Pinewood Derby Rules

Some important restrictions about Pack 1148's derby:

  1. Pre-carved kits are not allowed for Tigers, Wolves, Bears, and Webelos should start with the provided block of wood in the BSA kit. Lions may use a wedge car from a pre-carved kit.

  2. Previous year's cars cannot be used - all cars must be new this year.

  3. Non-BSA wheels are not allowed - please only use the wheels provided in the kit.

  4. Axles are not allowed - each car must have 4 nails (one per wheel); axles connecting 2 wheels together are not permitted.

  5. Please adhere to the policies on our website about how much of the car is scout-built. For example, a Webelos car should be mostly built by the Webelos scout with minimal supervision. These rules apply to the Sibling races as well - please do not try to enter cars for pre-scout age children built entirely by parents; sibling cars should be built by siblings.

  6. Each car will be weighed at registration and must not go over 5.0 ounces on the official scale at the event.

  7. Cars need to fit under the finish gate on the track and must fit over the guide rails of the track. (Inset wheels won't fit).

  8. Fronts and backs of cars must not end in a point (we need a flat surface to place against the starting line).

  9. Cars must have at least three (3) wheels on the ground.

  10. Once the car is checked in, it will be placed on our grid and cannot be modified.

Track Information

The following is for informational purposes only. The measurements are approximate. The standard wheel placement with the BSA Pinewood Derby Kit will clear just fine.

The picture below is a cross-section of the track. The car's wheels sit on the outsides of the two rails sticking up.

The center rail height is about 1/4 inch. The width is about 1 and 5/8 inches wide. Typical pinewood derby stick on or screw on base plate weights are generally fine with standard wheel and axel placement.

Official Pinewood Derby Rules


Open to all Pack 1148 Cub Scouts, siblings and children. Scouts from other packs may participate with special permission. The cars must be newly constructed from an Official BSA Pinewood Derby kit. Participants should have an active role in constructing the car.

Inspection: Cars will be inspected during registration for compliance to the specifications set forth below. Weight and verification that four wheels are touching down will be determined only at inspection and not at the track.

While wheels will also be verified during inspection non-compliant wheels can be flagged at any time during the derby.


Cars will be impounded when registered. After being impounded, repairs will be limited to replacement of axles/wheels that are broken/lost during the race.


BODY: The body in the Official BSA Pinewood Derby Kit must be used. No prefabricated car kits! Bodies of other materials will be grounds for disqualification. The body may be shaped, hollowed out, or built up from the original block, as long as it meets all other specifications. Any additions to the original body, i.e. steering wheels, drivers, decals, paint, weights, etc., must be firmly attached.

WIDTH: The car width at the wheels may not be modified; it must be the same as the original kit. Width must not exceed 2 3/4".

LENGTH: Overall length may not exceed 7". WHEELBASE: Wheelbase may not be modified; it must be the same as the official


HEIGHT: The car must fit under the finish gate. The primary gate is approximately 7" tall. Keeping the car height to 6" or less is safe.

WHEELS: Wheels and axles must be as furnished in the official kit. NO washers, bushings, bearings or springs are allowed. Wheels may be sanded to remove the flashing only. NO reductions in width or diameter, or changes in shape are allowed. Four wheels must make contact with the track as assessed at inspection.

It is the Pack’s intention to create a fair and fun environment for all scouts with as level a playing field as possible and keeping the focus on craftsmanship and fun. If at any time during the derby wheels are determined to not be official BSA wheels or are otherwise non-compliant the rules committee will meet to determine the proper course of action. If, at the discretion of the rules committee, the car has not raced and there is sufficient time, wheel changes may be made by the scout and re-registered. If the car has raced in heats with non-compliant wheels the times for the car may be removed and the car may not be able to qualify for a speed trophy. The car will still be eligible for the other awards including best in show. The rules committee determination will be final.

WEIGHT: The weight of the race-ready car must not exceed five (5) ounces as measured on the official scales.

UNACCEPTABLE CONSTRUCTION: The following may NOT be used in conjunction with the wheels or axles: hubcaps, washers, inserts, sleeves, bearings, or riding on springs. The following may NOT be incorporated into the construction of the car: protrusions (i.e. wires) that extend beyond the front of the car; cuts that allow the front of the car to extend beyond the starting line, such as a split front; or additions to the car that cause the cars front wooden edge to not be in contact with the starting pin.

LUBRICANTS: Only dry lubricants may be used.