Saturday, November 10, 2012

Homemade Toys That Last–Hot Wheels Track

Y’all try not to fall over dead from shock and awe that I’m finally posting another project. It’s been a rough 2 months.

That surgery was a total beating. And it compounded a problem that was caused by another doctor’s error. Still broken. Still trying to figure out how to be fixed. So, in the meantime, our projects have taken a MAJOR stand still. But, I’ll still try to post the little things we manage to get done. Sigh.

Well. Christmas is coming. And … four years later … here we sit. Still in a deep recession. And, four years later, here we sit … with life marching on. And kids getting older. And things still needing to get done.

So, I offer you the first (of a few more to come) idea for inexpensive homemade Christmas gifts:

A Race Car Track

(Think: Disney’s Cars … or Hot Wheels … pick your poison)

disney cars hotwheels race track

I’ll be honest. I actually made this 3 years ago. And it’s been through a total beating of my two kids plus multitudes of other preschoolers. And it has held up unbelievably well. And, it’s still the favorite ‘center’ during preschool: CARS.

Here’s all you’ll need:

1/2 sheet (or whatever size you want) of Masonite in 1/4 inch thickness

Some acrylic paint (black, white, green … yellow, if you’d rather draw a double yellow line or yellow dashed line)

And that’s it! We’re talking … $10, all in. MAX. And this track never has to be put together. It never breaks apart. And it seriously stands the test of time. Trust me.

disney cars hot wheels race track 2

I designed this simple little layout. Used a ruler and a sample curved edge (just cut one out of poster board to trace around so all your curves are uniform).

disney cars hot wheels race track 3

Simply draw whatever layout you want for your track onto the Masonite using a pencil. I suggest painting the black road first … then the grassy area surrounding (if you want yours to be dirt road-like, just use some brown instead of green).

disney cars hot wheels race track 4

Once you’ve got the black road painted, get to work on the green … and leave the white stripes for last.

disney cars hot wheels race track 5

All in, $10 … and maybe a couple hours of time, depending on how meticulous your are with your track drawing/painting.

disney cars hot wheels race track 6

In these pictures, I have the track set up on the table, which is how my kids prefer it.

disney cars hot wheels race track 7

However, when I designed it three years ago, I planned on it being on the floor all the time … look at how little they were!!! And, because I didn’t know how to store it when it wasn’t being used, I just had Superman cut the Masonite to exact measurements so that it could slide right underneath that red couch in the picture below.


It is by far the best $10 I’ve ever spent on the kids. As I type this, the two of them are in the other room play Lightning and Sally … 3 years later. Age almost 4 and 6 yrs … and they’re still playing with it DAILY.

I’ve since sold that red couch … so now, I just slide the track behind the entertainment center in the preschool room (you can see it in the background of the first picture above) whenever it’s not in use.

Happy Christmas present making, y’all!! Wishing times were better and we all had a little more to go around … but … instead, we’ll just have to make the best with what we’ve got!

PS- You should be able to buy those little Hot Wheels cars for pretty cheap. The Disney Cars brand cars are a serious investment. Sigh.


  1. This is awesome! Two quick questions (if you remember!): what type of paint did you use and how long did it take to dry?

  2. Modeling paint with a couple coats of gloss work and it takes about 24 to 48 houts to dry both paint and the gloss is 48 hours all together do a couple a coats on paint and gloss.