Go Kart Jackshaft

From Zero to Hero – The Go Kart Jackshaft’s Transformational Magic!

A go-kart jackshaft plays a pivotal role in the operation of a go-kart, acting as the intermediary between the engine and the wheels.

This key component takes the high-speed, low-torque output from the motor and transforms it into a low-speed, high-torque force to propel the go-kart forward.

Whether you’re a seasoned go-kart enthusiast or a beginner just starting out, understanding the function and importance of the jackshaft is fundamental to mastering the mechanics of your go-kart.

An Overview Of Go Kart Jackshaft:

A Go Kart Jackshaft is a critical component of a Go Kart’s drive system that transfers power from the engine to the drive wheels.

Essentially, it’s a central shaft for the drive system that features sprockets at each end. One sprocket connects to the engine via a chain, and the other, usually a larger sprocket, connects to the drive axle, again via a chain.

An Overview Of Go Kart Jackshaft:
Source: GoKartRiders

This setup allows for a gear reduction, which means the go-kart can have a high top speed while the engine runs at an optimal RPM.

Just like other parts of your go-kart, maintaining your jackshaft in good condition is crucial to ensure a smooth and enjoyable ride.

Requirement Of Go-kart Jackshaft – 2 Basic Reasons!

The purpose of a Jackshaft on a Go-Kart is multi-fold.

1- First and foremost, it serves as an intermediary between the engine and the drive axle, enabling power transfer from the engine to the wheels. This process is vital in propelling the go-kart forward.

2- Additionally, the jackshaft facilitates gear reduction – a critical function that allows the go-kart to reach high speeds without forcing the engine to overwork.

Requirement Of Go-kart Jackshaft
Source: Youtube

By ensuring the engine operates within optimal RPM range, the jackshaft not only enhances performance but also extends the engine’s lifespan.

Hence, a well-maintained jackshaft is essential for a go-kart’s efficient operation and longevity.

Should I install a Jackshaft for my Go-Kart?

The decision to install a jackshaft on your go-kart hinges on several factors.

If your go-kart’s design involves a straightforward direct-drive system where the engine’s output shaft directly connects to the drive wheel (as is common in simpler, low-speed go-karts), then a jackshaft might not be necessary.

However, for most medium to high-performance go-karts, a jackshaft is almost obligatory. It allows for greater flexibility in gear ratios, enhancing speed and performance.

Moreover, a jackshaft can make your engine work more efficiently—maintaining optimal RPMs and preventing unnecessary strain, thereby extending its lifespan.

Should I install a Jackshaft for my Go-Kart?
Source: Youtube

So, if you’re aiming for more incredible speed and performance or want to ensure your engine’s longevity, installing a jackshaft is a good idea.

How To Install A Jackshaft For My Go-Kart? 5 Simple Steps!

Installing a jackshaft on your go-kart is a step-by-step process that requires a few essential tools and components.

Before you begin, ensure you have a jackshaft kit, including the jackshaft, bearings, sprockets, and keys.

1. Mount the Bearings: Start by mounting the bearings that came with your jackshaft kit onto your go-kart frame.

The bearings should be aligned with your engine output and drive axle. Ensure they’re securely fastened to prevent any movement during operation.

2. Install the Jackshaft: Next, insert the jackshaft through the bearings. Make sure it turns smoothly.

3. Connect the Sprockets: Once the jackshaft is in place, install the sprockets. The smaller sprocket should be nearest the engine, while the larger one should be towards the drive axle. Align these sprockets with those on the engine and drive axle.

How To Install A Jackshaft For My Go-Kart?
Source: Ebay

4. Connect Chains: After the sprockets are installed, connect the chains. Make sure the chains are tight and well-aligned to ensure efficient power transfer.

One chain should go from the engine sprocket to the smaller jackshaft sprocket and another from the larger jackshaft sprocket to the drive axle sprocket.

5. Final Adjustments: Finally, make any necessary adjustments and tighten all components. Test the go-kart to make sure the jackshaft is functioning correctly.

Remember, safety comes first when working on any machine. Always follow proper safety protocols to prevent accidents.

If you need clarification on any step of the installation process, it’s best to consult a professional or experienced individual.

How Do You Calculate the Jackshaft Ratio? – 4 Easy Steps!

Calculating the jackshaft ratio of a Go-Kart is a simple process involving the counts of teeth on the sprockets. Here’s how you can do it:

How Do You Calculate the Jackshaft Ratio?
Source: eccarburetors

1. Count the number of teeth on each sprocket:

You’ll need to know the number of teeth on the engine sprocket (let’s call this E), the smaller sprocket on the jackshaft (J1), and the larger sprocket on the jackshaft that connects to the drive axle (J2).

2. Calculate the first stage ratio:

The ratio between the engine and the jackshaft. Divide the number of teeth on the smaller jackshaft sprocket (J1) by the number of teeth on the engine sprocket (E). Let’s call this ratio R1. So, R1 = J1/E.

