Build your own pit bike kit
Acquiring tools is a lifelong process. You probably started as a teenager with some screwdrivers, a wrench set and a hammer—but a welder is one of the last things you add to the collection, if you ever even own one at all. They require workshop space, money, and the specialized skills to properly weld.
It's understandable if you haven't gotten to that point yet in your building and tinkering. Fortunately for all the non-welder-owning makers, YouTube celebrity mechanic Colin Furze recently released two videos that show you how to make an awesome, fast go-cart with nothing but a simple tool collection.
Advertisement - Continue Reading Below
Now just because you don't need a full welder, you will still need some power tools to cut and shape metal—namely a drill and an angle grinder. You'll also need a particularly large 20mm metal drill bit as well as a 25mm bi-metal hole saw for creating the holes in the frame for the rear axle, but these bits can be purchased form a hardware store relatively cheaply. Everything else you need is par for the course—wrenches, allen keys, hammer, file, screw drivers—but you do want to get a set square and some clamps to make your life easier, particularly if this is your first time building something like a go-cart.
As far as parts go, you'll need a pit bike engine (more power and more fun than a lawn mower engine), a sprocket, an axle, a brake rotor and caliper, wheels, a steering wheel, a seat, and some other odds and ends including the electronics. You can get the exact parts that Furze uses from a shop called Pit Bike Parts for about 600 GBP, or $750. That said, you can find almost everything used online, and as Furze points out, if you buy a second-hand mini dirt bike you will get about half the things you need including the engine. If you want to get a full list, call up Pit Bike Parts and ask them to email you everything Furze uses in the video.
You're also going to need to buy some steel for the frame. You'll need about 12 feet of 2" x 2" steel box section, some 25mm x 25mm steel angle iron, and steel flat bar and plate in various widths and thicknesses (you can see exactly what Furze uses in the video). A vise is also going to be crucial to clamp and bend the steel, so you really want to have a full workbench if you are going to take on this project.