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Link Belt Vs V-Belt Thoughts?

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Forum topic by Blackie_ posted 12-08-2016 02:10 AM 907 views 0 times favorited 13 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Blackie_

4788 posts in 2346 days


12-08-2016 02:10 AM

I just recently had the belt go out on my tablesaw. The belt that was on the saw was a V-belt that had been on the saw a good 7-8 years and I never noticed any vibration. I have a good friend that is a machinist which insisted I go back with a V-belt after I mentioned a link belt he said it’s been his experience with link belts that they don’t hold up an average time on the pulley’s is about 2 weeks before they come apart he’s had to go back in and replace them back with v-belts, his exact words were that they were junk.

During my woodworkers meeting last night I had mentioned to them about my tablesaw and brought up the topic on the belts, they all say go with link belts that they’ve had nothing but great luck. The link belts help to remove vibration and that the v-belts become stuck in one position over time and creates vibration.

Note, my machinist friend did say that I should go in and replace the V-belt about every two years whether it needed it or not.

I’d like others thoughts and experience on this.

-- Randy - If I'm not on LJ's then I'm making Saw Dust. Please feel free to visit my store location at http://www.facebook.com/randy.blackstock.custom.wood.designs


13 replies so far

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Loren

9606 posts in 3481 days


#1 posted 12-08-2016 02:38 AM

Never had any problem with link belts. They seem
pretty tough to me.

I think on smaller-radius sheaves the v-belts with
the notches on the inside may do a better power
transfer, but that’s an anecdotal opinion.

I use both. I think link belts are great for contractor
saws and in a lot of other applications may be
less beneficial in terms of vibration control…
remember a contractor saw motor is bouncing
up and down on a vertical plane as the belt
drives the motor. There aren’t a lot of common
machines that have that exact orientation of the
belt to the motor… even on a jointer you have
the full weight of the motor pulling down on
the belt.

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canadianchips

2600 posts in 2831 days


#2 posted 12-08-2016 02:53 AM

Your machinist friend is correct.
I used to have seed cleaning plant on farm. These motors ran 24hrs/day for 2 weeks.
Certain applications I tried link belts (places where I would have had to remove posts and frames to replace a regular belt) these link belts would only run so long, stretch continously.
I use a v belt on my contractor saw that has notches on underside. Like they USED to use on an old engine fan !
I think they called them SPEED belts.

-- "My mission in life - make everyone smile !"

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MrUnix

5978 posts in 2033 days


#3 posted 12-08-2016 03:13 AM

I’ve only seen where link belts will sometimes improve vibration issues (like on contractor saws), and are good for machines where changing a regular belt is not really possible without a lot of disassembly, but that’s about it. I’ve seen plenty of times where it made things worse as well. They also are known for prematurely chewing through die-cast and aluminium pulleys, don’t seem to wear or last as long, are subject to more stretch, and cost way more than a standard v-belt. Todays V-belts are made out of much better materials and to closer tolerances than those of yesteryear, so belt ‘set’ is not really an issue any more. If you have a very small pulley and are worried about the amount of bend required around the radius, the cogged v-belts will work just fine (never heard them called SPEED belts though). As to replacing every couple of years regardless – It certainly won’t hurt anything, but I think it’s a waste of time and money. Replace the belts when you start seeing signs of fatigue and wear or start experiencing performance problems. YMMV.

Cheers,
Brad

-- Brad in FL - In Dog I trust... everything else is questionable

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Blackie_

4788 posts in 2346 days


#4 posted 12-08-2016 03:18 AM

I can only assume that the v-belts can gain a memory thus his reason for changing them every 2 years, I like the responses so far as I tend to follow his beliefs over my those in my woodworking group.

-- Randy - If I'm not on LJ's then I'm making Saw Dust. Please feel free to visit my store location at http://www.facebook.com/randy.blackstock.custom.wood.designs

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woodbutcherbynight

3635 posts in 2243 days


#5 posted 12-08-2016 03:26 AM

I have had these on my contractor TS and the Floor Drill press for about two years. Nothing to really go crazy about and as others have posted they do stretch. Other machines have belts that are too narrow for these to work so I just replace when I see them starting to wear.

As to replacing every couple of years regardless – It certainly won t hurt anything, but I think it s a waste of time and money. Replace the belts when you start seeing signs of fatigue and wear or start experiencing performance problems. YMMV.

Cheers,
Brad

- MrUnix

I agree changing on a bi yearly basis is probably overkill. Checking them periodically and changing when needed works for me.

-- Live to tell the stories, they sound better that way.

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MrUnix

5978 posts in 2033 days


#6 posted 12-08-2016 03:41 AM

As to replacing every couple of years regardless – It certainly won t hurt anything, but I think it s a waste of time and money. Replace the belts when you start seeing signs of fatigue and wear or start experiencing performance problems. YMMV.
- MrUnix
I agree changing on a bi yearly basis is probably overkill. Checking them periodically and changing when needed works for me.
- woodbutcherbynight

I sort of amused myself when I went back and re-read that… while I do believe what I said about only changing when needed, I remembered that I have a belt on one of my lathes currently that has gone way past its prime. Probably a decade or two past it’s prime actually! The outer covering is gone, it has some half foot long fiber strands hanging off ot it, some small chunks missing in places, is faded/discolored/painted in some spots, and looks like it could snap at any moment. But it’s still plenty flexible, doesn’t cause any adverse problems and just keeps on working, so I just keep on using it like that. I guess “do as I say, not as I do” applies more than I had previously thought :)

Cheers,
Brad

-- Brad in FL - In Dog I trust... everything else is questionable

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DocSavage45

8373 posts in 2676 days


#7 posted 12-08-2016 04:10 AM

I did replace a v belt with a link belt on my old craftsman, which had a vibration problem. This was due to alignment. The vibration stopped. There are more refined v belts now and I would look for the newer technology on my current Grizzly 1023 should there be a need to replace belts.

-- Cau Haus Designs, Thomas J. Tieffenbacher

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Blackie_

4788 posts in 2346 days


#8 posted 12-08-2016 04:14 AM

I am fortunate that my tablesaw has a spring tension on the motor so swapping out belts is a cinch, quick and painless. Tom, I’ll be showcasing projects very soon. :)

-- Randy - If I'm not on LJ's then I'm making Saw Dust. Please feel free to visit my store location at http://www.facebook.com/randy.blackstock.custom.wood.designs

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Woodwrecker

4100 posts in 3409 days


#9 posted 12-08-2016 06:18 AM

I don’t understand what you mean when you say,”v-belts become complacent”

com·pla·cent
kəmˈplās(ə)nt/
adjective
showing smug or uncritical satisfaction with oneself or one’s achievements.
“you can’t afford to be complacent about security”
synonyms: smug, self-satisfied, self-congratulatory, self-regarding, conceited; More

-- Eric, central Florida / Utor praemia operibus duris

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Blackie_

4788 posts in 2346 days


#10 posted 12-08-2016 11:38 AM

Eric, that’s not the right word I was going for, please ignore that description, I’m not sure which word I was going for but what I was aiming at was when something creates a memory is called?

-- Randy - If I'm not on LJ's then I'm making Saw Dust. Please feel free to visit my store location at http://www.facebook.com/randy.blackstock.custom.wood.designs

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Fred Hargis

4756 posts in 2327 days


#11 posted 12-08-2016 11:49 AM

I agree with everything said above, but don’t get lost in what’s proper for a commercial undertaking versus a home hobby application. Link belts aren’t bad for something like hobby use, we just don’t put the hours on whatever it is to make much difference. They can be (and are) a headache with heavy use machinery, like in a manufacturing environment. Even so, in most cases I see little need for them….modern day belts are so much better than the ones from years ago; if you can find the right size.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

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knotscott

7784 posts in 3209 days


#12 posted 12-08-2016 12:03 PM

There are pros and cons with both types. It’s important to recognize that most stock v-belts are fairly low quality, and not representative of some the better v-belt options available. V-belts are more prone to taking a set, causing some vibration…especially the cheaper ones. The cheaper v-belts are also very prone to not being very linear, causing similar vibration as taking a set. Some of the better quality cogged v-belts are excellent….smooth, quiet, durable, etc.

My experience with belts relates mainly to hobby type home owners tools, and is limited to DP, jointer, and contractor saws. I’ve read that they’re not recommended for multiple belt drive tools like the traditional triple belt drives in some cabinet saws. I’ve also read that link belts can be tougher on the pulleys, and can cause more wear over time. Link belts are obviously very flexible and much less prone to taking a set, but they’re less aerodynamic and make more wind noise than a good v-belt. They’re also really easy to size and adjust in-place. Link belts have a tendency to stretch over time, so the tension should be checked periodically.

-- Happiness is like wetting your pants...everyone can see it, but only you can feel the warmth....

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KYSean

119 posts in 3430 days


#13 posted 12-08-2016 02:56 PM

FWIW, I’ve had a link belt on my 14” Bandsaw for 15 years now.

-- http://editedwrite.com

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