In charge of 2016 track...now with results.

General race coordinator discussions.
User avatar
Vitamin K
Master Pine Head
Master Pine Head
Posts: 980
Joined: Sat Apr 20, 2013 7:26 pm
Location: Montgomery County, MD
Contact:

Re: In charge of purchasing track and running 2016 PWD....

Post by Vitamin K » Mon Nov 30, 2015 12:37 pm

Looking over the ruleset, most seems fairly standard. A few things you might consider:

- The wheelbase says "Any", but under the wheel section, it says "Wheels must be installed to the side of the car body directly across from one another in the same location as the stock kit axle slots". These are contradictory.
- Are pre-cut bodies allowed? For example, the Revell kits are technically "BSA licensed".
- Under prohibited items under wheels, you list "Canting". Does this mean that axles can't be installed canted? If so, you might wish to clarify the language.
- "Internet purchased modified 'speed wheels'" are listed as prohibited. A few things:
-- Clarify what a 'speed wheel' is. If I bought a wheel that simply had basic truing on the outer tread, does that count as a speed wheel? What about a mold matched set?
-- I'd change 'Internet purchased' to simply 'Vendor purchased', since conceivably somebody could buy them from a non-Internet source
- Are builders allowed to file/cut their own speed grooves into stock axles?



User avatar
race#67
Pine Head
Pine Head
Posts: 90
Joined: Thu Dec 11, 2014 10:05 am
Location: Columbus, OH

Re: In charge of purchasing track and running 2016 PWD....

Post by race#67 » Mon Nov 30, 2015 2:11 pm

Thanks, I appreciate the extra set of eyes, and some great points that needed to be corrected. Noted in green below...
Vitamin K wrote:Looking over the ruleset, most seems fairly standard. A few things you might consider:

- The wheelbase says "Any", but under the wheel section, it says "Wheels must be installed to the side of the car body directly across from one another in the same location as the stock kit axle slots". These are contradictory.
True, thanks, I forgot to edit the ANY WHEELBASE verbage out. Removed it!

- Are pre-cut bodies allowed? For example, the Revell kits are technically "BSA licensed".
I really do not want the precut bodies, but they are not a speed advantage. Are they all stock wheelbase? If they are I will likely leave it this way, and encourage any that show up to attend our car cutout workshop next year.

- Under prohibited items under wheels, you list "Canting". Does this mean that axles can't be installed canted? If so, you might wish to clarify the language.
Agreed, confusing and redundant with the "NO MODIFICATION" clause. The intent was no canting of the tread in respect to the axle bore. Removed it completely as the parallel verbage is saying the same.

- "Internet purchased modified 'speed wheels'" are listed as prohibited. A few things:
-- Clarify what a 'speed wheel' is. If I bought a wheel that simply had basic truing on the outer tread, does that count as a speed wheel? What about a mold matched set?
-- I'd change 'Internet purchased' to simply 'Vendor purchased', since conceivably somebody could buy them from a non-Internet source
Yes, changed to vendor purchased. Anything not stock out of the BSA kit or the Revell tube is a speed wheel for our purposes. I just wanted to make it more clear.

- Are builders allowed to file/cut their own speed grooves into stock axles?
I did not say they cannot, just don't pay someone else to do it. :)



Speedster
Pine Head Legend
Pine Head Legend
Posts: 1335
Joined: Sat Feb 18, 2012 2:48 pm
Location: Toledo, Ohio

Re: In charge of purchasing track and running 2016 PWD....

Post by Speedster » Mon Nov 30, 2015 2:39 pm

Isn't there anyway you can let the scouts stage their own cars? That's a lot of the Fun. If they drop it, it's their fault.



User avatar
race#67
Pine Head
Pine Head
Posts: 90
Joined: Thu Dec 11, 2014 10:05 am
Location: Columbus, OH

Re: In charge of purchasing track and running 2016 PWD....

Post by race#67 » Mon Nov 30, 2015 2:49 pm

I pushed for it. Problem is the track is way taller than most of the Scouts, especially the Tigers. Other members did not want to deal with stairs and a platform and the risks yadda yadda yadda. I have enough to worry about for this year so I decided to choose my battles. I may work on a platform with a railing after this years races and lobby to use it in 2017.



Speedster
Pine Head Legend
Pine Head Legend
Posts: 1335
Joined: Sat Feb 18, 2012 2:48 pm
Location: Toledo, Ohio

Re: In charge of purchasing track and running 2016 PWD....

