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Already thinking about next January!

Discussion in 'General Pinewood Derby Discussion' started by TexasTaxi, Jan 30, 2020.

  1. TexasTaxi

    TexasTaxi Bent Axle

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    This was our first year to do the PWD as a Tiger Cub.
    Konnor won first in den AND first in pack.
    We went with a simple "stick dragster" design.
    There were quite a few flat cars, at the race, but we were the only stick type.

    My question ... is it possible to build a fast car, that has some noticeable shape to it?

    The stick car was a rail rider, and despite having a poor jig and not perfect alignment, we still had a few sub 3 second runs.
     

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  2. TRE

    TRE PWD Royalty Pro Racer Pro Race Winner

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    You can send your car in and race here... we race every month and next year you will kill them...www.pinewoodderbyracing.com
     
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  3. TRE

    TRE PWD Royalty Pro Racer Pro Race Winner

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    a thin wedge is the fastest
     
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  4. Brian Stanley

    Brian Stanley District Champion Pro Racer

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    I was in your shoes a year ago. Built a car similar in shape to yours. We don't build them like that anymore!

    A wise person on here told me "you can't build a really fast car if you only build one car a year". Build more cars and send them in to race!
     
  5. TexasTaxi

    TexasTaxi Bent Axle

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    Considering the basic concept, of the weight in the back, giving more of a "push", why would the stick car, that has almost all of its weight in the back, not be as fast as the thin wedge that has a little more up front?
     
  6. TRE

    TRE PWD Royalty Pro Racer Pro Race Winner

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    Aerodynamics
     
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  7. Prozach2

    Prozach2 District Champion

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    Congrats on the win. IMO, with a cub scout, it's far more important that they have a good time, their allowed to give feedback, participate, etc. A good league racer could make a car shaped like a duck that could win most pack races. If you're trying to maximize speed, I'm pretty sure you'll find that it's unanimous among the people in the know; a thin wedge is the fastest.

    When my son and I first got into this hobby, he'd ask all sorts of questions: can we add lights, can we make it shaped like a bullet, etc. I'd point him to the correct info and ask him if he thought his idea would slow the car down. He'd say that it would. I'd ask him if he wanted to do it anyway. He wouldn't. Another kid might disagree. His best friend, for example, showed up to the pinewood derby with an absolutely awesome Taco Truck. He won the "Best in Show" award, and had a blast.
     
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  8. Prozach2

    Prozach2 District Champion

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    Aerodynamics. Also, you'd be amazed how much weight you can get at the back of the car with a wedge.
     
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  9. Brian Stanley

    Brian Stanley District Champion Pro Racer

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    Here is last year's car, sitting next to this year's car, you want to guess which is faster? :)

    83915075_1845452602265831_3163964121901170688_n.png
     
  10. Prozach2

    Prozach2 District Champion

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    which one has more weight behind the axle?
     
  11. Reecedad

    Reecedad League Racer

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    Congrats on your success!
     
  12. TexasTaxi

    TexasTaxi Bent Axle

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    Based on what everyone is saying, I'll have to go with the one on the right?
     
  13. Brian Stanley

    Brian Stanley District Champion Pro Racer

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    You know, I would have to check, I know the weight on the front wheel is about the same between the two.
     
  14. Brian Stanley

    Brian Stanley District Champion Pro Racer

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    Yep, quite a bit so, though not all of it is aerodynamics. We're still league slow, but hanging around here this past year has made us Scout fast!
     
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  15. Prozach2

    Prozach2 District Champion

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    Question for some of you guys that have been into this for a while: has the wedge always dominated? When did the ladder body enter the scene? Are the top guys all running some variation of a ladder body supported by balsa?
     
  16. TRE

    TRE PWD Royalty Pro Racer Pro Race Winner

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    Yes
     
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  17. Prozach2

    Prozach2 District Champion

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    I’m 41. I won almost every pinewood derby I competed in when I was a Cub Scout. The only person that ever beat me was my brother. This would’ve been late 80s, early 90s. We never raced anything but a thin wedge.
     
  18. Craigs Cruzer

    Craigs Cruzer Pack Champion

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    If you’re racing on quality aluminum tracks and your goal is speed, I would recommend starting with a ladder car as the baseline for building the car body. For scout cars, you’ll want to beef up the body depending on how the stop section is, if the track is elevated and how the cars are handled. No scout likes to see their car bust to pieces due to a fragile car careening with the backstop. The backstop will win.
     
  19. Pinewood Outlaw

    Pinewood Outlaw Council Champion

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    How much weight did you have in that stick car?
     
  20. TexasTaxi

    TexasTaxi Bent Axle

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    It has a 2.5 oz canopy weight, across the car, 3/8" in front of the rear axle.
    I'd have to count what's left, but I think there is another 1.0 oz of tungsten rounds (13/16" in front of the rear axle), a couple of small lead bullet fishing weights (in line with the canopy), and some tungsten putty in the well, on the very rear. So, total, a little under 4 oz.

    All of the weight is forward of the rear axle. You can see that I stretched the wheelbase as far as I could. It ran very stable, from what I could see.

    Reading on here, since then, I realize that there's so much more that we can do to make a faster car.

    My wife will not be happy when I start bringing home stuff for "this hobby". She already thinks I spend too much on hunting and scuba diving! :cool:
     
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