Pinewood Derby Toboggan

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Project by Kevin_S posted 12-03-2012 05:45 AM 4430 views 0 times favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch

At work they organize occasional events and activities just for fun. Once a year they do a pinewood derby and this year I decided to race. I came up with the toboggan design because I wanted a vehicle that still looked like wood.

I can’t say it was fast since I placed in the middle of the pack, but I did win most unique design! Everyone thought it was laminated wood at first glance, but it’s still just the block of pine. I masked the stripes and sprayed shellac I colored with brown dye. The crossbars are cherry veneer. The brass knob was a last minute design addition to get the sled up near the max weight.

8 comments so far

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

30679 posts in 3833 days

#1 posted 12-03-2012 07:42 AM

Pretty cool. I definitely thought it was laminated.

-- Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View Michael Wilson's profile

Michael Wilson

588 posts in 3985 days

#2 posted 12-03-2012 02:53 PM

Oh cool! Yeah I’d just assumed it was laminated as well.

View Bagtown's profile


1745 posts in 5225 days

#3 posted 12-03-2012 09:56 PM

Love this design
Great job.

-- Mike - In Fort McMurray Alberta

View Ted78's profile


415 posts in 3494 days

#4 posted 12-04-2012 10:04 AM

Nice! my little brother made a toboggan pinewood derby car when he was a cub scout years ago.

-- Ted

View davidinpcola's profile


6 posts in 4723 days

#5 posted 12-20-2012 01:41 AM

Nice design Kevin. As a Cub Scout fifty odd years ago I won the Pinewood Derby in Muncie, Indiana. Being in Indiana it was designed like an Indy car of the day with the sleek rounded body. Don’t remember what year it was, but to get the car to max weight I drilled two or three 1/2” holes in the bottom of it then filled the holes with buck shot and taped it over with masking tape. The trick was to drill the holes as close to the front of the car as possible. Perfectly legal and nothing came close to beating me. Naturally my dad was offering lots of advice, especially about using the buckshot and its placement. Smart man, my dad.

-- David

View davidinpcola's profile


6 posts in 4723 days

#6 posted 12-20-2012 01:42 AM

Thanks for bringing back that memory Kevin.

-- David

View InventorFisher's profile


19 posts in 2527 days

#7 posted 07-29-2015 10:49 PM

I’m living the Pinewood Derby dream with my boys in Cub Scouts. I brought some of the cars into work, now I have a bunch of engineers smack-talking their way into a work event. Love it.

-- Inventor Fisher

View Dark_Lightning's profile


5114 posts in 4603 days

#8 posted 07-30-2015 03:15 AM

Cool toboggan. We have (had) a pinewood derby at work as a fundraiser for breast cancer. I’m retired, so that makes it had. The one year I had time to enter, I won. I used two jigs- one to turn the wheels into discs (we were allowed to make any modifications, as long as we started with the BSA kit); the other was a fixture my brother made to machine pentagonal billet knobs for Chrysler products. I ended up with wheels .080” thick that had five 3/8” holes and five 1/10” holes. Serious reduction of the wheel’s moment of inertia resulted. The weight goes as far back on the car as you can put it for maximum potential energy. Other tricks were used. If you want to get a jump on it, go to and check it out. I never did anything to my (3) son’s cars for the pinewood derbies when they were in Cub Scouts, except for holding the drill for axle polishing, and then they decided when they were done. It cheats the boy to make his car for him (I’ve seen it done). When the car wins, the boy isn’t even all that excited, if he didn’t build it.

-- Steven.......Random Orbital Nailer

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