Post by Speedster » Tue Dec 01, 2015 12:41 am

Rules usually state "No part of the car may extend past the starting line" or something to that effect. I didn't see that in the rules listed unless I missed it somewhere. Revell has a kit I call a "Rod" that is illegal. The front wheels extend past the car and go beyond the start pin. I put a square piece of wood with double face tape on the front of the car to back the car up. Actually, it moved the COM farther up the hill which would have given the car more speed. It somehow made it to our District race but did not make it to the final track.



User avatar
Vitamin K
Master Pine Head
Master Pine Head
Posts: 980
Joined: Sat Apr 20, 2013 7:26 pm
Location: Montgomery County, MD
Contact:

Re: In charge of purchasing track and running 2016 PWD....

Post by Vitamin K » Tue Dec 01, 2015 8:13 am

race#67 wrote:I pushed for it. Problem is the track is way taller than most of the Scouts, especially the Tigers. Other members did not want to deal with stairs and a platform and the risks yadda yadda yadda. I have enough to worry about for this year so I decided to choose my battles. I may work on a platform with a railing after this years races and lobby to use it in 2017.
I had to convince some skeptics to let me go ahead with my plans to let the scouts stage. I did finally get my way, and I heard a lot of "Best Derby Ever" comments from the kids.



User avatar
race#67
Pine Head
Pine Head
Posts: 90
Joined: Thu Dec 11, 2014 10:05 am
Location: Columbus, OH

Re: In charge of purchasing track and running 2016 PWD....

Post by race#67 » Tue Dec 01, 2015 9:35 am

Thanks for the Heads up Speedster.
VK, I know I read that post, it is one of the reasons I pushed for it:) Once we get this year behind us with a new track, new software, new management and location I hope that people are impressed with the changes and allow some more.



User avatar
race#67
Pine Head
Pine Head
Posts: 90
Joined: Thu Dec 11, 2014 10:05 am
Location: Columbus, OH

Re: In charge of purchasing track and running 2016 PWD....

Post by race#67 » Mon Jan 25, 2016 3:43 pm

Well, less than a week until race day, I have never been more eager to get to race day. This project has been very time consuming.
Getting everything together, built, tested, upgraded and comfortable in two months that include a holiday was aggressive. I wanted to start the process in September, and that would have been much more enjoyable.
Track has been assembles and disassembled and reassembled and tested three times in my house (spanning the entire first floor to fit a 42' track). Boxes have been built. Rules have been established, and we even hosted a car cutout night for about 20 cars and got many of those cars up to weight.
All that remains is the big this Saturday. I will keep you posted.



User avatar
race#67
Pine Head
Pine Head
Posts: 90
Joined: Thu Dec 11, 2014 10:05 am
Location: Columbus, OH

Re: In charge of 2016 track...now with results.

Post by race#67 » Sun Jan 31, 2016 8:52 am

Well it is all over.
The amount of work, stress, and anxiety involved in getting a race going from scratch (New rules, new equipment, new help, new format, new venue) is not to be taken lightly. It consumed the past four weeks of life in this house.
Overall, the results were worth it. Adding an electronic start solenoid and allowing the scout racing in lane 1 to press the button starting the race was a HUGE hit. I also printed out interview questions and random derby facts (all found here, thanks DT) for the Scoutmaster/Emcee to use during the event. We had a really great event from the feedback I received.
Here is one E-mail excerpt:

"I want to comment on how the derby was run this year. Thank you very much for finding a way to involve the boys by having a start button! In the past, I felt it was very parent driven and the kids were not allowed to take part in any of the fun. They lost interest easily. The boys starting the race and getting "interviewed" as they did was a great idea. Mike, your fun facts were entertaining. It was a lot more enjoyable."

Check in using the GPRM check in sheets and printed stickers went really well, I cut the sheets into individual slips that went with the car into the impound box for me to collect and use as a notification to mark cars as "PASSED" in GPRM.

Overall there were three "issues" which I will share to remind myself of what happened for next year.
1) On Friday night we had an optional early check in. One of the cars arrived with the sidewalls sanded smooth (no lettering) and tread bumps completely rounded off. Our rules state all wheel lettering inside and out, and tread bumps must remain untouched. Unfortunately I had to inform the parents checking in the cars that the wheels would need replaced to race. The father left the building in disgust after a short discussion about wheel letters and tread bumps. helped the mother install new axles, applied graphite, and checked the alignment so the cars could race. I kept the wheels for later inspection.
This was the lowest point of the derby for me. I felt terrible last year that a car with severely lightened wheels was passed by the inspectors and allowed to race (and win) . As bad as that was, having to tell a family the wheels they worked so hard on needed to be removed was almost as bad. However, it would not have been fair to the other racers if we passed it.
I weighed the wheels that were removed once I got home. They weighed between 2.58 and 2.62 grams. The removal of material obviously stopped at the bottom of the cast in letters. The work done to remove material did not significantly lighten them, but did disqualify the wheels. Our rules state a 2.4 gram minimum wheel weight with a threat of post race removal. Wheels are all heavier than that stock. The lightest I have seen in about 40 is 2.58 grams. I need to address this somehow for next year.

