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what is a free-body diagram?

OCW Scholar - Physics I: Classical Mechanics
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a free body diagram is just a simple way to see all forces affecting an object. these forces will typically include the force of gravity, the normal force, and any other forces exerted by / on the object
what is normal force?
check yr other question :)

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Other answers:

The Normal Force is the component, perpendicular to the surface of contact: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/c/c7/Incline.svg
Here's one FBDO
1 Attachment
http://ffden-2.phys.uaf.edu/211_fall2004.web.dir/Jeff_Levison/Freebody%20diagram.htm
Careful... a free-body diagram should only show forces acting ON the body, not forces exerted by the body on some other body. The key to forces is keeping straight who/what they are acting ON.
Free body diagram shows all forces acting on the body - external ones and the ones coming from the constraints, points on the body by which it is connected with other bodies. Examples are: forces from pin joints, surfaces in a contact with a body etc.They come from the third law of dynamics.
FBD is actually a simple diagram to clearly show all the forces acting on a body

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