Mrs. Walker's Mousetrap Car Project
Mike's Award Winning Creation
(It's an old picture, but I love the fly swatter!)
Click the above link to see a winning mousetrap car!
Homework: MTCP Worksheets Link: click here
#1 How Fast? Homework (Worksheet)
#2 How Far? Homework (Worksheet)
#3 Blue Print/Rough Draft In class (Worksheet)
#4 Shopping List/ Who is responsible for what? (Worksheet)
2. In-Class work
I. Date: _____/_____/_____
Assignment #1 How fast/far (Due today) 0pts 6pts 12pts
Assignment #2 B.P. & S.L (Due today) 0pts 6pts 12pts
II. Date: _____/_____/_____ 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 pts
Shopping List Materials Brought to Class
1. Car = If you put a car on the starting line and it doesn’t move = 20pts
2. Car = If you put a car on the starting line and it moves (wheel must be on the floor) = 30pts
Greatest distance the mousetrap
from the starting line: ___________meters
1.01 to 2.00 meters =
2.01 to 3.00 meters =
3.01 to 4.00 meters =
4.01 to 5.00 meters =
5.01 to 6.00 meters =
6.01 to 7.00 meters =
7.01 to 8.00 meters =
I. 1stTrial = ___________________meters
II. 2nd Trial = ___________________meters
3rd Trial =
Extra Credit: longest distance in class 5 bonus points
5. Most creative or “Prettiest” car as voted by class.
(10 points) ___________ Bonus Points
6. Car "Donated to Science"
(5pts) ___________ Bonus Points
Note: Thirty point (30) limit for bonus points earned by any one student, and maximum possible of 130 total points.
Pre-race pts: __________/30
Base Distance pts: __________/70Bonus pts: __________
Total Score: _________/100
(Max Score = 130pts)
build a car from a commercialized kit you will be
assigned an "F". You are
expected to be creative and build a car from scratch for this project.
purchase a kit or use any part of a kit with pre-cut pieces from a
hobby store. Do not shop on-line to use a kit or any part of a kit. Do
not use parts from a brother or sister's car if you cannot verify that
they did not come out of a kit. Save your receipts in case they are
needed to verify the originality of your car. Again...if in doubt, show
the parts to
your teacher and ask. This project is considered an assessment.
Therefore if you deviate from the teacher's verbal and/or written
instructions regarding kits, you will be in violation of the academic
honesty section of the student handbook and will receive zero credit
for this project.
Use all the links and information listed below. A little research goes a long way. Do not use constructs, erector sets, or legos to build your car. You can buy aluminum, brass, or wooden rods. Parts can be purchased separately. The best cars are home made. It's best to ask your teacher first, so that your car isn't disqualified. If in doubt about those parts, please ask. It is your responsibility to ask for clarification if you need it. Don't assume. Do not use cars from previously graded pine wood derby or wood shop projects. Previous Boy Scout "Pinewood Derby" cars would also be unacceptable. Do not try and pass off a siblings car or friends from a prior year. The consequence will still be an F. Do not have someone else build a car for you. The car must be built by you.
If you begin early, the project will not be difficult. Do not simply build something that you saw on youtube. Some have tried to copy such a car and it didn't work. Again, listen to your teacher while they are coaching you in class on this assignment. Take notes. Research on your own. Do not wait until the last minute. Start early! Test your car before the due date. You should bring it to school and take advantage of the long hallways for your test run. If you do not have a functioning car on the day they are due, you have not meet the requirements. There will be no time extensions. All cars are due at the beginning of your particular class period.
This car is the one in the video clip listed above.
This was an
"A" ... all the way down the hall.
Physics Scholar from Ontario Canada:
(Tracked Mrs. Walker through e-mail)
Some of the challenges you will
overcome are gravity, friction, and weight distribution. The first
will need to make concerns your ultimate goal. Is it speed or distance?
will require a different lever arm length and tires. It is best to
with several different lengths for your lever arm. When considering
think in terms of a small lightweight car with a short lever arm that
quickly. The mousetrap imparts the energy to the car quickly. Think
or rubber tires. The car
at a rather high speed and coasts to a stop. Make sure your car travels
the 5 meter minimum. This is harder to do when building a car for
speed. If distance is the goal, you may consider
of the lever arm. This slows the speed of the car, but allows the
be pulled for a longer period of time. Check the links below to
perfect lever arm length. Experiment with different types of string and
really does make a difference.
Listed below are a few of the links I discovered that include tips on how to build a mousetrap car. If you are unsure about a particular design, ASK your teacher! The links are not provided for you to copy someone else's car, but to stimulate your thinking.http://www.docfizzix.com/design-help/index.shtml
Many of the links on the above mentioned link take you to Doc’s web site. However, there are some excellent photos of students with their finished cars. You may find some additional ideas here.
Consider wheel diameter carefully! Light weight is a good idea. Simple and light.
Cool lever arm, but heavy body.
Electrical tape for traction.
Awesome spinners !
Lengthen body to improve car.
not use these!
Mousetrap Car (front)
car built from
or erector set pieces is unacceptable. Ask
your teacher if in doubt.
Creativity can earn extra points! Tread is good for traction. Think "Green". Love the paint job!
These wheels were too small though. Longer bodies will use longer lever arms.
Plywood is heavy. Small wheels yield short distances. Research the length of that lever arm.
Choose lighter materials.
can have advantages, it all depends.
More weight requires more energy to move the car.
The body was a paint stick.
Walker's 2nd car.
Insulation is light
and was clever.
This car was
graded twice. It's not a good idea
Einstein would be
An art scholar's
to try and recycle a car from a previous year. It
earns an "F" the second time around.
Page Created and maintained by Nicole J. Walker
Last Updated: 7 Jan 2013