmission lines (both impacts and electrocutions), communication towers, smokestacks, vehicle strikes all the way down to building impacts....
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Old 02-23-2021, 01:56 PM   #9
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Power lines

Hi Rob
A little over 50 years ago I was taking an ornithology course at Iowa State. One morning a uniformed conservation officer came into our classroom. The professor recognized him immediately as a former student. He had a canvas bag with him and after a brief conversation he opened the bag. It contained a freshly deceased peregrine falcon. None of us had ever seen one of these great birds. Their numbers had declined to almost nothing in Iowa. The warden related that it had been found under some electrical transmission lines and had hit a wire while in flight. This was the first time I came to understand that birds often hit obstacles like wires, windmills, TV and Radio tower guy wires and the like. The professor was recognized as a competent “scientific mount” preparer and was given the bird for display in the University collection. Over the years I’ve found birds under wires quite a few times especially in migratory times after bad weather. Regardless of the structure, changes to the landscape above and below the ground certainly affect wildlife of all types.
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Old 02-23-2021, 02:02 PM   #10
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Big, big buildings

Wind turbines are a relatively small factor in bird mortality. Some utilities shut them down during migration periods.


Skyscrapers take many, during migration. And domestic/feral cats apparently are a much larger factor in bird mortality, so I've read, than either buildings or turbines.
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Old 02-23-2021, 06:29 PM   #11
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Sorry, OP

We got off topic (nothing new there) but I've not run across an Escape post on wind turbine or hydro use with their Escape rigs. Maybe someone has experience with them. I don't. I've pondered a wind turbine, looked into it, but the small ones are of limited output and an undesired hassle.


Where would you use either? Do conditions or locale suggest their use? If you have solar, why do you need more electrical capacity?


More solar panels is still my suggestion. Silent. No moving parts. Compact. Folks are clever and have stacked panels that slide out to increase wattage. See recent posts on a E15 with that set-up.
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Old 02-23-2021, 06:30 PM   #12
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Hi all thank you so much for the interesting perceptions. Yes I spend a couple of weeks in Quartzsite every January, and have been running Solar for many years. While it is true that I would rather spend time in the sunshine than a wind tunnel, sometimes, you don’t have an option. And even in the southwest, we have cloudy days on occasion. So... I think supplementing your panels, is certainly a consideration. The reason I included hydro in the equation, is simply because the generator portion of the turbine is basically the same for wind turbines as for water wheels. So if you find yourself alongside a sort of swiftly moving body of water often enough, something to take advantage might be in the offing.
Back to wind, an advantage to wind is that it doesn’t rely on the sun to work. So gusts later in the evening can figure in to your entire equation. I don’t believe I would like it, where the wind blows enough to eventually call it sucking, so, I would never consider it a sole source of green power. But as a supplement, why not? And yes they are a little noisy but it is very white noise, and definitely quieter than a gasoline motor driving a generator to just charge batteries. I believe you could just plug the entire unit into your zamp port, to have the coach controller use that power as well as the roof panels. I guess I can discuss that with William (sorry I never got his last name, he’s the techie guy they bring in to the videos).
As far as dimensions, I found one unit rated at 12 or 24 v @ 600 watts, it is less than a meter in diameter, and only 600mm tall.
I definitely find value in that.
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Old 02-23-2021, 06:57 PM   #13
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Check your numbers

600 mm is 2 feet tall. This does not compute.
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Old 02-23-2021, 07:16 PM   #14
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Well it rotates horizontally, and the blades are kinda squat, so while it rotates a 900mm diameter, the height of the blades are 300mm from center or 600mm tall. It will of course be higher in use depending on the height of your pole.
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Old 02-23-2021, 10:16 PM   #15
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Not to quibble.....

As you state...."Back to wind, an advantage to wind is that it doesn’t rely on the sun to work."


To the contrary. All weather, especially wind, is driven by the Sun. Hurricanes, blizzards, wind storms, sunny days....it would be a dead dear world without old Sol.


Get your gear, do the experiment of a wind turbine or mini-hydro plant to power your Escape and tell us about your experience.


bon voyage,
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Old 02-23-2021, 10:42 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HABBERDABBER View Post
Skyscrapers take many, during migration.

Flap flap flap flap flap flap BONK!
S
w
i
s
s
h

(The Far Side)
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Old 02-23-2021, 10:42 PM   #17
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As you state...."Back to wind, an advantage to wind is that it doesn’t rely on the sun to work."


To the contrary. All weather, especially wind, is driven by the Sun. Hurricanes, blizzards, wind storms, sunny days....it would be a dead dear world without old Sol.
Even I got what he meant. Unlike Solar, the sun doesn't need to shine in order for wind turbines to work. Gray, windy days are fine.
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Old 02-23-2021, 10:43 PM   #18
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I was reading up on the Coriolis effect. And I’m pretty glad it works the way it does. Seems pretty important.
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Old 02-23-2021, 11:26 PM   #19
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Far side

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Lewis View Post
Flap flap flap flap flap flap BONK!
S
w
i
s
s
h

(The Far Side)
One of my mechanics bought a daily Far Side calendar each year. When he came across one he thought I’d appreciate he would save it. I would find it taped to my steering wheel even though I had left the vehicle locked up. If you have followed this artwork you know that some
Cartoons are repeated with a slight change. In the red neck series he sent me two
“you might be a red neck if you have hauled firewood in your boat and you might be a red neck if you have hauled a dead deer in your boat.” He obviously had encountered someone who was familiar with the fact that I had done both on one trip. He had been an underwater welder on submarines when he was in the Navy. Might have changed his perspective somewhat. But he could weld about anything
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Old 02-23-2021, 11:34 PM   #20
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Even I got what he meant. Unlike Solar, the sun doesn't need to shine in order for wind turbines to work. Gray, windy days are fine.

No sun, no wind. Note the sun in upper right hand corner heating the atmosphere.
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