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Old 08-10-2011, 07:06 AM
Britcom61 Britcom61 is offline
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Default Predator 420cc w/electric start

Hi, does anyone have experience with this Predator 420 from Harbor Freight, says it has electric start, that would be a plus for me. I am looking to replace my Tecumseh 6hp, this motor is about twice the displacement so I would definitely get the extra power I'm looking for. I ride mainly over rough terrain, no smooth tracks or paved roads. I really don't want to do much fabrication, just a straight bolt on replacement if possible, hope someone else on here has tried this motor as there are no user reviews on the HF site yet.
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Old 08-10-2011, 07:38 AM
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That engine is going to have a larger mounting foot print, you'll have to move your mount to the right, and/or weld in a larger mount plate.
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Old 08-10-2011, 08:11 AM
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That 420 engine is also going to have a 1" diameter output shaft, chances are your Tecumseh 6hp has a smaller 3/4" output shaft so you'd probably need to buy a new clutch or T/C that fits and can handle the extra power.
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Old 08-10-2011, 08:14 AM
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If you've got the cash for the engine and clutch go for it!
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Old 08-10-2011, 10:51 AM
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Got the cash for the engine, don't known what type of clutch to use though, my setup now has a comet clutch with belt drive to the small sproket that drives the rear axle. Any ideas about the best clutch setup would be appreciated, thanks.
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Old 08-10-2011, 11:18 AM
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What you currently have is a torque converter or cvt transmission. If you'll be using a 420cc engine you'll need a 40 series comet torque converter (roughly $350). Also you'll need to setup a jack shaft for the 40 series tc. The tc will look like this, http://www.gokartsupply.com/4044seri.htm
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Old 08-10-2011, 03:14 PM
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I put that very engine on my kart. 420cc Predator with electric start. My kart is a two seater thunderkart, live axle. As stated, the engine base does have a larger foot print. For me this wasn't too much of a problem. I have a box-frame that the jackshaft runs through, and the engine mounts on top of that box. Mine is big enough that all I had to do was drill new holes.

"Gokarts4Life" is spot on about the torque converter. Follow that link and that is the exact torque converter that I now use. You will need a jack shaft for this set up. Also don't forget that the battery does not come with the engine. That is another ~$40.

The engine is already set up with a clamp for a throttle cable so it makes that connection very easy. You will have to add a spring though for throttle return. I also turned down the idle. You will need to check for clearance as well. This motor is BIG. My frame used to have a 5hp Briggs & Strat, this 420 takes up a lot more space than that little 5hp.

I also very easily moved the keyed ignition to the steering column support. A kill switch still might be a safer option, but at least I can still turn off the engine from the driver's seat.

Please let me know if you have any specific questions or would like pictures of specific areas on the engine.

I did take a very short test drive yesterday before pulling the rims off the kart; New tires are my next step; here is my kart:Click image for larger version

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Old 08-16-2011, 07:50 AM
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Default Your Predator install

I would be interested in finding out what the measurements are for the mounting holes, just to see if I can fit this motor on the mounting plate without adding a larger one. I also checked out the link for the TC but it said "out of stock, do not order". Any photos you can post of your setup would really help. How do you like the ride now you have that much more power? Thanks for your input, Lee.
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Old 08-16-2011, 09:50 AM
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I will take some pictures of my set up tonight after work. Here is a link to the engine's manual: http://manuals.harborfreight.com/man...8999/68306.pdf
On page 28 of that manual are the dimensions for the mounting holes. It's the lower picture on that page.

I just got new tires put on this past Friday and haven't had a chance to ride it yet. But the few test drives I did take previously were wonderful. With all the power and torque of this motor there is no bogging down in thick tall grass, no trouble going up inclines, even from a dead stop. I was tired of the smaller motors not having enough power for off road use (and a heavy driver ); it's very frustrating to have the gas pedal all the way down and the cart not move! That's why I went with the 420.

I too see that gokartsupply is out of stock, you might just give them a call and see when they'll get more. Also try Northern Tool; in mid July they started carrying a series 40 torque converter package. I did not find it on their website but doing a live chat with a salesman he said it was still available.

