• November 27, 2014

Scouts test their racing skills in Pinewood Derby

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Posted: Friday, January 31, 2014 4:30 am

by

Copperas Cove Herald

Scouts were off to the races Saturday as their creations made from wood whizzed down the tracks at Grace United Methodist Church as part of the annual Pinewood Derby.

For the contest, each Scout received a block of wood made of pine, four plastic wheels and four nails. The finished car must use all nine pieces, not exceed a certain weight or length, and fit on the track. Other than those basics, Cub Scouts are allowed to carve and decorate their cars any way they want.

The Pinewood Derby has been around more than 60 years, said Devon Langford, senior district executive of the Longhorn Council of Boy Scouts of America.

“The event has not changed much since it started in scouting,” Langford said. “The only difference is the new technology that the youth and adults have to build and mold the car and now we have tracks that are digital and can tell which car won and what place it came in.”

Tremell Pittman said the electronic track clocks the speed and time of each car. After each car is weighed, it is surrendered and put on the track.

“Some cars were not put together too well and did not make it to the end of the track, but the average speed was in the 200 mph range,” Pittman said, noting the winning car reached a speed of more than 900 mph. “The winning car was so fast mainly because of the aerodynamics and the graphite lubricant that was used on the wheels.”

The event gives the Scouts and their families the opportunity to work together on the project.

Twenty-five Scouts participated in the event.

“The adults are actually more excited about this event than the majority of any other event that takes place in scouting,” Langford said.

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