Author Topic: OLD CEILING FAN CONVERSION  (Read 2132 times)

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2windy

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OLD CEILING FAN CONVERSION
« on: July 10, 2007, 01:42:40 AM »
Found an old ceiling fan at the flea market for 3 bucks, couldn't pass it up. Look in my files for pictures of it. This thing is heavy duty and really old. It says 104 volts on it. Was kind of disappointed when got it apart. It's not like the knew style fans, the rotor is on the inside like a regular motor. Have a few questions, but first I'll give the sizes. It has a 9" rotor that is 1 5/8" wide. Enough metal there for turning down and putting some 1 1/2" neo's on. It has 14 coils on the stator and 14 empty post between each coil. The post measure 1 5/8" x 5/8" and there is 3/8" between each post. The coil size is 2 1/4" x 1 1/4" x 7/8" deep. It has .021 wire thickness in the coils. A single coil reads 3.3 ohms. What should I do with this thing. Shall I rewind it with heavier wire, should I wind every post, how big of an air gap, how big neos should I use, how far apart should I put them, should I skew the mags, or should I just throw the whole thing in the junk pile, because no matter what I do it will cog so bad I won't be able to turn it with a pipe wrench? Any suggestions on where to start would be appreciated.
« Last Edit: July 10, 2007, 01:42:40 AM by (unknown) »

Ungrounded Lightning Rod

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Re: OLD CEILING FAN CONVERSION
« Reply #1 on: July 09, 2007, 07:56:01 PM »
Are there loops of heavy copper around part of every other pole or so?
« Last Edit: July 09, 2007, 07:56:01 PM by Ungrounded Lightning Rod »

2windy

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Re: OLD CEILING FAN CONVERSION
« Reply #2 on: July 09, 2007, 08:15:24 PM »
I don't see anything. It has a couple coats of paint on it. I haven't pulled any wires apart yet.
« Last Edit: July 09, 2007, 08:15:24 PM by 2windy »

Derek

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Re: OLD CEILING FAN CONVERSION
« Reply #3 on: July 10, 2007, 03:54:35 PM »
I just took down one of our old fans recently and took it apart as well.  So getting a fan to halfway work as AC power just requires dropping in magnets then?  I think I counted 16 coils around the outside in there, and then another 8 maybe inside of that circle of coils?


Then I've got a lot of different colored wires, and have no idea which ones I'd have to test, and if I'd have to rewire anything?  Help me out there.

« Last Edit: July 10, 2007, 03:54:35 PM by Derek »

2windy

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Re: OLD CEILING FAN CONVERSION
« Reply #4 on: July 11, 2007, 04:29:23 AM »
I looked very close at it and could find no copper loops around the coils. Do you think this will cog bad?
« Last Edit: July 11, 2007, 04:29:23 AM by 2windy »

2windy

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Re: OLD CEILING FAN CONVERSION
« Reply #5 on: July 11, 2007, 10:29:47 AM »
Did I ask too many questions at once, or doesn't anyone want to hurt my feelings? Still looking for some input on this old fan motor.
« Last Edit: July 11, 2007, 10:29:47 AM by 2windy »

TomW

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Re: OLD CEILING FAN CONVERSION
« Reply #6 on: July 11, 2007, 11:21:44 AM »
2;



Did I ask too many questions at once, or doesn't anyone want to hurt my feelings? Still looking for some input on this old fan motor.


Well, it does seem to get a guy in hot water here saying "search the board" but that is the way to enlightenment. Many here do not like to hand feed info to folks because they feel you learn more if you do some reading yourself rather than expect others to type it all in again.


I think they feel these ceiling fan conversions have been covered a LOT and maybe you need to exert some personal initiative and hunt down some previous stories. Lots of folks have done these and the process is pretty well documented here.


Just the view from here and only because you asked. I never did one so, even if I wanted to walk you thru the decision making process, I could not.


Cheers.


TomW

« Last Edit: July 11, 2007, 11:21:44 AM by TomW »
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alancorey

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Re: OLD CEILING FAN CONVERSION
« Reply #7 on: July 11, 2007, 02:07:47 PM »
As Tom W says, ceiling fans have been done a lot here.


I don't think I've ever seen one that was 104 volts though.  And it looks old, like it's a shame to cut it up.  There are people who collect antique fans (Google for antique fan).  Maybe one would trade you some modern piece of junk for it.


