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Thursday, March 1, 2012

Pixie Derby (Pinewood Derby for Girls)

Lexi sanding or gluing. She had a
great time building her Derby car.
Hooray! Something fun for Dad and Daughters! In my opinion, there's just not enough activities for Dads and Daughters out there in the world. I am very thankful for our church and the many wonderful activities they offer for me and my six beauties.

This month they held a Pixie Derby Race.  I haven't thought about Pinewood Derby races since I was a Cub Scout some 30 years ago. Sure enough, this was the same thing. Daughter #3 and I were given the standard Derby car block of wood, four nails and four tires. That's it. No rules, regulations or anything. Just the time and date of the race.

So I did what what I do best.  I googled the crap out of "how to make a great derby car", "how to win pinewood derby races" etc etc.  I was floored by the number of youtube videos showing how to grind down the nail axles and polish them to a high shine.  They're putting graphite on them, discussing the optimum location of the added weights for maximum velocity down the race slope and stuff I never even thought of.  There are Office Depot promotional codes on supplies for race cars that could be useful.

Coats of blue paint being sprayed
on while perched atop a blue water
barrel. Oooooh, shiny!
When I was a kid, Dad handed me the block of wood and said "Get to carvin' boy." That was about it. Slather some paint on there and stickers if you were lucky enough to have any. Not today. Uh uh. I headed over to Hobby Lobby and couldn't believe what I found there.

There were custom weights, wheels, full axles, stickers, car bodies, fins, spoilers, you name it.  They even had a derby car stand that you could prop your car up on like a lift at the mechanic shop. The only way I could have had a better advantage is if I had a degree in mechanical engineering!

So, again, I did what any loving father would do. I bought the things needed to make my daughter's car take Best of Show if nothing else. Custom flame stickers and solid axles with custom wheels. I dug out the Dremmel and went to town on the tires, smoothing out the plastic mold nubbies.

I decided to ask a neighbor if they had heard any rules for the race as we had not been given any.  I was told they'd be abiding by the standard BSA Pinewood Derby Rules which meant I had to measure everything from width to length to distance between left and right tires.  Then I found out there was a weight limit. I had already screwed on the weight kit in full. I mean, no rules meant the heavier the car, the faster it should go (within reason.)

When it was all said and done, we had a great time with the entire family watching the races.  We didn't place in the top three but we won Best Design.  I'm looking forward to the next race now that the cobwebs have been dusted off my derby car knowledge.


6 comments:

Tricia said...

We loved pine wood derby races at our churches. The dads were more competitive than the kids.
Completely off topic, thank you for the alert on the composter. We had a friend who was in town on business so she picked up the only one Costco had, the 100 gallon size. It was $139. Closest Costco is about 4hours away. Thankful our friend was there today.

The Orange Jeep Dad said...

Hey, glad I was able to help. I started to build a chicken wire composter like Dizzy mentioned but got side tracked making more climbing trellices for my peas :-(

Dizzy-Dick said...

I used fence wire, but chicken wire would do. The advantages of wire is you can adjust the size to your needs. Congrats on the "Best Design". Maybe they ought to have a pine wood derby just for the kids, no parents allowed to help.

Used cars derby said...

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Used cars derby said...

This month they held a Pixie Derby Race. I haven't thought about Pinewood Derby races since I was a Cub Scout some 30 years ago. Sure enough, this was the same thing. Daughter #3 and I were given the standard Derby car block of wood, four nails and four tires. That's it. No rules, regulations or anything. Just the time and date of the race.

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