Pinewood Derby

Pack 846's Pinewood Derby Homepage

Race Day

The Derby will be held at the Eastside Christian Church, 5874 Montclair Blvd, Milford, OH 45150.

Pre-Inspection will be held on Thursday, Feb, 18th from 7:00 to 9:00 PM at Trinity Unity Methodist Church.

Snacks, lunch foods, and drinks will be available as a fundraiser. This is a family event so bring the grandparents, uncles, cousins, and anyone else who might enjoy the race.

"Be Fast... or Look Good Trying"

The pinewood derby is one of the most popular and successful family activities in Cub Scouting. Pinewood derby cars are small wooden models that Cub Scouts make with help from their families. Then they race the cars in competition. The cars are powered by gravity and run down a track. Every boy can design and build his own "grand prix" car to enter in the race.

Race Day Highlights

There will be three divisions...

1) The Scout Derby - with the three fastest cars qualifying for the District Pinewood Derby (if applicable)

2)The Parent Derby - with the leaders cheating their way to contested victory again this year. Life is not fair boys. Live with it.

3) The Sibling Derby - Scout brothers and sisters through fifth grade can enter their own cars. Kids in sixth grade or above will be disenfranchised in the parent division. Bring Kleenex.

Prizes and Recognition

The Derby is about doing one's best and having fun, so all child participants will be recognized. But that doesn't mean our race winners won't take home some shiny hardware. Especially the leaders who battle and fudge and manipulate their way to the oh so awesome victory lane for that oh so elusive glass of milk.

Equal Ground

All entries in the derby will start with the "Official Grand Prix Pinewood Derby Kit" which includes the body, 4 axles, and 4 wheels. All nine pieces MUST be used before the car can race. The kits are sold at the local Scout Shop or online. All active Scouts will receive a kit as a Christmas present in December. Parent and siblings are on their own. Cars may not exceed 5 ounces in weight and must conform to certain size restrictions and specifications. Decorating the cars are up to the imagination of the boys. The complete set of rules will be available at the Derby Workshops. Please don't worry about the small print specifically worded to exclude the leaders from some or all of the rules.


    1. The Pinewood Derby is open to all registered Scouts of Pack 846.
    2. Each Scout may enter one (1) car which must be present at the technical inspection/weigh-in event to be included in the competition.
    3. Each car must pass a Pre-Race Technical Inspection before it may compete. Technical inspection and registration of cars occurs on Thursday, February 18th from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.
      1. For Scouts - Car construction must reflect the age and building skills of the Cub Scout entering the car. The intent of this event for the scout and his Akela to work together on their car. Parents should “work with” not “do the work for” their scout. Parents and siblings should plan to showcase their individual talents as part of the Adults/Siblings race bracket.
      2. Cars missing Pre-Race Technical Inspection will not be permitted to race. The scout does not have to be present…but the car MUST BE ! No Exceptions!!
      3. Cars will be quarantined and held by the Pinewood Pit Crew until the race.
    4. If a car does not pass inspection, the owner will be informed of the reason his car did not pass. Cars, which fail the initial inspection, may be modified and resubmitted as long as it is within the 8:30 p.m. deadline.
      1. On site space and some assistance and tools will be available to aid you, but it is suggested that you bring weights, tools, glue, etc with you to the event for minor adjustments as needed.

Inspection Procedure

    1. Weight check using official Pack electronic scale.
    2. Cars will be jigged, using the Official Pack 846 Pinewood Derby Car Jig, measuring overall length, width and height of the car; location of original axle slots.
    3. Wheels measured for compliance and allowed tolerance.
    4. All axles coated with graphite, per Section 3 Item 9 below.
    5. Loose materials on cars will be removed.

Pinewood Car Specifications

    1. Materials: Race cars shall be constructed for this event from the parts contained in the Official Grand Prix Pinewood Derby Kit (referred to below as the kit) as sold by the Dan Beard Council Scout Store. Materials from the kit may be supplemented but not replaced.
    2. Weight: Racecars may weigh no more than five (5.000) ounces (total weight) as determined on the pack scales during the pre-race check-in.
    3. Axles: Axles (nails) must be as supplied in the Official BSA Pinewood Derby Kit. No aftermarket axles are permitted. Axles may be sanded, polished or smoothed. The axle nails shall be firmly affixed to the wood of the car body, and MUST be placed in the original 'axle grooves' in the supplied wooden block. No wheelbase alteration is permitted.
    4. Size: Racecars maximum body length - 7 inches, maximum body height - 5 inches, maximum body width with wheels - 2-3/4 inches and maximum body width 1-3/4 inches less wheels as determined by the official gages during the inspection. Bottom of car to track clearance - 3/8 inches.
    5. Weights and Attachment: Weight may be added to the car and will be considered part of the car for purposes of all measurements. "Weight" is considered to be any material on the car that is not provided in the kit. All weight must be securely fastened to the car, e.g. by permanent glue, nails or screws.
    6. Wheels: Only the wheels supplied in the Official BSA Pinewood Derby Kit are permitted. No aftermarket wheels. Wheel treatment (hub and tread smoothing and polishing) may consist of smoothing or deburring, but not the removal of substantial material from the original wheels or axles supplied with the kit. The following may NOT be used in conjunction with the wheels or axles: hubcaps, washers, inserts, sleeves or bearings. Cars must maintain positive four- (4) wheel contact with the track during each race. Cars designed for three- (3) wheel contact will be disqualified.
    7. Lubricants: Only dry, fine ground powdered graphite is permitted. Graphite with any type of additive(s) is prohibited. Cars may only be lubricated prior to or during inspection and not afterwards or during the race. Aftermarket lubricants, such as Hob-E-Lube, are prohibited. Oil, grease, silicon spray or any other lubricating products or compounds are not permitted.
    8. Car Finishes: Only paint or wax is permitted. No plating or plastic finishes are permitted.

Racing Procedures

    1. Prior to each heat, car numbers and lane assignments (chosen randomly) will be announced. Drivers are to take their car from the pit area and give them to "The Pit Crew" to place on the track and then take their position at the finish line. Upon completion of the race, "The Pit Crew" will give the car back to the driver to place back in the designated pit area.
    2. Once the car is submitted for entry, no further adjustments can be made except in the case of mechanical failure (see 3d).
    3. Each Scout will race (3) prelim heats and the fastest combined times will advance to the rank championship races and the one with the slowest times will advance to the Turtle Race Championship. The rank champions will race in the finals to determine the grand champion.
    4. Any entry that experiences a mechanical failure will be allowed to re-race if it can be repaired during the same heat. It will count as a heat loss if it cannot be repaired prior to the beginning of the next heat. All repairs of this type must be done with a member of "The Pit Crew" observing and certifying as to its raceability.
    5. In the event that all cars don’t reach the finish line, the one that goes the furthest is declared the winner.
    6. All rulings by "The Pit Crew" are FINAL.