Pack 325 Pinewood Derby 2013

Post date: Dec 17, 2012 4:57:24 AM

Pinewood Derby is coming up in January. You should have gotten your Pinewood Derby car kit at the November pack meeting – if not please let me know ASAP!

Our weigh-in event is Wednesday, January 23rd, 2013 at 6:45pm to 7:45 in the Country Lane MU room.

Our race event is Friday, January 25th, 2013 at 6:00pm to 8:30pm in the Country Lane MU room.

Below please find the rules and regulations for the Pack 325 Pinewood Derby race event. You can download a PDF of the rules at the bottom of this page.

Please let me know if you have any questions.


-- Doug

Douglas Brooks

Pack 325 Pinewood Derby Race Coordinator

Race Format

  • Opening Ceremony
  • Tiger Race: Tigers will race first, four times each (once in each lane), against other Tigers. The two fastest Tigers qualify to represent Pack 325 in the Pioneer District Pinewood Derby.
  • Design Judging
  • Cub Qualifying Heats: Wolf, Bear and Webelos Scouts will race four times (once in each lane), randomly assigned by computer.
  • Cub Finals Race: The fastest 12 scouts from the qualifying heats will compete in a finals race. The two fastest scouts from this race qualify to represent Pack 325 in the Pioneer District Pinewood Derby.


Two kinds of awards are given out – race performance awards and design awards.

  • Race Performance Awards
    • Tiger Race: 1st, 2nd, 3rd place (trophies)
    • Scout Race: 1st, 2nd, 3rd place from the Finals Race (trophies)
    • Den Awards: 1st, 2nd, 3rd place by den (medals)
  • Design Awards
    • Mach 325 Award: awarded to the car that looks the fastest – even standing still! (trophy)
    • Wood Master Award: awarded to the car that demonstrated the greatest woodworking effort (trophy)
    • Paint Master Award: awarded to the car that demonstrated the greatest paint effort (trophy)
    • Most Patriotic Design (ribbon)
    • Most Original Design (ribbon)
    • Most Colorful Paint Job (ribbon)
    • Construction Award (ribbon)
    • "If Looks Could Kill" (ribbon)
    • Funniest Car (ribbon)
    • Spirit of the Tiger (ribbon)
    • Spirit of the Wolf (ribbon)
    • Spirit of the Bear (ribbon)
    • Spirit of the Scout (Webelos) (ribbon)

Only Boy Scouts of America Official “Grand Prix” Derby Kits Allowed!

All Scout cars racing in the Pinewood Derby will be weighed, registered and impounded until the race. Scout cars that are not inspected and registered at the weigh-in will not be eligible for awards or advancement to district.

Weights and glue will be available for last minute weight adjustments of scout cars. Be sure you car is able to add or remove weight for fine tuning at weigh-in! Weigh-in is not the time to be removing wood from your car. Dry lubrication can be applied at check-in and during a “prep period” before the Cub Finals Race (for qualifying cars) only. Applying lubrication to your car during the race is now allowed. Please be sure to read the car building rules very carefully. To ensure there are no issues with Pack 325 cars that qualify for the district race we will be extra “strict” during check-in inspection.

The top two Tiger Cubs and top two older scouts (Wolf/Bear/Webelos) are eligible to race at the Pioneer District Regional derby. The third place car of each group can race as an alternate if one of the top two chooses not to race. The regional Pinewood Derby rules require that the cars be impounded after the Pack race and brought to the District weigh-in by a Pack race race official. The date of the Pioneer District Pinewood Derby has not been announced yet. More information about the district event will be available at our Pack race.

