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-   -   Would a 9 lb sapient spider producing 1/10 lb of silk a day suspend your disbelief? (http://forums.sjgames.com/showthread.php?t=74197)

Flyndaran 10-27-2010 06:10 PM

Would a 9 lb sapient spider producing 1/10 lb of silk a day suspend your disbelief?
 
I'm creating a non-physics violating species of sapient spider-like creatures.
But I can't for the life of me find out how much silk a spider produces let alone as a function of body mass.
So as a number pulled out of my spinnerets, does 1/10 lb for maximum output seem reasonable? Or would you say only 1/100 lb per day, etc.?

Anthony 10-27-2010 06:33 PM

Re: Would a 9 lb sapient spider producing 1/10 lb of silk a day suspend your disbelie
 
A 9 lb spider violates SoD. In terms of silk production, poking around, it takes around 100 kg of mulberry leaves to produce 1 kg of silk, so if we assume similar efficiency, that implies the spider is eating its own weight every day, which sounds high (though as a carnivore, it's eating somewhat higher energy density foods), 1/100 lb sounds more probable.

Flyndaran 10-27-2010 06:37 PM

Re: Would a 9 lb sapient spider producing 1/10 lb of silk a day suspend your disbelie
 
The christmas crab shows that arthropods can get that big.

pyratejohn 10-27-2010 06:41 PM

Re: Would a 9 lb sapient spider producing 1/10 lb of silk a day suspend your disbelie
 
I seem to recall that coconut crabs can get to be pretty freaking huge too.

Flyndaran 10-27-2010 06:45 PM

Re: Would a 9 lb sapient spider producing 1/10 lb of silk a day suspend your disbelie
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by pyratejohn (Post 1069304)
I seem to recall that coconut crabs can get to be pretty freaking huge too.

D'oh! That's what I meant.

Ze'Manel Cunha 10-27-2010 06:52 PM

Re: Would a 9 lb sapient spider producing 1/10 lb of silk a day suspend your disbelie
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Flyndaran (Post 1069291)
I'm creating a non-physics violating species of sapient spider-like creatures.
But I can't for the life of me find out how much silk a spider produces let alone as a function of body mass.
So as a number pulled out of my spinnerets, does 1/10 lb for maximum output seem reasonable? Or would you say only 1/100 lb per day, etc.?

Spider silk is very, very light, that is what makes it so valuable.

According to the following article, they used over a million golden orb spider milkings to make a 2.6 pound garment.

They cite 14,000 spiders to make 1 ounce of silk, or about 0.00007 oz per spider per day.

These golden orb spiders weigh maybe around 0.035 ounces, or about .002 of silk per ounce of spider.

You're scaling them up about 4,000 times to get to 9 lbs, so you should be ok with about an 0.3 oz max* in a day for a 9 lbs spider.

Mind you, if you do milk the spider for all the silk it's worth you may need to give it time to replenish itself before milking it completely again.

http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2009/09/spider-silk/
http://www.amnh.org/exhibitions/spidersilk/

combatmedic 10-27-2010 08:12 PM

Re: Would a 9 lb sapient spider producing 1/10 lb of silk a day suspend your disbelie
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Flyndaran (Post 1069291)
I'm creating a non-physics violating species of sapient spider-like creatures.
But I can't for the life of me find out how much silk a spider produces let alone as a function of body mass.
So as a number pulled out of my spinnerets, does 1/10 lb for maximum output seem reasonable? Or would you say only 1/100 lb per day, etc.?

May I stop to congratulate you on the best thread title I've seen in weeks?

:)

Apache 10-27-2010 08:21 PM

Re: Would a 9 lb sapient spider producing 1/10 lb of silk a day suspend your disbelie
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by combatmedic (Post 1069327)
May I stop to congratulate you on the best thread title I've seen in weeks?

:)

Why no, sir, a 9-lb intelligent spider certainly won't suspend any disbelief here, but how DARE you make it produce that much silk!!! For shame, sir!!

*snickers*

sir_pudding 10-27-2010 09:37 PM

Re: Would a 9 lb sapient spider producing 1/10 lb of silk a day suspend your disbelie
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Flyndaran (Post 1069302)
The christmas crab shows that arthropods can get that big.

That is probably the maximum weight for a coconut crab. If it's your spider's mean weight they are definitely at the limits under Earthlike conditions.

9lbs may be too small for sapience but that's pretty fuzzy. How much of that body mass is brain though?

Trachmyr 10-27-2010 09:55 PM

Re: Would a 9 lb sapient spider producing 1/10 lb of silk a day suspend your disbelie
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by sir_pudding (Post 1069354)
That is probably the maximum weight for a coconut crab. If it's your spider's mean weight they are definitely at the limits under Earthlike conditions.

9lbs may be too small for sapience but that's pretty fuzzy. How much of that body mass is brain though?

Actually 9lbs is more the typical weight... they get up to about 38lbs at their largest.

However... they grow throughout their entire lives (I think about 60 years), so if the spider in question does the same, they might not reach "sentience" until well being past "middle-aged".

Quote:

Originally Posted by Ze'Manel Cunha (Post 1069310)
Spider silk is very, very light, that is what makes it so valuable.

According to the following article, they used over a million golden orb spider milkings to make a 2.6 pound garment.

They cite 14,000 spiders to make 1 ounce of silk, or about 0.00007 oz per spider per day.

These golden orb spiders weigh maybe around 0.035 ounces, or about .002 of silk per ounce of spider.

You're scaling them up about 4,000 times to get to 9 lbs, so you should be ok with about an 8 oz max in a day for a 9 lbs spider.

Mind you, if you do milk the spider for all the silk it's worth you may need to give it time to replenish itself before milking it completely again.

Forgive me, but using those numbers I get something more akin to 1/50th a pound, or about 0.3 ounces.


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