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WindTapper's Blog

August 2014

Magnetic Flux Geometry

Because magnetic flux geometry (as shown by K&J Magnetics company fact sheets on their website) keeps the main numbers of flux lines so close to the magnets, I am seriously considering devising a multiple magnet arrangement inside the drive of my electricity generator. Originally I was going to use only one magnet, but if I place two, I can bring the magnetic flux closer to the coil.

The coil is an original winding of 10 lbs of magnet wire, into which I will place a PVC pipe to hold the rotating drive magnets. The drive magnets will be driven in turn by outside magnets hanging from a hoop hanging beneath wind turbine blades made from cut up plastic, one gallon water bottles.

The two drive magnets will be held apart by what I will call a drive shaft that is set into the sides of the PVC pipe and acts as a pivot for the magnets to turn on. Obviously I will need a strong case to keep the magnets from crashing into each other. Their magnetism will necessarily cause opposite ends of the duo to be oppositely charged.

What to make the case from? It cannot be metal with iron in it -- at least not in the preliminary design. Aluminum or bronze? And how far apart can I get the magnets? This depends partly on how much space I will have within the core of the coil. I need to go measure that.

Magnet Inside Spool Design

Preliminary thoughts on designing the housing for a strong magnet placed inside a spool of magnet wire:

1. Outside of the housing would probably be a PVC pipe that would fit snugly inside the spool of 10 lbs of magnet wire.

2. A rod to fit inside the cylindrical magnet that comes with a hole in its center could then be threaded into a hole at the middle of the pipe to take on the magnet and finally rest inside a second hole in the opposite side of the pipe. The rod needs to be sturdy and not affected by magnetism. Bronze or aluminum are candidates. There needs to be space for some dryer sheet between the rod and the magnet.

3. Spacers on the rod to keep the magnet centralized also need padding -- perhaps felt and dryer sheet to protect the magnet from wearing down or being zapped by static due to friction.

This all sounds pretty simple, no?

The rotor for spinning the central magnet needs to be redesigned, also. Fewer magnets would be needed because the central magnet is so strong. We actually only want the central magnet to spin rather than creating drag on the rotor assembly. I believe there is plenty of distance between the center of the spool and the magnets on the rotor. Distance is also easy to increase, from the outside by adjusting the height of the hoop that carries the rotor magnets.

Vacation Brainstorming

As a staunch believer in Alpha Waves, perhaps I force ideas to appear when conditions manifest as I predict they will be most fruitful. However, I'll take the ideas however they will come, lol.

I am doing some Basic Research here, concerning the manipulation of magnetic flux to cut the most wires to produce the most electricity per geometric configuration, at the least possible cost of raw materials during the testing phases. Right now I have a 10 lb. spool of magnet wire which I am going to try to use to produce electricity without removing the wire from the spool.

This will entail centering a strong magnet inside the spool (with the spool cradled on its side), while magnets fly around in a circle circumnavigating the circumference around the spool. The outside magnets should cause the inner, very strong magnet to rotate.

Originally I envisioned putting the central magnet on a swivel, but of course that wouldn't work since the swivel is affected by the magnet. However, I have some strong, cylindrical, di-pole magnets that have a hole at their center. I can simply let the magnets onto a dowel that is secured inside the spool. Insulation from friction will be necessary to protect the magnet centrally located -- protected also from static. Some anti-static dryer sheets should suffice, perhaps along with a felt pad underneath the magnet....

The beauty of this is that the magnetic flux coupling does not require the central pole to be attached to the whirligig's turbine blade apparatus. Also, no deforming of magnetic wire by making it into coils that may or may not be useful in future. The cradling of the spool could also involve setting it on a wheel having a central bushing so that the spool can rotate if it needs to. With the circular arrangement, as with the turbine blades not "caring" which way the wind blows, so the magnetic flux lines rotating around the outside do not require the spool to remain stationary to be viable. Thus we can reduce cracking, perhaps, of the insulation on the wire by allowing the wire to move as it will.

New Cat

A friend of ours is losing her battle with cancer. I promised to care for her cat in this situation, so now I am in the midst of trying to integrate her cat into our family. Her cat is 8 years old, she said. Our other cats are 1 and 2 years old, approximately.

My first strategy was to have a cage on the back, in the Deck Shack. I had envisioned that our cats would become curious about the new cat and eventually all of them would be calm enough to approach each other.

