Problem 251: In vino, veritas

It’s that wonderful time of year again — the crush. Harvest time in Napa Valley and many other fortunate places dotting God’s green earth. Nothing to do but get the goods into barrels and let time take its course.* Nothing to do except get the barrels to their resting places, that is. And so we find Pinot and Grigio, partners in a family-owned wine-making venture, faced with the annual dilemma of moving said heavy objects from A to B.

Pinot has constructed a ramp to get the barrels onto the five-ft-high aging platform and is trying to convince Grigio that they can simply turn the barrels sideways, get them rolling fast enough (Pinot says 15 fps will do) and send them hurtling up the ramp. This way, the barrels will end up on the proper shelf and all the boys will need to do is some final positioning.

Last year they used a rusty old wheelbarrow, so Grigio is willing to try just about anything this season. However, he doesn’t think the barrels will make it up the ramp and onto the shelf by themselves. He says they’re too heavy, at 420 lb each, and the angle of the ramp — 43 degrees — is too steep. Each cylindrical barrel has a 35- in. diameter. Is Pinot right or will the pair have to drag out the dreaded wheelbarrow after all? Treat the barrel as a solid mass.

*[Ed. Note: Wine-making process grossly simplified due to space considerations.]

Solution to problem 250: Duck bill, September, 2001.

Winners circle

Fun problem 249: August, 2001 TOTAL ENTRIES: 51 NUMBER CORRECT: 40 (78%)
WINNER: Greg Bennett, Baltimore GREG’S PRIZE: ETB-2000 software from UNIK Associates, Milwaukee, Wis., www.engineering-unik.com
Reduce hours spent calculating to minutes. Use ETB-2000 to calculate gear forces, bending moment, heat loss, structured load calculations, screw conveyor hp requirements, hydraulic system pipe size requirements, and storage pile capacity, among others. Most programs use English and metric units, and on-line help and phone support are available.

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