Q:

What is the difference between a fixed pulley and a movable pulley?

A:

Quick Answer

A fixed pulley consists of a wheel fixed to a shaft and is used in conjunction with a belt to transfer energy to another fixed pulley. A movable pulley consists of a shell, a movable wheel and a rope. Movable pulleys are also know as block and tackle.

Know More

Full Answer

Experts choose flagpoles as applications of fixed pulleys, while movable pulleys are utilized in modern elevators and weight lifting machines. According to Education.com, movable pulleys have a greater mechanical advantage, meaning that the input force is less than the force of the system. Although, experts say that movable pulleys require more rope pulls by the user as the weight has become lighter, but fixed pulleys require less pulls. According to TeachEngineering, fixed pulleys enable the user to take advantage of gravity, balance an object and help raise objects above one's head. Movable pulleys are useful to raising objects below one's head. Education.com lists a third compound, the multiple pulley, which is comprised of both fixed and movable pulley systems. These pulleys are easiest to lift objects, as the mechanical advantage increases in tandem with the inclusion of more ropes, as cited by TeachEngineering. Pulleys are one form of simple machines in addition to screws and levers.

Learn more about Motion & Mechanics

Related Questions

  • Q:

    How do you build a fixed pulley?

    A:

    A fixed pulley is built by attaching a rod to a fixed surface and placing a wheel or spool onto the bar. Loop rope around the wheel while fixing it to the rod, and attach the item to be lifted to the other end of the rope.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    How does a windmill function?

    A:

    Wind turns the blades, or vanes, of a windmill, which are connected to a shaft generating kinetic energy for a series of functions. Applications usually associated with windmills include electricity generation and groundwater access.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    How do you make a pulley?

    A:

    To make a simple pulley, stick wire through an empty thread spool such that the spool can spin freely and attach the wire to a stationary object, then tie a small object such as a toy or pencil to a string and run the string from the ground up around the spool and back down to the small object. This will create a simple pulley system, where the string can be pulled down to lift the small object up towards the spinning thread spool.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What is a compound pulley?

    A:

    A compound pulley, sometimes referred to as a block-and-tackle system, is a mechanical arrangement of pulleys that permits a trade-off of applied force for distance, according to HowStuffWorks. By slinging rope over and through a system of wheels, a compound pulley permits weights to be lifted and pulled with the application of relatively little force, saving energy and reducing the power needed to accomplish work.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore