NC Science Olympiad
2017 Scrambler
Division: B - Middle School
NC Essential Standards Alignment: Science Application and Technology
Event Scoresheet:

Scrambler Scoresheet

Track Layout: 2017 Scrambler Track Layout
National Event Page: Scrambler
Required Materials: Vehicle, falling mass

(NC Only) 2.i. If the scrambler design has a separate launcher, parts in contact with the floor must have a protective covering such as felt, cork, foam, etc. to ensure damage to the floor does not occur. If a falling mass is used, adequate padding must be used to prevent damage to the floor. Failure to adhere to this requirement is grounds for immediate removal and disqualification from the event. (9/9/16)

(NC Only) 3.c. The terminal barriers used in NC at many regional tournaments and States will only be 18 cm high. This is still well enough above the maximum allowed egg height (~12cm, see rule 2.e.) that it will not cause problems for device testing.

This is a building event.  Teams will build ahead of time a mechanical vehicle capable of traveling down a straight, level track (whose distance will not be known until the time of the competition) while carrying an egg mounted to the front. The vehicle must be powered by the energy from a falling mass. A braking mechanism must self-activate to stop the device before it reaches a barrier at the end of the track.  Teams will be allowed 8 minutes to attempt 2 runs. THIS IS AN IMPOUND EVENT.

Teams MUST bring their device and all tools required to calibrate/operate the device.

Event Leaders will provide all tools necessary to impound/measure the devices, materials required to test the devices, eggs, tape for eggs, a proper track setup including terminal barrier, and the scoresheet.

Teams are scored by the single run (out of 2 possible) that gives them the best overall score. Low score wins. The Official Scoresheet with more detailed information is available at the top of this page.

Common Mistakes:

  • - RAMPS ARE NOT ALLOWED. The rules state that the vehicle must start with all wheels on the ground, and that the mass of the vehicle must not be included as part of the falling mass. Don't show up with a ramp design from years past, you will receive multiple construction violations for doing so.
  • - Many teams do not have a proper backstop/egg platform in any given year. This (or any construction violation) adds a significant penalty. This is easily avoidable just by following the parameters given in the rules.
  • - Teams are allowed 2 runs only if the egg is not broken on the first run. Play it safe on the first run to ensure a score, then on the 2nd run go for it.


  • Be extremely careful to follow all building requirements! Make sure you meet size/weight/material requirements when building. This is something that is easy to do ahead of time, yet every year there are multiple violations.

Event Resources:
2014 Institute Presentation (2015 rules)
2007 Coaches Institute Presentation (2008 rules)
2007 State Tournament Scrambler Results

Pictures scrambler scrambler


This is the 2017 track explanation, everyone should take time to watch this video!




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