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Tkart magazine

Tech Focus | KG plastics: aerodynamics

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13 July 2016
The new 505 model fairings represent the utmost development in aerodynamic terms by KG, a leading manufacturer of fairings and kart accessories

When talking about fairings related to karting, it is impossible not to mention KG: the Italian company has thirty years of experience in the field and currently supplies many of the major chassis manufacturers. The first fairings created by KG were square-shaped and specifically for the lateral protection of the kart. Nowadays, however, fairing kits include a front spoiler, two side pods, front fairing and rear bumper. They are not only essential for safety, but also when it comes to performance on the track.


KG has several fairing models for karts in its catalogue, but the 505 is definitely the one that represents the greatest effort in terms of design and development. Unlike in the past, the primary objective during the design and manufacturing processes of this fairing kit was aerodynamics research. To solve the various problems in this field, KG carried out studies on fluid dynamics using software provided by Aotech, a French laboratory specialised in CFD applied to motorsport.

The goal of the KG 505 fairing kit is to reduce aerodynamic drag in order to increase the penetration of the kart and driver. Another, not secondary, goal is to have a more linear air flow in the air intake silencer, radiator and brakes area, which mean improved engine and braking system performance on the kart. The above had to take into account the stringent crash tests imposed by the Federation to ensure the safety and effectiveness of the protections in the event of an accident.
During the design stage, several changes were made to achieve maximum benefit in terms of "Drag", i.e. air resistance (CX), but above all of "downforce" (CZ), i.e. the force generated by the profiles that are orthogonal to the floor of the kart. In this sense, the nose panel of the 505 model acts as a wing, pushing the kart downwards. The lower area was subjected to the most study and work: as in F1 cars with an extractor, the benefits to be had are enormous and are not in contradiction with each other, because the load normally penalises advancement. Following the principles of the "Venturi effect", which states that increases to flow speed correspond to a decrease in its pressure, it was possible to achieve the goal of creating a slight "suction" effect that pushes the front end "downwards".
To develop the basic 505 hulls kits were evidence of The CFD (Computer Fluid Dynamics) tests carried out at the Aotech laboratory were essential to the development of the 505 fairing kit. The software that simulates aerodynamics allowed KG engineers to change the model until they were able to identify the best profile. A comparison between the BURU kit (also produced by KG) and the new 505 highlights the differences in the lower and frontal areas of the spoiler and the flows generated laterally.
Once work moved from a computer to the track, tests performed by KG confirmed an improvement in front grip using the 505 fairing kit. However, the advantage can be appreciated when the set-up is designed to maintain a good balance between the rear axle and the front and, in order to achieve it, compared to a kit that is more neutral in terms of aerodynamic performance, the 505 requires work on the set-up of the kart, otherwise there could be some imbalance towards the front. In fact, with the 505 the front spoiler is a real wing and its behaviour varies depending on the inclination. The CFD data shown in the table relates to assembly with the bumper assembly area perpendicular to the ground. To lighten the front, all you need to do is raise the tip of the spoiler by, for example, adjusting the fastening ring.
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