Do you have a son, grandson or nephew that is participating in a Pinewood Derby this year? It is that time of the year. Although my son isn’t quite old enough to participate this year, he has a cousin that is and since his cousin is interested in the Pinewood Derby, my son now needs his own car. I decided to make my nephew a fun surprise for his Pinewood Derby car, a custom Pinewood Derby box.
When I was growing up I remember when my brother participated in the Pinewood Derby. My dad got really into it. He loved to help my brother design cars, cut them out and paint them. I don’t know how many hours he spent researching all there was to know about how to make the cars go faster, but my dad learned it all. Not only would he make a car for my brother, he would make one for himself to race too. Soon all the neighbor boys would come to my dad to help them get their car ready for the Pinewood Derby. He was so into it that he was in charge of the district Pinewood Derby and I remember going to help him at the races. I must say, pressing that button to release the cars down the track is pretty fun. My brother did very well in those races and would come home with big trophies. Did I mention that they were really into Pinewood Derby? My dad had one favorite car. I think my brother won not just the district race but the next one up (state? maybe) and he kept that car in a special box. He didn’t want it to get dropped or played with and didn’t want the tires ruined.
Well last year, my nephew dropped his car before the races started and had to fix it on the spot. Needless to say, it didn’t do very well. So this year, after working with my dad to get his car ready to go, I figured he would need a safe place to store his Pinewood Derby car so it would get broken and he would have a good race day. Here is how I made this Pinewood Derby Box.
A smallish shoe box works great for this project. My mom had one and gave it to me. I spray painted it box and lid black. I used 2 coats of Rust-oleum paint and primer semi gloss spray paint.
I wanted to keep it simple in case he wanted to add anything of his own design to it. I found some Duck Tape in my craft stash that I thought was perfect for a race car! When my son saw this tape he said, “mommy, that looks like a finish line”! Like I said, perfect for a race car. 🙂
I covered just one end of the box and lid with the duck tape.
This is what really makes this box special. I bought a piece of foam from Hobby Lobby for a couple bucks.
Using just a pair of scissors, I cut a strip of foam for the inside of the box. The length should be the length of the inside of your box and the width should be the width of the Pinewood Derby car. (Approx: 1 5/8 inches) As you can see, it doesn’t have to be perfectly straight.
I put a line of hot glue down the middle of my foam piece and glued it to the bottom of the box.
The car fits perfectly on the foam. It keeps it from sliding around, getting dropped and maybe makes it a bit less tempting to get it out and play with it (possibly causing it to break) before the race.
Plus, how cool would it be to walk in with an awesome custom Pinewood Derby box? The other boys might start getting a little nervous! 🙂
Pinewood Derby was such a fun memory for me, and I wasn’t even the one racing! Making a special box, would help make it more fun and memorable for you little racers too. I know it’s not as big a deal to some people as it is to others, but if your son likes craft projects, this would be a great one. I kept this one simple since it wasn’t for my son, but think of all the fun designs you could add. You could use your vinyl for that!!
Good luck at the races!