If there are two hydraulic cylinders connected in parallel, each with a different load (shown in the picture below), will they start extending at the same time?
I'm having a disagreement with my tutor, he has told me that the cylinder with least resistance will fully extend, and only once it has fully extended will the other cylinder start to extend. I would have thought that both cylinders will start extending at the same time, and the cylinder with lower resistance will just extend faster. Much like parallel resistors in an electrical circuit.
The reason I think this is because there is still a net force on both cylinders. In the picture below, if the pressure of the system is 50000 Pa and the area of each cylinder is 0.03m^2, then there is a force of force of 1500N on the cylinders. Cylinder 1 has a load of 491N, and cylinder 2 has 981N, so cylinder 1 has a net force of 1009N, and cylinder 2 has 519N. So surely both cylinders will accelerate as there is a force on them?
Another reason I believe the tutor is wrong is that if the masses have very similar weights, say 50kg for cylinder 1 and 50.0000000000001Kg for cylinder 2, would they still only extend one at a time? If that is true then surely it is impossible for them ever to extend at the same time as no two weights will be exactly the same.
The only explanation I can think of to them extending one at a time is that the pressure relief valve (shown in the picture below, just to the left of the switch) plays some part. The pressure relief valve works exactly as the picture makes it look like it would. if the pressure of the fluid coming down the dotted pipe is enough to push the arrow so that it connect the above pipe and the reservoir, then water coming from the pump will flow straight to that reservoir. There is a spring that pushes the arrow to the right, so if that spring takes e.g 2000N to be compressed so that the arrow can connect to the reservoir, then this will prevent the system from ever having a higher pressure than 2000N. Everything else in the circuit is pretty self explanatory so I wont bother explaining what they do.
So please can somebody explain to me, in the diagram below If switch A is pressed down, will both cylinders start extending at the same time?