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Re: v-belts, some fond memmories from a wrinkled brain...
I got involved in the belt dilemma during the years I imported German
industrial machinery for furniture making. Not realizing the difference myself,
I simply replaced worn belts with similar top width and overall circumference.
But I ran into trouble, both in terms of performance, ie. slippage, etc.
as well as speed variations - a real pain when trying to 'synchro' a group of
Then I discovered that there are two main types used, each with a
different width to thickness ratio; one is type 'A' , the other 'B'. These two
are the most common, but other belts each have their specialties, like those
found in drivetrains for 'DAFS', as well as furniture machinery. These belts I
found were always of the slotted variety.
The bottom line is that the belt must match the characteristics of the
pulley in which it rides. In general that means the belt rides along the outside
edge of the pulley, ie. flush with the circumference of pulley - if it isn't at
the top now, where will it sit once the belt has stretched and climatized ? ;
also it's NB that the belt sides touch both walls of the pulley seat evenly on
it's way down, and it should keep that 'friction angle' as it is adjusted for
tension. If not the belt will destroy itself in very short time with possible
damage to other components.
eg. alternator not quite up to the job in cold weather when vehicle idles often?
belt could be appear to be OK but not up to proper RPM to crank sufficient
volt/amps. when it's really needed.
Personally, I never go for bargain belts - dealer belts or from a professional
belt shop - and I always match the belt to the pulley. As some say,size is not
the most important element in the equation; for belts it is their
cross-section - mostly 'A' or 'B' -then total length.... the final pun lies in
the ribbing and that depends on the application.