Download All About Mechanical Engineering by Don Herweck PDF

By Don Herweck

The elemental ideas of mechanical engineering are Isaac Newton's 3 legislation of movement relating to strength, acceleration and deceleration, and activities and reactions. operating with those uncomplicated ideas, state-of-the-art engineers proceed to create innovations that make our lives more uncomplicated.

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THE ILLUSORY PENDULUM A startling, little-understood optical illusion can be demonstrated with a pendulum and a pair of dark glasses. Make the pendulum by tying a small object to one end of a two-foot length of string. Let someone stand across the room and swing the pendulum back and forth on a plane perpendicular to your line of vision. View the pendulum by holding the spectacles so that only your right eye is seeing through a dark glass. Both eyes must remain open. The pendulum will appear to swing in a clockwise circle I Now shift the dark glass to your left eye, keeping both eyes open as before.

If you want to entertain your friends—and some of the experiments in this book are superb party stunts—practice them a few times before you demonstrate. “Harpooning” a raw potato with a soda straw, for instance, is an amazing parlor trick, but you may have to damage many straws before you get the knack. Sherwood Anderson wrote a famous short story, “The Triumph of the Egg,” about a restaurant owner who failed miserably in trying to show a customer how to put an egg into a bottle (see page 101).

Hang the thread on the nail, as shown, and mark the vertical line with a pencil. The center of gravity always seeks the lowest position it can reach, so you know it is somewhere on this vertical line. Punch another hole at some other spot near the cardboard’s edge and repeat the same procedure. The spot where the two lines cross must, of course, be the center of gravity. THE FLOATING BALLOON A gas-filled toy balloon of the type sold at fairs and on street corners can be made to hang suspended in the middle of a room, with no visible means of support.

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