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Homework Help: How to figure out when a table will tip over

  1. Oct 4, 2011 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data

    How Close to the edge of a 20kg table, can a 66kg person sit without tipping it over?
    The table is 2.2m long and there are two legs placed 0.5 m from each end of the table with 1.2 meters between the two legs and the top of the table is 0.80 m tall

    2. Relevant equations

    I am totally at a loss here, do I use r/R=Fd/gravity?

    3. The attempt at a solution
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 4, 2011 #2
    The question you need to ask is why does the table tip up at all?
  4. Oct 4, 2011 #3
    It tips because the guy sits on the edge and disturbs the balance (changes the center of gravity). I still have no idea how what equation I should be using.
  5. Oct 4, 2011 #4
    The table is symmetric, and you can assume that its mass acts from the centre of the tabletop. If you draw yourself a diagram you should see whats going on. Let me know if you don't!
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