I don't have much sympathy for wanting to cut it up.


  Alan

« Last Edit: July 11, 2007, 02:07:47 PM by alancorey »

2windy

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Re: OLD CEILING FAN CONVERSION
« Reply #8 on: July 11, 2007, 03:20:31 PM »
Thanks for the slap on the back of the head, I needed that. I thought the same thing myself, but then the wind jeanie got me and I couldn't pass up the thought of a conversion when I seen the size of the stator. I really did search the board for hours looking for something like this but never did come across with something with an empty post ever other coil. I going to put it back together and put it up in my garage. Thanks again for helping me snap out of the wind genny fever.
« Last Edit: July 11, 2007, 03:20:31 PM by 2windy »

bigdan

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Re: OLD CEILING FAN CONVERSION
« Reply #9 on: July 11, 2007, 08:55:20 PM »
Shoot some pictures,keep them small byte-wise,then post them please. Someone on HERE will know something about the motor.
« Last Edit: July 11, 2007, 08:55:20 PM by bigdan »

ghurd

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Re: OLD CEILING FAN CONVERSION
« Reply #10 on: July 12, 2007, 05:17:38 AM »
That is a really old fan motor.

It may not be very efficient as far as other fan conversions are concerned. Looks like lots of wasted space, and not exactly the strongest looking motor for the diameter


Perhaps you should read this post, paying particular attention to Comment #14. BTW, he listed an email address that could be worth pursuing?

G-

« Last Edit: July 12, 2007, 05:17:38 AM by ghurd »
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ghurd

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Re: OLD CEILING FAN CONVERSION
« Reply #11 on: July 12, 2007, 05:18:17 AM »
« Last Edit: July 12, 2007, 05:18:17 AM by ghurd »
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wdyasq

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Re: OLD CEILING FAN CONVERSION
« Reply #12 on: July 12, 2007, 08:52:11 PM »
I looked in your files. The angles of the photos are poor but I believe that is the remains of an old Emerson brand fan. These and the Hunter were some of the better brands of 70-100 years ago. Many of them only need a fresh change of oil and possibly a  new thrust bearing after 50 years of service. 30 years ago one in good condition would fetch $75-$100 fairly easily.


Ron

« Last Edit: July 12, 2007, 08:52:11 PM by wdyasq »
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2windy

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Re: OLD CEILING FAN CONVERSION
« Reply #13 on: July 12, 2007, 09:13:55 PM »
It is a Hunter Tuerk Type C. It runs as smooth as silk. Can't even hear it hum.
« Last Edit: July 12, 2007, 09:13:55 PM by 2windy »

Derek

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Re: OLD CEILING FAN CONVERSION
« Reply #14 on: July 14, 2007, 05:16:08 PM »
I've also searched thru all of the posts on ceiling fans.  Couldnt really find a "how to" guide on doing that.  I have no idea how to do it really, what has to be rewired, etc.  Cant find anything on google/yahoo searching either.... =(


Anybody know of a guide for converting a ceiling fan into something that will produce some power?

« Last Edit: July 14, 2007, 05:16:08 PM by Derek »

spinningmagnets

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Re: OLD CEILING FAN CONVERSION
« Reply #15 on: July 21, 2007, 11:01:42 AM »
Dear Derek, Please don't be discouraged. I'm sure its not that no one wants to help, But there isn't a lot of experience here converting ceiling fans for several reasons.


As you can imagine, each brand and model is slightly different internally, making each conversion a custom job. The cheap low-RPM bearings are made to support a hanging fan, when it is mounted to face the wind, the bearings will fail in a month or so. The blades are made to gently move air in a still room, and the first sudden wind gust may break one of the blades, leading to an out-of-balance condition and immediate catastrophic failure. The permanent magnets you'll add will want to stick to the coils, this is called cogging, so the wind will have to be strong to get it started spinning.


Raising the magnet speed dramatically increases the output (twice the RPM=4 times the watts), However, in high winds it will easily break. In low winds it will hardly produce any watts at all, IF you can get it to spin out of cog. But,... if you still want to use it as a learning experience and a classroom technology demonstrator...


