Tungsten Underbody Plates - 3 ouncesa
Pinewood Derby Weight

Includes 6 Mounting Screws - Not Shown in Photo

What is Tungsten?

The word "tungsten" literally means "a substance of high density", and is derived from the Swedish language, "tung", meaning "heavy," and "sten", meaning "stone." The name is appropriate as Tungsten is a metal with one of the highest densities. In fact, tungsten is 1.7 times more dense than lead. Only gold, platinum, and a few other rare and expensive metals have a similar density.

Applications of Tungsten

Tungsten is completely non-toxic and environmentally friendly so it is gaining increased use in weighting applications where lead is not appropriate. For example lead has been banned in many streams, so tungsten is often substituted for lead weight on fishing flies. The high density coupled with the non-toxic nature makes tungsten an ideal metal for this application.

For similar reasons tungsten is a superior product for weighting pinewood derby cars. Tungsten is 3.2 times the density of the no-lead weighting material often used on pinewood derby cars, thus it enables tremendous flexibility in the design of the car. Coincidentally, tungsten has been used by NASCAR for the metal roll cage and as frame ballast to lower the center of gravity of the race car.

When to Use this Product

Tungsten Underbody Plates are appropriate in the following situations:
  • Your car is low on weight, and you want to add weight towards the rear of the car without creating holes or pockets.

  • You want to design a very thin car, which precludes the use of thicker weighting material.

  • You want to create a car with a very low center of gravity. Since this weight hangs below the bottom of the car, using this weight will set the center of gravity lower than usual.
How to Use this Product

Tungsten Underbody Plates are 1/16 inch thick, and approximately 1-1/2 inches long by 1/2 inch wide (1.6 mm thick, 36 mm long, and 14 mm wide). Your 3 ounce shipment of Tungsten Plates contains six, 1/2 ounce plates, and 6 wood screws for mounting the plates.

Tungsten Plates can be easily used for pinewood derby car weighting by screwing, or gluing them with epoxy to the bottom of the car. When attaching to a car with standard axle slots, the plates can be stacked two deep by 3 wide, while still retaining 3/8 inch ground clearance (see Figure 1). When attaching the plates to cars with drilled axle holes, the plates must be placed one deep to retain the required clearance (see Figure 2).

The Tungsten Plates are very hard, so do not plan to drill or cut them. Instead, use an alternate method to make fine adjustments such as adding/removing tungsten putty, beads, etc.

a3 ounces nominal weight - actual weight ranges from 2.9 to 3.0 ounces

Figure 1
Plates Mounted Two Deep
For Cars with Standard Axle Slots or High Clearance

Figure 2
Plates Mounted One Deep
For Cars with Axle Holes or Low Clearance

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