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June 28, 2010

How to drill a square hole

An interesting technique described at Wolfram.com.

SquareHole.PNG

One way of getting a curve of constant width is to start with a right isosceles triangle and draw arcs of circles centered at the vertices as indicated and an additional smaller-radius arc at the top. Then if the resulting curve is rotated so that it stays inside the square that surrounds it, the locus of the apex is an exact square. By placing a cutting tool at the apex (red) this device can be used to build a drill that drills perfect square holes. One would start with a circular hole in the target material and then use the rotor to remove material so that the hole is an exact square.

Contributed by: Stan Wagon (Macalester College)

More discussion on the topic here.

Via

Posted by joke du jour at June 28, 2010 06:03 PM

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