Did you know, Predator 212 and other small engines that go on a Go-kart aren’t actually made for Go-Karts? They are made for usage on pressure washers, generators, water pumps, etc.
All these devices work best if the engine is maintained at a constant rpm near 3600 rpm and that is why these Go-kart engines such as Predator 212 come with a governor that maintains the rpm to 3600.
If you’re using this motor on a Go-kart or minibike, then there is no benefit of keeping the governor. Unless you want to keep the karts slow on purpose (for children) then don’t remove them. The only thing it will do is, make the go-kart slow.
A predator 212 engine with a governor will rev at 3600 rpm max, without a governor it can rev up to 5000 rpm (with other stock components). Since rpm is proportional to speed, if your setup uses the same gearing and tires, your Go-kart or mini-bike will be 1.5 times faster than before.
Here is the step-by-step process on governor removal of Predator 212, the procedure will be the same for Honda GX200 or any other small engine Honda clone motors.
Predator 212 Governor Removal (Step by Step)
- Unmount your Engine from Go-Kart
- Remove Transmission system and Drain the oil.
- Remove the Fuel Tank
- Open the Crankcase
- Unscrew the Governor arm.
- Using a screwdriven and hammer, and tap the snap ring of the governor
- Take out all the parts of the governor (including the washer under the governor gear)
1. Unmounting the Engine
This one is obvious, you can’t remove the governor while it is still mounted. We will need to open up the engine to remove the governor, which cannot be done while it’s still mounted.
However, you can bypass the governor without needing to unmount the engine (read below on how to bypass the governor).
2. Remove Clutch/Torque Converter & Drain the Oil
Once the Engine is out of the go-kart, you should remove the torque converter or clutch, whichever one you’re using.
It is very easy to remove the clutch, you simply take out the bolt and chain, the complete clutch will come out.
For torque converters, you can reverse the installation process to remove them.
Once your Torque Converter/Clutch is removed, you should drain out all the oil from the engine.
Simply locate the oil plug under the valve head and remove the plug.
3. Remove the fuel Tank
Use 8mm and 10mm sockets to remove the Gas Tank.
Use a Locking pillar or a screwdriver to pinch off the fuel line to prevent the fuel to come out.
4. Remove the Crank Case Cover
Before you remove the Case cover, make sure your engine is in a sleeping position and not in a standing position, i.e, the crankshaft should be in the vertical position, facing up.
With a 10mm socket, remove all the 6 bolts. Gently remove the cover. There is a paper gasket under the cover, try to not rip it apart. If it does tear, you will have to get a new gasket.
Once the cover is out, this is what you’ll see. A crankshaft, A Camshaft, a governor arm, and Gear.
We are trying to remove the governor gear. But before we proceed, make sure that you have the full view of the governor by rotating the crankshaft.
5. Move the Governor Arm
Once you open the crankcase, you’ll be able to see a portion of the Governor arm inside the crankcase. Our goal is to remove the governor gear so we will need to move that inside portion of the arm to be able to access the gear.
You need to loosen the governor arm from the outside of the crankcase with a 10mm socket.
Once the inside and outside parts are apart, you’ll be able to move the inside part of the governor’s arm freely.
6. Removing the Governor Gear
Finally, now we can remove the governor.
When you look inside, you’ll first see a white shaft that you can easily take out with your plier.
You’ll then be able to see a small lock clip at the bottom.
Take a hammer and a screwdriver and tap on that clip to loosen it up. You can tap it gently or with force, it doesn’t matter because you’ll be throwing away that governor either way.
Expanding the lock ring (clip) can be a long process, so be patient.
7. Take out all the parts of the Governor
Do not leave any part behind, there is a washer underneath the governor gear, make sure to take it out. It can be difficult sometimes to take that washer out, use a magnetic tp screwdriver if you have one.
You’re not done just yet. There is some debris always leftover after the process, try to clean as much as you can. Any leftover metals inside can make a lot of damage to the crankshaft.
And Finally, you can now reassemble all the parts. Reconnect the outside portion of the governor arm to the inside portion and put back the crank cover.
While putting the linkage back together, you will have to use an extra spring to provide the governor linkage with extra tension.
You can remove the arm completely and fill the hole, but the easiest thing to do is to let the governor arm on, it is basically useless without the other parts of the governor. You can also change the throttle linkage after the governor is removed.
Zip Tie Method (Governor Bypass)
Ideally, you should remove the governor completely because you don’t want the governor gear to be rotating at high speeds. But, some people do not like the hassle of opening up their engine. For them, there is another method of bypassing the governor (aka making the governor useless)
All you’ll need is a zip tie and a 10mm socket to remove the fuel tank. You can choose to not remove the tank but removing it will make the process easier.
The governor arm has 2 springs that come out of it, one from the end and another from the middle. All you need to do is zip tie the spring that is coming from the middle of the governor arm (like shown in the pic below).
The governor can control the speed by pulling that spring, so if you tie it down, the spring won’t expand and the governor becomes useless.
It is recommended to rather remove the governor because you do not want the governor gear to be spinning at high rpm when it is designed to be working at 3600 rpm.
Risks of Removing the Governor
Removing the governor will increase the maximum rpm of the engine, but the internal parts of the Predator 212 are designed for 3600 rpm. Generally, this isn’t an issue with just the governor removal, the internal parts can usually withstand 5000 rpm without breaking apart (unless you go full throttle for too long).
If you further add 18lb valve springs and other mods, then it is highly recommended to get a billet flywheel and billet rod. You can also get them just after the removal of the governor for extra safety.
What does removing the governor do?
Small engines use mechanical governors to limit the speed by limiting the throttle opening when the engine reaches a certain rpm.
If you look inside a governor, it has a gear, some flyweights, and an arm. The governor gear is connected with the crankshaft and rotates with it.
When the governor gear rotates, the flyweights experience centrifugal force and fly out, which in turn pushes a white shaft up.
This white shaft pushes the governor’s arm up from the inside, which results in the governor’s arm experiencing a force on the outside half. The governor’s arm has a spring that connects to the carburetor throttle and gives speed control to the governor.
When the spring is stretched the throttle will try to close, that is why you can make the governor useless by just zipping the spring.