Friday, March 28, 2014

 UPDATE: IT WORKS: see below.

   Weather fluctuations have caused some old orthopaedic issues to flare up and after I took meds to deal with them I wasn't much of a documentarian,  or for that matter all that literate. So yesterday requires a bit of reconstruction.

  It appears that I was inspired by Kent Barnes' commenting on how he used to joke about recharging the batteries in his drill by spinning the drill head and a repurposed 12 volt drill by Jake of Spaz (haven't heard from him recently, hope all is well)

The drill worked fine but the battery pack had died, so Jake took the battery pack and removed the cells and wired the casing so that it would plug into my twelve volt, off grid, system.

 It worked and quite well, but I kept breaking it so now it's a permanent fixture of the drill and any failures inherent in the current design are mine.

 So I attempted to take this:

and turn it into a generator head, I'd discovered that in my previous flailings that the drill motors speed was really high and that to get useful power out of them I'd need either gearing, or some sort of dc-dc conversion.

  The object here is to use the existing gearing and if possible without harming the drill (total pigs breakfast, see below)

 This is a VERY old makita single speed reversible. No PWM, the trigger is just a switch. I figured that I could rewire a battery pack, plug it in, pull the trigger, spin the nob and power! right? Wrong! that is an assumption for people with manual dexterity!  Not semi- conscious fiddlers.

 So far so good, right? after this the battery came apart in a big pile of corroded cadmium toxicity and the inside of the casing was filled with sludge, So the task became one of containment, rather than conversion

So instead, with trepidation,  I opened the casing of the drill. Note this has not  worked out well in the past. In fact the term "SPROING! and a rain of small, essential and apparently, evaporative parts have followed every previous attempt. This time I didn't suck.
  so at this point I wanted to solder wires to the leads from the motor and run them out a vent hole in the side.

 So I lit up the aftermath soldering system. (Ah yeah, "system")

 A old 100 watt radio shack soldering iron plugged into a salvaged 300 watt inverter connected to an old 84w/h battery wired into a 15 watt solar panel

 Don't expect to solder too long or too often and it works for a given measure of "work" If you accept burned thumbs and poor solder joints as proof, I can provide proof.

what it looks like as of 11:30 3.28.14 if I hook a meter to the end of the repurposed extension cord and spin the head I get about 1 volt at finger speeds. If I apply current the drill spins. I seem to be stuck in the "low" setting and the clutch is locked. Plus I have a small pile of parts, but to quote Dave Lister "there's always a few bits and bobs left over when you try a bit of  do it yourself"

     Vast improvement over just motor, was getting millivolts at finger speeds. I expect to get much better than finger speeds with turbine (I expect 4-6 volts). I think I can claim a usable (if unusual) generated voltage.


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