Sunday, February 11, 2007

Pinewood Derby Extreme Edition II

Here are a few more pictures from the pinewood derby. On the left you see "Breaking Wind" the propeller powered car that was the overall speed winner. I was surprised by this one. Those propellers had enough power to drive the car on the gym floor.

"Breaking Wind" on the left and the RC car on the right. The RC car was a really good idea but he needed a faster motor to make it win.
This is a nice shot of the CO2 car blowing itself off the track. It needed more weight and a more consistent mechanism but it was fast when it worked!. We had a rule that you couldn't touch the car during the start so he had a mechanism attached to a string with a big fish hook on the other end. The fish hook went on the top of the track. The gravity start would get the car going fast enough that when the string pulled taut the nail would be shoved into the cartridge. However, sometimes the string wouldn't release and the car would be left dangling off the side of the track. Hilarious!
Elder Hallam's car did very well. It was a nice kit that he bought at the store. It came with a lead weight to mount on the bottom. Very nice. If you ever get to see the Church's new missionary training videos "The District" you will recognize Elder Hallam. Sitting on the table is Elder Bridegan's car "The Golden Convert". It was so slow that it only made it over the finish line after I lubed it up for him. There is a bit of a lesson there too. Even the "Golden Converts" need help from the members to get to the finish.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Pinewood Derby Extreme Edition

Friday night we had a Pinewood Derby Extreme Edition event and it was really great. The only rules for the competition was that you couldn't use fire or gunpowder since it was indoors. This ruled out the use of Estes model rocket engines. However, there were some really good cars. The winning car used twin propellers mounted on the back of the car. There was one built from a RC car motor, one with a pull-back type toy car and one with CO2 cartridges. There was a hands-off start rule too so the CO2 car had a string with a hook that would release the spring loaded nail to pierce the cartridge as it began rolling down the track. The release mechanism had a consistency problem though. When it all worked well the car killed everyone else. But it only worked well two or three times so it didn't win in the end. There were a total of 10 cars entered in the race.

Below are pictures of our car. Katie came up with the concept and bought the Acorn Squash and jewels. She made the decorative wheels out of wire and at the last minute remembered we had an old Cinderella to pu on it. I did the gold paint job on the car and squash and Katie did the decorative paint. I polished the axles by putting them in my drill and spinning them on extra fine sandpaper. I also removed the burrs from the inside of the plastic wheels and lubed it all up with oil.

Amazingly, this car came in 2nd place overall. The polished axles make a Huge difference. We lost out in the end to the propeller powered car aptly named "Breaking Wind". However, we deserved the Best Sportsmanship Award because I brought my oil can and shared it with everyone. If the propeller car hadn't applied the oil he would not have won. All in all it was a great activity. Next time we should do it outdoors with an asbestos covered track so we can use fire!

Saturday, February 03, 2007

San Antonio Rodeo Stampede 4 Mile Run

Today was the San Antonio Rodeo Stampede 4 Mile Run and I finished 2nd in my age group and 7th overall. My time was 27:37 so I averaged 6:54 per mile. I'm really pleased with that because I've recently come back from some tendinitis in my left knee and I felt really strong today.