Saturday, 03 March 2012

Rules for future competitions may be different. Await announcement before construction!


03 March 2012, check-in beginning at 10:30 am
Scarborough Civic Centre, Council Chambers

To Register for BBC 2012 please visit
enter required fields and click submit once only.

Registration closing February 17, 2012 Extended to Feb 24, 2012

Also please bring some spare popsicle sticks, glue, construction paper for any last minute modifications, repairs to bridge and containers of used glue to assist in judging process.

  1.   Objectives

    1. Competitors will build a bridge using ONLY:
      1. Popsicle sticks
      2. White School Glue
      3. Construction paper

    2. Your bridge will be evaluated by the following measures:
      1. Quantitative: Load tested performance
      2. Qualitative: Other qualities including your design process

    3. There are two grade divisions
      1. Grades 3 to 6
      2. Grades 7 and 8

    4. A team may consist of one, two, or three students.

    • Each team will be required to pay an entry fee of $6.00 per team payable by cash or check at the time of 'Bridge' registration on the competition day.


    1. The main structure of the bridge must be constructed only of wooden Popsicle sticks and white glue.
    Construction paper is only to be used for the deck of the bridge, which can be cut to fit the design of the bridge.

    1. The only construction materials allowed are:
    2. Regular white all-purpose glue
    3. Standard wooden Popsicle sticks
    4. Construction paper
  2. NOTE: Refer to Picture 1 for an example picture of white glue and Popsicle sticks

    Your bridge MUST conform to following specifications:

    See Figure 1 and Figure 2


    L is the overall length of the bridge – Minimum 550 mm and Maximum 700 mm. A is the portion that may be below the supports and should be less than 500 mm. (Exceeding 500 mm will make the bridge to rest on this portion below the main bridge structure and will not rest properly for testing. So keep this dimension less than 500 mm.

  1. The total weight must not exceed as follows:

    Senior Category -250 grams.

    Junior Category - 300 grams

  2. Your bridge must rest steadily on two supports of the testing machine. The clear distance between these two supports is 500 mm.
  3. Design your bridge long enough not to slip or fall through this span under load. Remember that materials bend when loaded (we suggest a minimum bridge length of 550 mm).
  4. The travelled portion of your bridge must be at least 60 mm wide, capable of transporting two matchbox cars (each car’s dimensions are approximately 30 mm wide x 70 mm long x 30 mm high). Both cars must be able to roll smoothly across the bridge deck in both directions simultaneously.
  5. The maximum length of the bridge must be less than 700 mm.
  6. The maximum width of your bridge must be less than 150 mm.
  7. Your bridge structure may project up to 200 mm above the top of the supports.
  8. Your bridge structure may project up to 50 mm below the top of the supports. dim2
  9. Provision must be made to allow the loading platform with bolting attachment (132 mm long x 50 mm wide x 12 mm high) to be positioned at the centre of bridge span at the competition site.
    At the centre of the bridge, a vertical clear space 15 mm in diameter free of sticks must be maintained for the bolt, nut and washer to apply a test load. Look at photographs in
    Picture 2 of the bridge testing machine and Picture 3 for the loading platform
  10. The paper deck should be continuous. If needed, a hole for the loading platform bolt will be drilled at the competition site.
  1. Obtain the Parental Permission Form from our website and complete this form for each competitor.
  2. Every competitor must submit a signed Parental Permission Form during the check-in registration on the day of the competition.
  3. A parent or teacher must confirm that your bridge has been tested and can support at least a 4kg weight.
  4. A parent or teacher must certify that the bridges presented consist substantially of the work done by the students in the registered team.
  5. Competitors will not be allowed to participate without this form completed by a parent or legal guardian
  6. Duly filled and signed Parental Permission form and fee of $6 to be presented at the Registration Desk.

Be creative and have fun!!
We look forward to seeing you and your amazing bridges.

Important Information

Visit our website often for the latest information on this event:

Picture 1:White glue and a packet of 200 Popsicle sticks

These are available at Dollarama or similar dollar stores for $1.00 + tax each.
The coloured paper (board) for the deck are sold two for $1.00

For guidance, the size of each stick is 115 mm long x 10 mm wide x 2 mm thick. 100 sticks weigh about 140 grams.
Remember that Popsicle sticks vary in density. Glue and paper add significant weight. Ensure that your completed bridge is not overweight.

NOTE: Glues such as "Super Glue", "UHU", "Araldite", "Gorilla Glue" etc. etc. are unacceptable and use of such will disqualify the bridge

Click above picture to enlarge.

Picture 2: A bridge on the Bridge Testing Machine

Take careful note of the supports that your bridge must rest upon. The clear distance between these two supports will be set to 500 mm within a tolerance of ± 1mm.
The load is applied at the centre of your bridge with a bolt that pulls from below.
Your design must allow space for this bolt to pass through the bottom of your bridge.
Bridge Testing Machine
Click above picture to enlarge.

Pictue 3: Loading Platform attached to a bridge

The bolt that applies the load goes through the loading platform.
A washer and nut secures it.
The loading platform distributes the load on your bridge.

bottom view
Loading platform
Click above picture to enlarge.
bridge on supports
BBC machine