The fly in that ointment was that none of them are kittens anymore, plus the new-old cat is almost strictly an outdoor cat. He threw all holy hell types of fits inside the cage. He sat down in his water dishes and then sat down in his Tidy Cat litter box. I don't believe this cat ever used a litter box -- based on this behavior.

The combination of water and clay-based litter made solid lumps stick to his fur and start drawing the oils out of his skin. I had to get an emergency haircut and bath for the cat. He was amazingly pitiful-looking at one point. We were lucky that a groomer was available. She actually squeezed us in after I pleaded and described our new-old cat's situation. She didn't realize how much of an emergency it was until after she was part-way through the haircut, she said.

Now the cats are all jockying for positions among themselves. The female stuck close to me last evening while riveting herself in a position to see down the hall in case the new-old cat might approach. He did not.

Our other male cat (old-young) seems to be hunting the new cat, both inside and outside the house, so I let the new-old cat inside when the old-young cat goes outside. Instead of playing "Cat and Mouse" we are all playing "Cat." It has not yet graduated to "Cat Laser Tag" but I suspect that may lie in our future. Oh Joy.

Static Discharges and Magnets

I had been thinking about combining magnetic rotor versus coil electricity generation, plus I had wondered if I could get more voltage if I were to place naturally static generating materials between the rotor and whatever the rotor might come into contact with if there were lateral swinging of the rotor. While I might be able to slow the rotation down, and/or draw off static discharges, I finally realized today that perhaps static discharges would cause the magnets to become disoriented. In other words, since magnets -- even Neodymium magnets, which do not become weaker by putting opposite poles together -- could become damaged by static discharges because a single large pulse of electricity is how their magnetic fields are created in the first place

I should be protecting the magnets from nearby static, rather than generating static discharges near them. Unless, of course, it is possible to do both, lol.

Magnetic Flux Geometries

Consulting the K&J Magnetics flux geometry graphics for my set of 16 X 3 = 48 cylindrical magnets, plus the pounds of lift for Case 1, Case 2, and Case 3, I find that my ideas for generating electricity are wanting -- in other words, inadequate. I keep not wanting to believe K&J Magnetics' graphics, but I cannot afford to throw away the one 10 lb roll of magnetic wire on a project that their testimony says won't work as well as I had hoped that it would work.

So, now I have Plasti-Goop and string attached to 16 groups of three cylindrical magnets. I wonder if I could salvage those somehow? Clearly, the best configuration is to wrap coils as tightly as possible around spinning magnets placed on a central pole, if the amount of magnetic flux versus turns of wire is to be maximized, given limited resources.

Even the idea of multiplying flux by stacking magnets is wrong. One does not increase flux lines, but rather, possibly merely increases the distance that the existing number of flux lines can project from the ends of the poles of a stack of magnets. 

Please keep in mind that I report the above observations because I studied K&J Magnetics reports on their website, rather than actually building the whole idea from real materials. This is because I cannot afford to purchase materials such as magnets -- especially at current prices -- and have them fail.

Dear Diary

1.  Household projects have kept me hopping lately -- most notably my decision to fix a leaky faucet that has been dripping constantly for months. Our plumbing and house is perhaps 40 to 55 years old so sometimes plumbers come out to fix it without the proper parts being available and STILL charge $90 per visit. I had enough of that, and so, I decided to stick with it until I could understand and fix it myself. Either that or replace it....

2.  A day or so ago we had blustery winds that got our largest whirligig twirling briefly up to 30 RPM. So, I have been working toward calculating the best coil turn ratio, given that I will have 16 sets of magnets versus 48 coils, per RPM.

3.   Also I started looking into the number of flux lines per set of magnets. I was astonished to find that K&J Magnetics spec sheets do not increase the number of magnetic flux lines when the number of magnets in a stack is increased. K&J also depicts the geometry of the flux lines to not include a completely 90 degree, perpendicular flux coming from the pole ends of diametrically magnetized cylindrical magnets. I do not understand this because my magnetism detectors slam into the perpendicular when brought opposite to the middle of each pole.

4. Also trying to work out the logistical geometry of winding a set of 16 alternating and connected coils off a single supply spool of insulated wire. This task is surprisingly complicated. But, hey. It keeps me off the streets, as they say....
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