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Raingutter Regatta



If you have a number of model-boat enthusiasts in your pack then you will want to plan a Raingutter Regatta. Several classes of boats can be raced as long as they are not too big for your Raingutter course. The Wolf Cub Scout Book has plans for simple boats that could be entered in the Regatta or a Regatta boat kit is available from your local Scout distributor.

Race Course

The course will be determined by the facilities available. A portable wading pool, regular swimming pool, pond, lake or even a good size puddle after a rainstorm can be used for racing the boats.

The most commonly used course and where the race gets its name is the raingutter. The course is made of standard rain gutters 10' long, set in grooves in two saw horses. Allow sufficient space around the course for both participants and spectators. With gutters in place, put a small amount of water into each to make sure they are level. Make any needed adjustments, and when level, fill to about 1/2" from top.

Racing Procedure

The boats are propelled by boys blowing into the sails. Start with the boat's stern touching the end of the raingutter. The starter stands at the opposite end with hands raised. When he drops his hand, the boys begin to blow. Once the race is started, the boys may not touch the boats with their hands. The first boat to reach the end of the gutter is the winner. All races are run on an elimination system, by heats. Timing of boats has no bearing on determining heat or final winners. Winners of the first heats will compete against each other in a second heat, and third, etc. until a final winner is determined.

On courses other than the raingutter course, boats must be held by the pilots at the starting line and released at a pre-determined signal. No pushing is allowed. The boat crossing the finish line first is the winner of the heat. If two or more boats run a foul, there is no contest. The race is re-run.

Building Instructions

  1. Sandpaper the balsa hull to the desired shape, adhering to the specifications listed below. First use a medium-grade sandpaper, then finish off with very fine sandpaper.
  2. Give model two coats of sanding sealer which can be obtained at a craft or hobby store.
  3. Mast can be tapered by using either a hand or electric drill. While you carefully turn the dowel, work a piece of sandpaper back and forth until the desire shape is achieved.
  4. Give entire model two coats of colored lacquer.

Boat Specifications

  • HULL - No longer then 7" or shorter than 6 1/2"
  • MAST - 6 1/2" from deck to top
  • KEEL - Supplied in kit - no alterations allowed
  • RUDDER - Supplied in kit - no alterations allowed
  • SAIL - Supplied in kit - no alterations to size allowed

Material For Double Raceway

  • 2 - 10 foot lengths of 5" diameter half round gutter
  • 4 - End caps for gutter rivets or bolts to end
  • 2 - Trough supports (1" X 4" X 36") cut so gutter will fit
  • 2 - End braces (1" X 4" X 23")
  • 2 - Diagonal braces (1" X 2" X 72")
  • 4 - Legs (2" X 2" X 34")
  • several - 1 1/2" #10 flat-head wood screws for all fastenings

(This will make a frame to support to 10' lengths of rain gutter filled with 8 gallons of water. It can be assembled and disassembled.)


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