I just Balanced an Egg

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I just Balanced an Egg :(

Right... so the ability to balance an egg on the equinox is a myth. Everyone knows this. So when, at approximately 8:15pm DST in Atlanta, GA, my husband pulled out the eggs to balance one, I was not impressed. Then he got one to balance. I was looking for the trick. He repeated the event, then I managed to get the damned egg to balance. WTF??? Repeated the balancing a few times until 8:22pm, when husband regretted waking the monster and got all pouty because dinner was ready and we were eating not.

I will try again tomorrow, but I am deeply unhappy. Seems to be a normal egg, with no particularly flat bits. We balanced it on a wooden table covered with a smoothed tablecloth. It seems to me that the tablecloth was not capable of compensating for the egg's curvature, thus balancing it. I would have liked to try on the bare tabletop, but ate the aforementioned dinner instead. Maybe it was the cloth?

I'd say I'm shaken, but scrambled might be a more apt description.
 

Answers and Replies

  • #2
DaveC426913
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What makes you think you can't balance an egg on its end on any day of the year?
 
  • #3
Evo
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The other day I broke open an egg that didn't feel right. When I opened it, almost the entire egg was an empty balloon, so the yolk was at the bottom and not moving, yes I will post a picture. Could be that your egg is abnormal also.

All I have is my cellphone, Evo Child has my camera. You know how sometimes you find a clear membrane covering a small air pocket in the egg? Well, half of this egg was a dry airpocket. The shaded part is the membrane and the entire egg was beneath it, you can see where I punched a hole on the left side to get the egg out. I could have easily balanced this egg.
 

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  • #4
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OK, from 8:34-8:43, I balanced it on the plain tabletop. The heck with dinner, eh?
Will still try again tomorrow.
 
  • #5
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@Dave: Mostly because I'm a klutz, I guess. But yeah, especially with its lovely symmetry, I should be able to hit the COM, no?

@Evo: Can't tell if you're being sarcastic... On the off-chance you're serious, I will say that upon gentle shaking, the egg feels normal. It also spins like a normal raw egg. Also, assuming this is repeatable over the next few days, I'll break open the egg when I'm done. I'd also like to try with multiple eggs.

Yeah, I feel dumb. But Dave, I've never tried this before! Cannot wait for tomorrow.
 
  • #6
Evo
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@Evo: Can't tell if you're being sarcastic... On the off-chance you're serious, I will say that upon gentle shaking, the egg feels normal. It also spins like a normal raw egg. Also, assuming this is repeatable over the next few days, I'll break open the egg when I'm done. I'd also like to try with multiple eggs.
I'm quite serious. Ok, once again it's just me and the freak egg. You can (hopefully) see that the membrane covers half the egg, so it was not only bottom heavy, but the egg could not move within the shell.
 
  • #7
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That is just plain cool! Shame to waste it :)
I don't think my egg has a similar deformity, but I am unwilling to smesh it until I've tried balancing it for a couple more days. Especially since I've tried and failed to balance two other eggs. Is this one super-symmetrical? Perhaps...
 
  • #8
Evo
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That is just plain cool! Shame to waste it :)
I don't think my egg has a similar deformity, but I am unwilling to smesh it until I've tried balancing it for a couple more days. Especially since I've tried and failed to balance two other eggs. Is this one super-symmetrical? Perhaps...
You have a magic egg. :approve: Don't break it. If you can shake it and feel movement, it's not like my egg. The moment I picked it up I noticed it felt weird, then I shook it and nothing really happened. Then when I cracked it and saw what was wrong... I knew I had to preserve it because no one would believe me. SURE Evo, you had a half egg...UH HUH.
 
  • #9
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What is the big deal? Since when is it supposed to be difficult to balance an egg?

The table cloth certain will make it easier, try it on the smoothest and hardest surface you can find if you want some sort of challenge.
 
  • #10
Evo
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What is the big deal? Since when is it supposed to be difficult to balance an egg?

The table cloth certain will make it easier, try it on the smoothest and hardest surface you can find if you want some sort of challenge.
Have you tried to balance an egg on end?
 
