Welcome inventors! This past week was spring break, and to celebrate I bought a box of springs. After brainstorming with my kids, we created our own spring-action race car launchers and gate. Check it out!
Here’s how we did it: First, we gathered all of the same size springs together. You could experiment with different strengths and sizes of springs, but in the spirit of good sportsmanship, we opted to keep them the same for racing. We used these materials and painter’s tape.
To make the launchers, we cut a paint stick into small pieces and sanded the edges. Then we super-glued (and doubled security with hot glue) the springs onto the back of our paint stick pieces. Launchers!
After that, we needed our starting gate. We ran out of hot glue, so we used painter’s tape to frame the sticks into stalls. This wasn’t hard, but the sticks moved quite easily.
The ends of the stalls were floppy, so we secured two screws together that faced opposite directions to the end of the starting gate to keep them equally separate. This is shown in the video at the end. We also taped the outside walls to our table.
Ready, set, launch! For our race, we used more painter’s tape to create a finish line for the winners. We also experimented with some interference for our race cars to navigate. My son made a display for our winning cars.
I think it turned out pretty well! Here’s our big race. Give it a try and see what you think. And whatever you do this spring, don’t forget to enjoy life and invent your story.