To generate electicty, you need magnets spinning next to copper wire coils. If you put magnets on the face of a car brake disc (like two pancakes facing each other, one is spinning, one isn't), its an "axial" flux. If you put magnets horizontally on the inside of a cars drum brake, (Like one cylinder spinning inside a slightly larger cylinder) it's a "radial" flux. It was discovered a while back (for a small additional expense) that if you placed a second rotor full of magnets on the other side of the stator, it gave you more juice. Also the distance the spinning magnets were located from the stationary stator full of copper coils ("air-gap") affected how much power you got.


Its easy to add a second rotor and adjust the air-gap on an axial. its difficult on a radial (like your ceiling fan).


If all the copper coils in the stator are hooked up together, its a "single-phase", and a light bulb connected to it will flicker. If the coils are hooked together in groups of three, its "three-phase", and power pulses will be smoother. I have even read about 7-phase. (going around the clock, label them ABCABCABC...)


If the coils have every other coil lined up in an opposite direction of flow, the current will alternate direction, which has the benefit of stronger pulses. If you alternate the flow of electrons (AC) you may need to "rectify" the AC with diodes into direct current (DC) to charge a battery or run a DC device. AC components are typically sensitive to voltage, so you must control the RPM's. A typical Permanent Magnet Alternator (PMA) will charge a battery pack, as the wind is highly variable (unlike a gasoline generator RPM), then a DC or AC device can be run off of the battery. (label the coils A+,A-,B+,B-,C+,C-,...)


If you want the popular 3-phase alternating current, you must use coils that are in pairs of 3-sets (6, 12, 18, 24...)


Using these principles, you can spend a couple hundred dollars to make a very robust "dual-rotor, axial-flux" wind-gen that produces several hundred watts in a 10-MPH wind using car wheel bearings rated at an 800 lb load, capable of spinning over 1,000 RPM.


Strong magnets give you more power than weak magnets, and strong magnets cost more money.


Your fan probably has one rotor, and probably is a radial layout. Each coil should have two wires coming out of it and they are connected in a bundle. Cut the bundles away until you have just the two wire ends from each coil. How many coils do you have? Do you want DC, or AC. Do you want 1-Phase, or 3-phase. Buy the strongest magnets you can afford, and mount them on the rotor as close to the stator as you can (you may have to fabricate a new rotor from scratch). It seems to help the magnets if they have a steel backing and you alternate the poles (North, South, N, S,..) I'm still learning about magnets, and I'd just copy an existing layout that works).


I am still just learning, but I believe the experienced guys when they say the watts from a single rotor radial in low wind was just not worth the effort and few dollars it cost.


I'm sure I have screwed up some part of this explanation, and deserve to be "beaten like a rented mule", and for that I truly apologize. -Ron


"When you're trained to use a hammer,...everything looks like a nail"

« Last Edit: July 21, 2007, 11:01:42 AM by spinningmagnets »

Derek

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Re: OLD CEILING FAN CONVERSION
« Reply #16 on: July 22, 2007, 07:59:49 AM »
Thanks for the good explanation!  That was much appreciated.  I'm basically just using the copper coils and bearing to get power from a VAWT design.  So the blades wont matter.  I've never made any power from wind, so this will be my first.  Even if it doesnt produce much power, my motivation is to see which type of VAWT design makes the most power.  The power output would be a constant, so I just change the design and see whats more effecient using the same set of coils/magnets, know what I mean?


I have a total of 27 coils.  There is two circles of coils.  The inner circle has 9 coils, and outer circle has 18 coils.  The wire is pretty small on these coils too.  I've got bearings and about 1/2" outside of the coils that there will be room for small neo magnets.  How many magnets do I need???

« Last Edit: July 22, 2007, 07:59:49 AM by Derek »

spinningmagnets

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Re: OLD CEILING FAN CONVERSION
« Reply #17 on: July 22, 2007, 04:53:18 PM »
I wish I had better info for you, I'm still learning myself! The dual-brake-disc PMA with a 3-blade 10-ft diameter prop produces about 100 Watts @ 10 MPH. It can be done for abot $200-$300 if you do all the work yourself. (about $2500 for a store-bought unit that is plug-and-pay) Its hard to beat these numbers, as the spindle, bearing, and disc are stout and cheap. If you want something with a bigger or a smaller output, you may have to fabricate some of the parts yourself at a much greater time/expense.


