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"Free Power" Minto Wheel

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  • #16
    Well, I know some folks who were $10,000 from a power line, so they bought a $5000 solar/battery setup.

    Works very well for them, 24V batteries, large array, inverter, they run a regular house off it. They used to use generators.

    60 Hz on the dot (crystal controlled), no hassle.

    If you check out old Home Power magazine, there was an article on a fellow with a good sized stream. He had a small hydropower setup, about 10 or 12 KVA or so, as I recall.

    He would have more mechanical stuff, and more variation of frequency, no doubt. But probably more repairable in an immediuate emergency than inverters.

    I have solar for part of my power, always works fine for me, but I don't have to depend on it, as there is grid power on the property also.

    The intertie idea is less about making money, and more about simply adding alternative power back into the grid to displace some fuel generated power. It ripples back up thru up to the total pollution output. One KVA isn't much, but 100 people putting in 1 KVA each is starting to be real power.
    The more the better.

    The real low grade power like the minto wheel are best suited to well pumping, etc. Of course, does access to more water deplete the watertable and hurt those folks in the end?

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    • #17
      I've been watching the alternative power market for some time now.
      Solar and Wind are very complimentary.
      Solar and Wind power have improved considerably in both cost, efficiencies and reliability.
      On the same vein, power costs have continued to rise.
      I figure in my case, a home hybred solar and wind system with approved electronics for connection to the power grid, would break even in about 12 years.
      Estimated maintenance about $150/yr.
      Five years ago the break even was over 25 years with rather high maintenance costs!
      This was computed at 50% above my current average annual usage.
      It does NOT include the power usage in my shop!
      If this trend continues... a 4,5 or 6 year break-even would be very attractive.

      Tom M.

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