I'll take a few wide shots of my set up, but as I said, if you need anything specific after that just let me know.
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Old 08-16-2011, 08:38 PM
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Looking forward to some photos Regul8R, Im not sure about the jack shaft that was mentioned earlier by Gokarts4Life-11! Does that mean I cant use the one thats on there at the moment? What did you do about that problem? I have become frustrated when Im trying to start out on an incline, the 6hp just doesnt seem to have to power and just slips the belt, I think I need more HP to move my 190lbs, also all my Karting is off road, no flat fields or blacktops for me. I dont want to spend a fortune though, just want a setup very close to what you already have.
I have included a photo of the setup I have now.
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Comet TC 1.jpg  
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Old 08-17-2011, 08:29 AM
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Ok as promised, here are a few pictures of my set up of the 420cc motor on my kart. Feel free to ask questions and/ or request more specific close up pictures.
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Old 09-05-2011, 05:51 PM
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i got that same engine and i was wondering how you setup your throttle cable?
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Old 09-06-2011, 03:51 AM
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You say you have trouble on an incline- what is your gear ratio and tire size? $20 on a new sprocket may be all you need.
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Old 09-06-2011, 01:11 PM
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With a torque converter, you issue may just be the low oil sensor causing the engine to cut out.
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Old 09-12-2011, 11:37 AM
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It turned out that the wrong belt was installed, then the governor would slow me dow every time I got near top speed. I ended up loosening the governor arm, drilling a 1/8" hole through the shaft and installing a washer and split pin so the arm would not slide off. Hence I disconnected the governor and now the kart runs great. I have sloping fiends with many bumps and holes so don't really run much faster than the engine would normally handle. I know not to over review the motor and take my chances without a governor taking the power away.
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Old 09-13-2011, 12:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Regul8R View Post
I put that very engine on my kart. 420cc Predator with electric start. My kart is a two seater thunderkart, live axle. As stated, the engine base does have a larger foot print. For me this wasn't too much of a problem. I have a box-frame that the jackshaft runs through, and the engine mounts on top of that box. Mine is big enough that all I had to do was drill new holes.

"Gokarts4Life" is spot on about the torque converter. Follow that link and that is the exact torque converter that I now use. You will need a jack shaft for this set up. Also don't forget that the battery does not come with the engine. That is another ~$40.

The engine is already set up with a clamp for a throttle cable so it makes that connection very easy. You will have to add a spring though for throttle return. I also turned down the idle. You will need to check for clearance as well. This motor is BIG. My frame used to have a 5hp Briggs & Strat, this 420 takes up a lot more space than that little 5hp.

I also very easily moved the keyed ignition to the steering column support. A kill switch still might be a safer option, but at least I can still turn off the engine from the driver's seat.

Please let me know if you have any specific questions or would like pictures of specific areas on the engine.

I did take a very short test drive yesterday before pulling the rims off the kart; New tires are my next step; here is my kart:Attachment 15304
I am a new member and this would be my first message sent. I hope I'm doing this right. After seeing a picture of your kart, it reminds me a lot of mine, I have a Murray. I know very little about engines. But I did buy a "Predator" 212cc horz. shaft engine that I recently put on there. I can't see a good way to attach the throttle cable to the engine? I know where the throttle is on the engine but I have no clue about attaching the cable to it and dealing with the choke. If you could send me some good advice I would much appreciate it..
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Old 09-13-2011, 12:21 AM
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Wow, I just looked at all your pics of your kart, very cool... Is there any web sites that will teach me the basics about small engine repair or fabricating? Like "small engine 101" or "learn about small engines for dumb asses" (like myself) I'm probably getting in over my head and moving too fast, but I can learn real quick, cuz I've always been interested in motors, but nobody would really take the time for me and show me. It blows my mind the knowledge, that you and other people can just break things down for others who are in need for help. Again, any help is better than no help.
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Old 09-14-2011, 10:59 PM
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Rollin 7,

If you have never worked on an engine I recommend the first place you look at is How Stuff Works. Type in google, "How does a four stroke engine work?" And How Stuff Works, will have a very good demonstration of how it really works, and also YouTube is a good source for this as well.

Then you will need to branch off to carburetors etc.

It takes a very long time to learn the fine details of things, but you will learn as you go don't worry. It's fun too!
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Old 02-23-2012, 11:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Regul8R View Post
Ok as promised, here are a few pictures of my set up of the 420cc motor on my kart. Feel free to ask questions and/ or request more specific close up pictures.
Hey Regul8R,

Is that the jackshaft kit from BMI Kart, or did you manufacture your own? Also, do you recall what belt you ended up getting?

Thanks a bunch for posting these pics. I've no experience working with a TC and this clarified a lot.
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Old 02-24-2012, 12:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wlowman View Post
Hey Regul8R,

Is that the jackshaft kit from BMI Kart, or did you manufacture your own? Also, do you recall what belt you ended up getting?

Thanks a bunch for posting these pics. I've no experience working with a TC and this clarified a lot.
Regul8r has not been active since June last year. Maybe send him a PM and he might reply
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