New Father son team

Hello everyone. My son and I just picked up a Tony Kart for him to get started with. I’ve been auto crossing and road racing long before he was born and now that he is 11 he would like to join me at the auto-crosses.

Where are you located?

Central Florida

What age bracket are you in? Junior (<16), Senior (16+) or Masters (30+)

Son is 11. I’m 40.

On a scale of 1-10, how would you rate your mechanical ability, or willingness to wrench on things?

10/10. I wrench on everything. :grin:

Talk a little about your racing experience so far.

As mentioned before I’ve been into motor sports a long time. Always just for fun. I took a racing class at Miller Motorsports Park back in 2012.

My sons experience is limited to Grand Tourismo and Need for Speed on the PS4.

What’s the main thing you need help with to get you started.

We need to put this kart together and would really appreciate some help on prioritizing the parts needed to complete it.

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Welcome guys. That is a very cool kart! What kind of engine is that?

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It’s a West Bend US820. Seller mentioned we need to buy the mounting bracket, clutch, and sprocket and chain for it.

Interesting engine. Kart looks to be in good shape. What’s your immediate challenge?

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I recommend holding off on the engine for now. It doesn’t appear to be the “karting version” of the 820’s from years ago. Also, not seeing the crankshaft PTO end, finding a clutch could be a problem.
I’d start with the brakes. As Dom mentioned it’s looks in good shape, but bleeding the system or even taking it apart to check the seal and do a good cleaning is a fine place to start.
Check the axle bearings, does the axle spin freely without noise?

Back to the engine. You can find parts for 820’s, mostly on vintage karting forums. Tell us your plan for racing the kart.
Do you want to have your son race at a local kart club. Or, are your plans to just bring the kart allowing for autocross events?
Local club tracks don’t support the US820’s anymore, unless you find a vintage group running them. But my concern with your engine is having to “convert” it to a kart race ready setup. That would probably cost you more than just finding a used LO206 Briggs & Stratton race ready package. The LO206 is also widely race across the state and is probably support at a local track near you. That would open it up to two avenues to run, both autocross and club level karting.

I guess the biggest challenge at the moment is identifying what is needed to complete it and get it running.

We are about to go out and start cleaning it up. I’ll take the wheels off and check on the bearings and work on the brakes. I’ll keep you posted on how that goes.

With regard to the brakes, what type of fluid is typically used? I have some Motul RBF600 and wondering if that will work.

Oh, and as far as the goals. For now we are probably just looking at auto crossing. Although I imagine gokarting events will follow.

I would shelve that engine for now to keep things simple. On the chassis, I guess my question is what seems to be missing?

Do you know what engine types are permitted for the autocross events you’re running?

Brake fluid, most likely it’s got DOT 3/4 glygol in there, in which case RBF600 would be fine to flush with as it is the same.
I would verify what type is in there first, just in case someone converted the system at some point:

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Off the cuff, you’ll need a sprocket carrier which is a very common and generic\intechangable part. It looks like you have a 40mm axle (I think the chassis is TonyKart Esprit), so you would order a 40mm sprocket carrier if that is the case.

One thing to note is that the Briggs 206, and other four stroke OHV engines are inboard drive, so you will remove the axle to fit the sprocket carrier where you can see the spot where a carrier was mounted before.

It should also have an axle key to retain it, so make sure you have one of those too.

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@KartingIsLife @Dedo I am guessing that even for autocross, the engine is problematic? In that parts etc hard to come by?

As far as current fluid it seems to be dry. I assume the two Allen bolts on top are for the fluid???


Generally yep. The hex bolt unscrews and you use a gravity feeder thing to bleed. The rubber bits may be suspect given the age of kart. Also, don’t use the wrong fluid or bad things happen, as James mentioned. On my brake system, there’s a cap you have to unscrew on caliper so the fluid that’s being pushed can leave the system (and make a slick mess). Use a catch can or something. I’ve always used the compkart one but I am assuming (probably incorrectly) that the hex bolt on master cylinder is the same across brakes.

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How does your boy fit in the seat? If he’s swimming in it, he could mess up his ribs.

Thanks Dom. I have some reservations about the seat as well. Doesn’t seem to be a good fit for the kart. Not sure why my pics continue to upload sideways.


So it should be snug with a rib protector on. He should feel like he’s being held in a bit from waist down and he should have just enough room such that the rib vest is making contact but he’s not squeezed. If he’s loose in the seat and he’s hitting kerbs right,left,right, it’s an issue. He’ll be pulling 1.5-2.5 G’s every 5 seconds and being thrown against the edge of the seat (if there’s too much play).

The seat looks like some kind of rental kart seat, definitely not what I would want to be using with that headrest in back. Make sure you get your son fitted properly for a new seat so he is comfortable and snug like Dom mentioned.

The 820 engine hasn’t been used in competition for a long time. They were falling out of favor and were a dime a dozen when I started racing in '01. There are much better options out there that will be more reliable, easier to work on, find parts for, and cheaper in the end.

It’s probably more work and $, than value in return. No recoil starter: so needs electric hand held starter or find/source the recoil starter. The engine it self looks to be from a lawn and garden application. That large flange casting with bolt mounting holes. It looks like a vertical shaft mount for a push lawn mower. same thing for the exhaust. So that also could be an issue for the crankshaft PTO size/diameter and clutch fitment.

Gotcha. So an lo206 or something which is inexpensive makes more sense.

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And if it’s for autocross, Eddie you could find a fun kart engine with clutch and its own fuel tank very inexpensively.
Eddie, I didn’t see a fuel tank on the kart. Did it come with one? Usually they are mounted between the drivers legs below the steering shaft.

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No fuel tank. Where do you guys recommend to shop at? Once we finish going through it I want to start getting the things we need.

Not sure why the back bumper needs bushing like these but we just removed it to clean it up and figured I might as well buy new ones.