Pinewood Derby Cars Through the Years

Ah, it’s that time again.  The annual Grin-and-Bear-It Fest known as Pinewood Derby.

Why, Cub Scouts, why? Those of us who are woefully lacking in woodworking skills and equipment are already aware of our deficiencies, so we don’t need this reminder. Nor do we need the chance to see how well other parents are able to paint an accurate replica of Lightening McQueen.  (By the way, parents – nobody is fooled.  We know it was you.) And pasting that fake smile on, telling your poor child that yes, his car came in dead last in all heats, but by golly, we had FUN making it!

Can I get an “amen”?

And yet…here we go.

Our cars have been historically slow.  Like, barely finishing the race slow.  But it’s true that they have looked cool.

Our very first year, Boo made a Ghost Car.  He liked the little guy and the fake engine you could buy.
Ghost Car
The next year, Boo made a Humvee.  He painted it all himself.  He used a sponge brush and pounced, pounced, pounced in the direction I told him.

Humvee Pinewood Derby Car

Humvee Car

Pumpkin Girl made this one, complete with glitter.  She called it the Becky Angel Car.

Becky Angel Car

Read about how well this car did here: Showing Her Quality

We had a stroke of good luck the following year with Boo’s Tongue of Flame car that place 3rd in his pack.
Tongue of Flames CarThe American Flag car was Pumpkin Girl’s entry into the Powder Puff Derby that year.  The front of the car is actually the field of stars, so the flag flows back while it goes down the track.  It won first place in her Brownie Troop.

American Flag CarBip entered his own car into the family division that year. He was 3 years old and he did all the green painting himself.  I did the teeth, mouth and nose.

Alligator CarThat ended up being our last Pinewood Derby for a couple of years.  We moved to CO only to find that Web 2s don’t do Pinewood Derby here.  Bip’s next entry into Pinewood Derby was his first time as a Cub Scout.

A little piece of me died when he told me that he wanted an R2D2 car and I realized just how mom-intensive this was going to be.

First, we researched.  Some very over achieving parents have gone to great lengths to make a near-exact R2D2 replica.  I would not be doing that.

First, we found a friend to use magic or a lathe or something to turn the block of wood into a rounded shape for the top of R2.  Then Bip base painted him white.  I tapped off the bottom to be black to show negative space, as well as the flames as R2 burst (in theory) away from the starting block.

R2D2 Pinewood Derby Car

With painstaking work and a ton of masking tape, I had R2 ready for the details.  First silver for his head.  Then tons and tons of blue shapes.  I drew the rest of details for Bip to paint.  What you see is all his work, with some mom assistance.

R2D2 Car

R2D2 was a crowd favorite. Let’s just leave any further commentary at that.

Pumpkin Girl’s entry was a pizza car.  Please note, the wheels look like pepperoni.  Her inspiration was an actual slice of pizza that had a pepperoni stuck to the side.

Pizza Pinewood Derby CarLast year I got off easy, with a Wii remote car.  I also told Phil that it was his turn now to help with the cars.  Ta-da!!

Wii Remote Car Wii Remote Pinewood Derby CarIt was exactly as aerodynamic as you’d think.   When we lose, we look good doing it.

The Wedge O’ Cheese (with mouse) was Pumpkin Girl’s entry.  You know why I like her?  She comes up with her own ideas and executes them independently. It’s hard to see in the picture, but it really is wedge shaped.

Wedge of Cheese CarAnd now Pinewood Derby looms again.  Can someone get me an Exedrin?

More Mac and Cheese, please!


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