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This DIY Rubber Band Racer is a great project to do with your kids. The best part…you can make it with items found around the home. Here are the items needed and the step-by-step directions for making a DIY Rubber Band Racer.
- 2 straws (this will be the frame of the car)
- 4 toothpicks (or wooden skewers)
- 4 container lids (from a milk container or prescription caps)
- Rubber band (or Rainbow Loom Bands-great way to use the millions that are just lying around)
- Hot glue gun (I used a low temp since our 6 year old was helping)
- Drill (with small drill bits)
First, I used a ruler to figure out where I wanted the holes to go on my straws, because this is where the toothpicks were going to go (see picture below).
Each straw has four holes. Two holes are drilled at each end of the straw.
On each side, I drilled the first hole 1/2 inch in from the end and the second hole one inch from the end. I repeated on the opposite side of the straw. I then repeated it on the second straw. (See picture below)
The first line, 1/2 inch back, will be used for your wheel axels. These holes should be made a little larger and will allow your wheels to move freely.
The second set of holes, 1 inch back, will be used for the structure supports. These holes should be a bit smaller and the toothpick should fit sung into each straw.
- Once you have all the holes made in your straws you can move to the assembly of your car frame.
- You will place a toothpick through each structure hole (1 inch marked hole). I recommend to push though so the pointed tips are sticking out on both sides.
- Next, use your hot glue gun and glue the took picks to the straws. I would just glue the inside portion first and let it dry.
- Once dry, cut the pointed ends off your tooth picks and place a little glue on the out side section of the straw.
Now that you have the structure built, you can move to the wheels. Most of the caps that you will find have a mark in the center. This is a great and perfect place to drill the hole to make the axels for your cars.
You will want to drill the hole in the center of each lid just like you did for he structure holes, just large enough for the toothpick to fit snug into.
On one of the toothpicks, drill a very small hole in the center. Once the hole is drilled, you will place the toothpick ends (the point) that you cut off to make a peg (see picture below).
The peg will help when winding up the car to make it go. This toothpick will be your rear axel. Make sure to attach the larger caps to this one if using different sizes for the wheels.
- Now you are ready to assemble.
- You can start with the rear axel.
- Place the tooth pick in each hole, and attach each wheel.
- Note: At this point, you will want your peg to be in right in the center.
- Once the toothpick in in place you can attach each wheel and glue them into place.
- Repeat this step for the front axel.
- Note: you may want to add some more glue to the caps on the rear axel to give it some added weight. This will keep the car tires from just spinning when the car is ready. Another tip would be to use a little Playdough to pack in the caps.
Now that your car is built… Attach the rubber band to the front structure support. I personally did not have any rubber bands, so my son made me a quick one out of his Rainbow Loom bands.
Once attached, place the opposite side on the rear axel peg and slowly wind up the tires to test it out.
Now it is time to let your kids have some fun.
They will love playing with their new car and love the fact that they made it for YOU!
Hint: Be careful if you make it while their friends are around… they will start placing orders!
check out our video & watch it go!!