cyow5
cyow5 New Reader
11/17/20 11:44 a.m.

So my 2yo has already outgrown her Lotus (https://www.cartots.com/products/ride-on-lotus-exige-12v-sports-car-in-orange) but the claimed age range of 3-5 is what's really throwing me off. She isn't too big for it; it's just too slow. I hotrodded her Frozen four-wheeler with a bigger battery so she loved that but the gearing is just too tall. So her's what I *think* she needs:

-Foot controls including brake (no levers since I want something more in line with a kart)

-Graduated controls. None of this on/off switch crap. 

-Small enough for a 30" tall 2yo girl

Basically a kids kart seems to fit the bill but those are marketed as more for older kids. If she outgrew a "3-5yo" toy already, are these suggestions just overly conservative? Any kids karts small enough for her?

We mentioned something to her a month ago about getting a fast go kart for her, and she keeps bringing it up every couple days, so I'd love something with longterm potential to get her into karting since we are just down the road from GoPro Motorplex. 

 

 

 

Fueled by Caffeine
Fueled by Caffeine MegaDork
11/17/20 12:04 p.m.

https://www.fastkartsupply.com/pages/kid-karts-101-everything-you-need-to-know

 

they dont start real racing until you are 5..  Maybe try bmx..  they do it with balance bikes.

nderwater
nderwater UltimaDork
11/17/20 12:10 p.m.

Okay, my kids are jealous of your kid ;)
What does the drivetrain in the Lotus look like?  You should be able to juice it way past 3 mph.

PS -- the risk of injury goes way up when a kid moves from a <10 mph ride-on toy to a 30-40 mph kids kart.  Are you simply looking for a fun recreational toy, or do you want your kid to start their way up the motorsports ladder?

1988RedT2
1988RedT2 MegaDork
11/17/20 12:19 p.m.

When it comes to toy vehicles for kids, you can bet the corporate lawyers will beat all the fun out of it for fear of being sued.  Just buy products targeted for older kids or make your own.

Edit:  And naturally be 100% consistent with the use of safety gear.

Stefan (Forum Supporter)
Stefan (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
11/17/20 12:21 p.m.

Look at Power Wheels modding, bigger motors and battery (often taken from battery powered drills), better wheels and tires, etc. the methods should apply equally to other brands.

My kids are unfortunately on the small side, so my 4-year old's Kett pedal car is just the right size for her.  Her 2-year old younger brother is just a couple inches short to ride it, so he has to make do with a scooter for the time being.

That said, the 3-5 age range is likely more to do with the child's size, so you'll have to see if they can provide some measurements for the child's size range.

cyow5
cyow5 New Reader
11/17/20 12:30 p.m.
Fueled by Caffeine said:

https://www.fastkartsupply.com/pages/kid-karts-101-everything-you-need-to-know

 

they dont start real racing until you are 5..  Maybe try bmx..  they do it with balance bikes.

I'm not thinking of racing quite yet, but she does already enjoy the orange cone slalom in the driveway with her balance bike. 

cyow5
cyow5 New Reader
11/17/20 12:33 p.m.
1988RedT2 said:

When it comes to toy vehicles for kids, you can bet the corporate lawyers will beat all the fun out of it for fear of being sued.  Just buy products targeted for older kids or make your own.

Edit:  And naturally be 100% consistent with the use of safety gear.

The "make your own" part has crossed my mind. Multiple times. Mostly I'm just lacking in time and overflowing with projects, not a good combo, haha. Some of the toys I've seen have remote kill switches, but anything with a graduated throttle can be tuned down pretty easily. I'm more concerned about physical size. If she can't turn the wheel comfortably or reach the pedals well, she'll give up before giving it a real chance, and I don't want that. 

cyow5
cyow5 New Reader
11/17/20 12:36 p.m.
Stefan (Forum Supporter) said:

Look at Power Wheels modding, bigger motors and battery (often taken from battery powered drills), better wheels and tires, etc. the methods should apply equally to other brands.

My kids are unfortunately on the small side, so my 4-year old's Kett pedal car is just the right size for her.  Her 2-year old younger brother is just a couple inches short to ride it, so he has to make do with a scooter for the time being.

That said, the 3-5 age range is likely more to do with the child's size, so you'll have to see if they can provide some measurements for the child's size range.

That is seeming like my best bet since I can build off her Lotus, but I was hoping to find a "silver bullet" that also introduces her to an actual brake pedal. She also likes the music feature of her Lotus, so I'd have to do some kind of dual voltage setup. She wouldn't miss the music in something that never had it though. 

cyow5
cyow5 New Reader
11/17/20 12:40 p.m.
nderwater said:

Okay, my kids are jealous of your kid ;)
What does the drivetrain in the Lotus look like?  You should be able to juice it way past 3 mph.

