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Need a mecanical generator for experimentation.

  1. Nov 2, 2003 #1
    I need a manual generator.

    (i.e.: A gadget that generates electricity by using some mechanical energy).

    It has to be small - but not miniature.

    Also, I need it (if possible) modular, so one can attach other devices to it (to provide it with the mechanical energy)

    I would like it not to be too expensive.

    I would appreciate any pointers.

    Thanks in advance.
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 2, 2003 #2


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    Staff: Mentor

    Any electric motor is also a generator.
  4. Nov 3, 2003 #3
    Thank you.
  5. Dec 18, 2009 #4
    hmm I've just browsed about "Piezo Motor" really tiny about 1mm x 1mm x 6mm
  6. Dec 25, 2009 #5
    A really handy generator is a stepper motor. Common DC motors require a fairly high RPM to produce a reasonable voltage, but a stepper motor with a handle will get you there with reasonably slow hand cranking.

    Stepper motors are all over the surplus market for as little as a few dollars. I fabbed up a crank for stepper which drove small incandescent lamps for a kid's science fair project. Worked great.

    Just remember, it puts out AC voltage, so it will need diodes and maybe some capacitors to get it into a usable DC voltage.

    - Mike
  7. Dec 25, 2009 #6
    The stepper motor is a good idea but a small DC permanent magnet motor is a simple machine to do some preliminary experiments. You can get them out of old toys or stuff around the house, or buy them pretty cheap too. You can turn it with a variable speed drill and note the voltage increase at higher rpm, and do measurments with an rpm sensor and voltmeter.
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