Learn How to Make Your Own Mini House and Hydroelectric Dam
If you enjoyed our recent tutorials on how to make a miniature dam you might want to take your micro-civil engineering skills to the next level? How about testing your mettle building another dam that actually powers a small house?
The build is not too taxing but is incredibly fun. Read on to find out how.
As you can imagine, you'll need some tools and materials before you get started.
Materials and gear needed
- Cement mix
- Steel wire
- Bricks and mortar
- uPVC piping
- Wiring and lights
- Water pump
- Dolls house furniture for the house (or materials to make your own)
With everything in hand, it is time to get on with the build.
Step 1: Make the house
The first step is to choose the location you want the dam and house to be built. Once done, use regular bricks and cement to build the foundation and main walls of the house.
Complete the little house to whichever floor plan and design you desire. Before you complete the roof, add in some wiring for lighting and other electronics you may want to add inside.
Once done, render the outside and inside, paint, add flooring, add in mini-lighting, etc. and then complete the roof, as needed. Add readymade furniture, or make your own, and other features like windows, doors, etc to complete the miniature house.
A large chunk of the video is dedicated to the actual house construction, so watch it carefully for more details on this process.
With that done, and if desired, excavate a pond/pool in front of the house. Line with bricks, cement renders, and create some form of fence around it. You can also add a small bridge over the pool to the front porch of the house if wanted.
Step 2: Make the dam
For the dam, prepare the ground near the house for the dam and its reservoir. Once done, excavate part of the trench to accommodate the actual dam.
Line this with concrete, and then add steel wire reinforcement. Once done, build the main shape of the dam in a more steel wireframe. Ensure you add something to keep a hole in the bottom of the dam somewhere to act as a sluice.
Shutter the frame and then fill it with concrete. Stir and level the concrete as needed to remove any air gaps. Once done, level off the top and add railings to form a mini roadway to the top of the dam.
Leave the concrete to cure. Once it is dry, remove all shuttering to expose the concrete. Paint the dam as needed and add any other decorative features your see fit.
Step 3: Make the hydroelectric generator
Next, a little downstream from the dam make a small well structure with bits of brick and an l-shaped piece of uPVC pipe.
With that done, make a bowl-shaped piece of concrete with a hole in the center to match the bore of the uPVC pipe. This will form a cap over the well to create a whirlpool.
Once dry, cement the piece above the well and build a short brick wall around it and up to the sluice gate of the dam, as shown.
Build an impeller and attach it to a dynamo and then fix it to a frame so that the impeller can be suspended directly above the mouth of the well. With that done, build some small pylons, and connect the wiring from the house to the hydroelectric generator.
With that done, add foliage and other features around the dam and house as needed.
The last step is to then flood the reservoir of the dam. Once done, open the sluice gate and let the water run into the hydroelectric whirlpool.
It should have enough energy to start to turn the dynamo and power the lights and other electronics in the house. Magic!
If you enjoyed this little build, you might enjoy making another dam-related project?