1. Limited time only! Sign up for a free 30min personal tutor trial with Chegg Tutors
    Dismiss Notice
Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

How do you get a mouse trap car to go forward and then backward?

  1. Oct 16, 2004 #1
    I need to build a mouse-trap car that goes forward 3 meters and goes backwards 3 meters by Monday... is that even possible? Pls, help me with ideas... :bugeye:
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 16, 2004 #2


    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    By Monday? You'd better get cracking.

    Best guess is use 2 mousetraps... Fire them off one at a time.
  4. Oct 16, 2004 #3
    Why not have one wind a rubber band or something... you will have to adjust the tension but have it wind up then it should be able to get back..
  5. Oct 16, 2004 #4
  6. Oct 16, 2004 #5
    here is some students who created a mousetrap car that went forward and backward with 2 traps like enigma said
    http://www.andrew.cmu.edu/user/ejl/?M=D [Broken]
    Last edited by a moderator: May 1, 2017
  7. Oct 16, 2004 #6
    Another two trap foward/backward design
    http://www.andrew.cmu.edu/user/alauer/MecheDesign/mouse2.html [Broken]
    Last edited by a moderator: May 1, 2017
  8. Oct 17, 2004 #7


    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper

    Tie the car to a string suspended from the ceiling?
  9. Nov 3, 2004 #8
    Fix the mouse-trap FIRMLY to a little car. Fix the trap in a position such that when the wire thing comes to a stop, the momentum of anything attached to it will be in the direction the car will travel. Attach a weight to the end of that wire part. Put a spring on the front of the car. Put a firm support behind the car, so it can't jump backwards. Place a hard surface in front of the car, 3 meters away...
    Last edited: Nov 3, 2004
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook