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Imagine a Newton

06/01/2015 11:33 AM

For anyone who has trouble trying to get a "feel" for a force of 1N, it's about the force exerted by gravity on a 2¼" diameter apple, or a 30mm diameter steel ball (if the back of my envelope serves me well).

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#1

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/01/2015 11:58 AM

See ? math's not always "just been there, ruling the universe" it's an arbitrary thing we invented to explain and quantify phenomena.

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#2

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/01/2015 12:15 PM

I always thought a Newton was one of these

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#6
In reply to #2

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/01/2015 3:54 PM

If you stop eating them all you could weigh one and bring this argument for a close.

Next time I am at the Bureau of Weights and Standards I should see what they are using to represent a standard Newton. ;-)

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#31
In reply to #6

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/02/2015 4:35 PM

Fig or Apple Newton?

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#17
In reply to #2

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/02/2015 7:42 AM

Hi gringogreg,

They look like what we would call in the UK Fig Biscuits (mmmm tasty)

Best regards,

John

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#19
In reply to #17

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/02/2015 8:10 AM

AKA Fig Newtons.

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#3

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/01/2015 1:30 PM

Nice way to remember it.

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#4
In reply to #3

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/01/2015 2:41 PM

That's what I thought when it first occurred to me. "About a tenth of a kilo, so that's about an apple's worth" thought I.

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#32
In reply to #4

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/02/2015 4:37 PM

At least it is not the mass of an average dog turde, then the Newton would be a shite's worth.

I thankful elephants can't fly.

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#5

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/01/2015 3:51 PM

1 Newton = .10197 kg

A steel sphere 30mm in diameter would need to be hollow with a thickness of about 4.6 mm to meet that requirement.

Maybe you meant a 3mm diameter ball of steel, which is closer to 110 grams depending on what you use for its density.

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#8
In reply to #5

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/01/2015 4:55 PM

1 Newton = .10197 kg

Only when that 0.10197 kg is accelerated at 9.807 m/s/s. If that 0.10197 kg was held on the moon, it would exert only about 1/6 of a Newton on who (or whatever) was supporting it.

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#10
In reply to #8

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/01/2015 6:19 PM

Wasn't that what the original post said - under 1 G gravity? Or did I miss something?

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#12
In reply to #10

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/01/2015 7:18 PM

"...it's about the force exerted by gravity on a 2¼" diameter apple..."

The OP only said force exerted by gravity. The implication was gravity on Earth. I did not infer gravity on Earth (1 G). You did. Based on it being reasonable to assume gravity on Earth, your response is fine. My intention was to further clarify and make the distinction that gravity varies depending on planetary locale.

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#34
In reply to #12

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/02/2015 4:48 PM

"...on a 2-1/4" apple. How many apple trees (or corner grocery stores) on the moon, eh?

Apple only has context in terms of this fallen world Earth. The moon remains relatively dead, and relatively innocent, not having Eve there to hand me an Apple.

Therefore, sir, your deduction or implication that it could be the moon's gravity under consideration is in fact a red herring. So, then Doctor, it appears you have been on a fishing expedition.

I will now trouble you for that 5 quid you must surely owe me for such a thorough and complete tongue lashing.

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#63
In reply to #34

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/05/2015 2:36 PM

You call that a tongue lashing? I've gotten quite worse from Sarah Jane Smith on numerous occasions. And 5 quid? Sure...do you have change for a TARDIS?

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#68
In reply to #63

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/10/2015 8:38 AM

JBTardis: There is no change for a Tardis.

Do you know why you should never hire a Texas Tech football player as a cashier?

You can't get four quarters out of them.

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#71
In reply to #68

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/10/2015 8:56 AM

There is no change for a TARDIS.
Perhaps that chameleon circuit is on the fritz again.

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#72
In reply to #71

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/10/2015 9:00 AM

"Perhaps that chameleon circuit is on the fritz again" - (usually) wouldn't be a police box if it was working.

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#73
In reply to #72

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/10/2015 9:36 AM

(usually) wouldn't be a police box if it was working.

It might be a police box....but the fact that it can't change as James stated implies that it's not working properly.

Actually according to an episode in Series one (the newer Dr. Who series) the Doctor likes the police box shape and keeps it in that configuration.

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#74
In reply to #73

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/10/2015 11:34 AM

I was thinking more of the exchange rate between Tardis units and dollars. There is no change for a Tardis. I think the camelion circuit is working fine. Last time I saw it, the appearance was of a largish egg near Trafalgar Square.

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#75
In reply to #74

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/10/2015 12:26 PM

Hiding among all the other big eggs, eh?

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#76
In reply to #75

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/10/2015 1:35 PM

Something about Englishmen and pattern baldness, I suspect.

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#14
In reply to #8

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/02/2015 4:28 AM

That must be why they don't grow apples on the moon, takes too long for them to fall.

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#69
In reply to #14

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/10/2015 8:43 AM

Yes, and I pulled all the smallish green apples (a total weight here in Lubbock of approximately 20-25 lbs. estimated) taking up two plastic grocery bags, off my wife's Granny Smith tree two days ago, thinking "the bug man" was going to spray systemic pesticide and also dose the ground with another longer lasting one against tree borers, that would have rendered the apples poisonous. Then in speaking with the gentleman yesterday (after the deed was done), he related how he did not apply the tree borer poison to the base of the apple tree.

Any suggestions on what to do with a lot of small green apples that are no where near ripe, even for Grannies? Tarts anyone?

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#70
In reply to #69

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/10/2015 8:48 AM
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#15
In reply to #8

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/02/2015 5:02 AM

Yes, I could've said "For anyone who has trouble trying to get a "feel" for a force of 1N, it's about the force exerted by gravity on the moon on a 4 1/7" diameter apple...., but I don't think it would've been very helpful, since only a dozen people could have been in that position, and I can't find any record of any of them having taken an apple with them - and one doesn't often find apples that big.

(Tho' I'm sure they do exist:

)

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#37
In reply to #15

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/02/2015 8:04 PM

Not to mention that it's no doubt quite hard to feel the force being exerted through those spacesuit gloves.

Though I suppose they could have just taken them off, since it was a sound stage in Arizona.

Which has a gravitational field of 1G. We're back to normal sized apples in bare palms! Problem SOLVED!

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#53
In reply to #37

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/03/2015 12:46 PM

Just stop it with the NASA conspiracy innuendos! It has been proved time after time, that in fact, missions did land on the moon, just as shown. The so-called "problem" photographs were not problems at all due what we photographers refer as "perspective", and its effects on shadow vectors from a collimated light source (as the sun). If that does not settle the issue for you, I cannot help you.

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#57
In reply to #53

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/03/2015 4:25 PM

Please do check the smiley, James Stewart. It was meant to convey that I am deliberately stirring the pot while pretending innocence. That is why is is there. I am well aware the United States has landed on the Moon.

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#61
In reply to #57

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/04/2015 4:09 PM

Oops! I forgot so smile back. Sensitive about NASA, since I have a cousin who was an engineer working there back during Gemini-Apollo. I think he retired about the time the shuttles starting launching. He designed the docking ring for Gemini-Soyuz, as I recall, among many other items.

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#33
In reply to #8

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/02/2015 4:44 PM

Only "The Doctor" would think that way. What game are you up into, sir?

In Earth Standard Gravity (Mean Blogosphere gravity of 9.8 m/sec2), the ball is approximately 3 mm. Prize goes to Anonymous Hero. On the moon gravity is ~1/6th. Thus we need to cube root of 1/6th, on the moon we would need an iron ball of 5.454545455 mm, give or take.

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#36
In reply to #33

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/02/2015 5:18 PM

Think you've slipped a decimal place there (you're not the first). Think real world - how much d'you think a 3mm (0.12") steel ball weighs?

This is why I think an average-ish (2¼" diameter) apple is the best way to get a handle on it.

Suggest you read (or re-read) earlier posts in this thread.

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#39
In reply to #36

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/03/2015 4:15 AM

According to Simply Bearings a single 3mm 316 stainless ball is 0.11g x 9.81=1.08N.

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#40
In reply to #39

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/03/2015 5:00 AM

I'll leave it to JohnDG to tell you what's wrong with that!

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#44
In reply to #40

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/03/2015 5:44 AM

Ah yes, maybe a 1000 of them would do?

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#45
In reply to #44

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/03/2015 5:57 AM

Yes. Volume (and therefore mass) of a 10x larger sphere is 1000x greater. So 1000 3mm ones would do nicely.

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#46
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Re: Imagine a Newton

06/03/2015 6:30 AM

Bit tricky to hold in the hand though.

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#47
In reply to #46

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/03/2015 7:00 AM

Get magnetized ones (not SS316).

