Home Forums General Karting Discussion Potential First Kart

This topic contains 20 replies, has 10 voices, and was last updated by  Jim Derrig 4 years, 6 months ago.

  • Author
  • #45549

    David Carrier


    I’m looking into getting my first kart.  I’ve been to my local track a number of times (NOLA) and demoed some of their karts.  From what I have researched and talked to others about, I’m interested in the LO206 class.  I’d like to purchase used but have a tight budget.  I don’t mind buying a new engine and buying a used chassis, but I don’t know really have any direction as to what chassis to look into.

    I’ve run into a few Margay chassis for sale.  I’ve attached the link of my most recent find and was curious as to if anyone could give me insight as to whether or not I can run this chassis competitively, or if it’s too dated, or even if it will fit a LO206 setup.

    Additional (but possibly useless information), I’m 6’1″ and weigh around 175lbs.

    I appreciate the assistance!


  • #45557

    David Cole

    Welcom David, first off, please update your profile name to be your first and last name.

    Looking at the kart, it’s an older style of kart and the engine is not a LO206.

    I would suggest looking at used options from the NOLA Motorsports Park facility themselves. Contact Damon Guy Cuccia. I’m sure if they don’t have something, he can direct you to someone who has something in your price range that will work right away.

    David Cole - EKN Managing Editor

  • #45562

    Gary Lawson

    Looks like around a 98 brava 4 with the front torsion bar removed and a flathead engine. I would stay away from it. You can find a quality kart about 3-5 years old for 1500 and add the motor

  • #45564

    Chuck hurlbert

    Get a chassis that is common at your track. assuming you are going to club race only, the most important thing in my book is the newer style brakes that are self adjusting. Ven04/05 style. If the brakes require shims to adjust then move onto the next one. They are not worth saving a couple hundred bucks.

  • #45568

    Patrick Haney

    When I look at a used chassis for sale, I’ll check shops like Comet kart sales and e-bay for avalibility of spare parts.  Do your research on the chassis you plan to buy.  Find out if a LO206 will work without mods to the cross member.

    talk to the folks at your local track for chassis for sale.  Beware of craigslist karts and do your research.

  • #45597

    Gary Lawson

    Don’t worry about the brake system if it’s for a 206. You won’t got through a set of pads in a 20 race season. I can shim my arrow brakes in less than one minute without hurrying. On the other hand the otk self adjusting system is the most high maintenance system I have ever used because they need bled frequently.

    When looking for a kart used, price vs how old it is is important. Also, ideally you would like a kart designed for low hp, specifically 4cycle.

  • #45642

    David Carrier

    I appreciate all of the responses and assistance.  I will disregard the discovery and continue on with my search.

    My local track is a CRG dealer, however I’m finding those carts to be fairly expensive.  Additionally, I’m in the military so I’ll be transferring every couple of years so I’m not too terribly concerned with sticking with a particular brand.

    I’m unfamiliar with the brake specs as a few of you have discussed, so I will look into that and learn the differences.

    As far as what Gary said about seeking out a low hp kart, does anyone know of any specific brands or models that are geared toward that criteria?

  • #45647

    Dan Brown


    Many of the karts on the market, both new and used, will not take a 4 cycle engine. The difference between the 4 cycles and most 2 cycles is that the 2 cycles have the clutch on the right side of the engine ( as you are sitting in the kart). The 4 cycles have an inboard clutch , meaning the chain is located between the engine and the seat. Many chassis have a seat mounting strut welded to the frame rail next to the engine on the inboard side, or a rear frame crossmember that wont allow for the clearance needed to run a 4 cycle engine. You need to be aware of the differences as you are looking at used karts because what appears to be a good deal at first might turn out to be the wrong purchase entirely. 4 cycle engines are becoming more popular and some manufacturers are now building a chassis designed for the low hp 4 cycles. Margay offers one called the Ignite. Some of the Margay Brava karts will accept a 4 cycle, but not many. The standard Margay Brava will not, but the Margay Brava 4.15 will. Your best bet is to buy a complete kart with the correct motor from a respectable dealer. It may cost you slightly more to start with, but in the long run it will probably be cheaper. Any kart you buy will have to be set up for you specifically. It needs the correct frame rail and axle diameters for your body weight/engine package/ track that you plan on racing. It will need the correct baseline gearing and clutch slip for you and your track. It will need the correct seat mounted in the correct location for your body size ( one of the most important adjustments on the kart is seat mounting). And it will need to be scaled so you and the kart weigh the legal amount for the class you plan on running, and the weight percentages are adjusted correctly. A good dealer will do all of this for you, so that you can show up to the track and concentrate on learning the racing line and how to get around the course, and not worry about a poorly handling kart. I got this same advice when I started, and didn’t listen. I bought several used karts off Craigslist that were the proper chassis for our requirements, and we struggled horribly the whole first season. It was expensive and frustrating. Talk to a local dealer that races at your home track. It will be well worth it, in my opinion.

