Difference in clutch

The most important difference is the Vortex (Black) sprocket spins on a roller bearing while the Vortex (Red) spins on a ball bearing. Ball bearings offer far superior performance.

In 1995 when I designed the sprockets commonly used today, I had to use roller bearings because ball bearings were too expensive.

Last year SMC purchased a HUGE number of ball bearings in order to get a better price. Racers now have the option of a better sprocket at a reasonable price.


Thomas Fehring P.E.
Is there a conversion to convert the older black clutches to the new style? If its just the basket disc and drivers can you just buy those parts? Or did the clutch itself change?
To convert your old (Black) Vortex clutch to the new (Red) Vortex clutch you will need a drum, sprocket and attachment hardware. Your old four-tab discs will fit in the new 12-slot drums. When you’re due for a rebuild, order the 12-tab kit.

Sprockets from 9T through 21T are in stock. #219 sprockets are available too. All "Red" sprockets including the tiny 9T are equipped with a ball bearing.

The website will be updated soon with a “Conversion” page. Meanwhile, please email or call.

http://www.kartclutches.com/About SMC/contact.html