Pinewood Derby 2014

Here are the pics of the our first pinewood derby. Both for the boys and for me. We will be racing as part of Boys Scout Pack 835. Keagan is in Tiger Cubs and Braxten is a Bear this year.

As you can see we started with a plan block of wood as part of the BSA base kit. With the boys we drew up some pictures of what the cars should look like. Keagan just wanted his favorite - Lightning McQueen. I cut some test blocks so the boys could do some practice work before touching their final cars. This worked well. I ended up doing most of the shaping and sanding as that week we had close to record lows and sitting still is hard enough for them, but sitting still in the cold in their jackets was too much. I also did the base coat and the final clear coats but the boys did the other painting and Braxten did all his own stencils.

A few things I did to hopefully help the cars go faster: I used the milling machine to both polish the axles a bit (and take off the spurs) as well as drilling new axle holes - hopefully straight.

OK, well after re-reading the rules there was an issue, it DID say I had to use the existing slots in the block. Doh! For Braxten's car I was able to reuse the slots - although the front ones were partially carved for the curve of the front, but still useable. For Keagan's car, I had shortened it to look more like lightning mcqueen and removed the rear slot, so with 5 days left, we had to redo his entire car.
For weights, I routed out the back underside of the car, melted some fishing weights and used some epoxy to keep them in the cars. Braxten's was right at 5oz and Keagan's was just under at 4.9oz.

Results: Well surprising everyone, Braxten won every single race - both for his Den but also in the all around for the Pack! Some were very close. As you can see below he was quite happy about this. Keagan didn't fair as well. His tiger cub den was the largest group in the pack and it seemed all of them had good cars. He was 2nd or 3rd in each of his races, but was not enough to make the top 3. :(
He was unhappy for a while but recovered later in the day.

Click on any pic for a full size 640x480.

New pics after redoing Keagan's car and race results: