Matched V-Belt or Twist Lock

I have a lathe that requires two long main drive belts from the motor
to the headstock. The old belts are shot and I am seeking replacement.
I am aware that with two belts, they need to be matched in lentgth,
otherwise vibration can be introduced from the two belts fighting
eachother.
My question is do the twist lock belts have any advantage for multiple
belt drive applications? Can the twist lock belts be matched in
length accurately? Anyone here with personal experience? In general,
it seems like the twist lock belts are a high cost alternative. Don't
know if they are worth the $$$. Ultimately I'm seeking drive belts
that will run quiet and minimize vibration into the spindle.
Reply to
gradstdnt
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My rockwell also requires two matched belts (per the manual). I don't look forward to changing them because pulling the spindle to replace them is a major job. Please let us know what you find. chuck
Reply to
Charles A. Sherwood
I have learned a lot about belts lately. I have learned to never buy a machine belt from a place that hangs them up on nails (their lifetime is related to exposure to oxygen, so they should be put away in drawers). I have learned that lots of pulleys you would think would have little runout actually run out a LOT. I have also learned that a pair of B belts in the 40-50 inch range can easily run $40-50. Given that, I think buying some name brand twist lock belts would be cheap, not expensive. How much is your time worth tearing apart your headstock? Once you get the belts, if one is a smidge longer than the other, the other will stretch first. I doubt you run your lathe fully loaded (requiring both belts) very often anyway. So I suggest you try TL and see if and how bad it vibrates.
Grant
gradstdnt wrote:
Reply to
Grant Erwin
These belts are matched by pre-stretching them.
Reply to
Dennis J Brown
The documentation that came with my twist-lock belts recommends them for use in multiple belt installations.
Martin.
Reply to
Martin Whybrow
Belts are easy to change on this lathe, Clausing Colchester, and don't require any messing with the headstock. McMaster has matched sets starting at 66" for around $30 for two. Twist lock is $6.24/ft. Needing at least 10ft for two puts it at over $60, twice as much.
I agree if there was a lot of labor involved with putting these on, the cost difference wouldn't be that significant. In past google searches, I've read that can create more operating noise and are hard on the pulleys. My old belts ran quiet, but were badly worn, and obviously not worn evenly. This resulted in some gear slap in the headstock as the input spindle speeds up and slow down from the two belts fighting each other. One belt is physically looser and under running conditions, has a low freqency resonance. I'm wondering if the twist lock belts aren't of even length, that the same condition could exist.
Reply to
gradstdnt
In article , gradstdnt snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com says...
I'm surprised to see matched belts in McMaster. I didn't think belt matching was an issue these days. Gates did away with it perhaps 20 years ago with better control over belt length. I'm a big McMaster fan, but if have a good power transmission house nearby, a Gates B66 belt should be less than $10 - my price is $7.10/ea.
Ned Simmons
Reply to
Ned Simmons
I've had the same experience as Ned. I recently replaced the triple belts on my lathe and the local power transmission dealer told me that belt matching is no longer done by the name brand belt mfg'rs because of quality control. I paid about $8.00 a piece for the best quality they had and they have worked fine. Jim
Reply to
Jim Schwitters
I don't know a lot about belt lifetime and what affects them but it seems to me that they would also be exposed to oxygen in a drawer, unless the drawer has one of those fancy ntrogen blanket systems.
Just guessing here, but maybe belts store better in drawers because that limits exposure to UV.
Reply to
Mike Henry
I do this pretty regularly..and have found a fair amount of difference in Browning and some Gates belts, when each brand is purchased as a unmatched pair. Probably 60% of them are a smidge different. Not a big deal, but big enough for the types of lathes I do this on. that I always specify a matched pair of one or the other brand
Gunner
Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.
Reply to
Gunner
I can't answer your technical questions, but this one I can. I have the twist-lock belts on a lot of my machinery, including my cabinet saw, which takes three "matched" belts. Everything works just fine; my cabinet saw easily passes the "nickel" test. I wrote a mini-review on the belts a year or two ago. It's at
formatting link
They are.
Despite the glowing praise in my web-site write-up, the link belts are no better than cogged v-belts in some applications, and no better than ordinary v-belts in others. I learned much of this by experimentation after writing that review, but have not gotten round to updating the page.
Cogged belts share many of the advantages of link belts: excellent vibration dampening characteristics, reduced slippage, higher energy efficiency, longer life, and resistance to taking a set.
Additionally, there is no waste, as occurs with a link belt when there is a leftover, unused portion, and which drives the already high cost of link belts up even more. On the down side, cogged belts are not adjustable, and in the event of a broken belt (exceedingly rare) the entire belt is lost, as opposed to one or a few links. Personally, I'd be quite willing to give up these latter two advantages in exchange for the cost savings.
