How big should a mouse trap car be?

The ideal size for an ultra big wheel on a long distance mousetrap racer seams to be somewhere between 10 and 15 inches. And the ideal size for a drive wheel on a speed-trap racer seams to be between 2 and 3 inches but no more than 4 inches.

What wheels should I use for a mousetrap car?

Use thin, light wheels.

  1. Old CDs or DVDs work fairly well for this purpose — they’re large, thin, and extremely light.
  2. If you have access to old vinyl, these also work extremely well, though they may be too heavy for the smallest mousetraps.

What can I use for an axle on a mousetrap car?

A mousetrap car can be made from cardboard or balsa wood with CD’s for wheels and axles of wood or brass tubing. Power to drive the wheels is provided by a mousetrap to which a wand and string is attached to the snap arm.

Why is it better to have bigger wheels on a mousetrap car?

Larger drive wheels will have a greater travel distance per each turn compared to smaller drive wheel. The smaller the diameter of the drive axle in comparison to the diameter of the drive wheel the more force that will be required to accelerate the vehicle but the greater the distance of travel per rotation.

Is it better to have a heavier or lighter mousetrap car?

A heavy mousetrap vehicle will required more pulling force than a lighter mousetrap vehicle in order to achieve an equal acceleration. Lighter mousetrap vehicles will require less energy at the start and can use longer lever arms for more pulling distance.

What is the best way to design a mousetrap car for distance?

Using large rear wheels allow one rotation of the axle to take the car a much further distance. In other words, a given length of the string from the mousetrap moves the car a greater distance. The last note is to place your mousetrap as close to the front of the car as possible.

How do you slow down a mousetrap car?

If instead the mousetrap vehicle is shins it’s wheels when placed on the ground, or traveling two fast causing it to have to much friction, you may have to increase the length of the mouse trap’s lever arm and reposition the mouse trap away from the drive axle in order to slow the vehicle down and decrease the pulling …

Why is my mousetrap car not moving?

If a mousetrap vehicle is struggling to move and/or needs more acceleration then the lever arms can be shortened in order to increase the pulling force. Keep in mind that you will also have to reposition the mouse trap closer to the drive axle or the system will not work as intended.

Can you change the arm length of a mousetrap car?

If you cannot change the lever arm length without a lot of reconstruction of your mousetrap vehicle then try increasing the diameter of the drive axle with tape. The idea here is to wrap tape around the drive axle and change the axle-to-wheel ratio and increase the torque delivered to the drive wheels.

How big should the wheels be on a mousetrap racer?

Wheels and Axles. The ideal size for an ultra big wheel on a long distance mousetrap racer seams to be somewhere between 10 and 15 inches. And the ideal size for a drive wheel on a speed-trap racer seams to be between 2 and 3 inches but no more than 4 inches.

Why does a mouse trap need a drive wheel?

But as the size of the drive wheel increase, more torque is also required to start and keep the wheel turning. At some point a drive wheel can become so large that there is not enough force from the mouse trap to keep the wheel turning.

How is the acceleration of a mousetrap car determined?

It is controlled by the length of the lever and the ratio between wheel diameter and axel diameter. Extremely long distance mousetrap cars are geared to use the smallest amount of energy to go very far with a lot of efficiency. The traction, or the grip of the car’s wheels on the floor, will determine the mousetrap car’s maximum acceleration.