Did you learn the equations for levers and fulcrums while sitting in a classroom and listening to a lecture?
For those who haven't thought about levers for a while, a brief summary is found at:
Excerpts and images (images may be enlarged by clicking):
"A lever (/ˈlɛvər/ or UK /ˈliːvər/) is a machine consisting of a beam or rigid rod pivoted at a fixed hinge, or fulcrum. It is one of the six simple machines identified by Renaissance scientists. The word comes from the French lever, "to raise", cf. a levant. A lever amplifies an input force to provide a greater output force, which is said to provide leverage. The ratio of the output force to the input force is the ideal mechanical advantage of the lever....
The earliest remaining writings regarding levers date from the 3rd century BC and were provided by Archimedes. "Give me a place to stand, and I shall move the Earth with it"[note 1] is a remark of Archimedes who formally stated the correct mathematical principle of levers (quoted by Pappus of Alexandria)...."
Unfortunately, my formal education about levers consisted of lectures and equations on paper in a classroom. If I had been able to watch Wallace Wallington moving concrete blocks by himself using leverage principles, I would have been very interested in levers and fulcrums.
Wallace Wallington's website is:
Wallace Wallington has kindly given me permission to quote from his website.
"How It All Began
I am a retired carpenter with 35 years experience in construction. In my work experience, over the years, many times I had to improvise on tools that were not at hand in order to get the job done.
At one of these times, about 20 years ago, I had to remove some 1200 lb. saw cut concrete blocks from an existing floor. The problem was that we did not have a machine that could reach some of the blocks. The only obvious answer was to break the blocks into smaller pieces with a sledgehammer and load them into a wheelbarrow. To me, this seemed to be too much labor at the time, so I improvised.
Using a few rocks and leverage, I removed the blocks from below the floor to an area that the machine could reach them for removal. After doing this several times, the technique became very easy and quick. This experience had me consider the possibility that people may have used this technique before modern day equipment was available.
Following My Instincts
Nine years later, after retiring, I decided to explore this on my own. I brought home a one ton block of concrete from a job. Once I got home, I realized that I had to use my techniques to get the block off the truck. After unloading, I found that my technique allowed me to move the block around the yard with very little effort. At that time, my family became very interested in what their "crazy dad" was up to " this time".
In a few days time, I decided my one ton block was no longer challenging, so I made some bigger blocks to play with. Within a few months time, I was moving, rolling, standing on end, and stacking them on top of each other.
I found that I, working alone, could easily move a 2400 lb. block 300 ft. per hour with little effort, and a 10,000 lb. block at 70 ft. per hour. I also stood two 8 ft. 2400 lb. blocks on end and placed another 2400 lb. block on top. This took about two hours per block. I found that one man, working by himself, without the use of wheels, rollers, pulleys, or any type of hoisting equipment could perform the task.
Testing The Technique
A year after beginning my project, my son needed a pole barn moved, due to a desired property split. I decided to put my technique to the test. The wood building was a 30 ft. by 40 ft. and 16 ft. tall. It weighed over 10 tons. In order to move the building, we added another 5 tons of bracing and reinforcement.
The conditions were not good. At first, the field was muddy and I could only work for a few hours a week. Working by myself, I still found that I could move the building at a speed of 6 ft. per hour. With my son helping, we doubled that speed. After 40 man-hours of labor, we moved the building over 200 ft...."
More information, photos and videos are available at Wally Wallington's website.
When I first watched a video of Wallace Wallington, I probably cheered and applauded. The sight of one man moving huge weights was so inspiring. Wallace Wallington is an embodiment of "Work Smarter, Not Harder".
Happily, many humans admire Wallace Wallington's achievements. He has been featured in many articles and videos.
Please feel free to add relevant information.