News & Views

EWI at the Pinewood Derby race – on Saturday

By Maggie Perez on Thursday, April 5th, 2012


EWI's Pinewood Derby cars

On Saturday March 31st a group of EWI staff competed in the pinewood derby race, which was put together by the Columbus Dispatch.  Our competitors were Battelle’s armored car division, OSU-CAR and a real Cub Scout.  The event was held by Battelle in their old building.

Our team consisted of:

Ed Herderick, Applications Engineer – Structural Integrity

Sean Gleeson, Project Engineer – Non Destructive Evaluation

Mary Lorenz, Human Resource Specialist – Human Resources

Maggie Perez, Marketing & Sales Coordinator – Corporate Communications

Blake McAllister, Applications Engineer – Lasers

Jeff Root, Applications Engineer – Design, Controls & Automation

Steve Massey, Engineering Manager– Arc Welding

Michelle Laverty, I.P. Manager – Technology & Innovation

There were two sets of races; one had to conform to the Official Cub Scout rules and the other one was a cheater class car. Our team chose to build four different pinewood derby cars. From those four, two were selected for the actual competition.  Our engineers wanted to make it as fun as possible by building the most radical cars they could dream up while holding to the design constraints of speed, and the rules of the pinewood derby.  The four cars built were:

EWI's pinewood cars - the little red corvette & The Wedge


EWI's cheater cars the Re-Entry Vehicle & the Hot Dog of Doom

  • Hypersonic re-entry Vehicle – A two stage car that launches another car.
  • Hot Dog of Doom – Built using a material that is twice as heavy as lead per unit volume.
  • Little Red Corvette – Built using 64 thin layers of custom laser cut pine.
  • The Wedge – A classic design built “just in case”.

Our engineers definitely created the coolest ‘outside the box’ concept cars. EWI even managed to beat Battelle in the standard class.  OSU-CAR won first place. The Cub Scout finished second, EWI came in third, and Battelle won fourth place.  It was no secret that EWI was in the house and we brought our A game.  Sean Gleeson, Project Engineer, even wore his Magic Thinking Hat….why you ask?  It was a scheme to intimidate the competition and I think it worked, as everyone in the building knew when we arrived.

Sean Gleeson, Project Engineer & Ed Herderick, Applications Engineer - interviewed by the Columbus Dispatch



Ed Herderick, Jeff Root, & Blake McAllister - go over last minute details

Stay tuned for more details on Saturday’s pinewood derby race.  The event is scheduled to appear in the Columbus Dispatch on Sunday, April 8th.  Also, there was a camera crew from the Discovery Channel Canada at the event, so stay tuned for that as well.

To view more pictures of this event, please visit our Facebook page.

My name is Maggie Perez and I am in the Marketing & Sales department. If you have any questions about this blog or the event, please feel free to contact me at 614.688.5062 or by email at mperez@ewi.org.

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