durability in go-karts

Darian1m

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Hey everyone. So I am pretty new to the go-kart world. I got my Manco 812 working and running pretty good. But every time I go out seems like something breaks. A tie rod end one day, a wheel bearing the next, carburetor gums up and boggs engine down, steering wheel breaks off, chain broke the other day. The list just seems to go on and on.

Is this typical for go-karts in general? Should you just assume it will break during an off road ride and get used to it? Thats the go-kart life?
 

Darian1m

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I think the Kart is from the early 2000s. I am not sure about the parts but they seem to be original parts to the go-kart. It did spend a few years outside under a tarp in new England snowy and wet weather. Every time something breaks I replace it with a higher rated part. If a bolt breaks, I put a grade 8 in its place, an OEM tie rod end breaks, I replaced them with higher grade Heim joints etc...

The orgignal #420 chain was no good and had to go. I replaced it with a JT Sprokects 420HDR chain. It seems to be used on dirt bikes so I assumed it would be tough enough.

I guess my overall questions is if this is normal. Parts break and break often. Or is this not the typical experince?
 

PanelDeland

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20 year old cart. Neglected and then resurrected. It's going to have some issues. Much of what you mentioned seems normal enough. Any machinery that you put back into service is going to have these type problems but usually once you get them taken care of, reliability returns within the limits of how much you maintain it and how much abuse you put it thru.
 

Darian1m

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Thanks, as I replace parts hoping the reliability increases. I am going to take it out today to do some off-roading.

the belt is screeching at low RPMs right before it really engages. Going to search the topics.

Here is a pic. I really like this thing.
 

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anickode

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It really depends a lot on how you're driving it too. If you're out in the woods running full speed and plowing over logs and rocks and whatnot, to the point you can barely stay on the darn thing, stuff is going to break. If you're jumping it, stuff is going to break.

It's a solid frame no-suspension kart... Really just a yard kart with a roll bar. It's not a dune buggy or an ATV. Just keep that in mind.
 

ol'joe

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When you start replacing parts for the second and third times it will be time to start beefing up the systems that are not holding up to your abuse....Joe
 

NightHawkJ30

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Hey everyone. So I am pretty new to the go-kart world. I got my Manco 812 working and running pretty good. But every time I go out seems like something breaks. A tie rod end one day, a wheel bearing the next, carburetor gums up and boggs engine down, steering wheel breaks off, chain broke the other day. The list just seems to go on and on.

Is this typical for go-karts in general? Should you just assume it will break during an off road ride and get used to it? Thats the go-kart life?
I have mine 1998 Manco terminator since then only things i replaced over it 23 years. Is brake band and drum (didn’t really need it) and chain and sprocket. So you shouldn’t be having to much problems. With it
 

NightHawkJ30

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It really depends a lot on how you're driving it too. If you're out in the woods running full speed and plowing over logs and rocks and whatnot, to the point you can barely stay on the darn thing, stuff is going to break. If you're jumping it, stuff is going to break.

It's a solid frame no-suspension kart... Really just a yard kart with a roll bar. It's not a dune buggy or an ATV. Just keep that in mind.
Exactly i heard non Suspension Karts bend a break frames and axles. Later models like the 415B I believe had the front spindles with a spring on it to help reduce stress on frame. But these Light Offroad Vehicles are made for level light Trails riding.
 

Karttekk

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They're considered "yard" or "fun" karts, average speed 25 MPH or so, little suspension, basic machines. You can't expect something that has sat under a tarp to be robust. Welds need checked, steering components need freed up or replaced, brakes updated. Sounds like you're better off with a Polaris/Hammerhead buggy style machine. Any older karts I pick up get totally disassembled and gone over before they get put back out for use.

 

Kent

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That kart looks very good for it's age and having been dormant for sometime. Your problem is it was never built for off road at all. I bought one of these Colemans for my grandson (used).


It works okay for off road. As "anickode" mentioned above a lot depends on how hard your driving it. Nothing wrong with pushing the limits if that's how your enjoying your kart but that will always cause some parts to brake. Even rigs built for off road use routinely need repair.

Your kart looks like it would be easy to sell and offset the cost for something like the Coleman that has "some" suspension and all new parts. The difference in the ride alone is huge as your not getting beat up by the smallest road anomalies. Just something to consider. Beyond that if you continue to replace parts as needed you will get to the point where repairs should slow way down. Good luck with it.
 

Crazznewt

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That's a good looking kart. You might try running those rear tires at a lower pressure. Also consider better front tires and wheels. You can try a shorter spindle and put in springs for shocks. Make sure everyone that rides it knows where to back off the throttle because of the rough terrain, and where they can hot rod. Those back tires are key in reducing shock, keep the pressure lower. At second look, your front tires may not be as cheap as they look in the picture. Try running them at a LITTLE less pressure.
 
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SquidBonez

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It definitely happens a lot on my kart. I think I've gotten to the point where most major issues are fixed, but I fixed and replaced a lot (both out of necessity and for modification's sake). Off the top of my head...

- Replaced engine (Robin Subaru 169cc to Predator 212cc Stage 1)
- Replaced bent axle with rusted-on rim hub after rear tire flew off at 30 mph
- Replaced all 4 rims
- Replaced all 4 knobby tires with slicks
- Replaced bent brake rotor and brake caliper
- Reconnected brake linkage that wiggled loose while riding (lost all brakes heading into a sharp corner at 35-ish mph)
- Spent about a month trying to figure out why my chain kept popping off (CVT bracket kept tagging it causing it to pop off, just removed bracket)
- Replaced chain that snapped and locked up rear tires sending me into a tree
- Welded rear bar after bracket holding it on snapped off
- Replaced carburetor after kart refused to start after sitting for a few months (small carbs don't like sitting too long...apparently...)

And that's just what I can remember. Point is, it may be frustrating but not only did I learn a lot about fixing stuff in the time I've owned this kart, but I've also gotten a sense of satisfaction in taking a run down go-kart that could barely move under it's own power when I bought it and turning it into a 40 mph mini-buggy that loves to slide around corners. Trust me, keep fixing - you already have a nice kart on your hands. As you said, reliability will increase as you replace parts. Soon you will have very few issues and a lot more fun.
 

SquidBonez

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