springs

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Category archives for springs

DIY Force probe

I was thinking about some experiments that deal with friction and I wanted to show something with a force probe. The problem is that most people don’t have one of these. So, I decided to try and make one out of simple things. In this case, I am using some straws, a rubber band and…

LEGO plus Slinky = Physics

What happens when your kids won’t give you a turn on the Wii? Simple. You take their LEGO bricks and their slinky and do some physics. I will keep this simple. Basically, I created a slinky holder out of LEGO pieces and added LEGO bricks to the end to stretch it. Here is the video.…

Pendulum – a third way

Looking back at part I of this idea, I don’t think I did a very good job. Let me summarize the key things I wanted to say: Normally, there are two ways of modeling the motion of an object: Calculating the forces on the object and using the momentum principle or Newton’s second law (which…

Accelerometer Version-2

So, I built a new accelerometer. Why? The jelly-jar one was just not doing it for me. Plus, the cork was starting to make the water all yellowy. It was a good start, but I can do better. What was wrong with the jelly-jar one? First, it didn’t let the cork move very far before…

This has been on my list for quite some time. Really, it must be since i posted about measuring acceleration in free fall with an iphone. So, this post will be all about accelerometers. How does an accelerometer work? Really, an accelerometer measures force some way on a known mass. Let me show an extremely…

Jennifer over at Cocktail Party Physics has a nice post about her trip to Disneyland. The one ride that would be fun to play with (in terms of physics) would be the tower of terror. Think of the cool things you could do with a video camera during that ride. It would be like a…

Here is what is cool about [Fantastic Contraption](http://fantasticcontraption.com/) – it’s like a whole new world, a world ready for exploring. I am Newton, and I can see if this world follows the models that I propose. In this post, I am going to explore the elastic nature of the “water-sticks”. If you have played fantastic…

Maybe you know I like numerical calculations, well I do. I think they are swell. [VPython](http://vpython.org) is my tool of choice. In the post [Basics: Numerical Calculations](http://scienceblogs.com/dotphysics/2008/10/basics-numerical-calculations.php) I used vpython and excel to do something simple. I will do that again today (in that this problem could also be solved analytically). However, there is one…

Resonance and a Magic Trick

Magic tricks are cool. Especially when the trick is really physics. In this trick, I can make one of the four balls move more than the others. (When you watch the video, you will see why I am not a professional magician). You could set this up in a variety of ways. I state that…