Wednesday, June 15, 2022

New Duct Tape Roll List


The time has come for a change in tactics. Since 2004 I have been collecting rolls of Duct Tape from world countries. To date I have 91 rolls of Duct Tape in the World Duct Tape Collection. A coin, like the one pictured above will be engraved and given to anyone that adds a roll, to the collection of Duct Tape from a country on this list that I do not have. There are only 200 of these coins in the world. Here is the list of world countries I still need Duct tape rolls from to complete the collection. Send you roll and story of what country it is from, who you got it from and how you got it and I will send you your engraved 1 of 200 World Duct Tape coin.




Antigua and Barbuda









Bosnia and Herzegovina


Brunei and Darussalam


Burkina Faso



Cape Verde

Central African Republic




Cot d'Ivoire


Democratic People's Republic

Democratic Republic of the Congo



Dominican Republic


Equatorial Guinea


















Lao People's Democratic Republic





Libyan Arab Jamahiriya








Marshall Islands













Papua New Guinea


Public of Korea

Republic of Moldova

Russian Federation


Saint Kitts and Nevis

Saint Lucia

Saint Vincent and the Grenadines


San Marino

Sao Tome and Principe

Saudi Arabia



Seria Leone

Solomon Islands





Syrian Arab Republic






United Republic of Tanzania





OK so if you are still reading this post lets look at the collection to date.

The question is, what do you do with the rolls of Duct Tape and how do you display them? 

For people new to the World Duct Tape Collection. The first goal was to get a roll of Duct Tape from each of the 50 United States. This took a few years but here they are displayed on the right around a map of the U.S. On the left is the first half of the Duct Tape rolls from around the world. As you can see this side is full and I needed to add another panel to the display unit.

This project has got me back on the hunt for the 100+ rolls that I need to finish out the World Duct Tape collection. With a new world map and some scrap wood I was able to frame up a third panel to hold more rolls of Duct Tape.

The three panels when displayed look like this. 

Now the display has a lot of other parts to it and when set up people can check out the details on each individual roll of Duct Tape in the collection. The log books record the date, pictures and story behind each roll of tape and the people that sent the tape to me. There is even Duct Tape from the International Space Station that is signed by 15 astronauts while they worked on building it!


And lastly the entire World Duct Tape collection needed to be self contained in a nice space saving package that could be transported and rolled around for display. 

If anyone is interested in having the World Duct Tape collection put on display please contact me.

For more details and the stories on the collection and rolls go to my ducttape2thefuture.blogspot  blog.

And if you want to take on the challenge of getting a roll of Duct Tape from the list of countries at the start of this post or know of someone that might be able to get a roll to add to the collection let me know. 

Rolls can be sent to Dick Anderson  11672 Center Hill Road Darlington, Wisconsin 53530


Thursday, June 2, 2022

KidWind Blade Pitching

 The learning opportunities continue to pile up as I work to design a blade pitching system for KidWind teams to study and learn from. After seeing what the College Wind Challenge teams put together for the 2022 challenge in San Antonio, TX my wheels began to turn. 

The Darlington and Mauston KidWind teams continue to learn and grow finishing among the top 3 high school teams again this year. So it is my hope that they will take on the task of designing, building and testing a wind turbine for the 2023 KidWind Challenge year that will have blades that change pitch as the speed of the rotor picks up. 

The goal here is to provide the teams with a proof of concept to study and improve upon. Words just cannot do these ideas justice. Like the saying goes, "I hear it I forget. I see it I remember. I do it I understand."

DESIGN #1 Basic mechanical system 101

First up is this model. The design is made to have the blades start with a 45 degree pitch to get maximum starting torque to start turning the rotor. In operation the wind tunnel fan is started and when up to speed a switch is closed to start the blades on their cycle to pitch the blades to 3-5 degrees and run at optimum speed.

Each blade is pitched by a worm gear drive system as shown here. Limit switches are used to stop the blades by opening the circuit to the individual drive motors. Got to 3D print a worm gear and some mounting brackets that would have been a real killer to machine out of steel.

The system drive motors are 12 volt and the power to run them comes from 3 sets of AA batteries held in PVC tubes. There are some complicated DPDT relays and switches needed to be able to reverse the polarity to run the motors backwards to get the blades to return to the 45 degree pitch. Overall the self contained system proved it's self when placed in the wind tunnel with blades held at 45 degree pitch the maximum rpm was about 150. When the system was placed in the wind tunnel and operated so the pitch changed the rpm went up to 400. Very happy with this first design. The major problem was that the DC gear motors turned at slightly different speeds and this caused the pitch from blade to blade to vary. Plus no way to attach a generator.

DESIGN #2 The NEMA Stepper Motor control with Arduino and Rotary Encoder. 

This was going to be a trimmed down model with the center threaded rod bring turned causing the nut on the end of the rod to move toward the front of the turbine and change the pitch of the blades. The linkage to get the blades to change pitch was a real head scratcher. After several failures these linkage rods seemed to do the trick. 

At first I tried to drive the 1/2 - 13 NC rod directly with the stepper motor but there was not enough power.  My fix was to attach a 32 tooth KidWind gear to the shaft and drive it with an 8 tooth pinion that I 3D printed to fit the stepper motor shaft. You can see the stepper motor at the bottom of the Nacelle. The drive mechanics worked well.

Now the plan was that I wanted to place all the electronics and power supply into the Nacelle for one nice neat package. I did manage to place the Arduino board, Stepper Motor Control board and Rotary Encoder in the Nacelle. However the 5 volt power for the Arduino board and 12 volt power for the Stepper motor would not fit. Also there was no way to attach a generator to this system. But the system worked well. The blades would be placed at a 3-5 degree pitch angle. Then the system turned on and the Rotary Encoder turned the correct number of turns to make the stepper motor rotate the threaded rod and move the nut until the blades were at a 45 degree pitch. Now the wind tunnel would be turned on and when up to speed the Rotary Encoder button be pushed sending a signal to the Arduino board to return the stepper motor to the position it started at. This would be the 3-5 degree pitch for highest rpm. Took a bit of new learning to get the Arduino and programming code to work but all is good. Now to just solve the problem of being able to  get it to drive a generator and produce some electricity.

DESIGN #3 Thinking like the real 2MW Vestas 

OK so the stepper motor needed to be in the nose of the rotor. And the linkage rods reversed. A 1/2 - 20 NF threaded rod with a nut was used as before to provide the motion to the linkage arms. The blades are mounted to the white gear (just used the gear I had instead of cutting a blank disk) and allowed to rotate to change their pitch. Now just behind the white gear is the slip ring assembly where the 2 signal and 2 power lead connections are made. All of this rotates at the speed of the blade rotor, just like a Vestas turbine!

Now this 1/2 - 20 NF rod is held in some nice bearings for support (not like the piece of 2x4 in the model). Then a coupler does the job between the rotor and the 1:25 gearbox and 20 watt generator. Using a 5" diameter PVC pipe for the Nacelle the electronics and power supplies should fit nicely.

So now the next step is to learn how to get the data from the rpm sensor to be used to determine the pitch of the blades and control rotor speed and electrical output. No small task but a good learning opportunity for KidWind teams that want to blow away the judges in 2023.