In the following question, Why can't we resolve horizontally like this:
$\displaystyle 6 \cos 55 = 3.44N$?
Can someone explain, how this resolving is done. Thanks in advance.
Every diagonal vector can be broken down into horizontal and vertical components. For vector a, the horizontal component is found by taking the magnitude times cos 55. Thus 3 cos 55 gives you its horizontal force.
Since vector b is horizontal only, it gets added to 3 cos 55. Is that what you're asking?
I think maybe your terminology might be going against you. The "resultant" is the result of your vector addition. This is the 8.1 N at 17.656 degrees.
To find the components of vector a,
$\displaystyle a_x = | \vec{a} | ~ cos(\theta)$
and
$\displaystyle a_y = | \vec{a} | ~ sin(\theta)$
where $\displaystyle | \vec{a} | $ is the magnitude (size) of vector a and $\displaystyle \theta$ is the angle between the vector and the +x axis.
Does this help?
-Dan