  • #45664

    Rick Brown


    My club races world formula  (same block as 206) we haven’t found one chassis that you couldn’t mount a 4 cycle on? We have multiple crgs, top karts, Tonys, margays, Gps, Arrows, an All Kart, an Easy kart, and even a brm! You just need a Burris adjustable motor mount. If you have clearance issues you can usually play with the chain length to change the angle of the chain.

  • #45740

    David Carrier

    What do you mean by “angle” of the chain?

    And would that limit your drive sprocket size or is that generally a part that is standardized?

    • #45743

      Dan Brown

      Sprocket diameter is one of the bigger issues with a kart not designed for a 4 cycle. They can be made to fit, sometimes. I know the 3  Margay Brava’s  and the Tony Kart Racer I have will not take a 4 cycle without modifying the seat post/ rear crossmember unless a tiny rear sprocket was used. Maybe with a jackshaft they would work , I never tried that setup before. Margay offers a 4 cycle conversion that moves the rear crossmember straight across the frame to gain clearance . I think it would be much easier and cheaper for someone starting out to purchase a kart set up correctly than to have to mess with something trying to get an engine it wasn’t designed for to fit.

  • #45747

    Walt Gifford

    If you can find a Coyote Wide Track, that’s a good 4 stroke kart. LO206 will bolt right up with a 15 degree Burris mount.


    FAA certified jet engine and aircraft technician,
    Nicholson Speedway class champion 2001,
    Yamaha KT100 Service Center,
    41 years karting experience

  • #45748

    Rick Brown

    A shorter chain will make the distance between the sprockets shorter which angles the chain upward on the bottm helping to clear the the crossbar. As for sprocket clearance I could run up to an 86 on my 04 kt1 but can get a 93 on my new one.

    • #45823

      Dan Brown

      Rick, that is a great example of why he really needs to look a chassis over close before buying it. A 93 tooth sprocket is great, can’t get much bigger before the sprocket could possible hit the track under tire deflection. I measured my sons ’06 Brava last night in the shop when we were getting it ready for this weekend and it appears the largest sprocket that would fit on his mounted inboard would be about 60 tooth. The rear crossmember on the Brava is at a really pronounced angle, and isn’t far from the rear axle at all. I will be in the shop later this evening and most of the day tomorrow finishing setting up and scaling 4 karts for Sunday, I will measure my Brava, our CRG and OTK Racer and see how big would fit on them.

  • #45837

    David Carrier

    Well I’ve definitely been swayed to consider a complete 4-stroke set up.  I see on the Ignite on the Margay website and it appears that it’s trying to fit into it’s own class?  Or am I misunderstanding that?  It will compete in the Briggs class, correct?

    Also, Dan, I sent you a PM.  Thanks to all for the advice.

  • #45838

    Jim Derrig

    Might be a bit pricy, but it’s got almost all the bells and whistles you’d find on a full-blown TaG or shifter kart:





    • #45840

      Dan Brown

      Dave, I got your PM and replied, did you get my response?


      • #46050

        Jim Derrig

        To answer your question to me, not really except to the extent that many of those bells and whistles make it easier to drive and reduce maintenance, e.g., self-adjusting brakes.  Very few 4-strokers buy new like that; plenty of old gear out there that is competitive but you just have to be prepared to fix it and the learning curve is a bit steep, even if you have mechanical experience in other areas.  I rebuilt a BMW V-12 on my own and a simple little 2-stroke kart motor still had me guessing for the first year.

  • #45839

    David Carrier

    Unfortunately that is currently out of budget but I appreciate the direction!

    Is there any benefit to initially getting a kart that has “all the bells and whistles”?  Given my newness to the sport, would I truly take advantage of all the functionality of a kart such as that or would there be a lot of wasted potential?  I’ve always grown into sports starting out with something more basic and upgrading as I progressed and became more interested.  I guess, overall, is it worth the expense?

  • #45842

    David Carrier

    Dan, I did not.

  • #46033

    Brock Weiss

    Our local track runs a lot of 4 cycle classes. They run L206, World Formula, and the kid karts.

    You might want to give them a call and they might have something complete for you as I know they sell karts with the engines or without.  Problem is you would have to ship the kart down to you.  Otherwise you could look for something closer to you and go from there.

    other people have said to find a local shop and see what they sell or the track that you are at and buy from them. I agree with that 100% because then you have the support that you need right there if something breaks and you need a part you can get it right away

    I I know that there are a lot of good deals right here ekarting.com under the classified so check that out as  well as I have seen some really nice karts for pretty cheap.  Again you would have to find a way to ship the kart to you if they live far away. I   have bought three karts and I had them shipped to me with no problems so shipping really isn’t that hard

    here is the link to our club if you want to call them or check out their website


    At our track I see mostly

    OTK karts, Birel, CRG, and Intrepid karts are really good four 4 cycle and that is what I see most people run on the 4cycle classes at out track


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