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The Expert Advices | Simone sorio: perfect management of a 60 mini kart

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SIMONE SORIO:
PERFECT MANAGEMENT
OF A 60 MINI KART

Anyone who knows about karts and engines in general knows how fundamental the 60 Minikart is, the most formative class ever, where children begin to become real drivers, learning to relate to mechanics and experiencing race weekends as protagonists alongside their elders. Furthermore, although the vehicles driven by a 60-cc engine may seem simpler compared to a kart for adults, but they actually conceal the same problems and, even from this point of view, allow a lot to be learned. With Simone Sorio, a highly experienced Energy Racing Kart mechanic, let's see how to best handle a 60 Mini kart, without leaving out any recommendations for correcting the most common driving mistakes of young drivers.

1 Does the 60 minikart need less looking after compared to a higher class of kart?

This is what many who are not involved with Minikarts think. The Mini chassis is sensitive to any setup changes, just like an OK or KZ. Indeed, having less power available, even more attention must be paid, for example, to grip on the track: if it's too much, the kart risks dissipating power without being competitive. This is about a competition vehicle that is stressed for maximum performance, it is not a game. Everything must be taken care of in detail, starting from the thorough cleaning to be completed after returning from a session on the track, to check that all the components are in good condition.

THE 60 MINI IS NOT A TOY, BUT A FULL-BLOWN KART. SENSITIVE TO ADJUSTMENTS AS MUCH AS THE OK AND KZ

2 Which area of the kart needs the most attention while cleaning?

The area that gets dirty the most is the engine. In particular, the pinion-chain-gear wheel unit needs the most care. First, with the help of a brush soaked in petrol, clean the chain thoroughly removing any accumulated debris; repeat this on the gear wheel and finally take care of the engine. Therefore, spray WD-40 over the entire area, and finish the cleaning with paper or rags.

3 What has to be checked when cleaning the transmission?

The chain is certainly the most delicate organ, subject to strong stresses and friction: cleaning it after every session helps to preserve it. In fact, debris that is accumulated on the track or, even worse, off-track, can lengthen it, change the pitch, until it is totally ruined. If a minikart’s chain is dark this means that it has been working without lubrication and must be replaced.

The chain must be lubricated after having warmed up the kart on the trolley

Chain movement, perpendicular to its line of travel, of 1.5 cm is ok

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THE TIGHTENING OF THE WHOLE CHAIN MUST BE CHECKED

4 How often should the chain be lubricated? Is there a correct way of doing it?

The chain must be lubricated after each session with an appropriate grease spray. Care must be taken that the grease penetrates the meshes thoroughly. In fact, this activity is often carried out with the kart on the ground and, out of laziness, by quickly spraying it, believing that the grease will then move along the entire chain. This is a mistake! This gives a half-lubricated chain, while the other half remains dry. Another common mistake is to lubricate the chain and then start the kart on the trolley to warm it up or check its carburation. The result? The grease ends up in the chain guard before the kart touches the asphalt.

5 Is chain tightening important?

Chain tightening should also be checked after each session. The 60 Mini kart is not very powerful, so it is rare for the engine to move towards the rear by varying the tightening of the chain. I, for example, never mount the chain tightener, an indispensable accessory in the higher classes. The check should be carried out by turning the kart wheels and checking that the chain has the same oscillation, perpendicular to its line of travel, in all positions. An oscillation of about 1.5 cm is just right so as not to not have excessive tightening, which would be detrimental to the gear wheel and risk ruining the crankshaft. Conversely, a poorly tightened chain can jump and descend from the gear wheel, causing the kart to stop.

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