PS -- the risk of injury goes way up when a kid moves from a <10 mph ride-on toy to a 30-40 mph kids kart.  Are you simply looking for a fun recreational toy, or do you want your kid to start their way up the motorsports ladder?

Haha, yeah my wife actually bought that for $100 at Wal-Mart several years ago, before we ever even had a kid. Sure enough, now you can't find them, so it was worth it stored in the basement for a few years, haha. 

Regarding the motorsports ladder, I just want to give her the chance if she wants it. My wife and I enjoy it, so it would be great if she does, too. She already fusses in the car if we drive slowly, flies down the hill on her balance bike, etc, so she is defintely a daredevil. With how she keeps asking for a faster toy, I don't want to be in the way. 

 

cyow5
cyow5 New Reader
12/3/20 9:13 a.m.

So I decided to go with the advice here and hotrod her Exige for the time being. I got two 12V batteries I will wire in series, and I'll run all the electronics of an inner circuit of just one battery. This way they get 12V, and the motors get 24V. I also ordered a a PWM-based current limiting circuit that should allow me to clip the max torque while keeping all the higher rpm power, so this should make it more driveable with the on/off pedal switch. I'd really like to go with a PWM on the throttle eventually, but this should work for now. I'll update here when I wrap up everything. 

Robbie (Forum Supporter)
Robbie (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
12/3/20 9:25 a.m.

I say get her a dodge viper. You'll have 14 years to test it out to make sure it is safe for her to drive. 

At 2, they are usually pretty happy with a box and some colored paper. wink

From there, they won't care. Get them whatever you like. 

 

Wally (Forum Supporter)
Wally (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
12/3/20 9:51 a.m.

I was going to suggest a drum kit. I give them to a lot of people's kids and they seem to like them. 

captdownshift (Forum Supporter)
captdownshift (Forum Supporter) UltimaDork
12/3/20 11:18 a.m.

I would take a trip down to the GoPro motorplex and talk to some coaches and find out what the youth karting leagues in the area start off in with regards to classes that have 12+ entries in a field. As a benefit kids out grow karts, so you'll likely be put in touch with somebody who has a child who either is or will be out growing their kart enabling you to pick it up and them to have funds to get into something larger. 

Karacticus
Karacticus Dork
12/3/20 11:49 a.m.
Wally (Forum Supporter) said:

I was going to suggest a drum kit. I give them to a lot of people's kids and they seem to like them. 

Or a harmonica laugh

914Driver
914Driver MegaDork
12/3/20 1:26 p.m.

A baby brother or sister?  Boredom kicks in muuch later......

In reply to 914Driver :

Yeah, but it's replaced with sibling rivalry which is worse.

cyow5
cyow5 New Reader
12/3/20 2:10 p.m.
captdownshift (Forum Supporter) said:

I would take a trip down to the GoPro motorplex and talk to some coaches and find out what the youth karting leagues in the area start off in with regards to classes that have 12+ entries in a field. As a benefit kids out grow karts, so you'll likely be put in touch with somebody who has a child who either is or will be out growing their kart enabling you to pick it up and them to have funds to get into something larger. 

That's kinda what prompted all this. I was hoping to find a "pre 5yo" kart, but I've not come across anything. I haven't actually asked around the paddock though, but that's a great excuse to get back out there. 

cyow5
cyow5 New Reader
12/3/20 2:12 p.m.
914Driver said:

A baby brother or sister?  Boredom kicks in muuch later......

She's already getting bored with top speed of her Exige, and her sister arrived two weeks ago, so I'm not sure that this comment is helpful or accurate in any regard

cyow5
cyow5 New Reader
12/3/20 2:15 p.m.
Robbie (Forum Supporter) said:

I say get her a dodge viper. You'll have 14 years to test it out to make sure it is safe for her to drive. 

Funny enough, she loves to check Bring a Trailer with me in the mornings and wanted to see a video of the red Viper that's on there now, haha. 

cyow5
cyow5 New Reader
1/18/21 3:29 p.m.

The good news - 0.5ohm resistance in series with the two 12V batteries helps reduce the low rpm torque without hurting top speed much (where current draw has fallen off, so the voltage drop across the resistors in less). I also figured out how to wire the second 12V so the motors get 24V while the music and lights still get 12V. It also charges off a single 24V charger in the place of the original. 

The bad - it was fast until it wasn't. Now I need two new gearboxes... Oh well, just an opportunity for more speed! She also loves the increased steering angle my Dremel gave it, so it is getting to be a good pre-gokart. Eventually I will also wire up a brake pedal to give her practice with the concept. 

 

Antihero (Forum Supporter)
Antihero (Forum Supporter) UltraDork
1/18/21 5:57 p.m.

A good scotch?

 

I don't have kids.......

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