Running a Space Derby Race

Discussions on race planning, preparations and how to run a "fair" and fun race.
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mdmoe
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Joined: Fri Sep 23, 2005 7:53 pm
Location: Columbia, MO

Running a Space Derby Race

Post by mdmoe » Sat Sep 24, 2005 12:18 pm

Hi!
I have just finished constructing a Space Derby track. I have heard of several different ways of running the race and was wondering what some of you did. At our district race, they tied 2 ribbons to each line and that somehow helped determine who was first/second/third/fourth. I know one of the purpose of the ribbons was to foul the propeller and get it stopped before slamming into the other side.

Also, how do you line up the ships? I would think that you would want to lineup the end of the propellers, is that right?

How close the the ships generally finish? How many spotters are good? What kind of winders do you use? I heard you are supposed to soak the rubberbands in castor oil prior to use, how long?

Thanks!

Michael Moe
Cubmaster Pack 705
Columbia, MO
www.pack705.net



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Stan Pope
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Re: Running a Space Derby Race

Post by Stan Pope » Sat Sep 24, 2005 7:18 pm

mdmoe wrote:Hi!
I have just finished constructing a Space Derby track. I have heard of several different ways of running the race and was wondering what some of you did. At our district race, they tied 2 ribbons to each line and that somehow helped determine who was first/second/third/fourth. I know one of the purpose of the ribbons was to foul the propeller and get it stopped before slamming into the other side.

Also, how do you line up the ships? I would think that you would want to lineup the end of the propellers, is that right?

How close the the ships generally finish? How many spotters are good? What kind of winders do you use? I heard you are supposed to soak the rubberbands in castor oil prior to use, how long?

Thanks!

Michael Moe
Cubmaster Pack 705
Columbia, MO
www.pack705.net
Sounds like you have your act together, Michael.

Lube the rubber band(s) so that they will wind and unwind smoothly. Shouldn't take too much. And, no fair dripping on the gymnasium floor! Any lubricant that doesn't degrade the rubber bands should be okay.

Stage them with noses (forwardmost point of the vehicle) right on the starting line. That is the point that the finish line judges will be watching. (If they were going to be watching for the tail fin to cross the finish line, then you would line them up with the tail fins even! :)

Be sure to lubricate the wires that they run on ... otherwise, many of the planes will drag to a stop early. Thin film, of course, maybe a coat of Lemon Pledge or silicone.

Ribbon sounds okay unless it gets wound up in the prop and slows your event down too much.

Some folks make a "winding tool" that can chuck into an electric drill. Has hooks that engage the prop on each side of center. Equalize wind time ... so probably shouldn't run on batteries or use variable speed drill.


Stan
"If it's not for the boys, it's for the birds!"

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