Home Forums Tech Talk How to Align Go Kart

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    • #26733
      Don Robinson
      Participant

      Hi-

      A family friend purchased a Chinese Go Kart for our children.  It works better than I thought but it came with off-road tires, which wore down quickly.  We purchased street tires from Summit Racing, but they wore out after only about an hour or two of normal use.  The kart appears to be visibly out of alignment.   I have searched around online and see tutorials for aligning go karts, but they seem to be different go karts, and I’m not sure some of the tools they use would work with this particular kart.

      Can you give me guidance on how I could learn what tool(s) I need and what I need to do to align the kart?

      Thank you!

       

    • #26743
      Don Robinson
      Participant

      Hi, Thanks for the response.  I know, it seems hard enough to find an active go-kart forum, much less one any discussion about this kind of kart (it’s only 2 seats though, not quite as big as it looks.)

       

      The steering wheel has to be slightly at an angle to go straight, and you can visibly see that the front 2 tires go a slightly different direction.  It wasn’t originally like this, but I think my wife, taking our baby for a ride in it, drove it with a flat tire for a little while without realizing it, which might have thrown the alignment off.

      One of the tires (probably the one not tracking straight) quickly “corded”.  It is a patch slightly off-center.  I think I have the tire pressure around 20psi.  I put white-out on the tires and drove it until it seemed like the white out was wearing off relatively even across the tires.  Since the wear only seems to be hitting one of the tires, I think it’s definitely the front-end alignment.

      I did a lot of searching, and see alignment tools for a couple hundred dollars, but they seem to rest on the spindles and rely on a clear sight from one side of the kart to the other.  As you can see, there is a lot of stuff that I fear would block the line of sight on this kart.

      The kart seems to have adjustable tie rods exposed, similar to those on a car.

      Thank you again!

    • #26744
      Don Robinson
      Participant

      I figured I would add more specific pics.  In the picture of the front end, you can see the tires not straight.  It looks like both tires are corded now.

    • #26746
      Don Robinson
      Participant

      One more note, the bulletin board makes you upload pictures with a web link, so I had to “share” them from my Dropbox account, but they don’t show up in the message.  If you right click and “open in new window”, it looks like they come up, though.

      I have sent an e-mail to the manufacturer, and will see if I hear from them.

    • #26737
      tony zambos
      Participant

      Don,

      What do you mean by out of alignment? Are the rear wheels not tracking behind the fronts, is the tow off or is the chassis twisted. How are the tires wearing out? And how is it being driven?

      I’ll guess that most of us on this forum don’t have a kart with three seats and head lights. Besides here, can the manufacturer be contacted? Also, try to find a forum that caters to ATV’s.

      Update us and we’ll try to help.

      LAD Specialties customer / tony kart / rotax / kt100

    • #26777
      tony zambos
      Participant

      Don,
      couldn’t open any of the last set of pictures. The option of “open in a new window” is grayed out.

      Hopefully, all that maybe wrong is that you’ve bent a tie-rod. Check them and you should find the one that‘s on the not straight side is bent. If it’s bent only slightly, you can either remove it and pound it straight or leave it as is. If it shows greater damage, replace it.
      The ends of the tie-rods will appear similar to this.

      There should be a jam nut on both sides that prevent the rod from rotating. The rod will be left hand threaded on one side and right on the other. Loosen the jam nuts on both sides and rotate the rod until the wheel points straight. For this application, expensive tools are not needed. Take a tape measure and measure the distance between the tires. Measure between the insides of the front tires near the tire shoulders and once at the back. When the two measurements are equal, the wheels should be parallel with each other.
      Even if the tie-rods were only bent slightly and adjusting them corrects the problem, check all other steering components thoroughly.

      LAD Specialties customer / tony kart / rotax / kt100

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