Question regarding wheel mod-eliminating round bump molds

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alanb
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Question regarding wheel mod-eliminating round bump molds

Post by alanb » Mon Jan 13, 2014 1:26 pm

Hi. This is my first time posting the the forum Although I have been active in our pack for several years as a den leader, this year I became the assistant cub master and have a much greater level of participation in our derby.
We had our preliminaries on Saturday, and I found what I thought to be a car running illegally modified wheels according to our council bylaws. The wheels in question had been altered on the outside edge so that the little dots that run around the circumference of the wheel were removed and the outside of the wheel appeared to my eyes rounded off. My thought was that if those little dots were no longer visible that meant the wheel had been illegally modified because that created a smaller tire contact area and less friction.

But I'm now afraid I overstepped my bounds in that there was an illegal modification with the tires, considering the vaguness of our rules.

The background is the car in question had apparently also been raced last year (another violation) and it won all of its heats and the entire derby last year. At the time it puzzled me because it was significantly faster than the #2 through #5 place finishers, which were all very closely lumped together timewise. I know that we had lax inspection in place last year, and that the person running the inspection would have had no idea what to look for, so there’s no way of knowing if it was legal last year or not. At the preliminaries on Saturday I watched it race no fewer than 15 times against good competition and it did not lose a race.
The father of the scout has been notified about the wheels and has already agreed to change them, however, his position is that the mods were within legal limits, and the wheel profile and contact surface area were not changed. I don’t see how that could be if the bump of ridges has been removed, but am in the right or wrong in thinking that doing that in itself constitutes an improper change of the wheel? Below is how our rules read:
WHEELS CANNOT BE MODIFIED
b. NO wheel bearings, washers, bushings, or springs
c. Wheels may be lightly sanded to remove mold projection
NO OTHER WHEEL CHANGES ALLOWED!
No beveling, tapering, thin sanding, wafering or lathe turning.
WHEEL PROFILE MUST REMAIN AS SUPPLIED BY THE OFFICIAL BSA KIT.
d. Wheels must be completely visible
e. Axles must use slots provided in the block of wood. They may be polished
f. Axle slot must be visible. Do not cover or fill groove completely. Judges must be able to see the center of the groove. Axle Guards will not be allowed.
g. Only the axles that come with the official BSA kit, or from item #17007, (replacement wheel and axle kit), or from the allowed
I would appreciate any feedback given. If I was wrong to make them change their wheels, I’m sick about it.
Thank you!



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Darin McGrew
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Re: Question regarding wheel mod-eliminating round bump mold

Post by Darin McGrew » Mon Jan 13, 2014 2:04 pm

Are the "little dots" what the rules call "mold projection"? Has the "WHEEL PROFILE" changed?



alanb
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Re: Question regarding wheel mod-eliminating round bump mold

Post by alanb » Mon Jan 13, 2014 2:10 pm

Hi, I thought the mold projection spoke of in the rules pertained to any bumps or defects on the tread themselves, not the ridge of tiny bumps running around the outside edge of the tire. I guess I don't really understand what is meant by profile. I think I should have contacted council for clarification before I brought it up with the racer/father. I hate to think I disadvantaged them.



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Re: Question regarding wheel mod-eliminating round bump mold

Post by FatSebastian » Mon Jan 13, 2014 2:17 pm

:welcome: alanb!
alanb wrote:I thought the mold projection spoke of in the rules pertained to any bumps or defects on the tread themselves
I feel your interpretation is the one intended by the originators of the rules. However, the change of BSA molds in 2009 do not introduce sprue marks directly onto the tread, so that aspect of the rule is now obsolete.
alanb wrote:I guess I don't really understand what is meant by profile.
In the context of derby rules, our experience has been that "profile" usually means "shape of the radial cross-section of the tread surface". So I think your call for a change of wheels was reasonable, but I would petition for clearer rules regardless.



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Re: Question regarding wheel mod-eliminating round bump mold

Post by alanb » Mon Jan 13, 2014 2:22 pm

Thank you very much for your replies. I did send something to council about it so hopefully if I was wrong there's still time for them to reinstall the tires before the race this coming Saturday.



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Re: Question regarding wheel mod-eliminating round bump mold

Post by PeterT » Mon Jan 13, 2014 2:44 pm

AlanB - I see you are in the Pgh area - are you in Seneca District? Seems like you have the same district rules we have. The mold projection referred to in those rules reflects pre-2009 era wheels.

