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Homework Help: Simple Static problem

  1. Apr 15, 2005 #1
    A uniform steel beam has a mass of 1058 kg. On it is resting half of an identical beam.

    What is the vertical support force at the right end?
    What is the vertical support force at the left end?

    Could someone please give me a start in the right direction? Thanks
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 15, 2005 #2


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    All you need to do is make some assumptions and sum the forces in the Y direction and set them to zero.

    If you make the assumption that the beam is placed directly over the other beam and that the two centers of mass are in alignment at the midpoint of both spans and that the load is a point load then you can say:

    [tex]m = 1.5*1058 kg[/tex]

    The reaction forces at each end are going to be equal to each other and will total the overall weight of the beam system.

    [tex]R_L = R_R = (.5)(1.5)(1058 kg)(9.81 \frac{m}{s^2})[/tex]

    Are these assumptions about the problem's geometry correct?
  4. Apr 15, 2005 #3
    haha wow i forgot to mention the placement. Sorry. The top beam (the one that is the half length) is placed all the way to the left


    It looks sorta like that. Please forgive the ASCII art.
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2005
  5. Apr 15, 2005 #4
    I got the answer, thanks anyways :)
  6. Apr 15, 2005 #5


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    No problem-o. You now know you needed to sum the moments about one of the supports and set them to 0. Good job.
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