Racers start…uh…shaping your wooden blocks! Here are the rules for making your pinewood derby car.
Cub Scout Pack 231
St. Sebastian Church and School
Official Pinewood Derby Rules
(Revised January 2017)
1. You MUST use parts in box. No special/custom aftermarket wheels, axles, or wood block allowed. If you lose/break parts, wheels and axles will be available at check-in.
2. After-market DECORATIVE parts (windshields, body parts, spoilers, etc.) are allowed as long as they don’t violate any other rules.
3. Finished car cannot be any longer than 7 inches, but can be shorter, but not violate rule #4
4. Car must have a minimum 1 3/4 inches clearance distance between the wheels (along the length of the car)
5. Car, AT THE AXLES, must remain 2 3/4 inches wide (This rule is in effect to allow car to stay in its lane and not bind or misalign on the center guide rail as it travels down the track)
6. Car cannot weigh more than 5 ounces, but can weigh less. Car can be shaped or hollowed to accommodate additional weight.
7. Official Race Scale used at check in shall be considered FINAL (arguments about the super accurate digital scale at work will not be tolerated).
8. Maximum height of car cannot exceed 3 inches (This allows car to be stored in Race Garage)
9. Minimum under body clearance is 3/8 inch (distance between bottom of vehicle and bottom of wheel). This is to allow clearance and prevent the vehicle from resting or dragging on the center guide rail, preventing car from traveling down track.
10. The center of the car front must have a straight section at least 3/8″ wide for proper starting. No part of the car may protrude past the starting pin for proper starting and accurate timer sensing (i.e. “notched” front end).
11. Wheel and/or axle, bearings, washers and/or bushings of any type, style, shape or manner are prohibited.
12. Hubcaps of any type, style, shape or manner are prohibited.
13. Springs and/or suspension of any type, style, shape or manner are prohibited.
14. Starting devices or propulsion of any type, style, shape or manner are strictly prohibited. Car must be freewheeling. The only propulsion is gravity.
15. Original axles must be used, but can be shaped and/or polished
16. Original and official BSA wheels must be used. They can be sanded and smoothed to remove casting burrs, imperfections etc., but must remain flat, full width and NOT altered in any other way. Drilling, lath turning, hollowing or any other type, style or manner of “machining” or “customizing” the wheels to reduce weight and/or surface contact with the track is prohibited.
17. Final placement of axles must be in the pre-cut slots. This follows District/Council/National rules and allows the car to be run in District/Council sanctioned races.
18. No loose material of any type, style or manner allowed. Any part that comes loose or falls off during any part of the race will be removed and not allowed to be reattached. Exception: If a wheel falls off, driver will have 5 minutes to repair, after a second reattachment attempt, car will be removed from race.
19. All cars must be original and built this calendar year specifically for this year’s races. No previously built cars will be accepted.
20. All cars must pass inspection the day before the race. Any car not entered at pre-race inspection will not be allowed to race. Once car has been inspected and entered, only race committee members will be allowed to touch it (exception will be wheel repairs, see rule #17 above).
21. Prior to final inspection and entry, driver will be allowed to lubricate the wheels. Only dry powdered graphite or dry powdered “white lube” Teflon are allowed. Oils, grease or silicone sprays of any type, style, or manner are strictly prohibited. This rule is in effect to prevent any substance from staining, damaging or “gumming up” the track and will be strictly adhered to. Dry graphite will be available at check-in.
22. Scouts name and den must be clearly marked on the undercarriage of the car.
23. This is a SCOUT race of a car SUBSTANTIALLY built by the SCOUT. Help by an adult partner is expected and encouraged, but should be limited to rough shaping of the car, the handling and use of power tools, and help in assembly and tuning. Any car deemed to have been substantially built by a third party will be disqualified from competition.
These rules are intended to provide a fair and enjoyable race experience for all the scouts. This is not intended to be an engineering showcase. This is about having fun and Good Sportsmanship. Any conflicts outside the realm of these rules will be decided by the Race Committee. All Decisions by the race committee are final and not subject to appeal. In the interest of fairness, members of the race committee will not be made public until the day of the race.