Empowering Student Innovation for a Clean Energy Future

JSS Wheel Work on That

Red Bug Elementary

Wheel work on that solar car

Hello! What you see above is a picture of our car. But before we tell you about this car, we would like to tell you about the people that made this car and how we made it. The people that made this car’s names are Sawyer, Roland, Owen, and Rohan, also known as Wheel Work on That. The car that our team made took 9 days. We hope you pick our car to win.

Meet the Pit Crew

Name: Grade, AgeWhat each team member does:
Roland L.4, 10 Roland helps out the team when they need help to do stuff and helps build the car.
Sawyer G.4, 10Sawyer connects all the parts with hot glue and also thinks of some of the ideas and helps build the car.
Owen F.4, 10Owen helps by finding materials and 3d printing parts for the car.
Rohan P.4, 10Rohan helps by doing the computer work and also helps build the car.

I am speed! – Lightning McQueen

Project Logs

Date:What We Accomplished / Time Spent
2/7/2023What we accomplished: Today our whole team was here and our team contains Rohan, Owen, Sawyer, Roland, and today we sketched our model solar sprint car. And saw some examples of some junior solar sprint cars and took are pictures. And we found the name of the car. We also got a good model in side our head on how we are going to build it/flash.

Time spent: One hour thirty minutes
2/14/2023What we accomplished: We got our materials and discussed our plan. Again the whole team was here including Owen Sawyer Roland and Rohan. We attached our first pair of wheels. We grabbed our materials. We cut our hole in the base of the car. Before we glued the straw we attached a 30 tooth gear to the dowel.

Time spent: One hour thirty minutes
What we accomplished: Today we got our material all the members were here, Rohan, Sawyer, Roland, Owen. We cut a hole in the front of the wood for the big wheel to go through. Next we glued the straw around the metal dowel in it to the wood. We tested our motor on our car. We accidentally made a mistake and cracked the wood but it now looks better. We found  a good spot for the motor and battery pack. We put a paper clip to stop the gear from moving around. We hot glued the motor down. We are thinking about rounding the edges down. We also tested it and… it worked! Great?

Time spent: One hour thirty minutes
What we accomplished: Today all the members were here Owen, Sawyer, Rohan, Roland. Mr. Franz came in today and soldered some alligator clips to some wires. We put some hot glue bumpers to our front wheel. And we taped our battery pack on our car to test. We changed the way it is going and it now goes straight. We cut the front off where it broke and adding two more wheels.

Time spent: One hour thirty minutes
3/21/2023What we accomplished: Everyone was here including Sawyer, Roland, Owen and Rohan. We balanced our car so it can move straight. We also decided where the solar panel should go and installed it. We glued our ball holder down to our car. We tested our car outside… and it WORKED. We are going to do some more testing net time. We attached our wire holder.

Time spent: One hour thirty minutes
4/4/2023What we accomplished: Everyone was here including Sawyer, Roland, Owen and Rohan. We worked so hard but sadly… WAIT WHAT we actually made it to the competition. Then we added rubber bands on the wheels and tested it. We also filed down some wood our gear was hitting, it is now faster. We tested it outside and in needs more weight in the front.

Time spent: One hour thirty minutes
4/11/2023What we accomplished: Everyone was here including Sawyer, Roland, Owen and Rohan. Today our team worked on doing some adjustments on our car, while I worked on this tab. Later today we realized that one of our teammates need to take the car home to do some final touches.

Time spent: One hour thirty minutes
4/15/2023What we accomplished: Everyone was here including Sawyer, Roland, Owen and Rohan. We met at Owen’s house. We cut a new, thicker balsa wood base for our car. We changed our plastic straws for compostable bamboo fiber straws. We changed the gears. We also put some dry graphite lubricant in our axles. We did some tests on our car and it worked much better than before.

Time spent: About 5 hours
4/16/2023What we accomplished: Owen and Rohan worked on the website and posted some pictures and videos, and worked on a script for a video. Owen did some tests and wrote down the results.

Time spent: About 5 hours

Materials Used

Ray Catcher Solar Vehicle Kit$48.00
Balsa Wood$2.39
3D Print Filament$19.99 per spool (only used 1/4 of spool)
Compostable Bamboo Fiber Straws$0.13
Plastic Cup Recycled Material
Popsicle SticksRecycled Material
Rubber Bands$0.69
Hot Glue Sticks$1.27
Graphite Lubricant$2.00


Finished Car Specifications

Car Size: 27cm long, 15.5cm wide, 16.5cm high

Weight: 12.8 ounces

Wheel Sizes: 40mm

Gear Ratio: 10 to 40

Design Drawings

Photos of Building Process

Team hard at work images

Solar Car Test Results

Test #DistanceTimeSpeedEnergy SourceWeatherOutcome
120M12.06 Sec.1.65 Meters per secSolarSlightly CloudySuccess
220M12.37 Sec1.61Meters per secSolarSlightly CloudySuccess
320M7.32 Sec2.73 Meters per secBatterySlightly CloudySuccess
420M8.06 Sec2.48 Meters per secBatterySlightly CloudySuccess
solar car test run

Battery pack test run

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