2) About halfway through the second rank we had lane #4 finish as soon as the start button on the gate was pressed. The car had a .0002 time and a speed of 216,000 MPH. That made for some laughs and we re-ran the heat. It happened again two heats later. We shut down racing and I scrambled to see what the issue was as 100 people looked on. The 0 had a slight line in the middle of it, as an 8 would have. After some messing around we removed the timer section of track, removed the foam blocks and realigned the timer slightly. After that the rest of the day was fine. I guess the timer was on the very edge of reading lane 4 and something in the start system was triggering it.

3) I was not as comfortable setting up our final races with the top three in each den as I should have been. I figured I would be efficient and schedule the next round as each rank finished. After the second rank I realized I should have waited until all ranks finished and done a 'grand final' round at the end. When I tried to do that at the end, it would not let me as I had a round two that was never run for two ranks. I was not able to quickly figure out how to delete those rounds, without possibly deleting the results. The whole time I have the scoutmaster asking me "how much longer" as he tried to keep the audience entertained while I tried to figure it out. Finally I just used our printed results by rank to manually populate a whole new data file. I know there are much easier ways to do this, but at that moment it was the only way I was sure I could get it done without causing an issue. It took about ten minutes to do, and we decided since food was ready we would break for lunch while the dude at the computer gets his act together. So it was OK.

It also gave me a chance to calculate average scores for each den so we could award the new Cubmaster's Cup to the fastest overall den. This was a big hit, with the Webelo's winning it. It was great to see once of the Webelo's that won noting elected by his group to hold the trophy I the group trophy photo. It was also the biggest trophy, so that was pretty neat.

It was a great event, and one we can improve even further. I lost a bunch of sleep. The mystery timer issue covered in another thread did not rear its head all day, which was great. I need to get more comfortable with some of the more advanced features of the software before next year, and also get more people involved in the process. I shouldered way more responsibility than I wanted to. Hopefully now that we have one under our belt we can get more training for me and the helpers next year.

Thanks to all for their help in this thread, could not have done it without you.
Jim



User avatar
gpraceman
Site Admin
Site Admin
Posts: 4607
Joined: Fri Jun 20, 2003 12:46 am
Location: Highlands Ranch, CO
Contact:

Re: In charge of 2016 track...now with results.

Post by gpraceman » Sun Jan 31, 2016 1:26 pm

I'm glad that your race went well and the software was a help.
race#67 wrote:3) I was not as comfortable setting up our final races with the top three in each den as I should have been. I figured I would be efficient and schedule the next round as each rank finished. After the second rank I realized I should have waited until all ranks finished and done a 'grand final' round at the end. When I tried to do that at the end, it would not let me as I had a round two that was never run for two ranks. I was not able to quickly figure out how to delete those rounds, without possibly deleting the results. The whole time I have the scoutmaster asking me "how much longer" as he tried to keep the audience entertained while I tried to figure it out. Finally I just used our printed results by rank to manually populate a whole new data file. I know there are much easier ways to do this, but at that moment it was the only way I was sure I could get it done without causing an issue.
For future reference, you can easily delete a round, using the Options menu on the main screen (Options -> Delete -> Round). Then select the particular round to delete.


Randy Lisano
Romans 5:8

Awana Grand Prix and Pinewood Derby racing - Where a child, an adult and a small block of wood combine for a lot of fun and memories.

User avatar
gpraceman
Site Admin
Site Admin
Posts: 4607
Joined: Fri Jun 20, 2003 12:46 am
Location: Highlands Ranch, CO
Contact:

Re: In charge of 2016 track...now with results.

Post by gpraceman » Sun Jan 31, 2016 11:35 pm

Also, would you mind posting the trivia that you used? I like that idea.


Randy Lisano
Romans 5:8

Awana Grand Prix and Pinewood Derby racing - Where a child, an adult and a small block of wood combine for a lot of fun and memories.


Post Reply