DIY: magic levitating table that will break your brain
During the first non-working weeks associated with the coronavirus pandemic, people had no choice but to surf the Internet, reading and viewing various information. In April-May, users of the world wide web increasingly began to come across videos and articles about a certain mysterious levitating table, which seems to cancel all existing laws of physics. The magic lies in the fact that the upper part of the structure floats in the air without touching the lower base at all.
From a scientific point of view, this phenomenon can be attributed to tensegrity. This is the principle of creating structures from cables and rods, in which the cables work in tension, and the rods, on the contrary, in compression. In this case, the latter do not touch each other, but are in free space, and their relative position is fixed by stretched cables, as a result, none of the rods is subject to bending. This effect is widely used in the design of suspension bridges. It sounds complicated and incomprehensible, so today, using this homemade cardboard example , we will create this magical levitating table and figure out how it works. Required materials and tools:
List of materials:
– Corrugated cardboard;
– Thread or thin rope;
– Refills for a hot gun.
List of tools:
– Stationery knife;
– Thermal gun;
– A needle for thread.
Step 1. We make blanks
The main material is corrugated board with a thickness of 0.4 cm, several pieces of different sizes must be prepared from it. Using a pencil and a ruler, first mark 4 squares measuring 19×19 cm and cut them out with scissors or a clerical knife. Next, we cut out 4 supports in the shape of the letter “Y” 9.5 cm wide and 37 cm long. You will need to correctly calculate the angle of inclination of the support, use a square and repeat all the calculations that are shown in the photo.
Then we cut out 4 isosceles triangles with 5 cm long sides – these are props for the “U-shaped” columns. Next, we make several thin strips 0.8 cm wide, they will cover the edges of the top and bottom of the table.
Step 2. Glue the base
Using a heat gun, glue the 19×19 cm squares together, so that you end up with a pair of two-layer pieces. Do the same with the “Y-shaped” blanks. Glue the supports to the squares, with the edge in the middle. Take a square to make sure the support is at right angles.
Strengthen the supports using the previously prepared triangles (5×5 cm), as shown in the image.
Step 3. The magic thread
Before us are two, almost finished parts of the future levitating table. Take a string or string that is not thick and glue it securely to one of the legs. This will be the bottom of the structure.
Let’s give it a more aesthetic look by gluing all open edges with a cardboard strip (0.8 cm), as shown in the image.
Step 4. Joining the parts
Connect the thread from the support of the bottom of the table to the support of the tabletop using the same heat gun. The length of the thread should be 9 cm. Glue all exposed surfaces of the top with a strip of 0.8 cm, as you did in the previous step.
Step 5. Fixing the time frame
This is a very important step. Before allowing the structure to balance in space, its upper and lower parts must be located strictly horizontally and as parallel to each other as possible.
Take 4 pieces of cardboard of equal length and support the top with them, resting on the bottom. It is important that the central thread is in tension, otherwise the tabletop will tilt to one side during levitation. Carefully make sure the top is perfectly horizontal and the thread is tight. Fix the temporary “legs” with masking tape.
Step 6. Adding Magic Threads
Using a needle and thread, pierce one of the edges of the countertop and tie a knot. Secure the assembly with a small drop of hot melt glue on the back of the surface.
After the glue is dry, pierce the corner of the bottom of the craft , also tie a knot and secure it with glue. Repeat this procedure for each corner of the stage. Try to keep the threads at the same tension.
Step 7. Enjoy the miracle
Gently peel off the masking tape and remove the temporary supports.
If you observed the dimensions of the workpieces and carefully considered the tension of the threads, the levitating table will begin to balance in space.
Surprisingly, this is not a myth, the experiment really works. Try placing some small items on the countertop and watch how weight affects overall balance.
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Originally posted 2020-08-08 08:16:43.