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Maddening Magnets

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Keep in mind that I'm a regents physics dropout, so please bear with me: 


I'm going off to college in less than two weeks. Earlier tonight I was organizing four big magnets I found to bring with me, when my mom came in and started rambling on about my textbooks. Absentmindedly I began to fiddle with these magnets, when I discovered that they all attached to each other. I said to myself, "SELF. They shouldn't all be attracted to each other! What about opposite poles? If I've got two sets, each set has a north and south magnetic field--opposites attract!"


So my question is, why isn't there any repelling going on between the two sets? Shouldn't there be a combination of these magnets that would result in two sets of repelling magnets?


Thanks a bunch!  :geek:

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Absolutely!  And you were never a physics dropout, your schedule was too full.


Take any two of the magnets, and if they are both true magnets, you should be able to find an orientation in which they can attract each other, and also repel each other.  You can't have a north end of a magnet without a south (or if you ever do truly find one, call me, we'll go win a Nobel prize together!)  Have a great time this fall!!!

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