I'm guessing that you're referring to the "fake tread" dots which go all the way around the wheel. If these are missing the District registration people will unceremoniously show them the door - as they have no location available for working on cars.

Actually the district Judges have historically been very strict.

Three or four years ago they have a six wheel car show up - made to look like a mac truck cab. The middle two wheels appeared to be slightly raised and therefore decorative. They made the Cub/parent remove those wheels since our district has a "four wheel" rule, and from what we noticed the car never even finished a race after that. I'm guessing the process of prying out those middle wheels damaged the remaining ones.

At our local registration we expanded our rules while staying completely inside the district rules. Whenever someone pushes the limits we make sure to tell them "well, district rules say....".

We also have rule #18, which paraphrased says something along the line of "the PW Derby Head Judge (aka ME) has final say, and this is unappealable". It's been three years since I've had to throw down rule 18, but it comes in handy when you need it!



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Re: Question regarding wheel mod-eliminating round bump mold

Post by alanb » Mon Jan 13, 2014 2:49 pm

Hi Peter,
No, I am with Pack 270, North Huntingdon, PA, part of the Westmoreland Fayette Council. You are correct in what I was referring to, the little "bumps" going around the outside of the wheel. I feel bad because the rules are so vague, but that was the only car I've seen with that mod, so maybe I jumped the gun. If nothing else, we will need to revise the rules for next year if we want to prohibit of the little bumps. Thanks!



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Re: Question regarding wheel mod-eliminating round bump mold

Post by macd » Mon Jan 13, 2014 4:06 pm

The rule:

"Wheels may be lightly sanded to remove mold projection"

was probably violated if the wheel was sanded to the point that the little dots around the circumference (I think of them as faux tread) have been removed.

My district and pack has the same rule. I believe it was written pre-2009 when the mold projections were on the running surface of the wheel and needed to be sanded off for the wheel to be flat. I believe some builders use the "lightly sanded" step to lighten the wheels. Leaving some of the dots seems to be a easy way to describe, inspect, and enforce "lightly".



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Re: Question regarding wheel mod-eliminating round bump mold

Post by Speedster » Mon Jan 13, 2014 4:35 pm

WHEELS CANNOT BE MODIFIED. His wheels are illegal. I'm not sure what else could be written after it's stated "WHEELS CANNOT BE MODIFIED". I'm getting the feeling those wheels don't weigh anything near 2.6 grams.



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Re: Question regarding wheel mod-eliminating round bump mold

Post by Darin McGrew » Mon Jan 13, 2014 5:37 pm

Speedster wrote:I'm not sure what else could be written after it's stated "WHEELS CANNOT BE MODIFIED".
Well, the rules do say "WHEELS CANNOT BE MODIFIED", but they also say that "Wheels may be lightly sanded to remove mold projection". So which is it?



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Re: Question regarding wheel mod-eliminating round bump mold

Post by alanb » Mon Jan 13, 2014 5:45 pm

It seems like maybe our pack should consider eliminating the part about "wheels may be lightly sanded to remove mold projection" or at least clarified, if the problems with a tread aren't an issue anymore. Then we could put something in about the faux treads.



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Re: Question regarding wheel mod-eliminating round bump mold

Post by FatSebastian » Mon Jan 13, 2014 7:22 pm

Darin McGrew wrote:Well, the rules do say "WHEELS CANNOT BE MODIFIED", but they also say that "Wheels may be lightly sanded to remove mold projection." So which is it?
The two rules would be reconcilable if "light sanding" was not considered a "modification", i.e., the degree of sanding is expected to be very light and for the purpose of removing a particular defect. Most people would not consider polishing to be a "modification" of tarnished silverware, whereas removing all traces of silver plating would be a modification. Clearly the removal of the fluting is a modification which requires more than "light sanding".



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Re: Question regarding wheel mod-eliminating round bump mold

Post by Shawn Stebleton » Tue Jan 14, 2014 6:22 pm

It sounds like you're in my district, Bushy Run. From how you describe the wheels, they would be disqualified at the Bushy Run District race. I've been there as a parent of a racer the last 7 years :mrgreen: and have seen many cars get inspected.

Full rules are here. Note: Clicking it opens a PDF for saving.


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Re: Question regarding wheel mod-eliminating round bump mold

Post by alanb » Wed Jan 15, 2014 6:13 am

Shawn, yes we are in the Bushy Run district. I definitely feel that the car would not pass inspection at the district race, but I think in our pack rules next year I'm going to lobby to put something in specific to the alteration of the tread beads, so there won't be any confusion. Take care!



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