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Archive for Engine Tuning

AJ Whisler

Editors Note – For those of you who don’t know AJ Whisler, AJ is one of the most highly regarded and well respected Tuners in North America.  Why did I choose AJ to guest write an article on the importance of chains and proper chain maintenance?  A few years ago, I ran into AJ at my hometown track during the height of the Super Pro era and he told me something that stuck with me to this day.  He said that the teams he worked with had been noticing a 50-100 rev advantage on longest straight with new chains in a shifter kart and up to 400 rpm in an ICA (20,000 rpm) engine.  Because of this, some of the teams were putting new chains on their go karts for every heat and main event.  Realizing this was not economically feasible for 99% of karters, AJ went on to do many hours of dyno and track testing and development to come up with low friction, highly durable chains that you don’t need to replace for every race to maintain peak performance.  (For more information on AJ’s chains, click here to be taken to AJ’s website whisler-racing.com).  So, who better to give us tips and technical insight into optimizing your chain than AJ Whisler…

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Categories : Engine Tuning
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As I mentioned in last month’s article on Spark Plug Reading, Plug Reading will get you close but to really optimize your jetting, you need to incorporate the piston read and data analysis into the equation.  Without data analysis, you will have no real way of determining what your optimum spark plug and piston color should be.  In addition, the piston will give you a better indication of whether or not you are too lean and/or detonating, the first sign that you are on the edge of optimization and on the verge of a blow-up…

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Unfortunately for many of us in the US, the option to race your ICC powered kart is vastly disappearing.  While you would think switching between two shifter motors would be a simple matter of bolting the new motor on and you’re off, there’s a lot more to it than that, especially if you are buying a used Honda.  The big difference is that while the ICC is self contained except for the water pump, everything but the water pump is an external component on a Honda.  Consequently, you need to find a place to securely mount many of the fuel and ignition system components somewhere on the engine or your kart.  I think I fell into every pitfall you can imagine while making the transition to Stock Honda.  Luckily for you, I will recount it all so you don’t have to…

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Given the plethora of kart classes out there and the hundreds (well, maybe not hundreds but it sure seems like it sometimes) of different racing kart engines, you may be wondering how is FKI going to tackle the art of engine tuning.  Well, at the end of the day, regardless of the type of motor you run, engine tuning usually boils down to one component – how does your sparkplug look.  Your sparkplug reveals many things about your jetting so the more knowledgeable you are about reading a plug, the better you will be at optimizing your jetting.  So what are you looking for?  Well, with the help of SwedeTech’s owner and founder Reine Pierson, we will show you…

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Categories : Engine Tuning, How To's
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It seemed appropriate to start the Data Analysis series with choosing a gear since the first thing I do when I go to a new track is look at the data to assess my gear choice.  While sometimes it is obvious that you are geared too long or short, using both the graphs and the Time Compare feature of your data acquisition system can be crucial to picking the optimum gear that will move you up the grid in qualifying or a race.  So what are you looking for?  I’ll explain…

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The Bux Circlip Tool – just this side of magic!

There are a few specialty tools in karting that are a must-have.  They make your karting life so much easier you wonder why it took you so long to buy it in the first place.  This month’s Kart Tool of the Month – the Bux Circlip Tool – ranks highly if not first on this list.  The Bux Circlip Tool takes a job that may be one of the most difficult in karting – installing circlips – and makes it so easy, safe and quick to perform it’s not even funny.  As you will see in the article on rebuilding your own top end earlier this month, installing circlips is not only tricky to perform, but very difficult to describe.  There is a definite technique and art to installing a circlip and it is very difficult to do so without scratching the outside surface of the piston (or the inside for that matter).  Add the constant threat of the circlip springing out of the piston and flying into oblivion never to be seen again and you can see my point.

The Bux Circlip tool eliminates all of the above.  After reading the directions to quickly set the tool up for your piston type*, using the tool is literally this easy:  1.  Place the circlip on the end of the installer (pictured on the left above) making sure the circlip opening is in line with the groove on the installer handle, 2. Place the adapter/sleeve assembly (shown on the right in the picture above) of the installer snugly into the wrist pin bore.  3.  Insert the installer into the sleeve with the groove facing up (12 o’clock position) and slide the installer through the sleeve until the installer bottoms out and snaps the clip into place as shown in this link: http://www.fastech-racing.com/bux-circlip-tool.html.  That is it!  It will literally take you 15 seconds a side to install your circlips with no risk of losing the clip or scratching the piston. The Bux Circlip tool has single-handedly taken one of karting’s most difficult jobs and made it one of the easiest.  At $39.95, you will seriously wonder why you didn’t buy one yesterday!  You can find the Bux Circlip tool at Fastech-Racing. So, go online (http://www.fastech-racing.com/piston-tools/) or call Fastech (888-333-4181) today and save yourself time and aggravation for years to come.


* Tip:  Carefully remove some of your old circlips and use an old piston to set the depth of the adapter/sleeve assembly to your piston type.  Then practice installing an old circlip into the old piston to make sure you have everything set properly.  I found this very helpful.

There are a couple of areas mechanically when you first get into karting that are fairly intimidating.  The braking system immediately comes to mind as one, the other would be the changing the Top End.  These are two areas where you feel you don’t want to get into the unknown and make a mistake as you definitely don’t EVER want to lose your brakes and you certainly don’t want to accidently do anything to cause your motor to lose power or blow.  Well, luckily changing the Top End, much like rebuilding the braking system, is fairly simple and straightforward.  Once someone walks you through it, it is relatively easy.  So let’s see what’s underneath that cylinder, take away the mystery, and give you the confidence to change your Top End like a pro…

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Categories : Engine Tuning, How To's
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Working the front office at SwedeTech, I receive a lot of phone calls and emails from many individuals.  Some own our engines, some own a SwedeTech accessory, and some just want technical help.

One of the most common questions I receive is, “Can you send me a jet chart?”

My first response is, “Do you own a SwedeTech engine?”

I will ask the customer about the specifications on the engine.  TM, Maxter, Pavesi, CR125, Modified CR125 or Stock CR125.  Blah, blah, blah.

It is very hard for us to supply a generic jet chart without knowing specifics from our customer.  A jet chart is not absolute, it offers a baseline to assist in tuning.  There is no magic jetting that we can just guess at over the phone.  But, there is a definite process you can follow to build your own jet chart…

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Categories : Engine Tuning
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Last month, I highlighted some of the important areas of the Honda CR125 Stock Moto engine and racing program.  This month I am going to focus on our approach to running the Stock Moto.  Some topics in this article will be specific to SwedeTech Racing, but I will try to make this a broad as possible…

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Categories : Engine Tuning
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Ok, here it is Firestone Kart Info subscribers, SwedeTech’s Corner Stock Moto write up.  Nick has been lobbying hard on your behalf for a Stock Moto article from SwedeTech.  So here it is….. Just Buy a Swedetech Engine.

All kidding aside, there is a huge reason why the Honda CR125 Stock Moto package has become such a popular class.  Typically, your largest expense will be the initial purchase of the engine package, but the maintenance and running costs are relatively low when compared to many other karting engines.  If you are saying to yourself right now, “I can buy a clone engine for $200.00”, you are subscribing to the wrong newsletter.  You can put a wing on a Fiero, but it still is not a Ferrari…

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Categories : Engine Tuning
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