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Gold Bars

Science brain teasers require understanding of the physical or biological world and the laws that govern it.


Puzzle ID:#14343
Fun:*** (2.77)
Difficulty:** (1.31)
Submitted By:Smithy*en*!
Corrected By:Smithy




There was a millionaire who loved collecting gold. He bought ten solid gold shapes from a man, but the man proposed a bet. He said:

"One of these shapes is fake. It is made from a metal that looks exactly like gold. The only difference is that it is 1 gram lighter per 10 cubic cm. If you can find the fake, you can have all of the bars for free".

So the man weighed all of the bars, and to his surprise, they all weighed the same. Because of their strange shapes, he could not simply measure them. How can the man discover the fake without any measuring tools?

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Aug 23, 2003

i got it! we jsut studied the water displacement method in school!
Sep 09, 2003

like it!!
Sep 17, 2003

riddle mistakenly uses area (cm sq) where it should be volume (cubic cm) seller's hint makes no sense otherwise.
Oct 03, 2003

nice one
Nov 11, 2003

It is simple density porblem.... is that what I'm learning in school..........
Dec 24, 2003

I think that Archimedes figured out that problem over 2000 years ago.
Dec 25, 2003

wow that was really easy
I like it
Aug 27, 2004

nice teaser!!!!
Mar 18, 2005

This is Archamedes! Duh!
Jun 17, 2005

Basic Physics.
Aug 05, 2005

This one you either know right away, or you don't cause you have yet to take physics. The only problem I had with it was the fact you assume that a bucket (or any holder) of water would not be thought of as a tool. Sadly, in your solution, you are using the bucket exactly as a tool to measure the density of the objects.
Sep 19, 2005

i bet if you were alive 2000 years ago curtiss, you would have figured it out too right?
do you think your really smart?
i don't.
the answer to this teaser is DENSITY...that's all you had to write
Nov 22, 2005

er would it also be possible to test the hardness of the gold with your fingernail? most metals are not soft enough to dent simply by pushing on them, but solid gold is. correct me if i'm wrong.
otherwise that was a really good teaser!
Oct 29, 2007

May 27, 2008

correct me if i'm wrong, but size has nothing to do with it-density does.

The fake would be less dense, so even if it weighed the same, it would displace less water. Example: pumice floats because it is not very dense. drop a sample of gold of the same mass, and the gold would both sink and displace more water.
Jan 19, 2009

You said "1 gram lighter per 10 sq cm" but you should have said 1 gram lighter per 10 *cubic* cm.

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