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  #1  
Old 01-15-2019, 10:01 AM
jmg jmg is offline
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Default need advice on first Go Kart

hi!

My 10yo son has developed an interest in go karts, and I want to build one with him.. I have zero experience with go karts (though I am mechanically inclined, hobby mechanic).

Where's a good place to start? Cost, within reason, isn't a concern.

I'm debating whether to go from scratch with plans, or go with a kit... I'm thinking the kit would probably be a better place to start, and then we can use that as a springboard later on to build more custom karts.

any advice appreciated!
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Old 01-15-2019, 12:33 PM
gokartdaddy gokartdaddy is offline
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a third option is to buy a used frame or old kart that needs restored
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Old 01-15-2019, 01:36 PM
numscul numscul is offline
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I have to agree with gokartdaddy

You might be better off finding something off Craigslist and doing a father son restore.... That way if he decides he wants to try something else it won't be a let down.... Like it would be for me if i built an entire kart from scratch and had one of my boy''s say they didn't like it anymore
And this way you both get to learn and grow at the same time together

I am not sure where you live but if you have trouble finding a kart for the right price i would more than happy to send one out to you for no extra cost of the kart and shipping... I'd just need to know the kind of kart and condition you want it to be in

Also kits need to be welded and there is nothing worse than welding one part slightly out of place making the kart Wapperjawed / caddywomppis.... Trust me .... I know from my disaster with a drift trike frame i built not too long ago and realized i welded the support on the side the engine was supposed to be on

Just my opinion .... We will support you no matter what you decide is the best to do
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Old 01-15-2019, 03:05 PM
jmg jmg is offline
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Thanks!
He really wants to build one, and fail or not, I want to try and support things like this -- anything that gets them away from screens :-)

are there any decent kits out there? I'm looking more for gas than electric, mostly b/c I know gas motors, nothing too fast ..
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Old 01-16-2019, 12:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmg View Post
Thanks!
He really wants to build one, and fail or not, I want to try and support things like this -- anything that gets them away from screens :-)

are there any decent kits out there? I'm looking more for gas than electric, mostly b/c I know gas motors, nothing too fast ..
IIRK, gopowersports had a kit. Maybe have a look at their website

OH, and welcome to the forum!
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Old 01-16-2019, 09:05 AM
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One of our fellow DIYGK members KartFab designs some nice go kart kits.
Check 'em out

https://kartfab.com/
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Old 01-19-2019, 09:11 AM
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Thanks guys.. looking into this deep this weekend...
leaning towards the kit ... TBH, mostly because learning how to weld has been high on my to-do list, and this seems to be a perfect project to that... but also will consider numscul's offer!! May be hitting you up for a fixer-upper, or maybe even just a frame, and we'll add the motor/etc.
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Old 01-19-2019, 09:25 AM
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Check your local craigslist. I found three go karts, one with an engine, for $300.
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Old 01-19-2019, 02:18 PM
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I help a friends son build one. My friend and I went out and purchased one he felt comfortable with on Craigslist... I dismantled the kart and brought over a few pieces ... the son was ecstatic... each week we put a few parts together in some boxes and he brought them home, was telling his son they shipped to his work... I went over and gave him a hand while bull****ting with his dad.. letting him do most of the work.. he has had that kart for close to 6 years and rides it every chance he gets.. we have only changed gearing to adjust speed ..

My friend is a lawyer and not the type to build something.. yet he’d give his son anything in the world. I feel they both learned something and both appreciated the help..
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  #10  
Old 01-21-2019, 01:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by voided View Post
I help a friends son build one. My friend and I went out and purchased one he felt comfortable with on Craigslist... I dismantled the kart and brought over a few pieces ... the son was ecstatic... each week we put a few parts together in some boxes and he brought them home, was telling his son they shipped to his work... I went over and gave him a hand while bull****ting with his dad.. letting him do most of the work.. he has had that kart for close to 6 years and rides it every chance he gets.. we have only changed gearing to adjust speed ..

My friend is a lawyer and not the type to build something.. yet hed give his son anything in the world. I feel they both learned something and both appreciated the help..

This is awesome!! Good plan
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Old 01-21-2019, 10:39 AM
jmg jmg is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by voided View Post
My friend is a lawyer and not the type to build something.. yet hed give his son anything in the world. I feel they both learned something and both appreciated the help..
Hey, not all lawyers are mechanically declined... I'm been practicing for 20 years, and can't wait to get my hands dirty on this !!

---------- Post added at 11:39 AM ---------- Previous post was at 11:34 AM ----------

ok, thanks for all the advice guys.. I looked at the gopowersports kit, and I *really** liked it.. had some very nice lines, classic, classic look, looks like it's well built, and it comes completely welded, all the parts you needed … I almost pulled the trigger on it, but decided to go completely from scratch... got the plans from https://kartfab.com/ , just bought the steel this morning, bought a quality Mig welding setup... and a bunch of other tools... for better or worse, I really wanted this to be something we learned together, and not all me teaching him..So, at the end of the day, whether we have a POS or a killer kart, we'll have spent multiple weekends in the garage cutting, welding and building. can't see how it could go wrong.

Thanks again for all the advice!!
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  #12  
Old 01-22-2019, 10:34 AM
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Sounds great counselor, get after it!
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Old 01-29-2019, 09:40 AM
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:-)
.. though maybe I should have reserved that comment until *after* I put this thing together.
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Old 03-10-2019, 04:19 PM
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got the plans, got the steel, got the frame welded together with my son this weekend... onto the sheet metal next weekend!!!

first time welding ... looks kinda square... :-)

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Old 03-10-2019, 05:24 PM
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This is what mine looked like when it was at about that stage. Except I built mine 100% from scratch, including making the plans. You should have a good experience using those plans. When I made my own plans, I had a few things with steering, axle, etc that werent exactly right so I had to do a lot of little adjustments that took forever. Im sure using those plans will be a lot more headache free than my experience was.
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  #16  
Old 03-18-2019, 12:46 PM
jmg jmg is offline
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only getting to work on this on saturdays and sundays, so fairly slow progress.
Rear Axle and floor pan this weekend -- starting to look like a kart (or a wheelbarrow) :


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  #17  
Old 08-13-2019, 01:34 PM
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finally got everything welded up, painted, assembled and running! using a 212 predator, with some mild mods (intake/exhaust/carb), thing really moves.

used the plans from kartfab.com, really amazing, easy to follow and very complete.





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Old 08-13-2019, 01:53 PM
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Congrats!! Looks great!
How'z the Boy like it?
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Old 08-13-2019, 02:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JTSpeedDemon View Post
Congrats!! Looks great!
How'z the Boy like it?
well, he built the majority of it.. :-)
He loved it, he's a real gearhead.
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  #20  
Old 08-13-2019, 02:08 PM
mckutzy mckutzy is offline
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That is a cool build...
WHat is that covering on the exhaust....???
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