Hello I am trying to find the acceleration of a system that has 2 masses, m1 and m2 connected via a spring with a spring constant of k with a force of F applied to the larger mass in the direction that stretches the spring.
Very good. How are you going about it?
ie. did you try Newton's method of drawing free body diagrams for each mass?
I think you may have left out some important information in your problem statement:Yeah I found the forces acting downwards but I think they are irrelevant because all the acceleration for the system would be in the sideways direction.
This cannot follow from post #1 because you have not given any values for m1, m2 or F. It is unlikely to be correct because you have not accounted for the force from the spring.I found that the acceleration of the 3kg (larger) mass is 15/3= 5ms/^2,...
Yes....but I'm not sure if this is correct because wouldn't the spring be pulling back on it and therefore lowering its acceleration?
This is not how you would normally treat the accelerations of coupled masses is it?I am not really sure how to find the acceleration of the whole system, do I try find the acceleration of each mass and add them?
You include the force due to the spring in the free body diagram.How do I do that when a spring is involved?