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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hiya everyone - yet another newbie, but I have been living here since 2002. Seems like you all have some good info flowing, so ...

My apologies for posing a question so soon into our "relationship", but can anyone give me any advice on how to find a competent and qualified engineer to advise and manage installation of a hydro electric installation at my old watermill?

I have identified and calculated a potential of about 5kWph 24/365, and hope to use Navitron kit. I need someone who can plan and oversee works, both electrical and civil, and who would be acceptable to the ANAH authorities so I can get a grant, and subsequent tax credit.

Amazing tho' it seems, hydro engineers in this untapped region seem to be either non-existent or living extremely covert lives.

Thanks muchly,
Hils
 
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I presume you've googled?

'Hydro Auvergne' yields 38K responses - I'll leave you to sort out what you want....

Hydro was the only method of generation that I didn't look into here ( for obvious reasons) My only advice would be to traet all the 'experts' as someone with a book to sell you - only believe an opinion once a dozen others have said the same thing...
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Yes, I Googled altho' I never tried something quite so simple as you suggest (until just now), and then refined it a bit more. But, as always before, there's plenty of advice on how to calculate and what kind of kit etc etc, but there's a dearth of anyONE actually DOING it.

My need remains .....:confused2:

I presume you've googled?

'Hydro Auvergne' yields 38K responses - I'll leave you to sort out what you want....

Hydro was the only method of generation that I didn't look into here ( for obvious reasons) My only advice would be to traet all the 'experts' as someone with a book to sell you - only believe an opinion once a dozen others have said the same thing...
 

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Yes, I Googled altho' I never tried something quite so simple as you suggest (until just now), and then refined it a bit more. But, as always before, there's plenty of advice on how to calculate and what kind of kit etc etc, but there's a dearth of anyONE actually DOING it.

My need remains .....:confused2:
Have you ever used a builder in the area? If there is someone nearby you have some confidence in, you might try asking him. We have a neighbor who is a builder, and DH approached him about our solar water heater, which he is now doing.

When we asked him about installing a wood burning stove, he admitted he doesn't do that work, but would refer us to the company he uses.

A trusted builder might be able to point you to an appropriate installer of the equipment you're looking to put in. Or if Navtron is a brand name of the equipment, perhaps you could contact them to see if they can give you a list of resellers or installers.
Cheers,
Bev
 
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I found a few hydroelectric turbine sellers who offer an "étude", but I doubt they would be interested in an installation if you are supplying the turbines yourself.

Maguysama is one.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks Bev.
Yes, I've done all of the above and contacted everyone people like ANAH can give me contact details for. Without exception, they're full of technical advice but no-one wants to get their hands dirty. Local builders are all frightened off as soon as "l'electricite" hits the conversation, but would be prepared to work alongside an engineer to complete the civil works. And no, it's not a linguistic problem, or even a scientific problem, 'cos I can make myself understood in both milieus.

Navitron, a UK company, has a rep (Marc Asker, who also writes for Connexion) in the Dordogne, but it's going to cost me the best part of 1K Euros just for the site visit.

All I need is a competent local hydro engineer - sob sob ..... lol
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Yay

:clap2:

Haven't heard of this bunch, but have marked them to contact them on Monday. Really don't mind whose kit I use as long as whatever it is is acceptable for grant/tax credit purposes.

Many thanks
Hils

I found a few hydroelectric turbine sellers who offer an "étude", but I doubt they would be interested in an installation if you are supplying the turbines yourself.]
 
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It's worth doing a pagesjaunes.fr search too, I looked at a couple of Auvergne depts (63, 43) under 'turbines hydroelectriques' and there were a very few numbers, although some were obviously existing hydroelectricity generators as opposed to installers, ie anything mentioning 'centrale' or 'usine'.

I thought it might be something more popular in the Alpine departments, but nothing in 73 or 74.

On Google a search for ingénieur hydroélectrique france devis gives a mass of results, and a few look interesting. Would take some sorting through though.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Many thanks again, Pete.
I also thought alpine & "watery" areas would have the kind of persons I'm looking for with much the same kind of results as you've found. There seem to be loads of "talkers" (consultants) but not many "doers" apart from the people who actually make the kit.

The world seems predominantly obsessed with wind and solar power, and, in this area, geothermal, to an extent, but mostly here they're pushing wood pellet heating rather than thinking about harnessing the water power rushing past the door. It does anger me a bit 'cos in this 7km valley alone there used to be 40-odd watermills running everything from paper-making to wood-cutting to seed-oil production to starch and flour milling. The mill-race serving my (2) mills drove two wheels one immediately after the other for two pairs of flour milling stones and two pairs of oil stones and a rack of paper-pulping tubs. And my mills are just 10metres downstream of another, larger erstwhile papermill.

In the valley itself, there are three functioning mills - 2, upstream, supply the paper museum at the Moulin Richard de Bas, and the third, downstream of us, which has two 3m dia wheels, produces oil on a Saturday occasionally. But none of them can give me any advice on finding an "ickle man wot duz" as their installations are several hundred years old and they maintain them themselves.

I need a tardis ....

Hils
 
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I used to live in the Savoie, and there was a time when industry along the banks of the fast-running Isère boomed through direct access to cheap hydroelectric power, prior to nationalisation of the electricity industry. Then prices were fixed on a national level, the remote and smallish factories of the department couldn't achieve the necessary economies of scale either, and industry soon moved downstream to the likes of Lyon.

Not much help to you but I thought I would mention it anyway!
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
yeah well .... that's progress for you X-/
 
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