puzzle piece

Click to solve our online jigsaw puzzles!

puzzle piece

How to Bake Pinewood Derby Cars

Preheating an oven.
AGorohov/iStock/Getty Images

When competing in a Pinewood Derby, you must make your car as fast as possible. One way to do this is to bake the Pinewood Derby block of wood. Making the block of wood as light as possible allows the addition of weights to bring the car to the weight allowance. The car's speed is increased by placing the weight at specific spots.Removing moisture from the block of wood will allow weight to be placed in the back of the car as well as the underside.

Preheat your oven to 250 degrees.

Place the Pinewood Derby block of wood on the cookie sheet.

Place the cookie sheet with the block of wood into the oven.

Bake the Pinewood Derby block of wood for two hours. This will remove as much moisture from the wood as possible, which will make the block of wood lighter.

Remove the block of wood from the oven. Allow to it cool. You can then proceed to design and shape your Pinewood Derby car.


Bake time may vary depending on the climate in which you live. Those that live in arid regions may have far less moisture to bake out of the wood block than those living in humid regions. This is not an exact science--keep in mind that every little bit of weight removed from the block of wood will have an impact when the total weight of the car can only be five ounces.


  • Watch the block of wood closely for signs of the oven being too hot or the wood being in there too long. It is possible for the wood to catch fire if the temperature is too hot.
Our Passtimes