How to Build and Design Your Own Kart

In 1956, Art Ingels designed the first kart and since its introduction, it has technically evolved into a finely tuned machine. Karting is the easiest and most cost-effective method to enjoy oval track racing for new motorsports enthusiasts. These little machines are packed with power and often are a launching pad for youngsters who continue with a career in professional motorsports. Kart racing is done on kart tracks or oval tracks around the world and is usually about a half mile long.

What is a Kart?

The kart is designed with a tube frame were a one-piece axle is mounted along with other components like the hubs, tires, seat, steering box, engine, fuel tank, drive sprocket, and every fast kart needs a good set of brakes. A centrifugal clutch is used for most karts; however, some karts called “shifter karts” have gearboxes. The bodywork can vary with sprint karts using minimal bumpers to super-karts having full cover bodywork.

Suspension System

The kart doesn’t use a suspension system or a differential because the design of the kart does not need them. The tube frame allows for flexibility and the tires absorb the bumps bypassing the need for a suspension system. The kart also uses a special geometry for the front end that allows the inside rear wheel to raise slightly when cornering. This also eliminates the need for the rear wheels to spin at different speeds. Working and servicing karts is easy when you use Streeter Super Stands. They can hold up to 300 pounds while providing a comfortable working height.

Build Your Own Kart

There are two methods for building a new kart. If you are interested in building a custom-built kart, scratch building is the way to go. If you are looking for an easy assembly, pre-fabricated karts chassis are available with separate components for purchase and assembly. Scratch building a new design requires knowledge in the powertrain, chassis, handling, and overall safety design. A lot of novice beginners underestimate the skills needed to build a custom kart, and a suspension less motor kart is no exception. Understanding how the kart tricycles around corners with the powertrain, and how the tires absorb bumps will make your design work right the first time.

Construction Challenges

In order to get the front wheel geometry correct, use a jig to secure the pieces to braze or weld the correct angles. Using a solid workbench that is flat and level will help when you’re fabricating components. The tools required to fabricate a tube chassis can add a considerable expense to your project. If you do not have the equipment needed like a welder, renting or borrowing the equipment is a viable option.

Cost of Building a Kart

Most components are available online and are less expensive than other types of racing machines. The total amount really depends on the price and quality of individual components.

Racing Cost

Racing a kart is an affordable hobby with the greatest expense coming in engine repairs and tires.

Where to Start?

You can start by going to a qualified online motor kart supplier who has all of the components to build a kart with a solid reputation in the industry and is a trusted source for kart enthusiasts worldwide.