02 03 Pinewood Derby Stories and Photos from Maximum Velocity 04 05 15 16 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 31 32 33


Speedy the Turtle - Derek & Scott Bobbitt

This is my son, Derek's, first Pinewood Derby car. It is named
"Speedy the Turtle" (his idea for the name -- it would be "sneaky" and
no one would suspect his car was fast, because "turtles are slow,

To prepare for the race, we read Pinewood Derby Speed Secrets together
and shared many discussions about basic physics (his Pinewood Mantra
became, "Friction: The Enemy of Speed," was echoed for weeks around
the house) as well as numerous tips about how to gain the precious
time down the track. Tips we learned, including weight placement for
ideal center of gravity, three wheels on the track, block treatment to
further reduce weight (like baking for almost 2 hours in the oven),
and the addition of weight with Tungsten Putty to idealize the final
weight at weigh-in, were all incorporated into the final design
concept for his sneaky turtle. The turtle's head was his idea for an
adaptation of the "fast start" secret -- including the Wolf scout cap!

Our agreement was simple: you design it and I will carve it -- and
design it he did! I did not allow him to use any power tool with a
blade, nor any chisels or knives. I taught him to use my pen lathe to
polish axles with sandpaper all the way up to 2000 grit -- a mirror
shine. He spent 4 1/2 hours sanding the carved block from 60 to 220
grit, learned how to spray paint, and then hand painted the final
touches with a Q-tip and toothpick.

In the first heat, Speedy the Turtle generated a track record, and he
ended up taking 1st Place. But the best part was watching Derek at
the finish line cheering on his den-mates--totally oblivious to the
fact that "track record" means "1st Place." Despite winning every heat
holding the track record for the entire event, he was blown away that
he had won the race.

Geico Car - Brian Keezer

My son, a Webelos II, decided that since we had been pretty
inconsistent over his first four years of racing with trying to win
the speed category, he wanted to try for best design in his final
year. He came up with the idea of the Geico stack of money that you
see on the commercials. He built it and painted it entirely on his
own. It came out looking great, and he ended up winning for best
design in his Pack. He then went onto the District race and took first
place for design there as well. The car wasn't very fast, but he
certainly accomplished his goal in his final year of Cub Scouts, and
couldn't have been happier with the two large trophies he walked away

Read More at: Pinewood Derby Times Volume 10, Issue 5

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