Lightnin's Simple Alignment Test

Secrets, tips, tools, design considerations, materials, the "science" behind it all, and other topics related to building the cars and semi-trucks.
Speedster
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Re: Lightnin's Simple Alignment Test

Post by Speedster » Sun Mar 08, 2020 12:04 pm

Our biggest workshop with what I call my Pack 217 (I've been with them for 35 years) is where we do everything and concentrate on speed. That's what I love. Pack 217 races cub scouts and Girl Scouts and then supplies one of the tracks for the Commodore Perry District race. I do smaller workshops on my own but I still concentrate on science. We will cut out a car for Design if it is not complicated. They have 6 cars to choose from and even though they look a bit different they are all basic wedges. Our Pack supplies lead rod for Free and I am the only one who touches the lead. They are sealed by me with Bondo. They check their wheels on the concentricity gauge to find the worst one, polish their bores with Novus 2 and remove casting marks under the heads of the BSA nail. I demonstrate lubing wheels with Hob-E-Lube graphite the Max V way but the scouts do not lube their wheels at the workshop. Too messy. This year was the 1st year I became involved with a Carpenters Union School that is a Cutting Clinic. They cut out the car only. They cut 150 cars but it was pouring down rain and the rain was predicted. I was told they normally cut out around 300. There were 3 stores that were called "The Andersons" and those 3 stores would cut out 800 cars together every year. The stores were sold to some huge operation and they were all closed. The carpenter's Union lets me talk to the folks as they come in and I have my set up in a room they supply. You can have your car drawn out and get in line for one of the 6 bandsaws. You don't have to listen to me. I've been around so long folks from all the Districts know me. If someone needs a wheel or nail or they break their car they usually are sent to me. I welcome them.

Thanks to my wife she was able to get me connected to the lady at the Toledo Lucas County Library who is in charge of buying books for the library. Yes, Yes, I built Amy a Pinewood Derby car. Amy will now have Troy Thorne's book, "Build a Winning Pinewood Derby Car" in the Toledo Lucas County Library. Anyone in Ohio will be able to get the book. I didn't know that was possible.

I am very fortunate that every year there is ONE scout who is obsessed with speed. I supply all the best things we can legally buy and we spend multiple times together. Long ago I did a Derby race for an AWANA group but they used the BSA kit. That was the first time I had heard of the AWANA organization. Normally it is always scouts.

That's my history. The Pinewood Derby today is my only hobby and I can do it year around. Today we are racing the children of the children we raced 35 years ago.



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davet
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Re: Lightnin's Simple Alignment Test

Post by davet » Sun Mar 08, 2020 1:42 pm

I remember you telling me that years ago about helping a kid out with a fast car every year. Don't other parents complain?
I was asked by the pack we were with to have a "fix it" table at the race. The kids would get 2 trial runs before they had to complete check-in. A few kids came to me with issues and after we tweaked them they took 1st in their Dens. I think that's why they refused my offer to help the next yr.



Speedster
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Re: Lightnin's Simple Alignment Test

Post by Speedster » Mon Mar 09, 2020 4:31 am

Davet, we're getting a bit Off Topic here but briefly no one knows I do it. We teach The Physics of the Pinewood Derby at our workshops and I offer Troy Thorne's book For Sale for $10.00. I absorb the shipping cost. Troy's book is on a separate table by itself for anyone to look at. The scout and his adult helper now know where the word "Derby" came from without looking it up. The "Kentucky" Derby. The "Soapbox" Derby. It's a competition. It's a Race.

Don't forget Hobby Lobby's 40% Off one item. I'm getting more tungsten cylinders today.



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davet
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Re: Lightnin's Simple Alignment Test

Post by davet » Mon Mar 09, 2020 8:33 am

Awesome Speedster.
Off topic yes. I had sent you a PM but it must not have gone through.
Good to see you still here doing this for the kids, and adults.



Speedster
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Posts: 1888
Joined: Sat Feb 18, 2012 2:48 pm
Location: Toledo, Ohio

Re: Lightnin's Simple Alignment Test

Post by Speedster » Mon Mar 09, 2020 12:40 pm

When did you send a PM?
Try my email. I'd like to hear from you.



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