Building a go kart frame is straight forward. Arrange and brace the steel tubing on your workbench, tack weld the frame together, then weld everything up. We will focus on the base frame and bumper, then move on to other components in the next page.
Go Kart Frame Plans
The go kart frame plans show how to build a 2 seat go kart, step-by-step, with all of the correct gauges of steel tubing, sheet, and plate. So lets start with the base, which is made of 1″x1″x11 gauge square tubing.
Square and Secure the Frame Tubing
In order to make sure the base frame is level and square, set it up on a level work space. I used a piece of plywood (OSB) on my workbench and a square to position the frame sections, then used nails to secure the tubing. The reason why I did this is because as you weld, the tubing will warp slightly at the weld. Bracing the frame will prevent warping and keep everything square. The next step is to tack weld the frame into place.
Tack Weld the Frame
Tack welding the go kart frame is easy. First, make sure the tubing matches up (notice how I used a straight edge in the above picture to make sure the tubing was on the same plane). Next, make a small tacks at the tubing intersections. I made four tacks at each tubing joint. Finally, remove the nails.
Weld Between the Tacks
Welding the tubing joints between the tack welds will give you great results as the go kart frame is already stiff. To avoid warping, focus on one joint at a time:
Weld one joint side, then flip the frame and weld the other side of the tubing.
Double check all of your welds for the base frame, then move onto the bumper.
Do the same bracing, tacking, and welding as before with the bumper. Make sure you have the 5/16″ pedal holes drilled exactly in the center of the tubing 1 1/8″ from the edge of the tubing. These holes will serve as the pivot point for the brake and throttle pedals.
I do not advise grinding any welds down on the main part of the frame. However, for aesthetic purposes, its ok to grind down the bumper welds to smooth out the edges. First, I ground down the welds with a grinding wheel on my angle grinder, then used a sanding wheel to polish and smooth out the grind marks. The end result was great!
Alright, we are making some great progress now! Next up is the go kart axle.