As chief mechanic, team boss and bottle washer I've been busy. Busy doing some things wrong but mainly getting it right.

While changing William’s tyres the other day something struck me - the length of the stub axles was different on each side. On the drivers left hand side it was 8cm to the threading and on the drivers right hand side it was 9cm to the threading. The length of threading on each side was of a different length as well.

Not being sure if this is by design or by accident I asked on the forum for some advice. Shouldn’t be a problem is the advice but worth replacing them anyway.

Good news on the chassis front - it appears that it is legal until the end of 2016 although I can’t find anything on the chassis to say what type it is - that could be a problem. Looking at other karts I can see where the chassis and serial number is stamped, but on our kart there is nothing there. At some point the chassis was recoated and the model number and serial number covered over. Maybe if we gently sand that area we’ll get the information back, maybe not.

Gear ratios are interesting me at the moment. Our front clutch has 20 teeth and the sprocket has 72. Hopefully I can get hold of a 19 tooth clutch in the next few days for wet racing - that should given faster acceleration out of corners but than an overall lower top speed.

William was slow at the last practice session and I know why - absolutely down to me. After I cleaning his back sprocket I took the back axle off and tried to get the two bearings off as well to try and clean them and give them a greasing. When I put the back axle back on I tightened up the bearings - too tight I might add as they were acting as brakes and not letting the back axle spin. I’ve come to the conclusion that either the back axle or the chassis (or perhaps both) is bent. When I put the back axle back in place the holes for the nuts and bolts didn’t line up at either end. I managed to get the nuts in and tightened each one a little in turn, then the other end etc until it was all tight. Today after experimenting a little I’ve found that if I tighten one of the bottom nuts up the axle doesn’t spin for as long when given a twirl. The nut is on and tightened to the point where it just starts to slow the axle and then loosened a little.

I was talking to a friend who told me about “parts washers” - you stick the bits you want washed in them and they pump the cleaning fluid around so you can wash the parts under a tap of cleaner basically. On the same page they have magnetic parts trays - trays that are magnetic so they stick to the kart floor for example and then any nuts and bolts put in them don’t go walkies as they too are held in place. Looks like I’m going to be spending some money down there!

We have a couple of weeks before our next practice so I’m going to strip and clean the carburettor. It will be interesting to see what condition it is in!

I’m also hopeful of leaning about the piston stops and timing. I’ve read some articles but they get very technical very quickly.

Author: Jez Caudle. Published: Wednesday November 19 2014