Windpower Workshop, by Hugh Piggott

A book dedicated to building your own working windmill for electricity production. Details of generator choice and design, blade construction, furling systems, towers, wiring, battery charging, heating, alternator design, modifications for car alternators and generators, and everything else you will need to know. An essential book for anyone contemplating building their own wind turbine, written by the foremost wind homebrew expert in the world.

With great interest, I have gone through the entire book within two days. I must assert that your book is the most practical and most valuable for those who want to manufacture small wind turbines. In very short, you have explained theory and practice both really vividly. Your approach of explaining the subject is really penetrating to the brain and it is highly commendable. Even a layman can understand the subject very clearly. I am sure that your book will play very important and effective role in disseminating small wind technology throughout the world.
I convey my hearty feelings and many many congratulations for writing this most valuable book. I must admit that I have never come across such a nice and practical book as WIND POWER WORKSHOP. All the 8 chapters are very nice.
Managing Director

My name is Corey Babcock, I am 17 yrs old, and I am a GIANT wind power fan! I have built at least fifty or more wind machines since 1993 ... I have just recently purchased your new book Windpower Workshop and I think that the information in it is really great. I would like to thank you for taking the time to write this book, because there are many people out there that are like you and me who are interested in wind turbines and would like to build one of their own.
 -Corey Babcock, AKA "The Wind Kid"

Review by Paul Gipe

 Review from

An Absolute Must-Have For Windmill Enthusiasts, July 11, 2002

 Reviewer: Bruce Boatner  from Murrieta, CA USA This book contains real practicality, not just empty theory. Talk about "put your money where your mouth is" - Hugh lives on a remote spit of land in Northern Scotland that doesn't even have roads, much less access to the power grid. If necessity is the mother of invention, there's good reason why he was highly motivated to develop the kinds of simple airfoils and low speed alternator combinations that produced real power. This rudimentary experience has taken him all over the world for installations and workshops. I guess having someone like that around makes him a pretty popular guy with his neighbors.

This book covers the theory necessary to understand wind energy basics, and proceeds as a how-to manual on shaping a simple turbine out of wood. It then shows how to build a low speed alternator out of a brake drum. (There is another book by Hugh called "Brake Drum Windmill Handbook" which goes into more detail).

The challenge is building an electrical generating system that operates at the slow rotational speeds of a wind turbine (e.g. 300 - 500 RPM). Everybody wants to hook up an automobile alternator, but even if it is optimized for high output at an idle, it probably will not start producing power until it reaches 1800 RPM. (Typically the engine/alternator pulleys have a ratio of 3 or 3.5 to 1 and the engine idles @ 600 RPM).

A great little book.