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Budmaniak

Blastcars and Model Building

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Hello. New the forum. I'm hoping someone can help me figure out if BSA Blastcars can really be used as a model project for the Model Design and Building merit badge. This is what the description for the BSA Blastcar says at the Scoutshop and everywhere else on the internet: https://www.scoutshop.org/blastcar-racer-car-kit-613152.html

  • "This activity can be used toward requirements for Model Design & Building, Woodworking and Wood Carving merit badges."

Sounds great, but then when you look at the requirements for the Model Design and Building merit badge I see that requirement #4e says 

  • "Build a model of an actual passenger-carrying vehicle to a scale of 1" = 1'0" or ½" = 1'0" (10:1 or 25:1 Metric)."

But if you look at requirement #3 it says:

  • "select a subject from requirement 4 for your model project (no kits). Prepare the necessary plans to the proper scale..."

So, essentially the requirement is specifically saying you cannot use a kit. Isn't the BSA Blastcar, in fact, a kit? Or is it not considered a kit because it's just a block of wood like the Pinewood Derby car, even though it comes with wheels and axels?  https://meritbadge.org/wiki/index.php/Model_Design_and_Building

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Questions like this are the purview of local councils.

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Excellent question.  Recommend you cut and paste your posting and email to merit.badge@scouting.org and advancement.team@scouting.org to get a response.  I believe that the scout store is using the MB as a marketing tool.   We have used these at a troop meeting for fun when the webelos 2 visited.

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Hey there, I received back some information that I suppose helps clear this up. First, I did hear back from my council on this and they basically said that if it's an official BSA "kit" then it can be used for the requirement it says it is allowed to be used for. However, that was not as cut and dry as what the National Merit Badge Subcommittee wrote back:

Quote

 

Dear Mr. Curtis,
 
I am the volunteer chair of the National Merit Badge Subcommittee.  Your email dated July 28, 2019 has been forwarded to me for review.  
 
First, thank you for your service as a merit badge and NOVA counselor. Also, we are grateful that you have brought this issue to our attention.  Feedback such as this helps us tremendously.  
 
Regarding Requirement 3 of Model Design and Building, our intent is that a kit, such as the Blastcar Racer kit, may not be used to satisfy this merit badge.  We do not believe the use of a kit would provide the level of challenge and interest needed for the merit badge.  Further, with respect to the representations in the Blastcar Racer kit, we understand the confusion this causes.   However, we hasten to add that the makers of that kit are not responsible for the contents and requirements in this merit badge. Accordingly, despite any language in the kit to the contrary, the Scout must comply with the current merit badge requirements, including Requirement 3.  
 
Again, we thank you for your question and very much appreciate you raising this issue for us.
 
Jeff Bostwick

 

 

So, the official word on this says that merit badge requirements need to be followed as they are written. If it says "no kits" then that means no kits.

Hope this is helpful. 

  • Upvote 1

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That is the response we should all have expected from the merit badge folks.  The "requirements cannot be added to or subtracted from " statement is in my earlier reference book (1911).

my experience is that councils have no clue on this.  BSA should have pulled all these blast cars and taken the wording off them.

  • Upvote 2

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I wonder if the intent with the Blastcars was to provide a source of parts for someone building their own model: i.e. axles, wheels, eyelets, etc...   It might be an easier source of parts if the Scout in question doesn't have access to a fully stocked hobby shop where they could get what they need for their own model.

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