- from Simple Machines
Think of a long, strong stick. That’s a lever.
The stick is propped up on a small object called the fulcrum. Now imagine you are holding one end of the stick, and a heavy rock is on the other end. The rock is called the load. By pushing down on the stick, or using effort, you will be able to lift the rock. In levers, the effort is applied at a different point from the load. And the position of the fulcrum has an effect on the amount of effort (that is, the push or pull) needed to move a load. For example, the closer the load is to the fulcrum, the less effort you will need to lift it. But your effort will move a greater distance than when the load is farther from the fulcrum. In that case, your effort will be greater but it will move a shorter distance.