Thank you Philip Andrews for your revealing efforts in exposing the real stupidity and massive financial gambling associated with the Viking Energy wind farm (Time warp; SN 22/10/13).
As the owner of the 2.5 kilowatt machine on the westside you refer to in your letter I can only confirm your points about the poor average performance, despite being in Shetland with its “premier wind profile”.
As far as the smaller machines are concerned you have to factor into the financial equation just how unreliable many, if not most of these machines are, the rip off costs for constantly hauling them down and up again (once or if) the accredited installer can get the spare parts.
My turbine is probably the oldest still turning in Shetland and that is no thanks to the early part of its life when it was being looked after by a so-called accredited installer, where it lay on the ground as much as it stood proudly turning.
Several years ago I made it plain no accredited installer was welcome on my land and took over the servicing and repair of my own turbine.
From that day on it has performed better and far more reliably, exposing the rotten sham of the cartel of accredited installers who just add unnecessary costs and unreliability that for some will cancel out most of your feed in tariffs (FITS).
Like Philip Andrews I have spent several years investigating small scale wind turbines and whilst some machines are now getting more reliable, many are a total waste of money and will probably never pay back their costs.
The results of my studies have most definitely brought me to the decision to sell what is probably the most reliable, cheap to maintain small scale turbine in Shetland and replace it with a Rayburn to get warmth, cooking and hot water on the many cold days with no wind and the even more days of not enough wind.