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# What is a complex machine?

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A complex machine is a combination of two or more simple machines that work together, such as when a lever and a wheel and axle are combined to form a cart. There are many different possible iterations of complex machines, from staplers to wheelbarrows and skateboards.

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Credit: JD Hancock CC-BY 2.0

Simple machines are a group of six items (wheel and axle, pulley, screw, lever, wedge, and inclined plane) that can be combined to form a complex machine. A bicycle is an example of a complex machine because it involves the use of two wheels and axles. A dolly, or handcart, is another example, with a lever and wheel and axle being combined to help lift and move heavy loads. The term "complex machine" may be used interchangeably with "compound machine," which also refers to a group of multiple simple machines working together to make a more complicated mechanism.

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## Related Questions

• A:

An common example of a lever is a see-saw. Some other levers are pliers, crowbars, wheelbarrows, scissors, staplers, fishing rods, tweezers, nut crackers and fishing rods.

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• A:

A pivot, also known as a fulcrum, is the point where a load is pivoted. This is a fixed hinge that is connected to the ground.

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A rake is third-class lever. The pivot point, called a fulcrum, is at one end, while the load is on the other end. The force is in between. Shovels, spears, elbows and knees are other examples of third-class levers.

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No, the shovel is a third-class lever. In such systems, the effort is positioned between the fulcrum and the load. Mechanics of using a shovel involve holding one end steady with a hand, making the fulcrum, while the other hand applies force, or effort, to pull up the load.