Angular Momentum - Bike Tire


The humble bike tire has a multitude of uses for the demonstration of angular momentum. One of the more common uses is to have someone try to turn it while it is spinning. If they do this while standing on the turntable, they will start spinning themselves.

Another possible demonstration is to set it on a table standing on one of the handles and spin it up. At high enough angular velocity, the angular momentum will be large enough to keep it from tipping over. Eventually, it will even begin to demonstrate precession.


All of these effects demonstrate conservation of angular momentum, particularly its vector orientation.

The bike tire can be wound up by hand or by using a string.