3. Calculate the second stage ratio:

Calculate the second stage ratio between the jackshaft and the drive axle. Divide the number of teeth on the drive axle sprocket (D) by the number of teeth on the larger jackshaft sprocket (J2). Let’s call this ratio R2. So, R2 = D/J2.

4. Calculate the total gear ratio:

Multiply the first stage ratio (R1) with the second stage ratio (R2) to get the total gear ratio. So, Total Gear Ratio = R1 * R2.

This total gear ratio represents the overall reduction in speed from the engine to the drive axle. Remember, a higher gear ratio means more torque but less speed, while a lower gear ratio means less torque but higher speed.

Jackshaft Kit For Go-karts:

A jackshaft kit for go-karts typically includes the primary components needed for the installation, making the process more straightforward.

The key parts included in a standard kit are the jackshaft itself, bearings, sprockets, and keys. Some kits also include chains and mounting hardware.

Jackshaft Kit For Go-karts:
Source: Amazon

Choosing the suitable kit is crucial to ensure compatibility with your go-kart. Check the specifications of your go-kart, such as:

  • Engine size
  • Horsepower
  • The existing drive system to select an appropriate kit. Also, consider the quality of the components, as high-quality parts will improve the performance and longevity of your go-kart.

Before purchasing, read product reviews and customer feedback, and ask the supplier any questions.

Remember, a well-chosen and adequately installed jackshaft can significantly enhance your go-kart’s performance and lifespan.

So, take the time to make an informed decision and enjoy a smoother and faster ride with your go-kart. Happy karting!

How To Maintain A Go-Kart Jackshaft?

Maintaining your go-kart’s jackshaft ensures its efficient operation and longevity. Here are some steps you can follow to keep your jackshaft in top condition:

1. Regular Inspection: Inspect the jackshaft for any visible signs of damage or wear. Check for any bends, rust, or pitting in the shaft. If you notice any of these issues, replace the jackshaft.

2. Clean the Jackshaft: Dust, dirt, and grime can cause the Jackshaft and its components to wear down more quickly.

Use a clean, dry cloth to remove dirt or dust from the jackshaft. If there’s stubborn grime, you could use a soft brush or a mild cleaner.

3. Lubricate Regularly: Lubrication is crucial for the smooth operation of your jackshaft. Use a high-quality lubricant designed for go-karts or similar machinery.

Be sure to lubricate the bearings and sprockets, as they’re the parts that often face the most friction.

How To Maintain A Go-Kart Jackshaft
Source: Youtube

4. Check the Sprockets: The sprockets on the jackshaft play an essential role in power transmission. Check them regularly for any signs of wear or damage.

Ensure they are securely fitted and aligned correctly with the chains.

5. Inspect the Bearings: The bearings allow the jackshaft to spin smoothly. If they’re not functioning correctly, it could lead to problems with the jackshaft and the go-kart’s operation. Regularly inspect the bearings for wear or damage and replace them if needed.

6. Chain Maintenance: The chains connecting the sprockets should be regularly checked for proper tension and alignment.

A loose or misaligned chain can cause issues with the jackshaft and the go-kart’s overall performance.

Remember, if you need more clarification on maintaining your go-kart’s jackshaft, feel free to consult a professional or experienced individual.

Regular maintenance can not only improve your go-kart’s performance but also ensure the safety and enjoyment of your ride.


To wrap up, the jackshaft plays a pivotal role in the operation of a go-kart, contributing significantly to its speed and performance. It is imperative to understand its installation process, calculation of gear ratios, and the necessity of a suitable jackshaft kit.

Remember, the efficiency of your go-kart depends largely on regular maintenance and timely inspection of the jackshaft and its components.

So, always prioritize the upkeep of your jackshaft to ensure a smooth, enjoyable, and safe go-karting experience.

Frequently Asked Questions:

1. Why use a jackshaft on a go-kart?

A jackshaft is used on a go-kart to help achieve the desired gear ratio, enabling better control over speed and torque. It also allows for more flexibility in the placement of the engine and other components, which can improve the balance and handling of the go-kart.

2. What is the point of a jackshaft?

The primary purpose of a jackshaft is to transmit rotational power from the engine to the drive axle, allowing for optimal control over the go-kart’s speed and torque. Additionally, it provides flexibility in the positioning of the engine and other components, enhancing balance and handling.

3. What is a jackshaft on a minibike for?

A jackshaft on a minibike serves the same purpose as on a go-kart – to transmit power from the engine to the drive axle, allowing for better control over speed and torque. It also allows for more flexibility in the placement of components, improving balance and handling. So, a minibike with a properly installed and maintained jackshaft can provide a smoother and

4. What is the definition of a jackshaft?

A jackshaft is a mechanical component used primarily in power transmission systems. It serves to redistribute power and torque from an engine to other parts of a machine, such as a drive axle in go-karts or minibikes, allowing for better control of speed and handling.

Read Also:

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *