Pinewood derby is a must experience for every Boy Scouts member. This derby refers to a racing event for unmanned mini cars with no machine. Although unpowered, the cars could move because of the gravitation law. And since this derby become popular, many organizations aside from Boy Scouts held similar events with more proper arrangement.
Tips on Building Powerful Pinewood Derby Car
As mentioned before, the pinewood derby car 100% depend on the gravitation to move. That’s why, to get a super and powerful car, it lies on how the design could escalate the gravity effect. For that reason, here some tips you could do to build a supercar for the derby:
1. Avoid Pointed Nose Design
The first step is designing your pinewood car. To do that, you could look for some pinewood derby printable designs on the internet. Then, you can start to draw your blueprint design by combining from what you printed. One thing you have to remember, that you should avoid the pointed nose design for your car. Because pointed nose couldn’t rest well on the pin at the start line, and it could make the car bumped around at the starting of the race.
2. Wedges Design, not Rectangular
Aside from avoiding the pointed nose design, you also should avoid the rectangular ones. The reason is that rectangular is not an aerodynamic design. Thus, by using rectangular shaped would make the wind block your car move. Remember, pinewood car could run because of the gravity force by utilizing the weight and height.
3. Dry Wood
To make your super car, you have to bake the pinewood for at least, two hours. That way, all the moisture would get removed. The result of this process would make your car become lighter. Thus, you can place more weight on the rear of your car, since getting more weight on the rear would add speed.
4. Maximum Weight as Possible
In the most cast, pinewood car shouldn’t weigh more than 5 ounces. For this matter, you should maximize this allowed weight. And if your finished car weight less than that, you can add other detailed accessories that allowed to get more weight. Also, you have to make sure the rare part weight more.
5. Installing the Wheels and Axles
You have to ensure that you get the alignment straight, this to make your car run smoothly. Also, glue the axles perfectly on their holes, and be careful not to get any glue on the wheels. And there’s some expert know-how to increase your car speed performance. Try to build a three-wheeled car, by making one of the wheels slightly smaller than others. The purpose is to make it run faster by reducing friction.
And also, put the front and rear wheels as far as (allowed) possible. Don’t forget to put dry lubrication to avoid friction between the wheels and the body. That way, the wheels would rotate smoothly with minimum friction as possible.
6. Distinct Design of the Front and the Rear
In this kind of event, you don’t put your car but an official. For that reason, you have to make sure others could tell which one the front part and which one is the rear. Because in several cases, the official personal failed to notice which one is the front part and put the car backward.
Let Loose on the Design by Utilizing These Templates
Although it’s a pinewood car, you shouldn’t limit your creativity. Put the best design for your car to make it as cool as possible. Also, you have to create a smooth surface by sandpapering to lessen the friction. Don’t forget to put paint your supercar to make it more impressive. There are many car designs at the pinewood derby PDF files below to get some inspirations.
The pinewood derby started as a Cub Scouts activity but become popular in out of Scouts community as well. The reason is that the event is fun. Not to mention, the challenge for the imagination in building and designing for mini cars is also thrilling.