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#41
In reply to #39

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/03/2015 5:27 AM

The Newton is a derived unit. The SI base units are kg.m/s2. Note: kg not g.

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#43
In reply to #39

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/03/2015 5:41 AM

Hi Nigh.

A 3mm ball bearing seems intuitively too small - at least for a static force - unless it is being dropped and stopped at the end of it's travel!

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#64
In reply to #39

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/08/2015 3:38 PM

Mixed units Nigh, well, it just never bodes well.

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#65
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Re: Imagine a Newton

06/09/2015 4:16 AM

True but it's a fact of life especially when dealing with the U.S. We do sometimes find ourselves talking at cross purposes. I remember a conference call with an American customer who wanted a dimension to be within a 'few mill'. We were thinking a few millimetres, that's easy, then we realised he meant micro inches.

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#66
In reply to #65

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/09/2015 6:08 AM

Unless I'm much mistaken, by "mil" Americans mean milli-inch, what we call over here thou, short for thousandths of an inch (or used to).

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#67
In reply to #66

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/09/2015 6:12 AM

You're probably right, my memory is not the most reliable tool.

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#42
In reply to #36

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/03/2015 5:34 AM

JohnDG - Yes, I'm inclined to agree - a 3mm ball bearing seems intuitively too small. My concept of a quarter pound is more akin to your apple - and isn't that were Isaac Newton got the idea from!

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#51
In reply to #36

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/03/2015 10:44 AM

3.0 mm steel ball: 10.6028 mm3 I suppose that is precisely 0.0106028 cm3 of steel. Steel typical density is given as {The density of steel varies based on the alloying constituents but usually ranges between 7,750 and 8,050 kg/m3 (484 and 503 lb/cu ft), or 7.75 and 8.05 g/cm3 (4.48 and 4.65 oz/cu in).- wikipedia entry on steel}, approximately 8 g/cm3. Thus our 3.0 mm steel ball mass is (assume 8.0 density) 0.0848 g! Wow, was I ever mistaken. Apologies.

I will start over with a suitable ball of steel next time.

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#55
In reply to #36

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/03/2015 12:58 PM
"low, low density steel""high density steel"
7.2g/cm

3

8.4g/cm

3

1Newton1Newton
9.80665m/sec

2

9.80665m/sec

2

980.665cm/sec

2

980.665cm/sec

2

0.101972kg0.101972kg
101.9716g101.9716g
V=4/3πr

3

14.16273cm

3

12.13948cm

3

14162.73mm

3

r=(V*3/4π)

1/3

12139.48mm

3

15.00903mmradius14.2573mm
30.02mmdiameter28.51mm

copied from a quick and dirty spreadsheet. I absolutely was wrong at first, but now I am correct. We know the object must be of mass 101.97 g in order to exert 1 N in standard earth gravity. The problem everyone (including me at first) is keeping units straight, and getting from the mass to the volume, using the correct formula. This is (thank God and Greyhound) my final answer.

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#62
In reply to #33

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/05/2015 2:27 PM

Whatever do you mean by "what game are you into"? No game at all.

I used the Moon as it's common to inhabitants of Earth. If I had used the relative gravitational acceleration of the planet Raxacoricofallapatorius, no one here would have the slightest idea what I was talking about.

Now pardon me, I have some time place to be.

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#11
In reply to #5

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/01/2015 7:09 PM

I'll happily review my figures (my envelope was a bit crumpled), but a 3mm (0.12") diameter steel ball weighing 3.9oz? What kind of steel is that?

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#13
In reply to #11

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/01/2015 7:22 PM

Off by one problem! :-)

You are correct, I was off one decimal place.

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#16
In reply to #5

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/02/2015 6:20 AM

No, he was right first time. Perhaps you're thinking of 30mm radius? But then 4.6mm thick (SG 8) gives ~ 4N. Don't forget area is 4*pi*r^2!

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#24
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Re: Imagine a Newton

06/02/2015 9:24 AM

Please ignore my #16. I posted before seeing your #11.

But looking at it in more detail, using 30mm dia, 4.6mm thick and assuming material volume = outside area x thickness (which clearly errs on the high side) comes to volume only a bit less than the solid sphere, and weight 1.02N. Somewhat to my surprise.

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#25
In reply to #24

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/02/2015 10:07 AM

That approximation (area * thickness of shell) is surprisingly inaccurate (I agree with your figures). Using the masses of the inner and outer spheres and subtracting gives 1.11N for the solid sphere and 0.74N for the hollow one.

