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Ladder horizontal force problem

  1. Mar 14, 2007 #1
    1. A uniform 5m ladder of mass 12kg rests against a wall with its base 3m from the wall. A painter of mass 55kg sits 3.5m of the way up the ladder. what is the horizontal force in N exerted on the ladder by the wall? a)110.45 b)178.45 c)232.67 d)327.08

    in the previous problem what is the magnitude in N of the vertical force exerted on the ladder by the ground? a)656.6 b)117.6 c)539 d)345.67

    i tried to solve this problem by adding the masses of the ladder and the painter and then multiplying it by the height and gravity and trying to resolve the vector for the x direction. but i think i am missing a step or just not doing it right; i am studying for a test next week so this is a prob from the test bank

    i would appreciate any help on this cause it will b on my test


  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 14, 2007 #2


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    You are right to resolve the force into x and y components.
    Work out where the center of mass is.
  4. Mar 15, 2007 #3
    i found the center of mass

    but i am not sure how to incorporate that into the problem

    and then how i can resolve the vectors

    pls help
  5. Mar 15, 2007 #4


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    Gold Member

    Draw a diagram.
  6. Mar 15, 2007 #5
    What forces are acting on the ladder? In what directions? Since the system is in equilibrium, they must all be equal.
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