If you are looking to build your own Go Kart and are looking at plans there are five things a good Go Kart plan should cover. These are its safety features, its center of gravity, the go kart rider, ease of construction (framing) and horizontal mount or vertical engine. Here are some things to ask yourself or check the plan for in terms of those 5 things.
The key thing you should be looking for is that is it as able to adopt a full roll cage system. This would ensure that you get the most protection possible should the go kart roll over. While rolling over is not the worst accident that can happen in a go kart, the fact is when you look at the statistics of all go kart injuries, nearly three quarters of those are trauma to the neck and head from rolling over. A roll cage with give you some protection if a roll over should happen and protect you from potential neck and head injuries.
Its center of gravity positioning is another important thing to look at and unfortunately a lot of go karters over look it. When the center of gravity is off doing something like placing the front wheels more forward for more room can create huge problems on your steering. When you want to turn you can carry on going straight. The mistake of not considering the center of gravity is one many home builders make. When looking at a good go kart plan this issue should be accounted for to prevent having to make huge changes to its build at a later date when things do not go right.
As in how many riders are there going to be for this go kart? This will then affect how large the go kart needs to be, the size of the brakes and the tires, the gear ratio that will be required and how much horsepower it needs.
A good go kart plan should cover how to fixture the frame so that you are able to assemble it. Often these plans may have the whole design of the kart but the details and specifics of how to fixture it and jig it are missing or at best vague. A plan that is step by step and clear is more likely to lead to a better constructed go kart.
Ideally you want the option of being able to decide whether you want a horizontal or vertical engine in the frame. While the vertical option is more difficult you still need to know it will fit and can be worked on when needed.
Other tips on what a good go kart plan should cover