Pinewood Derby Axle File
Using the official BSA axles will require a good bit of work. Using our Pinewood Derby Axle File will make the job a lot easier. As we will discuss preparation below. Again, a little bit of prep work will save a lot of time later in the build. In addition to having all 4 axles be straight, you must remove the burs, or crimp marks on the axle shaft prior to polishing. This is quickly done with a pinewood derby file. You will then need to put a high polish on the axle shafts and inside the axle head. All of this will help reduce friction and make your car faster.
By far the best pinewood file for the job. This file is perfect to remove the burrs and shape your axle head. 5 1/2 inches in length. With the tapered end, you can profile the head of your axle to the perfect angle. Fine checkering for minimal material removal. Only one cutting side, Rest sides are safe meaning they do not cut. No accidental material removal while shaping the head of your axle.
After straightening the axles, you will wet finish your axle to the level of polish determined by your lube. This is a great video on how to work axles if you are a DIY type guy. I would highly suggest picking up additional factory axles to experiment with. Things can go wrong quickly working with a file.
Pinewood Axle file for Prep Preparation How To
- Use light file work to remove the crimps and gussets. Use a single cutting-edge file such as a Barrette file with a FINE / SUPER FINE cross section. Light file work ensures greatest axle diameter. Smaller diameters will cause wobble issues.
- Taper the underside of the axle head if allowed by rules with file. This will ensure minimal axle contact with the outer wheel hub.
- Wet Sand axle from 400-3000 grit sand paper, then a final polish with a diamond paste. Pay close attention when polishing so that you do not undersize the diameter of your axle. 30 seconds per grit is all that is needed.
- Polish levels: 3000 grit for graphite, 100K for oil is the current racing practices.
- Never try to bend axles while in the pine block. YOU WILL BREAK the wood.
- If you can groove the derby axles with file, a good set of grooved axles always gives an advantage.
- If you can use aftermarket axles, I highly suggest looking at machined over-sized grooved axles for minimal wobble.
- Make sure to inspect your final axle polishing for imperfections.
Watch how we polish our axles. The ONLY cnc axle polishing machine in the industry.