Propeller Car Kit

Propeller Car Kit

Pinewood Derby Times
Volume 13, Issue 5
November 27, 2013

In this Edition:

- Editor's Notes

- Feature Article - Wax Those Wheel Bores for Top Performance

- Humor

- Product Showcase - Pro-Bore Wax - $1.00 Off

- Pinewood Derby Car Showcase

- Q&A

Editor's Notes
Happy Holidays
Best wishes to you and your family. We hope you have a great Thanksgiving (and/or Hanukkah).

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

Wax Those Wheel Bores for Top Performance
By Randy Davis

If you peruse the various pinewood derby forums, you will know that the adult racing leagues are highly competitive. These pinewood derby car builders are always on the lookout for techniques to gain a few micro-seconds. The first article of this season discussed one of these techniques, the use of fenders to improve the aerodynamics of the car. Today we will look at another technique, waxing the wheel bores.

Polishing wheel bores is fairly common, and is accomplished using a product such as Micro-Gloss1, a very fine crystalline abrasive that is designed to polish plastic and acrylic products. Waxing the bore goes a step further by applying a plastic-safe wax (Pro-Bore Wax2) and then buffing it with a pipe cleaner. This wax fills in tiny imperfections in the bore and results in a hard slick surface that is better than the polished bore. To check this out, let's run an experiment and see what happens.

Experiment Setup
In order to isolate the benefit of waxing the bore, all other variables need to be eliminated. Therefore, track testing would not be a viable way to test as too many factors are at play. So instead, we will use a weighted-wheel spin jig. The equipment used was previously described in Volume 8, Issue 6 - Grooved Axles

As a refresher, the apparatus consists of a machined steel ring which is sized to fit snuggly over a machined BSA wheel. The ring weighs two ounces, which is essentially the load on a rear wheel of a pinewood derby car.

Figure 1 - Weighted Wheel Spin Jig

After sliding the ring over the lubricated wheel-axle assembly, the axle is mounted onto the apparatus. A length of nylon line with a weight on one end is wound around the ring (there is a small pin on the ring not seen in Figure 1, to which the non-weighted, looped end of the string is attached). On each test, the string is wound until the weight touches the eye hook. The weight is then released and a stopwatch is used to measure the spin time. The string is sized such that it is released from the ring before the weight reaches the ground.

Two wheels and two axles were used for each test. The reason for the duplication is to ensure that performance is not exaggerated or degraded due to a "fluke" wheel or axle. The wheels were machined wheels and were from the same mold number.

The combinations tested were:

Max-V-Lube Graphite - No Wax
Max-V-Lube Graphite - Pro-Bore Wax
Krytox 100 - No Wax
Krytox 100 - Pro-Bore Wax

Each wheel/axle was lubricated in the same manner, and then given two break-in spins. Next, five spin tests were performed for each wheel (eight wheels total).

Experiment Results
As you can see in Figure 2, the use of Pro-Bore Wax improved the performance for both Krytox 100 and Max-V-Lube Graphite (a longer spin time is better).

Figure 2 - Experiment Results

How does this data transfer to track time improvement? Certainly the improvement in track time would be much smaller than shown above, as many other factors come into play. However, with both lubes, using Pro-Bore Wax should provide measurable differences on the track.

1Bore Polish (Micro Gloss) can be found Here.

2Pro-Bore Wax can be found Here.


TEACHER: Why are you late?
STUDENT: Class started before I got here.

TEACHER: John, why are you doing your math multiplication on the floor?
JOHN: You told me to do it without using tables.

TEACHER: Glenn, how do you spell 'crocodile?'
TEACHER: No, that's wrong.
GLENN: Maybe it is wrong, but you asked me how I spell it.

TEACHER: Donald, what is the chemical formula for water?
TEACHER: What are you talking about?
DONALD: Yesterday you said it's H to O.

TEACHER: Winnie, name one important thing we have today that we didn't have ten years ago.

TEACHER: Glen, why do you always get so dirty?
GLEN: Well, I'm a lot closer to the ground than you are.

TEACHER: Millie, give me a sentence starting with "I".
MILLIE: I is..
TEACHER: No, Millie. Always say, "I am."
MILLIE: All right. "I am the ninth letter of the alphabet."

TEACHER: George Washington not only chopped down his father's cherry tree, but also admitted it. Now, Louie, do you know why his father didn't punish him?
LOUIS: Because George still had the axe in his hand.

TEACHER: Now, Simon , tell me frankly, do you say prayers before eating?
SIMON: No sir, I don't have to; my Mom is a good cook.

TEACHER: Clyde, your composition on "My Dog" is exactly the same as your brother's. Did you copy his?
CLYDE : No, sir. It's the same dog.

Product Showcase

  Pro-Bore Wax  
$1.00 off

Tests show that waxing the bore of your wheels will improve pinewood derby car performance when using Max-V-Lube Graphite or when using Krytox 100. Using Pro-Bore Wax will reduce the coefficient of friction, allowing the wheels to spin faster and more freely. This equates to improved performance on the track.

Through December 10, 2013, you can get a bottle of Pro-Bore Wax for $1.00 off. To take advantage of this limited time offer: Click Here, and use coupon code BOREWAX during checkout.

Car Showcase

Some unusual cars ...

Propeller Car - Ron Kohl

We used your propeller car kit, along with our modifications to make this car. It includes both capacitors and batteries. A slide switch on the rear turns the battery on and off. The screw on the front prevents the switch from accidentally closing and charging the capacitors when the car is in the holding area. Just in front of the arrow point is an LED that flashes when the capacitors are charging and the fan is running. It adds some suspense. The body, wheels and axles are from a Pinewood Derby kit. The car did win, and all eyes were on it at the district race held in April 2013.

'63 Corvette Stingray - William Groner

Here is my '63 Corvette Stingray, "Hot Salsa", with your Max-V wheels trued to 2.2 grams. The car set the track record at APR in July. As you can tell, it's a plastic model on a wooden frame. APR rules for the Door Slammer class require a 1/25 scale model of an American-made production car prior to 1973.

St. Mary's School Bus - David Farlwo

I thought this might inspire those who want to try something different. The bus met all the regulations for our group. It is a three-wheeler with the weight in the rear of the roof (primarily). We've got a very competitive crowd, so the bus was a way to run and win best of show. It placed just under the fastest cars, taking fifth place. The best part was that it wasn't a wedge and could still keep close company with the other cars. Not too much bragging when your wedge just barely beat an old school bus!

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!


We opened my daughter's car kit tonight and noticed that the wheels included in the kit are a different design than last year's. This year's design is a five-spoke rim with no "Awana Grand Prix" molded into the tire area like it was last year. I used your speed wheels last year, and obviously we can't use them this year, as they are different than what came with this year's kit. I'm wondering if you have speed wheels made from the new design. Let me know.

Possibly your club is using PineCar brand wheels. Do they look like this?

If so, then you can find PineCar Speed Wheels Here.

If not, send me a photo of the wheel (both sides), and I will try to identify them.

Do you have stock RA wheels? We are not allowed to use your thin RA Speed Wheels.

Sorry, we only offer the narrowed RA wheels, not stock ones. However, you can get stock wheels from:


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.

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