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Pinewood Derby Rules

There is not a set of universally accepted derby rules. Every pinewood derby race is free to modify its own rules as it sees fit. This document was written for leaders who must establish the rules for their particular derby. Below I have tried to list the most generally accepted rules which seem to apply to most races that I have attended or have been posted elsewhere.

  1. The maximum weight is 5.5 ounces (155.9 grams).
  2. Except for weights, decorations, adhesives, and lubricants, you must use the pine block, wheels, and axles from the original Pinewood Derby kit. (Prohibited items: Motors, rubber bands, springs, starting devices, bearings, bushings, washers, skids/runners, and wet paint. ) Weights and decorations must be securely attached.
  3. The original axles and wheels cannot be reshaped, although wheel irregularities (e.g., sprue, flash) can be removed.
  4. The car must fit the track.
  5. Areas of concern are:
    • Overall height (clearance of electronic finish gate)
    • Height of nose (reach of starting gate posts)
    • Ground clearance (height of lane guides, plus allowance for the bending of the track)
    • Overall width (separation between lanes)
    • Body width at axles (width of lane guides)
    • Rear axle location (length of track behind starting gate)