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Pinewood Derby Times
Volume 13, Issue 3
October 30, 2013

In this Edition:

- Editor's Notes

- Feature Article - Shop Talk - Woodworking Tips

- Humor

- Product Showcase - Pro-Axle Bender

- Pinewood Derby Car Showcase

- Q&A

Editor's Notes
New Tool From DerbyWorx
Maximum Velocity is pleased to introduce a new tool from DerbyWorx, the Pro-Axle Bender. The Pro-Axle Bender provides a simple and repeatable method for bending pinewood derby axles to the desired angle.

Click Here for more information on the new Pro-Axle Bender. The Pro-Axle Bender is also our Product Showcase product, and is being offered at 10% off the list price.

Inventory Clearance Sale
We also are clearing inventory on several items including our Propeller Car Kit II, the Assimilator Kit (with a tungsten canopy), plastic car canopies, and paint markers. We don't have many left, so don't delay. Click Here to find our clearance items.
MV Basic & Wedge Car Kits

If you are planning a race and are not required to use a specific kit type, our MV Basic or Wedge Car Kit are just what you need. These attractively priced kits are equipped with:
  • Quality Block - Unlike the blocks provided by some organizations, our blocks are soft, northwestern pine blocks, cut precisely to 7 inches long, 1-3/4 inches wide, and 1-1/4 inches tall. These dimensions, as well as the axle slots accurately duplicate the dimensions of standard pinewood derby blocks from BSA and PineCar.

  • Simple Axle Preparation - Don't worry about filing off flaws, or losing hub caps. Our Speed Axles have no burrs or crimp marks, and install without hub caps. With or without polishing, they are ready to go. We supply five, so you have a spare.

  • Quality Wheels - Forget cheap, out of round wheels. Our MV wheels are top-quality wheels. You will not be disappointed with the quality of these wheels.

So, if your organization does not mandate a particular kit type, consider our MV Basic Car Kits or MV Wedge Car Kits

Can We Help?
If we can help you in any way with your pinewood derby project, or if you have any feedback regarding this newsletter, please contact us at:

Main Pinewood Derby Site -
Mobile Pinewood Derby Site -

Feature Article

Shop Talk - Woodworking Tips for Pinewood Derby Car Building
By Randy Davis

When I was a boy, my father was involved in several home remodeling projects. At the time I was more interested in goofing off than learning carpentry, electrical wiring, plumbing, etc. I did learn the basics, but now as an adult, I wish that I had paid more attention so I could do more of my own work.

During the work sessions with my dad, he would pass along some tips to make the job go easier. The few I remember (and still strongly adhere to) are:
These tips are certainly true for any woodworking project, and I try to apply them to home projects as well as pinewood derby car building. But of course, this is just the tip of the iceberg for useful woodworking tips. So, what I would like to share today are some woodworking tips that I have learned over the years that really help when applied to pinewood derby car building.

Measuring And Marking

Incra Bend Rule

Hand Drilling
Drill Press
Chiseling a Pocket

(aka Four-in-One Hand Rasp)
Using the correct tools and using them properly will improve the look and the precision of your pinewood derby body. Just remember, "Measure twice, and cut once!"


A man was taking it easy, lying on the grass and looking up at the clouds. He was identifying shapes when he decided to talk to GOD.

"GOD", he said, "How long is a million years?"

GOD answered, "In my frame of reference, it's about a minute."

The man asked, "GOD, how much is a million dollars?"

GOD answered, "To Me, it's a dime."

The man then asked, "GOD, can I have a dime?"

GOD said, "In a minute."

Product Showcase

  Pro-Axle Bender Axles  
10% off

Accurate Alignment = Greater Speed!

The Pro-Axle Bender provides a simple and repeatable method for bending pinewood derby axles. This allows rear wheels to run canted, and the front dominant axle to be aligned for rail-riding or straight alignment. Accurate alignment is one of the five keys to producing a fast pinewood derby car.

The Pro-Axle Bender will work with axles from BSA, Awana, MV, PineCar, and many others. The tool will bend zinc and nickel-plated steel axles, as well as stainless steel axles.

Through November 12, 2013, you can get a Pro-Axle Bender for 10 percent off. To take advantage of this limited time offer: Click Here, and use coupon code PROBENDER during checkout.

Car Showcase

Today's showcase cars are from Donald Welsh.

Pink Phantom

Here is the car that my daughter Laiken and I built for this year's Awana Grand Prix. We found the Formula One design at Maximum Velocity; my daughter liked it because it was cool looking. I was not too surprised when she decided to paint it pink and add the colorful decals. The car ran really well in practice and raced really well in the derby to earn third place for speed in the TnT girls division. This was her first time racing in the derby and she was very surprised when they called her name at the end of the derby for her trophy.


Here is the car that my son Luke and I built for this year's Awana Grand Prix. The Riddler took second place for speed in the TnT boys division. The car is the extended version of the Maximum Velocity Wing design. Luke painted it green and I painted the questions marks on using a Styrofoam plate with the cutouts. We decided to make his car a three wheel runner, and after hours of sanding and polishing the axles and wheels it produced really good results.


I built this Maximum Velocity Vaccinator design to race against my children during practice. The car is very quick. Everyone at the practice runs thought it was the coolest car they had seen and some were worried that it would be entered in the derby. After seeing this car on Maximum Velocity I couldn't imagine it being any other color. The paint job is not perfect but it is a sweet car and my son said he wants to make one for next year's derby.

Share Your Car With Our Readers

Do you have a car you would like to "show off" to our readers? If so, send us a photo of your car along with a brief description of any special features. Also, please include your full name. If selected, we will include the photo and description in this newsletter.Please e-mail photos to:

Photos must be sent by e-mail in JPG format (minimum size of 640x480, maximum size of 1280 x 960). Please shoot photos from the front left of the car, similar to the orientation of this car:

For better focus, keep the camera four or five feet away from the car, and then use the camera's zoom to fill the frame with the car.

Send only one photo per car, unless an additional photo is needed to adequately show a feature. Also, only one car per subscriber per year please. Thanks!


Have you ever done any comparison between your multi-groove speed axles vs. a single groove axle?

No, I have tested grooved vs non-grooved, but not single versus multi-groove. I believe the key factor is minimizing the amount of contact between the bore and the axle, not the number of grooves.

Note that both of our single groove axles (part 4052 and part 4098) have an oversized diameter. So either axle will outperform our multi- groove axle (part 4099) which has the standard BSA diameter.

Can your Aero Fenders be used on extended wheelbase cars? Which is better, pine or balsa?

The front Aero Fenders will not fit on an extended wheelbase car, however, the rear Aero Fenders will fit.

The balsa fenders are lighter, so they generally are preferred. However, the pine fenders are easier to implement.

Do You Have Questions that Need Answers?
Do you have a pinewood derby-related question? If so, send your question to: info.maximum-velocity@com. We answer all questions by e-mail, but not every question will appear in the Q&A section of the newsletter.

Back Issues

Are you a new subscriber, or have you missed some of the previous newsletters? Don't miss out! All of the issues for Volume 5 through Volume 13 are posted on our web site and can be found using our Newsletter Index.

Issues from Volumes 1 to 4 are available in four formatted documents, ready for immediate download. To find out more, Click Here.

Newsletter Contributions

We welcome your contributions! If you would like to contribute an article, a web site review, or a speed tip, please send it to:

Please read our submission policy.

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The Pinewood Derby Times is a free e-newsletter focused on the Pinewood Derby. It is published biweekly from October through March.

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Randy Davis, Editor, Pinewood Derby Times

Copyright ©2013, Randy Davis. All rights reserved. Please do not reprint or place this newsletter on your web site without explicit permission. However, if you like this newsletter we grant permission, and encourage you to e-mail it to a friend.

Maximum Velocity disclaims any personal loss or liability caused by utilization of any information presented in this newsletter.

The Pinewood Derby Times is not specific to, and is not affiliated with the Boy Scouts, YMCA, Awana, or any other organization .

®Maximum Velocity! is a registered trademark of Maximum Velocity, Inc.

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