Tapered Roller Bearings - Karting

CLejeune990

New member
Why hasn't karting tried tapered roller bearings in the RS (mainly RR) of karts? Tapered roller bearings take a lot better lateral and radial load. I can see that there would be more drag and weight, but we are mainly concered with "corner velocity", which tapered roller bearings would reduce friction / drag from.

I guess this has been thought about, but was wondering the "why" in it.
 

PD Power

New member
Tapered bearings have no racing value whatever on a kart.
They pose a significant safety issue, when used on the front wheels, and ought never to be allowed on the front (steering) wheels.
 

flattop1

Dawg 89
PD
are you saying they need to be properly adjusted so as not to cause a driveability issue ? Or the spindle nut coming loose?
something else completely?
 

shane3fan

New member
Tapered bearings have no racing value whatever on a kart.
They pose a significant safety issue, when used on the front wheels, and ought never to be allowed on the front (steering) wheels.

What sort of safety issue would there be with running the tapered bearings?
 

LOUMAR

Member
Tapered bearings have no racing value whatever on a kart.
They pose a significant safety issue, when used on the front wheels, and ought never to be allowed on the front (steering) wheels.

If they are so unsafe on front [steering] wheels, why am i required to run tapered roller bearings [ball bearings not allowed] only on my mod with 15 inch wide wheels and 600 hp? Why have all US auto makers gone from ball bearings to tapered roller bearings on the front hubs? Are you saying that a kart puts more pressure and thrust on the front wheels? I don't think so. If it did i don't believe that ball bearings would be allowed. I know that a tapered roller will last longer and will not need to be adjusted as often as ball bearings.
 
Ya, I'm not getting the tapered bearings being unsafe bit, Paul...Please explain further.

I'm sticking with my taper bearing hubs in my street vehicles too!

The Arc taper bearing front hubs were very nice -- I still have a few sets of them lying around. Only issues I ever had with them was forgetting to use the undersized wheel spacers that fit inside the oil seal on the bearings, (the standard wheels spacers are a bit too big of O.D.) Finally I had some anodized bright blue and I solved that problem. :)

Thanks,
Brian Carlson
 
Maybe a bit unsafe because they require a pre-load to keep from moving up and down, that would mean that you would need to constantly check them, plus there is no way a bearing that is currently used in a kart application is anywhere near it's design capacity.
 
Pre-loading the bearing is done on ball bearings too. Every kart racer in the country already does this. Maybe I'm just missing something on the taper bearings being unsafe. Ralph Nader shoulda been all over this!
 
Honestly, in all my years of karting.....The Hornet karts from the factory with tapered rollers, All the Bug karts that came with them, and even on twins in enduro classes.... Never saw or had one fail. Never. How can they be unsafe Paul? Maybe with a negligent installation but that's far from being a bearing problem. I honestly feel that when you consider lateral stresses on a bearing, the tapered roller is a FAR safer design than any sealed ball bearing. Sorry, but experience has proven them to be just fine despite hollow minded speculation. JMHO
 

NAPA28

New member
The old forums had a good post about this.
I raced them in the mid 90s. Use a regular hub and just install the race and bearing in a hub bored deeper to fit the seal in.
Mike Clements and E.C. birt Tested and tested these and there opinion was that that didn't help nor hurt you one bit. No mention of safety was in this post that I can remember.
 

PD Power

New member
If the spindle nut comes loose....the bearing shoots off the end of the spindle.
One of our very best racers had to be air lifted to the hospital......SERIOUSLY injured when that exact thing happened.

Furthermore that tapered bearing idea is not exactly new. It has tested exhaustively for years. It offered exactly NO value to corner
speed or handling.
 

XXX#40

2A supporter
If they are so unsafe on front [steering] wheels, why am i required to run tapered roller bearings [ball bearings not allowed] only on my mod with 15 inch wide wheels and 600 hp? Why have all US auto makers gone from ball bearings to tapered roller bearings on the front hubs? Are you saying that a kart puts more pressure and thrust on the front wheels? I don't think so. If it did i don't believe that ball bearings would be allowed. I know that a tapered roller will last longer and will not need to be adjusted as often as ball bearings.

You might wanna re-think that statement, all front wheel drive US cars dont have tapered bearings
 

XXX#40

2A supporter
You said ALL US auto makers used tapered bearings in the front which is very untrue, most cars today dont have tapered bearings in them anywhere.
You were the one that used a bad example not me, US auto makers havent used tapered bearings on the front end in years

Mike Ward built a hub for the RF(non tapered bearing) on karts to overcome the side load it see's, but still no gain in lap times
I never said tapered bearings were un-safe on the front of a kart, but if they were so great every new chassis would have them on them
 

Motorshop318

New member
So if the spindle nut was pinned per saftey(tech)all would be good? Also if the spindle nut, unpinned, came off with a wheel using sealed bearings one can keep right on racing with no worries about the entire wheel assemble leaving the spindle?
 
Top