Gravity Defying Drinks

Gravity Defying Drinks is one of my favourite ‘magic tricks’ but there’s some real science in here too, just make sure you do this experiment outside!

gravitydefyingdrinks-1-setupWhat do I need?

  • Some string
  • Thick card
  • A hole punch
  • Tape
  • A plastic cup of water

How do I do it?gravitydefyingdrinks-2-string

STEP1 – Get a nice thick piece of cardboard to use as the base. This should be roughly A4 size. If you have thin card then fold it over and wrap some tape around to firm it up.

STEP2 – Make a hole in each of the four corners of your cardboard base.

STEP3 – Cut 4 pieces of string each around the same length and tie one to each hole in each corner of your cardboard base.

gravitydefyingdrinks-3-readySTEP4 – Tie the 4 pieces of string together about 10cm above the centre of your cardboard base.

STEP5 – Add one longer piece of string (about 1 meter) and tie this to the 4 connected bits of string to make a leash.

STEP6 – DO THIS OUTSIDE - Spin your contraption smoothly in a circular motion. The water stays in!

What’s going on?

Did you try it yet?! Awesome, right! But how does it work? As you spin your cup around you can feel in your hand that it’s naturally trying to fly outwards.

Imagine if you let go of the string while your cup gravitydefyingdrinks-4-gowas spinning! Your cup would go flying off into the air. As long as you spin the cup fast
enough that this outward force will be stronger than the gravity that’s pulling the cup down to the Earth the water will stay in and you will stay dry!

More Fun Please! - Experiment like a real scientist!

  •  What’s the maximum length of string that you can use? [Remember to do this experiment outside!]
  • How many cups of water can you balance on your cardboard base?
  • How slow can you spin your magical spinning cup contraption and still stay dry?!

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