[Kartbuilding] Converting Transmission

Stephen Burke stephen at sburke.eu
Wed Jul 24 00:01:13 IST 2013

Hi David,

If you have a tractor lawnmower with a horizontal drive output shaft -
then you are in a good position. You can use chains to transmit the
power directly. If it was a vertical shaft, then you would have to use
v-belts and pulleys which can slip.

However if you want a full transmission with clutch and levers, you
would need to get the gearbox from a motorbike.
I done this previously. See photos at:
Now, it wasn't pretty, or light, but it did work. It had 4 gears and a
manual clutch.
If you look through the photos you will see I created a gear lever
system allowing me to change gears more easily (keeping away from the
moving chains!)

It was a bit loud - with the two chains. It was also heavy, as the
gearbox (from a Honda 90) was nearly the complete engine with just the
cylinder head removed and a plate bolted over in place.
It was great fun building and making it all work together.

I hope this helps. Let us know if you have any questions.
Best of luck,

On 13/06/2013 17:01, david kehl wrote:
> Mr. Stephen Burke,
> Hello my name is David Kehl. I am 18 years old and I am looking to
> build a go kart. Im planning on using a tractor lawn mower (with a
> horizontal shaft) as my engine to build an off road kart. Would you
> have any ideas on how to convert the transmission in a way that would
> require shift gears using a clutch and lever (like a manual
> transmission car)? Any input would be greatly appreciated.
> Sincerely,
> David M. Kehl

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