This tutorial will clearly explain how to create a rocket powered hotwheel, as well as the track required for it to run on. Within this project, it is important to determine the car's velocity
when letting it run on a track with a designated distance
. If all of the instructions are properly followed, the result will be very exciting, as well as a good learning experience.
Step 1: Materials
The materials that you require for this project is...
A toy car (i,.e. Hotwheels, Matchbox)
Rocket engine, igniter
12 gauge wire
Hollow pen tubes
hot glue gun and glue,
zip ties tape
16 ft 2x4 piece of wood
2 metal L brackets with holes (drilled)
Vernier Photogates with a Computer
Step 2: Step 1: Finding a Car
Find a Hotwheel/toy car. It is recommended that you find one that goes in a straight line when you push it. The weight of the car may effect the car, as it contributes the factor of inertia. Also, a car that has some space between the ground and the base of your car works best, so you may have room for a zip tie, or tape in order to keep it stable.
Step 3: Step 2: Finding Appropriate Model Rocket Engine
The next step is choosing a rocket engine. An "A"or "B" type engine should be a sufficient, but if you want to test your car at a higher accelerationand speed, you can go for the "C" type engine, which is very powerful. Be aware that the force of these engines is very strong, and may cause injury if not used properly. The average speed of our tests were around 20 to 40 meters per second with a "C" model engine.
Step 4: Step 3: Finding a Pen Tube/Straw
As listed in the material section, it is necessary to find at least 2 hollow pen tubes, or straw. With a few pen tubes or straws, you need to attach them to the sides or top of your car, to ensure that the car will stay on the track when it is run through the wires. It is recommended that you use pen tubes rather than straws, the force of the rocket engine may cut through the straw.
Step 5: Step 4: Attaching the Rocket Engine to Your Car
Properly attaching the rocket engine to your car is very important. Hot glue alone is not strong enough to hold the car and the rocket engine together, and the heat from the engine will most likely melt it off. Therefore, you will need some zip ties to hold the car and rocket together, and if desired, electrical tape as well.
Step 6: Step 5: the Track
For the track, it is best to use a long plank of wood as shown in the picture. Place two L brackets at each of the track and drill them into place. With 2 steel or 12 gauge aluminum wires, you must attach them to each ends of the track, parallel to each other. Secure the wire, and fit the wires through the pen tube/straw holes that are attached to your car. Ensure that the wire is firm and tight so that rolling friction may play a smaller role in your test.
Step 7: Step 7: Finishing Up
Your car should be completely assembled, and ready to race. Now you must place the fuse inside of the rocket, and hold it with butt plug at the end of the rocket. Connect a positive/negative wire to the car, and whenever you are ready, touch the opposite side of the wire to the 12V battery; this will set the rocket off.
Step 8: Conclusion
Congratulations! After completing all of these steps, you should have resulted in a successful run with your new rocket engine powered car. Record your data with the vernier photo gates, and make sure they are working properly by running your hands through the sensors. Unfortunately, my own test came out to be a failure; there were technical difficulties with the vernier photo gates. Simply avoid this mistake, and you have successfully tested a rocket powered hotwheel.