21 Pinewood Derby
It is the time of year again for Cub Scout Pinewood Derby.  This is my son's last Derby, as it was also his Arrow of Light celebration, where he 'graduated' to Boy Scouts.  I asked him if he wanted to go for looks, speed, or fun this last go-round, and he decided on fun.  Wanted a 'Pikachu' car from Pokemon.

He's had some experience with the Sawstop, and since I can clamp things into the sled, it was relatively easy and safe for him to carve out the bulk of his block by himself.  I cut the 'Pikachu' on the bandsaw, as well as one of the angle cuts I didn't trust his little fingers with.  He came back in for sand and paint.

Anyways, I give you the Pikachu car:

We did not build this for speed, and I used the wheels and nails provided with no polishing or prep.  Still, it was surprisingly fast, coming in 3rd place in his class of 8.  He really wanted the 'Best in Show' award, but his arch rival made a 'Mario' car that won the contest of popular appeal among 5-11 year olds.  He handled it with surprising grace, though, congratulating the winner for his victory without my prompting.  He's definitely growing up.

One of the smarter things we do as a pack to channel adult zeal is to have the adults make test cars. This way we are not setting up the track with kid cars and risking damage or accusations of unfair advantage, and it takes some of the excess Dadness and focuses it in a more healthy direction. This year for test cars, I made a truck and a Mustang(ish) fastback.

Our pack is 5 years old, and my son was one of the first members.  It's grown to be a robust group in that time, and there are some good parents in the younger classes, so I suspect it will live on for a long time.  Was a mixed feeling to set up the track for the last time, because for whatever nostalgia it holds, it is still heavy and tedious to adjust.  

Crate I built for the track is still holding up pretty well after four years in school custody.

Not a bad way to finish off the Cub Scout adventure.
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  Re: 21 Pinewood Derby by JohnnyEgo (It is the time of ye...)
Johnny, I am hoping you will one day, in about 3-5 years, report that your son has made Eagle Scout.

Oh, and you need to go to Philmont with him as well.

I do enjoy your Scouting related updates.
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  Re: 21 Pinewood Derby by JohnnyEgo (It is the time of ye...)
Congratulations Johnny, and the same to your son.
I hope you are still able to be involved at the next level, if it's what you want.  Big Grin
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  Re: 21 Pinewood Derby by JohnnyEgo (It is the time of ye...)
Cool! Good memories for all. Hopefully you can keep him in the shop.

My son decided to join Scouts too late to do more than one Pinewood Derby car. He wanted one that was reminiscent of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. I taught him how to use the bandsaw and gave him some practice before turning him loose with the blank from the kit. He did an excellent job at it.
  Re: 21 Pinewood Derby by JohnnyEgo (It is the time of ye...)
Good stuff Johnny.  That Pokemon car is pretty cool!  Nice job.  Sounds like your son is getting a lot more out of the experience than just a little fun.  Congrats all around.  

My oldest GS had his last derby last year, so I think I'm out of the derby car business.  It was fun while it lasted.
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  Re: 21 Pinewood Derby by JohnnyEgo (It is the time of ye...)
When Fescue was a Boy Scout he worked with a den of Cub Scouts (Den Chief?). 

Being Fescue he had to build a pinewood racer that was "a little different."

Took his block of wood and went to my drill press and drilled multiple holes through from every side.

Entered it as:

"The Holey Roller"

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  Re: 21 Pinewood Derby by JohnnyEgo (It is the time of ye...)
I do love the creativity that sprouts from pinewood derby entries. That sounds like a good plan on handling parental enthusiasm.

Nice cars!
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  Re: 21 Pinewood Derby by JohnnyEgo (It is the time of ye...)
Love these posts. A fun time for everyone.

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  Re: RE: 21 Pinewood Derby by Gary G™ (Love these posts. A ...)
Looks like there was..um..quite a bit of parental involvement in the Pokémon car ;-)

(Not that I was immune to it either - ha ha)

Our Pack tried to temper the involvement by offering build parties to assist new/under tooled parents and running a couple of extra races for families (siblings and dads mostly) and a turtle race (slowest car to finish, wins).

Hopefully we encouraged some new woodworkers out of all that.
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