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#27
In reply to #25

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/02/2015 12:27 PM

That's right, and the error is greater for a sphere than a cylinder, as all 3 dimensions are involved.

Of course, for something like a (cylindrical) vessel say 2m dia x 10mm thick, the error is negligible.

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#28
In reply to #5

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/02/2015 1:35 PM

"1 Newton = .10197 kg"Sorry to notice that you compare apples with pears since one is a FORCE unit and the other a Mass unit you should avoid the sign "=" but use an explanation and specify that it is for earth conditions.

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#7

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/01/2015 4:12 PM

"May the Force be with you." - Anon

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#9

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/01/2015 5:03 PM

According to this site close approximations for a Newton are:

  • a medium sized apple. Rather fitting since Newton's gravitational laws are so closely associated with him being hit on the head with an apple.
  • A cooked quarter-pounder
  • weight of a stick of margarine
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#18

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/02/2015 8:01 AM

For those of us here in the US, a standard baseball is slightly over 1 N in weight. Its mass is spec'd at 142 to 149 grams, which works out to around 1.4 N.

(All baseballs are the same, btw; no difference between Little League and the Pros.)

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#20
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Re: Imagine a Newton

06/02/2015 8:13 AM

Sorry if you think I'm being picky, but N is a unit of force, not weight.

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#22
In reply to #20

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/02/2015 8:35 AM

Sorry John, it is . Weight = mass x gfs. I've been trying to explain the same to my lad doing his gcse science! We're getting there..slowly.

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#23
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Re: Imagine a Newton

06/02/2015 8:54 AM

OK, true if you use that definition, but you wouldn't get far in a grocer's asking for ten Newtons of spuds!

In the SI system, N is the unit of force.

(Opps, you're correct, N is also an SI derived unit of weight. Apologies. Still don't recommend it for buying veg, tho'. ).

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#29
In reply to #20

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/02/2015 2:51 PM

Ha. Yes, I have a degree in Physics and I am aware that force is a general term whereas weight is the specific term for the force of gravity.

You are being picky, but that's ok; no need to be sorry about it!

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#30
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Re: Imagine a Newton

06/02/2015 3:36 PM

Interesting. My degree is also in Physics but I thought it was the other way round, force being the scientific term (= mass*g when due to gravity) but weight being an everyday term, often used in place of mass (wrongly).

But as long as we all know what we're doing it's no problem.

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#35
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Re: Imagine a Newton

06/02/2015 5:01 PM

Hey! Physics graduates united! Mine was '75, so it's probly all changed now, anyway.

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#38
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Re: Imagine a Newton

06/02/2015 9:08 PM
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#21
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Re: Imagine a Newton

06/02/2015 8:33 AM

Like a lacrosse ball then.

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#26

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/02/2015 12:22 PM

It is a force as others have said, but easier for me to imagine it as one newton being caused by a quarter pound weight here on earth.

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#48

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/03/2015 9:47 AM

I'm a bit late getting here...
But I hate these units based on names rather than easily understood more fundamental units

Draw weight of a bow 50 pounds... I expect you can all visualise that. But if it was in Newtons everyone would think ... What?

Personally I've drawn 445 Newtons! Wow impressive... but do any of you have the faintest idea what that is?

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#49
In reply to #48

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/03/2015 10:03 AM

Hi Del,

100 lbs in old money!

Best regards,

John

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#50
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Re: Imagine a Newton

06/03/2015 10:09 AM

Quite right, divide by 10 for kg, times 2 for pounds. Near enough for most things.

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#52
In reply to #48

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/03/2015 11:11 AM

What weight hanging from the string of your bow (held horizontal) would draw it the same distance?

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#54
In reply to #52

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/03/2015 12:51 PM

Yup, that's how you measure bow draw weight.

Heaviest I've pulled is about 100 pounds at 32" draw length (the poundage increases the further you draw it... surprisingly linearly).

I usually shoot about 50 pounds at 28" draw.

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#56

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/03/2015 3:04 PM

Just thought I'd tell you that I went to the same school as Isaac Newton, although not at the same time.

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#58

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/03/2015 5:45 PM

Is this New-ton same as the old ton...?

Just askin'

Del

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#59
In reply to #58

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/03/2015 6:50 PM

Tonnes ain't what they used to be.

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#60
In reply to #59

Re: Imagine a Newton

06/04/2015 3:09 AM

Julius Caesar told his son

Two two four nought

pounds in a ton

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