scheduling to assemble a racing lawnmower? Maybe you are a fan of this sport and would like to participate in lawn mower races? If your answer is yes to these questions, then this is for you because here you will get the tips and information you need to build a racing lawnmower.
Lawnmowers typically used for racing have the cutting blades removed, the height of the center of gravity is lowered, and the transmission is adjusted to achieve speeds of around 45 mph (72 km / h). To keep racing low-cost, entry-level classes retain many of the original components, while most open classes allow for powertrain and chassis customization.
The races are generally held on small dirt tracks to keep the races competitive and close. The races take place in America, Europe, and Australia.
Find the parts you need
In many ways, building a racing lawnmower is a lot like building a car. The first thing you will need to do is find the parts that you will need to build your lawnmower. This will probably be the hardest part of this process for you, but once you’ve found what you need, you’re on your way. Places to start your search for the parts you need include searching junkyards and yard sales and visiting eBay and some of the other larger auction sites. And don’t forget to check with your friends and family for old lawnmowers that they may no longer be using.
These are the main parts you will need:
An engine (of course!)
Rear-axle and axle mounts
Wheels, tires, and hubs
Front axle and knuckles
Transmission (right angle gearbox)
Heavy-duty motor component
The next step is to strengthen the framework or make changes that will work with its components. They have no suspension, so the frame suffers a severe blow. Reinforcement is essential to prevent the frame from bending and eventually cracking due to fatigue. The back of the frame was cut approximately 6 “from the back. Throughout the build, I used a 1×1 square tube that is easy to weld and work with. This is what I used to create the square frames that the mounting brackets hold the rear axle bearings. I chose to use a 1/1/4 “rear axle as this size is very common and therefore parts such as wheels and sprockets are easier to come by.
These square frames were welded to the frame and then the end I cut was welded to the back. The minimum height required for my class is 4 “from the frame to the ground. Therefore, it is important to know what size wheels you plan to use and where to mount the axles to meet this requirement. The lower you can go, the better mower handling will be. The mine site is only 4 “off the ground.
Next, we weld two lengths of the square tubes along the top of the axle brackets to the front tubular frame. We did this because the transmission will go under. A piece of the diamond plate will cover it, and on top will be the seat. This will allow me easy access to powertrain and chain maintenance and will also protect me from flying debris or potential chain failure.
We used a right-angle gearbox for this build. Why? Because the other option is to use a 3-5 speed gearbox that is used as standard on mowers. These work well, but it also means that you will have to change the grease on them and perhaps invest in hardened gears as the originals will come out much easier. With a Right Angle Gearbox or RAGB, there are only two moving parts. In addition, they are designed for higher-speed applications and are therefore perfectly suited for this application. More simplicity means more reliability.
In addition, we use a centrifugal clutch. This is a better higher HP unit that is stronger than typical kart clutches. The springs can be adjusted for higher or lower engagement.
Your steering system
To have any hope of winning races, you will definitely need a steering system for your racing mower. For this, a direct steering system will be perfect and will facilitate driving.
Most lawn mowers come with a gear-driven steering setup. These are useless and tend to get out of place. Therefore, it will be necessary to create a “direct pilot” system. In other words, a solid connection between the steering wheel and the front wheels.
The next thing we want to do is install its internal components, starting with the powertrain and then the brakes. You should know that there are several types of braking systems, both hydraulic and mechanical, but you will want to use hydraulic brakes as they work best for racing mowers. Not to mention, they are also much easier to install.
Once the brakes are set and installed, you are ready to weld the mower deck to the frame, including the battery and electrical system.
Then you are ready to create what is called the vomit tank in the mower racing world. This is the area that is designed to contain your engine, and since it is designed as a reservoir, it prevents your racing lawnmower from leaking oil on the racetrack.
For added safety and comfort, now is the time to install your seat. Most people use seats like those commonly found in schools but without legs. If you are looking for more comfort from your seat, you can cover it in foam with something similar to what you would find in an old car.
The last step before putting everything back together is to paint it any color you want. Something shiny and flashy is usually a good option here. Then you are ready to put it back together. Another thing to keep in mind here is to make sure you select large wheels that have deep treads. It will help you a lot when you use it for off-road racing.
Once you’ve completed the construction process, you should have no trouble finding events where you can compete against other racing lawnmower competitors. A quick online search for events should suffice.
It is important to have enough space around the mower for construction as it can be difficult to work in a crowded workshop.
Tools to modify the frame (i.e., welder, metalworking) can dramatically increase the cost of your project if you don’t already have a workshop, but borrowing or renting items is also an option.
Donor lawnmowers can be used inexpensively, as long as the condition of the engine and transmission remain good. Due to limited size and horsepower, most parts are OEM or fairly low-cost to manufacture.
Build the effort
Due to the unique nature of each mower make and model line, modifications will generally require the replacement of standard / OEM parts. Customization beyond that will require metalworking or finding creative pieces.
Cost of the race
Very, very low. Tire replacement, except for damage, is rare.
Transportation and support team
It can be loaded in the back of a pickup truck or on a small trailer. Support equipment can be transported in the transport vehicle.
Wear protective gloves and goggles when welding.
Carefully install the motor and battery.
Carry out all the necessary electrical processes according to the mower manual.
If you are a racing lover but don’t have enough skills to build a racing car, you can build a racing mower to suit your desires. And you know that building a racing lawnmower is not a very difficult task.