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The **Mechanical Leverage Calculator** computes the force that a lever can lift, and the length of a lever needed to lift a force. The user can choose different length units for the lever (e.g. feet, meters) and different weight (mass) units (e.g. pounds, kilograms, tons U.S., tons Metric).

W • x = F • y

**INSTRUCTIONS:** This calculator has five functions related to the mechanical lever:

**y - (beam length):**computes the required length of a beam above the fulcrum for a lever to raise a weight (**W**) based on the downward weight applied (**F**) and the length below the fulcrum (**x**).**W- (lift mass or weight):**computes the weight that can be lifted with a lever based on the length of the beam (**y**) above the fulcrum, the length (**x**) below the fulcrum and downward weight applied (**F**).**x - (fulcrum position)**: computes the length from the object to the fulcrum needed in a lever to lift a weight (**W**) with a downward force (**F**) with a beam of length (**L**), where L = x + y (see below).**F - (downward force):**computes the mass needed to create the downward force (F) to raise the object with a lever.**L = x+y**: computes the sum of two lengths

Archimedes once said, "Give me a lever and a place to stand and I will move the earth." While this might be a bit of an exaggeration, Archimedes clearly understood the power of the simple lever. Levers are still used in the basic construction of many complex machines. Every hydraulic arm on bulldozers and tractors use leverage in performing their tasks.

Using the calculator above, compute how much weight you could lift using a simple piece of lumber and concrete block as the fulcrum. If you weigh as much as me (200 lbs), and you use an 8 foot 2x4, and place the fulcrum at 1 foot, you can lift an object 1,400 pounds! If you move the fulcrum six inches toward the weight (x = 6", y = 7.5'), you can lift 3,000 lbs. That's the amazing lever.

The power of a lever is not only useful, but is can save lives. Rescuers often use levers to lift heavy objects to reach people in collapsed building or under broken machines.

- The Simple Machine Calculator has formulas related to gears, pulleys on multiple axles and levers.