Soap Box Derby Design: Painting A Soap Box Derby Car

If you're helping your child out in getting their soap box derby car ready, find out how to paint it with these tips, techniques and instructions.

Soap Box Derby racing has been a favorite event of boys and girls since it began in Dayton, Ohio, in nineteen thirty three. There have been over a million boys and girls participating in the Soap Box Derby since its first race was run. When this famous race first started, the prize was a loving cup. Today, winners can be awarded trophies and savings bonds, as well as other valuable prizes.

If you are interested in getting your child started in this sport, you'll need, of course, to purchase a suitable coaster car. A derby racer is a car that simply coasts down a hill. It has no engine or other means of propulsion. You can either purchase a used car, or, you can help your child build their own from a kit. Cars that are allowed to race in the derby must be built according to certain specifications. Therefore, rather than try to build you own car, purchasing a kit or a prebuilt car is the best way to go.

The Soap Box Derby is divided into three progressional racing classes. They are the Stock Division, the Super Stock Division, and the Master Division. Which class your child will start out in depends on their age and weight. However, most of the younger children start out in the Stock Division. Because of this, their derby car kit is the easiest to put together. The kit includes all of the necessary parts. All you have to buy separately are the wheels. The hard plastic shell of the Stock Division coaster cars come in one color, either white, red, blue, or black. These cars are not allowed to be painted. They must remain their original factory color.

The next racing category is the Super Stock Division. This class is designed for children who are a little taller and weigh more than those in the standard Stock Division. You can purchase a kit or a used coaster car for your child to use in this class too. The only difference is, your child is allowed to paint their Super Stock cars. This class of coaster car also has a hard plastic shell. You and your child can leave the plastic its original color and just add sponsorship decals. Or, you may choose to remove the shell from the frame and paint it. Just be sure that you choose a paint that is suitable to be used on hard plastic.

And, finally, the third racing category is the Master Division. Children who participate will weigh a little more yet than those in the Super Stock Division. The Soap Box Derby car used in this class can also be assembled from a kit, or, it can be bought second hand. This coaster car is the hardest to put together. According to the derby rules and regulations, you and your child can paint this type of car too. Unlike the other two classes, the Master Division car has a fiberglass shell. Again, this shell can be left its original factory color. Or, it can be removed from the frame of the car and painted.

To paint either a hard plastic or a fiberglass shell, be sure that you read and follow the official rules of the Soap Box Derby. Also, follow the manufacturer's directions on the paint containers in order to achieve the best results. Basically, though, you must first wash the shells with a mild detergent. This will remove any dirt, films, and other pollutants so the paint can adhere to the surface properly. Then, brush on or spray on a light, even first coat, and allow it to dry thoroughly. Make sure that you wipe off any runs in the paint. Apply a second coat of paint as needed.

Finally, remember that building and painting a Soap Box Derby coaster car is a parent/child project. You may not do all of the work. Instead, you must only help your son or daughter.

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