You can make a small windmill for the purpose of generating electricity as an alternative source of power by using a few simple items found around the house or at a hardware store. When deciding to use a windmill for electric power, remember that positioning of this device is critical to allow for proper air flow; otherwise, your windmill simply will not work as intended. Making a small windmill is a moderately easy process and can be done by almost anyone.
- Pinwheel head
- 4 thread spools (small)
- Power drill
- Metal rod
- Pin clip
- Magnetic wire
- Plastic sheets or cardboard
- Wire cutters
- Magnet kits
Remove the propeller head from your pinwheel as this will be the main component of your new windmill. The larger the pinwheel, the more electricity will be generated in your finished project. However, you will also need a stronger wind to push a larger windmill head.
Create your casing by gluing your four spools to the two plastic sheets, two on each side. You can also use cardboard or another sturdy, stiff paper as an alternative to the plastic sheets. Use your power drill to drill a small hole in the corner of your casing. This hole will be where your small metallic rod will be inserted, so you will need to make the diameter of the hole accordingly.
Purchase a magnet kit for windmills from your local hardware store. This kit will include instructions on how to position your magnets onto the casing of your homemade windmill. Once finished aligning the magnets and casing holes properly, insert the metallic rod through all the holes. Place a pin clip on both ends of the rod, which should extend from the casing roughly 1/2 inch on either side.
Wrap your metal wire around all four spools numerous times (over 200 wraps) to insure a secure fit on the casing. Glue your pinwheel propeller to the opposite end of your metallic rod. Cut and strip the wires as needed to secure to the object you will be powering. Once all parts are secure, position the windmill in a breezy area to test the propeller.
Tips & Warnings
- These small windmills will not produce a great deal of power if they are not positioned in a windy area on your property. Due to the small amount of electricity generated by the windmill, small appliances or generators will benefit the most.
- Whenever working with electricity or wire cutters, be sure to always wear protective glasses and gloves to lower your risk of injury.