Apparently the only unchallenged advantages of the link belts are (1) the ease of replacement -- especially in cases where machinery must ordinarily be disassembled for it -- and (2) the ease of maintaining spare inventory. (Anybody, please feel free to jump in and correct me if I'm missing something here.)
While both the link belts and the cogged v-belts dampen vibration, the link belts are a little better with lower frequency vibrations such as are cause by pulley or load imbalances and such. However, both types of belt also introduce some higher frequency noise owing to their "teeth." In this respect the link belts are noticeably worse (louder in the higher frequencies), and they also "squeak" a bit from the links rubbing against one another and the pulleys or sheaves.
Because of this, a particular machine may sound quieter or louder with the link belt than with a cogged or regular v-belt. On all my machines that run them, save one, the link belts seem as quiet or quieter than regular or cogged v-belts. The oddball is a woodworking bandsaw whose sheet metal stand apparently oscillates in harmony with the higher pitch of the link belt links. That saw runs about 3 dBA quieter with a cogged v-belt and 2 dBA quieter with a regular v-belt.
Here is some pricing information I collected from MSC
formatting link
, one of my favorite industrial suppliers. Prices for 36", 48", and 60" classic v-belts are $6.80, $8.16, and $9.35, respectively. Cogged belts in the same sizes run $8.43, $10.14, and $11.47. Assuming no waste, the same link belts would cost about $12, $16, and $20 each. Something to think about.
Reply to
Jim Wilson
I'm afraid I have to agree. The laws of physics dictate that gases are evently distributed in the atmosphere, as I recall. I don't know why a nail would attract more oxygen than a drawer.
Harold
Reply to
Harold & Susan Vordos
Harold..geeze man, did you think it through? Nails rust. Ferric Oxide. Iron + oxygen.
Belts dont rust. This means nails attract far more free oxygen than do belts. So ergo, if the belt was on that nail..it would be in the presence of lots more free O2.
Sigh..some peoples kids...sigh
Gunner
Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.
Reply to
Gunner
What can I say? There are times when I don't think it through. The vet said I need more iron in my diet. Thinking of adding a few rusty nails to my cereal in the morning. Think it will fly? :-)
Harold
Reply to
Harold & Susan Vordos
Counter-arguement!
Gunner..geeze man did you think it through? Nails rust. Ferric Oxide. Iron + oxygen.
Nail do rust. That means the nails attract the free oxygen that is available. This oxygen bonds with the iron from the nail to form iron oxide (rust). Therefore oxygen is removed from the area near the belt. Ergo, ergot, and etc. if the belt was on that nail...it would be in the presence of lots less free O2.
Sigh..some adults...sigh
Red Duct Tape is like the Force: It has a light side, a dark side, and it binds the universe together.
Reply to
R
As others have said, link belts are probably not the best choice for you. However, if you want matched belts and even greater resistance to belt slap, try banded belts. These are 2 or more normal V belts with a common backing between them. Do make sure that your pulleys are not worn though. If the grooves have worn deeper making the tops sharp, they can cut the banding leaving you with 2 separate belts. Worn pulleys are not a good idea for other reasons as well. My fist lathe came with a link belt driving it and ran very noisily. The previous owner had fitted the link belt to save dismantling the headstock. The fact that link belts don't run very well on flat pulleys never occurred to him. I replace his belt with a normal one and left a spare fitted loosely ready for next time.
John
Reply to
John Manders
Hey...it works for my roses. Though I usually use swarf.
Gunner
Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.
Reply to
Gunner
Excellent counter!
Hummmm so if we put belts in a sealed drawer with nails..will it suck out the air, jamming the drawers closed and collapsing the cabinet? Gads...maybe thats why I have a stuck drawer on my rollaway......
Gunner
Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.
Reply to
Gunner
The concept is called a "sorption pump" and these are used all the time.
Take some activated charcoal, or some zeolite (which is nothing more than ceramic beads, engineered to have lots of pores) and then put them into a closed stainless steel tank, with one port on it.
Then dunk the vessel into a can of liquid nitrogen... and the remaining port will, indeed, suck the chrome off a trailer hitch. Your rollaway would be flatter than that proverbial tank car that got steam-cleaned.
Jim
================================================== please reply to: JRR(zero) at yktvmv (dot) vnet (dot) ibm (dot) com ==================================================
Reply to
jim rozen
Thanks Jim for your very informative post. I havent considered cogged V-belts. I thought they were best suited for use with small pulleys. I didn't know they had any advantage for vibration. I agree that a big benefit for linked belts is easy installation in complicated assemblies and one size fits all for maintenance departments. Neither of these conditions exist in my situation.
McMaster has matched belts online in the B size. I need A. In their paper catalog it states that all belts of the same size are matched. I haven't found this in their online catalog. The belts I'm seeking are 83" long.
Thanks again for all the responses. I'm going to pass on the linked belts and either go with cogged or just a regular matched set.
Reply to
gradstdnt

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