Part of the joy of doing everything yourself is what we politely call ‘learning from experience’, or more commonly, ‘f**king it up’. Yesterday was a ‘learning’ day. First, I discovered just how close to a hot stove flue you can put roofing felt, when the roofing felt on the little hat on the roundhouse began to smoke. Cue much leaping around with shovelfuls of earth to damp the fire, and running up onto the roof to douse the smouldering felt. Having got over the excitement of that learning experience, and congratulating myself on having not burned the roundhouse to the ground, I noticed that our wind turbine had stopped generating electricity.
No problem, I thought, we’ll just drop it down and check it out. (It was just a loose cable). I dashed out, hitched up the winch, and loosened the guy wire to lower the wind turbine. Actually what I loosened was the cable I had just hooked the winch onto.
Imagine my surprise, when as we began to lower the precious turbine, instead of being caught by the winch (now hooked onto nothing in particular), we watched as it continued its descent towards the ground, unimpeded by nothing more than air resistance.
Only when it came to a halt with one blade firmly embedded in the soil did the swearing begin. I suppose it is a blessing that aluminium wind turbine blades are bendy to some extent, so at least it hadn’t snapped.
The picture you see above, is me heating the end of the battered blade on the gas stove, to anneal it before bending it into something resembling straightness.
Although perhaps now not the most finely balanced of machines, it is all back together, and thanks to the efforts of Jim and Wesley, back up in the air, and generating electricity once more.
The lesson for today? Don’t take wind turbines down a) in a hurry and b) at the end of the day when you’re ready for your tea. oh and c) pride comes before a fall. or a fire. or both.