# Conical pendulum concept

## Main Question or Discussion Point

I have a question about the flying pig.
A flying pig is just a toy pig with wings that is hung from the ceiling with a string. When you turn it on, it flies in a circle and shows concepts of conical pendulum.
But it only flies in one direction. If you push the pigs in the opposite direction, it will not travel in shape of a circle.
Why is that????????

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Doc Al
Mentor
I don't know the details of how the pig is connected to the string or how it flies, but--as mentioned in your previous thread--there's nothing about a conical pendulum that implies one-way motion. However, it's certainly conceivable that the pig mechanism was constructed so as to make it easier to fly in only one direction. Turn the motor off and then give it a push in the opposite direction and see what happens.

tiny-tim
Homework Helper
… is it a bird? … is it a plane? … no! … it's …

If you push the pigs in the opposite direction, it will not travel in shape of a circle.
Why is that????????
Hi ys2050!

I did a quick google search - these pigs look fun!!

Does yours have flapping wings? If you move the pig the other way, does it have to "fly" backwards?

If so, maybe the aerodynamics of the wings make it unstable if the wings are forced backwards?

Hi ys2050!

I did a quick google search - these pigs look fun!!

Does yours have flapping wings? If you move the pig the other way, does it have to "fly" backwards?

If so, maybe the aerodynamics of the wings make it unstable if the wings are forced backwards?
Yeah I think it has something to do with the wings..... but I can't figure out exactly how the wings are doing that...!! T.T

Doc Al
Mentor
When you try to make it fly in the opposite direction do you turn it around? Or do you just give it a push and it decides which way to go?

Not having the thing in front of me to examine and play with, I can't say for sure, but it would seem rather easy to make the mechanism such that it tends to always go clockwise (or counterclockwise).

When you try to make it fly in the opposite direction do you turn it around? Or do you just give it a push and it decides which way to go?

Not having the thing in front of me to examine and play with, I can't say for sure, but it would seem rather easy to make the mechanism such that it tends to always go clockwise (or counterclockwise).
When I try to make it fly in the opposite direction, I turn the pig around and give it a little push.... in which case, it won't travel in a circle....

Doc Al
Mentor
Can you try this (just for fun): Instead of hanging the pig, float it in a bath of water. See what happens.