Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Cedar Projects
Scott Symmes9:57 AM

Cedar gate with Arbor


Two cedar Adirondack Chairs finished in red latex paint

Had a comment from a viewer about the lack of woodworking projects. Good point. Yes, I have been quite busy with wind turbines and solar panels, which in-theory, has little in common to woodworking.
So, to show good intentions, I dug into the photo albums and pulled out a few summer freelance projects. As I remember, it was quite enjoyable and help pay for college. Feel free to browse through cedar structures, Adirondack chairs and pergolas.
More pictures found at the Cedar Workshop Google+ Page

Garden Corner Pergola for grapes and shade



Wednesday, January 22, 2014

The Plan to Build a Tree Mounted Wind Turbine
Scott Symmes6:13 PM

Surrounding Lodgepole Pines
I've been thinking about mounting a wind turbine to a tree for quite awhile. Not happy with the wind turbine on the deck. It's not getting clean, undisturbed wind. If I could just get the turbine above the trees, I could maybe generated a couple more watts. 

I have two wind turbines, a small 175 watt DC and a larger 700 watt 3 phase AC turbine. The small one works good at throwing a few watts in and keeping the deep cycle batteries topped up or trickle charged. It's a nice peace of mind in the below zero winter nights.
Haven't installed the large turbine yet. The 1" keyed shaft did not fit into the tower pipe. So it was back to the drawing board. Have found a fencing pipe that would be big enough thou. Another problem the 700 watt is very heavy and the tow raising turns into a two person job.

One thought was to find a dead tree and fasten a tower to it. The only catch was it would have to be lowered for servicing once or twice a year. There are a few "standing dead" pine trees on the property, but are only 12' to 15' below the tree canopy. I estimate the average height of the trees is 40'. 

The next idea, was to select a live tree and safely mount a wind turbine to it. I don't want injuring or impede the growth. 


The ideal tree was directly behind the cabin, is a large, triangle shaped, White Spruce. It's quite magnificent to look at and would make a fine mount for turbines. Almost 90% of the wind comes rolling down the mountain and hits the back side of the property.

The cabin is located in a forest of Lodgepole Pine trees. I measured a tree that fell down and it came out to 40' tall.




Large White Spruce
Still have to mount the large turbine, but, the height factor is cancelling out the project.

On my lunch hour, I did a few sketches. I think about what resources are available: lumber, bolts, nuts, etc. Instead of what could be purchased.

Concept 1- Tree fort support

Concept 2 - Clamp platform
Concept 3 - Swing up
Concept 2- Is a Birdseye view, looking down on a "platform". The tree would be sandwiched in-between. 

Also, I have to think, "how does one person climb up the tree and hoist the lumber up?" That's what it comes down too. 

Then went to Adobe Illustrator and hashed out some more ideas. See below for the animated gif.
Updated January 24, 2014