  • #11
Vanadium 50
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With 15-30 minutes of practice, anyone can balance an egg on its end. Most people aren't patient enough, and give up sooner.
 
  • #12
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And yet I harbor a deep and shameful fear that the egg won't balance again tonight. Which is nonsense, I know. After all, as Evo has pointed out, it is a magic egg.
My husband may have won round one of the Equinox and the Egg, but science shall prevail! (Says the woman with irrational doubts and references to magic. Clearly, someone needs to finish her coffee.)
 
  • #13
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Phil Plait (the Bad Astronomer) has gotten quite good at balancing any egg on any flat surface on any day of the year.

I recommend looking up his videos on this. If I remember to do it when I get home, I'll post a link.
 
  • #14
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Thank you, O Physics Forumites! I am almost soothed enough not to spend every night this week balancing eggs. Aw, heck, I am soothed enough, but I'll feel like a lousy scientist if I don't finish my experiment at this point. :shy:
 
  • #15
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Thank you, O Physics Forumites! I am almost soothed enough not to spend every night this week balancing eggs. Aw, heck, I am soothed enough, but I'll feel like a lousy scientist if I don't finish my experiment at this point. :shy:

Here you go, an instructional video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RrhdR0G2PQ0
 
  • #16
turbo
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It took about 30 seconds to balance an egg. The black surface is a very smooth slate counter-top. No cheating here. I could have found a tiny dent in our 35-Y.O. kitchen table, but that would have been fake.

P1000759.jpg
 
  • #17
Evo
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It took about 30 seconds to balance an egg. The black surface is a very smooth slate counter-top. No cheating here. I could have found a tiny dent in our 35-Y.O. kitchen table, but that would have been fake.

P1000759.jpg
Fake! That egg's not balancing, it's hovering over the counter.
 
  • #18
turbo
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I think the shadow from the glare off the melitta filter box is proof enough. BTW, it would have take a lot longer (and more effort) to fabricate a "hovering egg" photo than to balance the egg and take a snapshot. This is for the tyros - Evo is just being Evo.
 
  • #19
Evo
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I think the shadow from the glare off the melitta filter box is proof enough. BTW, it would have take a lot longer (and more effort) to fabricate a "hovering egg" photo than to balance the egg and take a snapshot. This is for the tyros - Evo is just being Evo.
I meant it that you had acheived a greater phenomena of making the egg float, but pretended it was just balanced. Ok, not a good joke...time for coffee. :frown:
 
  • #20
turbo
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This camera is a bit odd in some ways. This piece of fossil rock was sitting firmly on top of my home-made woodbox, but it doesn't look that way here.

floatingfossil_comt.jpg
I haz levitating rocks!
 
  • #21
486
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Here you go, an instructional video

Thanks! That's pretty much the method we used. Patience, patience, patience, and lots of tiny finger adjstments.

Turbo, do you have
(a) a lot of practice
(b) a magical egg
(c) magical fingers
(d) some combination of the above?

I am officially jealous of how little time you have to waste to get your awesome results.
 
  • #22
turbo
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Thanks! That's pretty much the method we used. Patience, patience, patience, and lots of tiny finger adjstments.

Turbo, do you have
(a) a lot of practice
(b) a magical egg
(c) magical fingers
(d) some combination of the above?

I am officially jealous of how little time you have to waste to get your awesome results.
This is the first time that I have tried. I tried to find the center of gravity of the egg and hold it still until the innards had a chance to stop moving - done!
 
  • #23
486
1


This camera is a bit odd in some ways. This piece of fossil rock was sitting firmly on top of my home-made woodbox, but it doesn't look that way here.

floatingfossil_comt.jpg
I haz levitating rocks!

So... do we still do photo contests around here? Because you is having a winning shot over there.
 
  • #24
486
1


This is the first time that I have tried. I tried to find the center of gravity of the egg and hold it still until the innards had a chance to stop moving - done!

Officially jealous. Sooooo do you train bronco riders as your day job?
 
  • #25
turbo
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Officially jealous. Sooooo do you train bronco riders as your day job?
Yes. I used to train unicorn-recruiters until it became so difficult to find female virgins. The rodeo is easier.
 

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