The five most important car building hints:

  • Carefully trim all flash from the sides, hubs and contact surface of the wheels. Remember that you cannot change the profile (shape) of the wheel.
  • Remove the sharp edges of the axel nails by first filing, then placing in the chuck of a drill and using sand paper to make smooth. After you can use pumice, or polishing compound to polish the axels. Pay special attention to the heads of the nails that will contact the outside hub of the wheel.
  • When mounting the wheels leave between 1/16th and 1/8th of an inch of play (total) on the axle. This prevents binding and makes it easier to lubricate the wheels.
  • Make sure that the car rolls straight when placed on a level surface and that all four wheels touch the ground. Adjust the axle nails as needed to achieve this.
  • After the axles are perfect, use two-part epoxy or a hot glue gun to set the axles in position. The BSA axle clamps may also be used.

Car Building Rules – Read Carefully!


The purpose of this event is for the scout to build and race a wooden car. The scout should do as much of the work as is appropriate for his age. It is expected that a Tiger Cub will have quite a bit of help, but a Webelos II should be doing almost all of the work himself. Buying pre-made parts is NOT the goal of this event! Each scout is expected to build a new car each year – no racing last year’s car!

The Kit

The car shall be built from the official Cub Scout “Grand Prix Pinewood Derby Kit." The Kit is a one piece wood block for the car body with plated nails for wheel axles and wide tread plastic wheels. Only official BSA wheels and axles may be used as replacements. Unofficial kits, bodies, wheels or axles will not be accepted. The "PineCar" or any other pre-cut bodies WILL NOT be allowed to enter the District Race.

The Car Body

You must start with the wood block provided in the kit and, as a minimum, the axle slots and some amount of continuous wood between the slots must remain from the original block. The axels must be inserted in the pre-cut grooves that are already cut in the car body. The wheel base (distance between the axles) must not be changed. You may add weights and other decorations if you wish. Decorative parts may be from any source.


All cars must have four (4) wheels. You must use official BSA wheels. The shape and form of the wheels cannot be modified or reshaped, however wheels may be cleaned up to remove molding burrs. Only a minimal amount of material may be removed. The embossed “tread” marks on the outer rim must still be visible. You may not remove material from the inside of the wheel. The molded lettering on the inside and outside of the wheel must be intact and visible to the judges. The wheels may be polished if desired. All four wheels MUST be in contact with a flat surface when the car is placed on it. (Roll the car on a flat surface and all 4 wheels MUST turn)


The official kit provides nails for the axles, and you must use the official BSA axles. Wheel bearings, washers, bushings, axle sleeves, and wheel covers are prohibited. The axles may be smoothed and polished if desired. The axles may be glued to hold them in place in the slots.

Physical Dimensions

Overall dimensions are: 3" wide by 7" long by 3" high. Some kits come with blocks longer than 7" and must be trimmed. Note that these rules allow a 3" width vs. the 2-3/4" width specified in the kits. The width between the wheels must be greater than 1-3/4", inside measurement. No part of the car can extend forward of the starting post.

Track Clearance

Track clearance is specified at 3/8" to clear the lane strips that are 1/4" high. Your car must clear the lane strips.


The car weight shall not exceed 5.000 ounces (141.75 grams). No loose material of any kind is permitted in or on the car. The car may be hollowed out and built up to the maximum weight by the addition of solid materials such as wood or metal provided it is securely attached or built into the body chassis. The weight MUST NOT be taped on. No liquid weights are permitted inside or attached to the outside of the car body. No weights may be added after the car has raced in the Pack race. Lead weights should be avoided due to the toxicity of lead. The pre-made metal weights, or steel, brass or tungsten should be used instead. If lead is used it must be under the surface, sealed from touch. Note that many low cost scales and most post office scales are not very accurate and your car may be overweight if you rely on them. At the district race, an official BSA 5oz. weight is used as the reference, and all cars must not weigh more than it does.


The car shall not run on any type of springs. The car must be freewheeling


The wheels and axles may be lubricated with any lubricant desired. However, a car that is dripping any oil or excessive amounts of graphite on the track will be disqualified. No additional lubricant may be added after the race starts. If wheel or axle repairs are necessary during the race, the replacement part may be lubricated under the supervision of a race official. The 12 scout cars that qualify for the final race will be given 10 minutes under the supervision of a race official before the finals race to apply additional lubrication to their car.