Build A Wind Generator from Old Washing Machine Motor

Go find an old washing machine if you don’t have one and take the motor out. We’re going to clean the motor and rewire it and then attach turbines to make this thing generate power from the wind. This article won’t tell you exactly how to make this wind generator but will give you an idea that you can do it yourself.

The idea is to take a good motor and rework it so that it will generate power from wind turbines you will build an attach to it.

Step 1: Remove motor from washing machine

This step was the most destructive using various implements to separate the motor assembly from the washing machine.  I’ll leave it to your imagination and whatever tools you have on hand.  The output of this step should be the coil assembly and the magnet assembly.  Keep the shaft and bearings if you can also.  Mine were pressed into the washing drum and were difficult to remove without destroying them.  Keep the bolts from the coil and magnet assembly also.  You may want to use them for your new hub.

Step 2: Clean the Parts

Clean the magnets and coils, and remove any rust that may have built up on the ends of the coils.  Then put a light coat of oil on the metal parts or a light layer of clear coat to keep them from rusting again.

Step 3: Design a New Hub

This may be the most difficult part.  You need to design a hub that will space the coils in line with the magnets, and also have some sturdy bearings at each end.  I started out with a block of plastic used for an automotive brake rotor holding fixture.  You could make the same on a lathe, or build one up from layers of wood or other plastic, etc.

Step 4: Shaft Fit

I saved part of the original washing machine drum shaft where the two bearings were located and cut off the rest.  Then I added some threaded rod in the end where the original bolt was located.  The threaded rod will attach to my blade assembly.

Step 5: Hub and Coils Wiring

Now you have to rewire the motor. Watching a video may be the best thing right now…

Step 6: Finished Generator Assembly

The magnets and coils mounted on the new hub and shaft assembly.  At this point, you can spin the assembly and measure the voltage output, current output, vs. RPM.

Step 7: Blade Design and Construction

My blade design is based on some vertical blades I’ve seen, and in particular, a spinning porch ornament I purchased a few years back.  The Idea is to have a cup-like section of the blade always in the direct flow of the wind.
More pics and information at

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