How to Make a Homemade Generator that Runs on Wood or Even Trash

By On December 5, 2017

Have you ever wondered what you would do for electricity if we were in some mass blackout, a martial law scenario, or perhaps you just wanted to go into the middle of nowhere and still have power?

You might want to learn about generators. You could buy a really solid gas powered generator capable of powering a laptop or phone all day for around $1,100, such as this Cat RP6500E. Or for a more environmentally friendly generator, solar power generators or wind power might be a better option.

Or, you could get a much cheaper little device to charge a phone or laptop for 15 minutes for a couple hundred dollars.

But you know what could be done in an absolute emergency situation? You could make a generator that burns garbage or wood shavings to power a small light, or possibly a phone or a small device for a short period of time, but a short period of time that might save your life.

Using the type of engine one would find in a lawnmower, and gas that is produced by a device that captures the energy of burned wood (or anything else that can be burned, even trash), someone created a generator.

An incredibly interesting, hobby-inspiring YouTube channel called Experimental Fun posted a couple videos in which they built 2 generators out of a small engine and a gas producing device.



The first video’s description reads:

“When wood is heated it releases a few different types of flammable gases, I use a homemade gasifier to extract these gases out of the wood, I first run the gas through a condenser coil to condense any steam and tar out of the gas, I then use a bubble filter to catch that water and tar and it also helps in filtering out some of the unwanted smoke, next the gas runs through a homemade filter to remove the last of the unwanted byproducts, The wood gas then runs directly into the air intake on the 25cc engine.

This was only my first test. It seems the wood was a bit wet and I also didn’t let the gasifier stay hot long enough, this caused the gas production to be very inconsistent and the engine to only run for a few minutes at a time.

I will do a second test at some point, subscribe so you don’t miss it.
Thanks for watching 🙂

In the first video, the person goes through a process of cutting a large metal drum so that a smaller cylindrical piece of metal can be placed in the side of it, where wood is also burned.

A coffee-can looking cylinder is drilled, equipped with some wires that are securely welded to the top, and filled with wood shavings and twigs.

In the end, the small, welded shut can filled with wood shavings and twigs is placed into the large drum full of burning sticks, and the small welded can is heated to produce energy that is filtered through a jar of water with a copper coil in it, to make a gas come from the copper coil jar as the water boils.

It’s pretty amazing. If you desperately need to charge something that is low power, one day you might need to scrap an old lawnmower engine and do this.

A little engine like this can be used to make a generator.



For a little understanding of wattage, read this link.


(Image credit: Experimental Fun, Amazon, Home Depot)