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Which kind of truss would produce the best result (aka. best distribution of force):

i) An equilateral, isosceles or a scalene triangle
ii) 3 small triangles or 2 big triangles (the overall masses of both are equal)

The truces are made of fettucini and need to hold a mass of 6 kg.

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closed as off-topic by Manishearth Jul 12 '13 at 14:20

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1 Answer 1

up vote 0 down vote accepted

More smaller triangles are better than a few big ones (more stiff). Also think about which triangle shape distributes the loads for evenly.

How are you constrained dimensionally? Ideally you create a vertical structure that distributes the weight over $N$ columns of noodles. If you can't do this, then you find which configuration yields the more vertical orientations. Also it is important to know if the noodles can rotate about their support making them a 2-force member, or are they fully loaded with the ends fixed in location and orientation? Think of stiffness here. How would you make the truss as stiff as possible? Would long flat triangles be better, or short tall ones?

I guess without more details we cannot qualify an answer.

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