2017 District Pinewood Derby Rules








All Districts are strongly encouraged to follow these rules to ensure proper qualification for the Council Derby. The purpose of the Derby is to provide a positive experience for the cub, the parents, the Pack and the Chartered Organization with the emphasis on THE CUB.


  1. You must use official BSA Pinewood Derby bodies, wheels and axles. Use of pre-cut bodies is prohibited. BSA Grand Prix Pinewood Derby wheels and axles that have been altered and resold by third parties are prohibited. Car must be built within the current Cub year.
  2. Weight: 5.00 ounces or less. The Official Scale is FINAL.
  3. Length: 7 inches maximum. Typically 2.75 “minimum. Cars should clear the track center guide, typically 3/8 “.
  4. Height 4” maximum. Car wheels must be at least 1 5/8” apart to straddle the center guide.
  5. Gravity powered only. No power assisted devices such as rubber bands or magnets.
  6. No additional items may be added to the wheels or axles such as washers, springs, bearings, bushings, o-rings, etc.
  7. You cannot modify the size, shape, dimensions, angle, canter wheels or weight of the wheels in any way. This includes sanding of the tread. There is one exception to this rule – you may lightly sand the hub (the part of the wheel that touches the car body). After the Council race, judges will remove at least one wheel and axle for inspection and weighing (of the wheel). The wheel must weigh at least 2.50 (not 2.5) grams to be legal (note: this number was calculated by weighing a number of wheels right out of the kits. If further testing indicates, this weight may be changed).
  8. Axles may be filed, polished, grooved – as long as BSA axles from the official car kit are used and the work is done by the scout and/or his parent/guardian. You cannot bend axles.
  9. Dry lubricants, such as graphite or Cub Scout Teflon Powder, may be used to lubricate the wheels. Any lubricant must be dry at the time of inspection. 
  10. No part of the car body, wheels or attachments may protrude in front of the starting peg.
  11. It is not required that all four wheels make contact with the track at the same time.
  12. No moving or loose parts may be incorporated into the construction of the car. The car design may be enhanced by the addition of other stable materials such as plastic or metal. Any additions must be firmly attached and meet Car Size Requirements.
  13. Wheel base may be changed so long as the wheels do not exceed the specified length of the car.
  14. At the Council Derby, the cub must be present to enter his car into competition. He does not have to be there for the actual race.
  15. Any car not meeting the stated rules when inspected at the Council Derby has the opportunity to change the car to meet the specifications.
  16. New for 2017: There will not be an Outlaw Division at the Council Pinewood Derby.
  17. Decisions of the Judges and Derby Committee are FINAL.
  18. Sportsmanship, fair play, ability to race within the stated rules and Scouting spirit are the tone of the day.

All winning cars at the Council Derby will be subject to a post-race inspection, with the removal and review of the wheels and axles.


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