February 10, 2017 at 3:43 pm #78021
I have been watching Two Flags racing channel on youtube. Seems like a really good beginner’s chronicle. The question I have is what do racers think of the LO206 specific Karts, for example the VLR or the Birel model (AM29 I think)? They seem cheaper and some places are selling a complete assembled Kart. What are the drawbacks? The first thing I noticed was no third bearing and 28mm frames. Seems the low horsepower enables a less built up Kart, hence the lower price.
TonyKart 401s LO206
Morgan Hill, CA
February 12, 2017 at 7:21 am #78032
Some of it is cheaper brake systems and less magnesium components etc. I really don’t feel most karts on the market are 206 specific as much as the manufacturers threw together a kart with a straight rear bar to take advantage of the fastest growing karting market in North America. I’m very skeptical to think many of these manufacturers even tested their karts with a 206 before they started selling to the public. And the prices are lower because they know cheaper alternatives are out there, not because it actually costs that much less to produce. They are just go karts made of metal. How does one cost as much as 1500 less from the same company just because it has a different brake, axle, and wheels?
February 12, 2017 at 7:27 am #78033
More specifically I’m saying the manufacturers that focus on the tag and shifter markets aren’t putting in the same effort in their 4cycle product.
February 13, 2017 at 10:22 am #78088
This is one time where Canada’s karting scene has had an influence on the US market.
The Eastern Canadian 4-cycle scene has been very competitive for a long time. The big Canadian Birel, CRG and Tony (and some other) dealers recognized the ability to sell more karts by offering a “made for 4-cycle” product years ago, and worked with the factories to provide a product that worked well with a 4-cycle engine (first Honda, then Briggs).
This isn’t as much a case of Birel, CRG and Tony putting their “factory” efforts into the products as it the dealers putting in the effort to get the factories to build a kart for their markets, and making refinements when necessary.
For example, the CRG “Tork” or RS-4 and RS-5, was also called the PSL RS-4 or RS-5 because CRG built those karts for PSL when PSL was a huge CRG dealer. When these karts first arrived in Western Canada in the hands of some drivers who brought them from the East, the biggest Western Canadian CRG dealer didn’t even know what they were because the Western Canadian market was focused on 2-cycle at the time.
These chassis have been refined over the years, and other brands have made chassis to suit the market as well (most notably of late, K&K, which is 100% focused on 4-cycle chassis).
These chassis are specifically designed to work with the ASN Canada 4-cycle rules, which mandate a 50″ max width and 180mm rear wheel.
When the rules are opened up to 55″ width and 210mm rear wheels and wider tires, it seems that either a 4-cycle specific chassis or a 2-cycle (TAG) chassis are pretty much on par with each other… the 4-cycle chassis are built for 4-cycle power, while the 2-cycle chassis are designed to be run at the wider track widths.
If you are buying a brand new kart for LO206, I would go with a 4-cycle chassis because of the lower cost. The big differences are they generally use lower-spec brakes, less “beefy” 17mm (instead of 25mm) front spindles, 8mm (instead of 10mm kingpins), only have 2 (instead of 3) rear axle bearings, use 40mm (instead of 50mm) axles, and generally use more aluminum than magnesium components, cheaper steering wheels (i.e. is a $275 steering wheel – about 10% of the cost of some complete 4-cycle karts – really necessary?), etc. to keep the cost down. Some chassis go down to 28mm tubing (or some combo of 28/30), but others are all 30mm.
February 13, 2017 at 12:08 pm #78096
I can only speak to the VLR chassis which was, from its inception, designed as a LO206 specific chassis, undergoing over 2 years of local testing and refinement. Its development was neither rushed nor compromised, and involved racing at several venues.
The VLR Emerald was also recently awarded the honor of being chosen the Tri-C spec class chassis for 2017. The results of the Emerald’s testing and development show in the results of the opening round of the Tri-C season at CalSpeed where the Emerald won the LO206 Senior class in a talent-packed grid of 30, against both 2-cycle and 4-cycle chassis.
February 14, 2017 at 6:29 am #78153
Rob got it pretty good, there isn’t really much different about them. They might market some chassis as 4-cycle but the biggest thing is just lower quality components because the 4-stroke stuff is more of a budget class. There’s some tubing differences, although how much of a change there is has not been determined, and they’ll typically run aluminum instead of magnesium parts and try to keep costs down.
Try to find a good deal on a kart and worry about the chassis type later. A generally agreed upon number is that a better chassis will get you about a half-second or so of laptime
February 14, 2017 at 6:59 am #78154
There can be chain clearance issues with crossmembers on 2-cycle karts when used in 4-cycle applications. The chains on the Briggs engines are inboard (between engine and seat) while 2-cycles are outboard. The chain can hit the crossmember depending on gear size and engine mounting position.
May 2, 2017 at 11:47 pm #81166
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