Forget the search function, just read all the posts on "everything" until your eyes burn, then read some more the next day, and the day after that.


Some considerations that I forgot in the last post is, The coils (assuming the most productive 3-phase/AC) can be in "Delta" or a "Wye/Star" configuration. each has its benefit and drawback. There is also a coil "series" or "parallel" alignment. Your coils need to be as big as you can fit, but do you want lots of turns of small diameter wire (more volts/heat) or fewer turns of fatter wire (less resistance, better low-rpm power)

http://www.windstuffnow.com/main/3_phase_basics.htm


Start a couple of blank documents (one for general electrical info, one for your specific project), and copy/paste any paragraph from the posts that might be useful to your project. Save the links to posts with pics that are relevant.


The popular Dual-disc uses 9 coils/12 magnets (12 on each disc) the wooden PMA uses 18/18, a big motor conversion in a nearby post uses 6/12. I still don't understand the magnet thing yet (not that I accurately understand the previous stuff I've tried to explain!)


Its hard to get permission to erect a propellor HAWT wind-gen in the city. It reduces property values, and there are concerns over high-RPM break-up. For that reason, I'm interested in a VAWT for now (till I retire to the countryside soon). A "Lenz2" may not be the most efficient, but it is currently the best "Watt-per-dollar" home-made VAWT being experimented with. A fairly large Lenz2 is a cheap low-RPM high-torque windmill that many cities are allowing on your roof or yard. A two-blade will noticeably pulse, and to remedy that I have seen a 3-blade, or, a pair of 2-blade units with one on top of the other and 90-degrees out of phase. A "Darrieus" is like a Lenz but a linkage causes the blades to change angle. More efficient, but more expensive and complex.


As far as the number of magnets, if your first effort is unworkable, you can re-use those magnets for a different project later. Buy a cheap digital voltmeter and a bunch of magnets and play with it. Spin the shaft with a cordless drill and take a read-out.


As far as the "best" generator, even if you restrict yourself to a 3-phase PMA, you still have a half-dozen more choices to make. What do you want to do with the juice you'll get?


I'm looking at using a vehicle gearset as a 4:1 gearbox so a ~200 RPM Lenz2 (on a trailer) can spin a large motor conversion about 800 RPM. I plan to run AC wire from a windy hill to a DC rectifier/battery pack/inverter next to the house. It may not work out, we'll see. -Ron


"I may not be an artist, but I can sure draw flies" -Popeye

« Last Edit: July 22, 2007, 04:53:18 PM by spinningmagnets »

spinningmagnets

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Re: OLD CEILING FAN CONVERSION
« Reply #18 on: July 25, 2007, 04:15:19 PM »
I think many newbies may read this, so I feel compelled to add some other points I am studying to learn about proper wind-gen design.


"cut-in" is when the turbine begins spinning fast enough to produce enough volts to begin charging a battery. Cut-in is affected by the output of the alt/gen, and the size of the prop/fan.


When the wind begins blowing too hard a "furling" mechanism is often employed to gradually turn the prop away from the wind to prevent it from spinning too fast and breaking apart.


If a load is applied to the alternator, such as charging a battery, when the battery is fully charged and the power management device suddenly disconnects the wind-gen from the battery, the prop will begin spinning much faster, sometimes leading to a catastophic failure. One popular method that is used to avoid this problem is to shift the load from charging the battery to something else, such as heating water, or any other load you can devise. The alternate load is called a "shunt" load.


Matching the size of the alternator to the prop size is important. If the prop is too small for the alt, it will not be able to spin enough in low winds to overcome the resistance when trying to work a load. If its too big it wont spin fast enough in the normal winds for your area, missing out on some of available watts.


100 Amps in a 10 MPH wind may not be the perfect output for every situation, but the 10' dual-disc 3-phase alt that is promoted on the home page of otherpower.com is a truly great watt-per-dollar project.


You may want to build a cheap anemometer (wind-speed meter) to go with your output muti-meter, so you can say "design "B" produced 12 watts in an 8 MPH wind"


I'm sure I screwed up some part of this, so don't bet the farm on anything I say, but I hope some of this will help someone. -Ron


"How many liberal arts college graduates does it take to change a light bulb"?

"Just one, but when I'm finished, would you like some fries with your order"?

« Last Edit: July 25, 2007, 04:15:19 PM by spinningmagnets »