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# How Much is G?

calibrated playground swings
 (+5) [vote for, against]

How Much is G? is the name given to the idea of attaching some easily read calibrations to the swings in children's play grounds.

These would take the form of the swings all having different chain lengths, with each of these being clearly visible. Calibrations attached to the angled supporting structures would enable the amplitude distance of the swinging arc to be determined and timed. To help with the timing, a large clock with only a prominent sweeping second hand would be fixed in place nearby. The final item of data would be determined by the actual swing seats, as they acted as weighing scales displaying the weight of the user in pounds and kilos.

Now every factor is in place for a group of curious children (or adults) to conduct a range of basic calculations based on the swinging motion of a simple pendulum.

 — xenzag, Jun 21 2014

pendulum http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pendulum
[xenzag, Jun 21 2014]

This won't let you determine G, unless you also know the mass of the Earth.
 — MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 21 2014

 You also need the radius of Earth.

I think calculating for g is more interesting because it more immediately applicable to real world experience.
 — xaviergisz, Jun 21 2014

 Presumably we're trying to measure little g. The real problem here is the pendulum mustn't be driven. Also, the amplitude needs to be small enough for it to approximate simple harmonic motion. All in all, not a fun swing ride.

I think kids would be far more interested in measuring their "number of g's" as they cling on to a playground roundabout. This could be done quite simply by welding a metal rod with a weight attached tangentially on the perimeter, which would deflect over a graduated scale a bit like a torque wrench.
 — mitxela, Jun 21 2014

My neighbor David would swing for hours, pumping his legs each time. This would screw up any calculations.
 — popbottle, Jun 22 2014

 //My neighbor David would swing for hours, pumping his legs each time. This would screw up any calculations.//

He was probably doing it on purpose too, the jerk.
 — ytk, Jun 22 2014

I thought this was going to be the swing arc of each note on a musical scale.
 — 2 fries shy of a happy meal, Jun 22 2014

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